So you’ve chosen Samoëns as the destination for your holiday. From restaurant recommendations to resort information, here you’ll find everything you need to make the most of the area. We hope you have a memorable and enjoyable time in Samoëns!
Situated in the heart of the Grand Massif domain, which links to the neighbouring areas of Sixt, Morillon, Les Carroz and Flaine, there are hundreds of kilometres of downhill skiing, ski touring, trekking, mountain biking, climbing and phenomenal airspace for paragliding and hand gliding.
Samoëns is situated in an area of limited development meaning you will always find some time for quality peace and quiet. You may want to indulge in the wide range of top restaurants, get hold of a bottle of delicious local wine or taste some real savoyard delicacies at the morning food market.
Samoëns is distinguished as one of the most beautiful towns in France and is also the only ski resort in France to be classified as a national heritage site. Add to this stunning views of Mont Blanc, fresh mountain lakes, vast waterfalls and unique alpine flora and fauna, and you have yourself an absolutely unique holiday experience for people of all ages and interests.
Mountain Lifts – Airport Transfers
We recommend Mountain Lifts for all your winter break transportation needs. Providing private Geneva Airport transfers, they guarantee your journey will be smooth and worry-free, with an immediate departure service from the airport. Contact them to reserve a private transfer for up to 8 passengers per vehicle.
www.mountainlifts.com Tel: +44 7366 848845
‘Bon Appetit Alpes’ – Delicious frozen meals to you
“The best online meal delivery service made in the mountains”
They stock a delicious and authentic international menu to suit all tastes and dietary requirements.
Simply order before 4pm for same day delivery direct to your accommodation. We Offer 10% discount to all Mountain People guests; please use MP10 in coupon section when going to the checkout online. ORDER NOW
From their kitchen to your table, no shopping, no waste, just heat, eat and enjoy!
‘Alpine Hampers’ by KPS– If you fancy a day off from food shopping, KPS can organize to provide you with various hampers (breakfast, basics, tartiflette etc…). They also offer a personalised shopping service and will deliver to your door! These services are only available when ordered online with a minimum of 48hr notice. www.kukipegs.com/food-hampers/ +33 6 38 88 94 94
Carrefour is the main supermarket here. It is located on the main road into Samoëns. You can also buy household products, kindling and firewood.
Opening times (general)
Monday – Saturday: 8.30AM – 8PM
Sunday: 8.30AM – 12.30PM
Au Nid Nature – This well stocked organic food store is located on the place des 7 Monts. You will also find the small Sherpa and Casino supermarkets in Samoëns town centre, these are often open when the main Carrefour isn’t.
Butcher Le Pied de Poule – This is a very good quality butchers in the centre de Samoëns. They take orders for the christmas period. View the Christmas menu. Résidence les Ecrins étoilés, 20 route de Sixt, Samoëns. https://www.boucherie-lepieddepoule.fr +33 4 50 58 74 03
From Monday to Friday
7.30am to 13pm and 3pm-9pm
Saturday: 7.30am to 7.30pm (non-stop)
Sunday: de 8am to 1pm
Société Laitière des Hauts de Savoie – For a wide selection of local cheeses, head to this placein Samoëns! Biscuits, jams and juices too. +33 8 92 97 26 60
Markets – The Samoëns market is held on a Wednesday between 9 – 12.30am. You will find all of the food stalls in the big car park near the large ice hockey stadium. If you love local, fresh ingredients, this is not to be missed. In summer, the Sixt market is held on Monday afternoons in the Place du Tilleul near the Office de Tourisme.
Patisserie – We love Boulangerie Tiffanie. It can be found just off the main square in Samoëns and there are 2 more: one in the centre of Sixt and also one just opposite the Grand Massif Express ski lift where you can buy picnic lunches for the slopes or for long hikes. If you want cakes for special occasions, try La Jaysinïa which is near Tiffanie in the centre of town.
