Chamonix is a town in France in the Alps near Mont Blanc, the highest mountain in Western Europe.


Mont Blanc lies to the south and the Aiguilles Rouges are to the north.

The Arve River flows through the Chamonix Valley on its way to the Rhine.

Over 3,000 feet (1,000 meters) above sea level, Chamonix is a popular vacation spot for skiers, snowboarders and mountaineers.

The first Winter Olympics were held in Chamonix in 1924.

Every year, the village of Les Houches, in the Chamonix valley, hosts a leg of the Alpine World Cup.

The ski resorts in the formerly isolated village of  Vallorcine, also in the valley, are becoming more and more popular.


48 square miles (125 square kilometers) of the Chamonix valley are covered by glaciers.


The Bossons glacier moves at a rate of 984 feet (300 meters) a year.

A new ice grotto is carved into the Mer de Glace every year.

Climate change is having a strong effect on the glaciers.


Visitors to Chamonix can witness spectacular man made as well as natural scenery.

The town is a conglomeration of architecture from many periods from baroque to art deco.

Farmhouses and chalets decorate the landscape.


Chamonix is the home of Musée des Cristaux, a museum of minerals excavated from Mont Blanc


There are more than 100 hiking trails.

Snowshoeing is a popular activity in winter.

Mountain biking and paragliding are also popular activities.

You can even have a lesson in dog sledding.

The Arve provides opportunities for rafting.