Summer Activities & Adventure in Les Gets
You can’t beat the French Alps when it comes to Activity Holidays. Les Gets was one of the first resorts to recognise the demand from mountain bikers to use the winter ski lifts in the summer so they could really explore the mountain area.
Les Gets comes alive in the summer with the Alpine mountains creating the prefect playground for adventure activities. The village has a natural charm about it with the traditional wooden Chalets sitting beautifully between the trees and on the mountainside. The local Getois folk pack away their skis and get ready to welcome summer guests into the village. The ski hire shops quickly change their stock and before you know it the shops are packed full of mountain bikes and road bikes waiting to be hired.
Ideal for families, Les Gets has a lot on offer for children. The swimming lake, adventure park, bouncy castles and trampolines keep the young kids entertained whilst the bigger kids test their nerves mountain biking, wake boarding, rock climbing, rafting, canyoning and paragliding.
For serious mountain bikers there are over 650kms of marked trails covering the Portes du Soleil. You can easily leave our Chalet and ride across to the Swiss resorts of Les Crosets, Champery or Morgin where you’ll find some excellent downhill trails. You can even put yourself to the ultimate test and try out the 2011 UCI World Cup downhill course. Closer to the Chalet in Les Gets there is an amazing bike park with various jumps and tabletops, some suited for beginners and some suited for the more insane bikers!
If you prefer road biking then there are plenty of challenging Cols (mountain passes) to test your fitness and work up a real sweat. Famous cols like the Joue Plane which is regularly featured in the Tour de France offer stunning views as well as a great ride up and back down again.
For couples, singles or groups looking for a mix of action and adventure then the Vitam Parc near Annecy is a great day out with its Spas, Massage treatments and Turkish baths. There are also several boutique spas and relaxation centres in Les Gets and the surrounding villages.
We can arrange day trips to place like Chamonix, where the ice white glaciers really stand out working their way down the mountain side. You could take the stunning and memorable trip over from the top of the Aiguille du Midi on the Helbronner lift across to Italy, with the glaciers and mountains all around you. Annecy is also a good day out, dating back to medieval times with its 14th century chateau and crystal clear lake, there is plenty to do and see for all the family. Lac Leman, situated between Switzerland and France is also worth a trip. Propelling 500 metres of water a second 140 metres high, the water fountain down by the Lake front in Geneva is pretty impressive.
The weather, fresh air and stunning scenery make Les Gets and the French Alps a ‘must see’ for everyone. Most of us have seen the Alps covered in snow, but you haven’t discovered the best of the Alps until you come and visit in the Summer.
Mountain Biking VTT
Host of the 2004 world downhill mountain bike championships, Les Gets is a Mountain Bikers paradise. There are trails to suit everyone, with a similar system to the winter ski pistes grading the runs from easy (green) to difficult (black). Home to two times World Mountain Bike champion Fabien Barel, the runs and the bike park have been designed and developed with the help of his expertise. From straightforward off road riding, forest firetracks and wide grassy slopes to huge jumps, scary landings, impossible surfaces and split second decision making, the challenges await you.
For the XC die-hards, the almost never-ending trails wind their way up and down the mountains, through the alpine forests, crossing rivers and through alpine pastures. Covering the boarder between France & Switzerland the trails are superb examples of mountain biking at its best.
Road cycling is one of the major French National Sports for a good reason. With the open space, the amazing scenery, the fantastic choice of mountain passes and the respect from car drivers, it makes cycling a real pleasure.
From our chalet you have a great choice of mountain pass routes varying in degree from a semi hard workout to something off the scale! We can help prepare routes and provide maps, as well as being available to join you on some rides. There is a great choice of routes to suit all levels from complete beginners to the very advanced.
For the hard core ‘Roadies’ linking several of the more famous climbs like the Joux Plane, Col Joue Vert, Ramaz, Col de Colombiere and the Col du Corbier can make for a very challenging but very rewarding days riding.
We’ve all been on the beach and watched as wakeboarders and waterskiers get bounced around on the choppy waves eventually being thrown into the cold water. Well now it’s your chance to have a go, but we have a treat in store for you. The lakes where we go are calm and warm. The boats used are specially designed to tow people and therefore produce a nice clean wake, perfect for jumping or just testing your luck staying up and travelling from wake to wake.
If you have never done this before then don’t panic as we have qualified instructors ready to take you out and gently pull you out of the water and up onto the wake.
It is an incredible experience that when combined with the warm waters and the beautiful surroundings, makes for a truly unforgettable day out.
Rock Climbing & Via Ferrata
Several areas near our Chalet are perfect for first time climbers to experience the breathtaking adventure that is Via Ferrata. Gentle climb up a mountain face using permanently fixed safety gear and make your way along the side of the rock. A harness and helmet are provided, but you need to take your camera just to capture the look on your friends faces as they climb along with you! Using a variety of natural ledges and man made steps & bridges – both beginner and experienced climbers can ascend to the spectacular views at the top.
There are plenty of places close by for Rock Climbing. Using either your own gear, or hiring a guide and using their equipment, you can practice your multi pitch, bouldering and abseiling skills. The rock is mainly granite, and the crags are usually well equipped. Not far away are plenty of classic rock climbing routes like the Aiguille du Midi and The Dru.
White Water Rafting
White water rafting is a great way to experience the power and flow of the river. Sitting in the raft with your guide, you will be taken down the river experiencing the rapids, eddies, swells, water falls and currents as you journey downstream. The rafting lasts between two to three hours and the rafting centre staff will brief you on safety and equipment before you go. You can join one big raft for eight to ten people or take a smaller two-man raft.
Rafting is suitable for all ages from 10-12 years and over, younger children can participate if they are tall for their age. Everyone needs to be able to swim well.