Monday 6:30am–12:30pm, 3–7pm
Wednesday-Sunday 6:30am–12:30pm, 3–7pm
Opening Hours vary out of season
Massif Cuisine by Gaëlle Stevenson-Cooke
We offer catering services in Samoëns, Morillon,
Dailycieux by Jess de Jong
www.facebook.com/dailycieux Tel: +33 6 38 49 03 72
LVF Alps by Chef Lukasz Bodaszewski
LVF’s services range from home delivery of delicious classics to Fine dining dinner parties catered for you by chef Lukasz in your chalet. Prices start from 45 eur for 3 courses.
http://www.lvfalps.com email@example.com Tel: +33 6 42 63 32 55
Le Relais des Vallées– Great chanterelle tartiflette, unpretentious & incredible views of Mont Blanc. It should be your first stop in Summer. Open June to mid-September. Col de Joux Plane, Samoëns +33 4 50 34 91 86
Restaurant Mezzanine– French fusion, refined rustic food. Chemin de Graveruaz, Samoëns +33 4 50 53 65 22
La Table de Fifine– For a special occasion. The tarte tatin is amazing. La Cour, Samoëns +33 4 50 34 10 29 http://www.table-fifine.com
8 M des Monts– Modern Savoyard Food. One of the best restaurants in Samoëns. It’s small inside so book early! Place du Gros Tilleuil, Samoëns +33 4 50 21 30 01 https://www.facebook.com/8mdesmonts
Aux Becs a Fleu– A firm favourite with many of the locals – small, cosy, refined. 96 Route de la Piaz, Samoëns +33 4 50 54 40 68
Monde à l’Envers– A small menu but quality food in a quirky mountain setting. 93 plaxe du Criou, Samoëns +33 4 50 34 19 36 https://www.facebook.com/lemondealenverssamoens74
Chalet Restaurant du Cirque du Fer a Cheval– Fantastic steak haché and carpaccio. A magical view of the natural rock amphitheatre that surrounds you. You can also rent sleds here for sledding at the Cirque in winter. Reserve Naturelle, Sixt-a-Fer-Cheval +33 4 50 89 13 88
Auberge de la Feuille d’Erable– Charming old restaurant and a village landmark offering Savoyard specialties all year round and a shaded terrace for outdoor dining in summer. Sixt +33 4 50 34 44 47
Le Rouet– Traditional wholesome cuisine, bar and snacks, next to the ski piste in Salvagny. Ideal in winter if you have children learning on the slopes there. Traditionally open for the ski season only, but in 2018 opening for the summer season too on 24 June, serving both lunch and dinner. Sixt +44 4 50 34 40 89
Auberge de la Cascade de Rouget – This restaurant is not to be missed, as much for its spectacular views of the 80m waterfall, known as the Queen of the Alps and floodlit on Friday and Saturday nights, as for its excellent food. You should try the ‘beignets de pomme de terre’! Only open in summer, the road is closed to cars in winter. Sixt +33 4 50 34 19 94
Nunabar– Open air café and bar on the river in Sixt, just next to Nunayak Rafting Company. Only open in summer. Sometimes has live music. Sixt +33 4 50 34 42 67
Le Chalet du Lignon– Drive or hike from Cascade du Rouget to this rustic spot for lunch or an afternoon snack. This is the starting point for hikes to the Sauffraz and Pleureuse waterfalls. Sixt +33 4 50 34 99 90
La Luge a Teran– The best restaurant on the piste up at Samoëns 1600, winter only. Warming Savoyard meals & delicious desserts. Booking essential.
Half way down the ‘Dahu’ run, at foot of the ‘Gouilles’ lift. +33 6 85 80 77 00
Mimi’s Crepes– Simple, good value snacks and meals next to the ski lift in town and in the winter also up at Samoëns 1600 +33 4 50 34 90 97
La Reposette– If you skip the queues and park at the bottom of the old lift in Vercland you might stumble across this Dutch-run gem. Order a vin chaud or a casual dinner at the end of the day’s skiing. Vercland, Samoëns +33 9 67 07 22 08
L’Igloo– A Favourite of many if you find yourself hungry on the pistes of Morillon. At the top of the Bergin Chairlift, Morillon +33 4 50 90 14 31
Chalet des Molliets– Relax at bottom of Les Molliets ski lift in this fun restaurant, while you wait for your dogsledding ride. Les Carroz +33 4 50 90 05 09
Le Blanchot – Good food on the piste in Flaine. The snack bar downstairs is also a great place to grab a quick bowl of chips before heading back towards Samoens 1600. At the bottom of the Serpentine run, Flaine +33 4 50 90 82 44
La Pente a Jules– The service can be a bit slow but the food is hearty fuel for skiers. At the bottom of the Almandine green run, Flaine +33 4 50 90 87 42
Crêperie La Fandioleuse– A favorite place for both sweet and savoury crepes & cider. There is a cozy interior in winter and an outdoor terrace in summer.
Chemin de la Cour, Samoëns +33 450 34 98 28
Club Med Carita Spa – Located at the top of the Grand Massif Express in Samoëns, this resort is accessible either by cable car or road. Day passes are available to use the hotel’s spa facilities. Please call for more information and pricing.
+33 4 50 78 60 00
Ô des Cimes Samoëns – There are two spas in Samoëns located within holiday residences. Please call for more information and to book treatments.
+33 4 50 91 76 77 www.odescimes.com/fr/spas/
+33 4 50 78 01 77 www.odescimes.com/fr/spas/
Les Carroz Aquacime – A leisure centre dedicated to relaxation, sport and well-being, with a view on the snow-covered ski slopes of the Carroz from the outdoor pool as a bonus. Spa pass starts at €17/day.
455 Route du Mont Favy, 74300 Arâches-la-Frasse, France
+33 4 50 90 24 80 www.winter.lescarroz.com/
Spas Deep Nature – There are several Deep Nature Spas in the Haute Savoie region within driving distance from Samoëns. They offer half day and day passes as well as an extensive range of treatments. It is advisable to book over the phone in advance.
+33 4 50 55 94 73 www.deepnature.fr/
Vitam Neydens – This large leisure centre is located on the way to Geneva.
It is very child friendly with water activities like slides as well as a climbing centre. It also has a spa and wellbeing centre with many facilities from saunas to jacuzzis. Passes for the spa start from €18/4hrs
+33 4 50 84 66 66 www.vitam.fr/
Creche in Samoens
This creche is for 3 months old to 4 year olds. You can choose between half days and full days. We recommend booking one week in advance during busy periods.
firstname.lastname@example.org tel: +33 4 50 34 13 96
Club Piou Piou, ESF
Ski kindergarten on the pistes at Samoens 1600 for 3-5 year olds. 6 consecutive half day mornings or afternoons: €151
www.esfsamoens.com email@example.com tel: +33 4 50 34 43 12
This reliable nanny service has english speaking nannies based in Samoens who are qualified and insured to look after children aged 4 weeks to 14 years old from the comfort of your chalet. Please contact Katia for booking enquiries and further information.
Sun & Snow Childcare
This private nanny service is available in Samoëns, Morillon, Sixt and Verchaix and Emily and Valerie offer fully qualified nannies and tailor childcare packages to your needs.
Emily: +44 7742 464906, Val: + 44 7525 359959
A ‘Massif’ pass will include Samoëns, Morillon, Les Carroz and Sixt (more info on following page). If you want to visit Flaine, you will need a ‘Grand Massif’ pass. For beginners or families with young children, the Sixt slopes close to the chalet are ideal and the Sixt ‘Débutant’ (beginner) pass obtainable only at the local (Salvagny) pass office is exceptionally good value. A Samoëns ‘Débutant’ pass allows you to use the main lift from Samoens and a selection of beginner slopes at the centre of each resort. Child passes are for under 16’s and you’ll sometimes need proof of age. Find the latest discounts, multiple day ski passes and family passes on the grand massif website.
‘Xtreme Glisses’ is conveniently located close to the “Grand Massif Express” lift in Samoëns. Leave your equipment here every day after skiing to save from having to lug back to the chalet – Friendly, helpful staff and discounts for our guests– just mention you are staying with Mountain People.
www.xtremeglisses-samoens.com +33 (0) 4 50 89 82 30
‘Ski Higher’ are highly recommended – they will deliver pre-booked ski equipment to your door, taking the hassle away from the usual hire shop frenzy on your first day. Great service & 10% off for our guests. Just mention Mountain People!
www.skihiresamoens.com +33 (0) 6 79 35 47 65
www.zigzagski.com +33 6 31 20 44 10
Latest Info – For up to date in-resort information, interactive ski maps, weather reports and ski pass prices, visit www.winter.grand-massif.com
Samoëns– Good beginner areas, lots of blues and a few reds. A fairly central point for easily accessing the other resorts, including Flaine. Plenty of parking by the ‘Grand Massif Express’ in town. You can also drive to Samoëns 1600 or the Vercland lift next to La Reposette if you want the option of bypassing some of the queues back in town.
Morillon– Best for beginners – with some superb long easy runs. It can also be the best place to ski in bad weather as it is lower and some of the runs go through the trees. There is now a chairlift with high speed access to the top of Tete de Saix.