The popular local rivers are the Arve and the Giffre – or for the more bold or experienced there is the Dora Baltea in nearby Italy.
This ultimate adrenalin water sport takes you down natural water slides into deep pools of water as you navigate the course of the river through gorges using any means possible – abseil, jump, slide, scramble or climb! The Canyons are naturally formed by the water cutting into the bedrock stone, forming narrow gorges with numerous drops, beautifully sculpted walls, and often spectacular waterfalls.
The water is freezing but you are well suited out with a wet suit and gloves. All you need to take is an old pair of trainers, your swimsuit and a towel. The adrenalin of jumping off high rocks into the unknown water below will keep your heart rate up and help keep you warm. Canyoning is not an activity for the faint hearted but it’s a great challenge and a great way to see one of the most beautiful canyons in the region. The minimum age is 12 years.
View the spectacular Portes du Soleil from the air and get a real feel for the massive scale of the area. Paragliding is, in effect, a parachute that inflates and flies needing nothing more to do so but the energy that is created by running gently down a hill using thermals to maintain and increase your height!
There are several companies in Les Gets and Morzine who offer tandem flights suitable for all ages. Normally you get about twenty minutes in the air to enjoy the view before you touch down in the village.
Paragliding tandem flights make a great gift if you have a family or group member celebrating a birthday whilst staying with us.
Not satisfied with travelling down the river in the comfort and safety of a raft or a canoe, your guide will kit you out in thick, reinforced wet suits, crash hats and flippers, then he will guide you down the river over and hopefully through the rapids to the calmer waters before jumping back in and heading towards the next rapid.
Normally there is the chance to test your skills by jumping onto one of the rapids and seeing how long you can surf the wave before you sink back in and get washed down stream.
Not for the faint hearted, but highly recommended by us if you want to experience white water up close and personal.
With average summer temperatures in the Les Gets and Morzine being around 25 Celsius, jumping in to one of the outdoor swimming pools or one of the beautiful lakes is great fun. Les Gets has its own lake which has supervised swimming with a life guard on duty during the day from June until September. Morzine has an Olympic size (50 metre) outdoor swimming pool, with a separate area for young kids and a play pool for older kids. The new indoor swimming pool in Morzine is due to be completed soon. There is also an indoor adventure pool called Aquariaz being built at Avoriaz.
Slightly further away there are some fantastic swimming lakes in Samoens, Passy and Montriond, where you will also find football & basketball courts, beach volley ball court, children’s play areas and fun water slides. If you want a day out with the option of swimming and relaxing, then the Vitam Water Parc near Annecy is great fun and features several water slides, wave pools, and a surfing simulator! There is also a huge indoor climbing wall.
Horse and Pony Trekking
Children can enjoy a 30 minute pony ride around the Les Gets Lake, or an easy ½ day trek. The ponies are calm and well looked after for your children to safely explore the area. Horse rides are also available for adults and children over 13 years old from 2 hours to half a day.
You can also do longer treks around the Portes du Soleil. One of our favorites is the trek up to lac Montriond where the turquoise waters create an amazing reflection on a calm day.
Each summer one of the local horse clubs normally put on a show in the area demonstrating the control and skill they have when riding these amazing animals.
The Les Gets 18 hole golf course is an opportunity to experience your game together with magnificent views across the surrounding valleys and mountains. The greens and fairways are maintained immaculately and provide a largely technical course amidst beautiful mountain woodlands.
* 18 hole golf course, 5264 metre, Par 70, 15 golf carts available, no handicap required to play, courses and private lessons available from mid June to mid October.
Hiking and Nordic Walking
There are hundreds of hiking trails all over the area which offer breathtaking views of the French & Swiss Alps. Choose from the massive selection of sign posted routes Mid Altitude hikes, or hire a guide to take you off the normal walking tracks to identify the alpine flora & fauna. There are also several High Altitude hikes close by where you can experience walking on a Glacier by hiring a qualified guide, choose from Glaciers in the Mont Blanc range, Switzerland or Italy!
Someone had the idea to suspend a wire high above the valley floor, then attach a person in a small sleeping bag and launch them from one side of the mountain to the other! Getting up to speeds of 100 kph its hard to let out a proper scream, but you hear most people giving it a try anyway!
The best part for me was the unexpected surprise when you come shooting into the other end of the cable, but that’s something you’re going to have to find out for yourself!
The Fantasticable is running all summer from the top of the Linderets bowl over to the Chatel side of the mountain. Definitely worth the experience, oh and did I mention that once you get to the safety on the other side of the mountain, they then turn you around and send you back again!
Annecy Day Trip
Annecy is well worth a visit. It only takes 50 minutes to get there by car. Dating back to medieval times with its 14th century chateau and crystal clear lake, there is plenty to do and see for all the family. The lake is a very comfortable 23 degrees and there are beaches along the edge of the lake for sun bathing.
The town itself is filled full of shops and restaurants. It has a very cosmopolitan feel to it with the cafes spilling out onto the pavements and the live musicians playing in the streets.
The canals running through the centre of the town look really pretty and the market is set up once a week a long the edge of the canal.
Chamonix Day Trip
Chamonix, where the ice white glaciers really stand out working their way down the mountain side is one of the most stunning and memorable places to visit. The towering mountains all around you create a real sense of adventure. It doesn’t take long to see mountaineers and other adrenalin junkies walking around the centre getting ready for there next big adventure.
The town has a real buzz about it, with the shops, cafes and restaurants all bursting with day visitors. The amazing smell of the traditional French delicacy as you pass each restaurant is enough to make you want to stop at every one!
The trip over from the top of the Aiguille du Midi on the Helbronner lift across to Italy, with the glaciers and mountains all around you is something everyone should do at least once in their lifetime.