Flaine – Very nice ski area. Lots of good off-piste when there is fresh snow. You will need a ‘Grand Massif’ pass to ski here. Flaine’s ski season sometimes opens early and extends over the rest of the ski domain due to its cold, high positioning. You can reach Flaine easily by taking the Grand Massif Express to Samoëns 1600 and skiing two runs over.
Sixt– Beginner pistes and ski school for the little ones. Subject to favourable snow conditions, you can ski down to Sixt from Flaine on the beautiful 14km Piste des Cascades, which passes below the Lac de Gers. If you want to eat at the excellent Refuge du Lac de Gers, you must make a reservation in advance. The restaurant staff will tow you the 2 km uphill via snowmobile. +33 (0) 987 88 18 69
Les Carroz– Good varied area but can be slightly tricky for boarders to get to from Samoens as the access is narrow, flat and sometimes overcrowded.
Praz de Lys – On the way to Les Gets after Taninges. Small resort but cheap. Nice wide/flat beginner areas.
Morzine / Les Gets – You can ski down into Morzine from the top of the Col de Joux Plane above Samoëns. The drive to the actual resort in winter takes a bit of time as you have to wiggle around the mountains! Morzine & Les Gets are good, fun alternatives to the Grand Massif for a day and a change of scenery.
There are so many hikes to choose from, including many that begin from the chalet. Take a look at one of the guides on the bookshelf but please return after use. In addition there are numerous mountaintop refuges that can turn a walk into a multi-day trek. Please note the degree of difficulty and altitude changes and keep up to date with weather reports. Check in with the Tourist Office about specific hikes and for reservations at the refuges. Here are a few of our favourites:
A lovely walk with panoramic views over the Giffre Valley and Mont Blanc. Only do on a clear day to best enjoy the magnificent views. Start straight from the house or drive up to the Col de Joux plane for a shorter walk.
Lac de Gers
A relatively easy couple of hours to a peaceful mountain lake (and the best wild blueberry tart). You can also ski here in winter.
Col de la Golèse
Walk towards ‘Les Allamands’ from ‘La Rosiere’ and continue following signs to the Col de la Golese. If you have a 4×4 with good ground clearance, you can even drive up for dinner in summer. Basic off-roading skills useful for this one.
Cascade du Rouget – a 2 km hike that begins in Salvagny.
You can follow the road or a trail through the woods. This waterfall is known as the Queen of the Alps and falls a dramatic 80m. From Cascade du Rouget, you can continue (either on the road or a path to the right of the falls) towards Lignon.
La Pleureuse and Sauffraz Waterfalls
The trailhead is the parking of Lignon, above Cascade du Rouget. From here you can continue to the Refuge de Sales, which is a high valley surrounded by cliffs and the site of a former ‘alpage’ for summertime grazing. The climb to the refuge is through a series of ascending valleys, each marked by waterfalls. Reservations required for overnight stays.
Refuge des Fonts
This is a day hike to one of the prettiest natural cirques in the region (not to be confused with the much larger Cirque du Fer a Cheval). The refuge offers meals (and a dormitory for overnight guests) and is situated in a traditional summertime ‘alpage’ – where farmers brought their cows for grazing. The chalets are still in use by local families. This is also the location of the famous Eagle’s Nest built by English jurist Alfred Wills in the 1850s.
Cirque du Fer a Cheval
An easy and relatively flat path leads from the Cirque to the Fond de la Combe. You will cross the Giffre and enter a valley punctuated by a series of waterfalls. High above you extends the Ruan Glacier, where Jacques Balmat, the first man to scale Mont Blanc, disappeared in 1834, while searching for a fabled seam of gold. From the Fond de la Combe, you can continue to the Refuge de Vogealle and, just beyond, Lac de Vogealle, but reservations are required for overnight stays. There are two routes to access the refuge from Fond de La Combe. Beware that the ladder route (Le Pas de Boret) is more technical and challenging, but both are quite steep.
Ancienne Gorges des Tines
The Gorges des Tines in Sixt are not to be missed and no hiking is required. There is a hike through the Anciennes Gorges des Tines which requires some climbing on ladders and passes near a cliff wall used by the climbing school.
Tour des Fiz
The massive outcropping called the Rochers des Fiz dominates the skyline. A hike to Refuge Alfred Wills will take you up to the Rochers des Fiz, and you can continue to Lac D’Anterne and/or Refuge de Sales.
Mountain biking is now a huge focus on the summer sports calendar here. The Grand Massif Express lift in Samoëns has opened the domain in a completely new way, allowing cross-country bikers and downhillers to enjoy over 600kms of trails within the Grand Massif, with access to Les Carroz, Morillon, Flaine and Sixt.
It is recommended that you pick up a trail map from the tourist office and/or get hold of a copy of ‘Classic VTT’ Mountain Bike routes, available to buy in most book shops in Samoëns.
If you haven’t brought a mountain bike out with you, a wide variety of bikes are available in town from classic hardtail cross country mountain bikes to monster looking full suspension racers and electric fat bikes. You can also get a pro to take you around the best local spots, available for a full or half day:
X’treme Glisses: +33 4 50 89 82 30 – (Mention Mountain People for discounts)
Mountain Spirit: +33 4 50 12 78 39
J’aime Sport: +33 4 50 34 98 20
Dogsledding – Evasion Nordique offers unforgettable husky dog sled rides – park your skis at the bottom of the ‘Les Moillets’ ski lift in Les Carroz and embark on an amazing adventure! evasion-nordiques.com +33 6 82 09 50 03
White Water Rafting – Nunayak, located in Sixt, across from the Tourist Office. They offer rafting, hydrospeed, swimming in rapids, canyoning, and multiple other activities, as well as a bar and restaurant. + 33 450 93 86 74.
We also recommend Ecolorado, where you can choose between a big raft, canoraft (2 people) or kayak. Gorgux 1148, route de Sixt, 74340 Samoëns +33 4 50 34 45 26
Paragliding – You can get the Grand Massif Express lift to the main takeoff point at Samoëns 1600. Or, the 15 minute walk from Col de Joux Plane to ‘La Bourgeoise’ is another popular take-off point. For those wanting to try a tandem flight for the first time, try Pégase Air:
Route des Mouilles, Samoëns +33 4 50 34 95 80; +33 6 07 14 94 24
Rock Climbing – Zig Zag offer a good introductory course +33 6 31 20 44 10. For more experienced climbers, check at the tourist office for a list of Grand Massif and Via Ferrata guides. Never use any equipment you might find at the house, always hire or bring your own.
Via Ferrata – The Via Ferrata in Sixt Fer a Cheval is a mixture of hiking and climbing, horizontally and vertically. The routes are equipped with cables and metal ladders to make the course easier, but it is still a physically demanding sport. It can be completed independently or with a guide. For a guided trail, contact Zig Zag Ski +33 6 31 20 44 10
Horseback Riding – The best and most beautiful place to do this is with Hippoloisirs at Sixt a Fer Cheval. You can choose between 1 and 2 hours. +33 4 50 34 12 67
Ice Skating – The ice rink is opposite the tourist office in Samoëns. It is only open in winter.
Tennis – You can play tennis by the pool in Samoëns. There is also tennis in Verchaix by the lake. Book in advance.
Golf – The nearest golf course is in Les Gets, a fun 18 hole course under the ski lifts, if you haven’t played at altitude before – you should – it adds at least 10% to your normal hitting distance! + 33 4 50 75 87 63
Fishing – There is fishing in the park in Samoëns. If you want to fish in any other river, you’ll have to buy a permit from one of the ‘Tabac’ stores.
Parcours/Treetop Zip Wire – A favorite with kids, try Indiana Parc just next to the lake in Samoëns. Lacs aux Dames, +33 (0)689 83 18 84
Samoëns Open Air Swimming Pool
Open June – August, 10:00 – 19:30. No swimming shorts permitted for men so bring your tightest speedos! And if you happen not to have a pair handy, there is a vending machine that sells all sizes for about 7 euros. This pool has a great water slide for kids. Tip: Buy a book of 10 tickets giving all family members access at Children’s rate.
We are only 1 hour away from Lake Geneva (or Lac Leman). A good spot is ‘Bains des Paquis’, which has an open-air restaurant, diving platforms and rafts, and you can book a massage. In the winter, it is known for its delicious fondue.
Lac Bleu in Morillon
Well signposted and very popular! There is a sandy beach and there are lifeguards, which is great if you have young kids.
Plonnex ‘Chrystal Lac’
If you are looking for a bigger, quieter nearby lake, drive over the roundabout at Verchaix towards Taninges on the D907. It is down a path on your left opposite the hamlet of Plonnex. They sometimes hold water-skiing competitions here.
Lac de Montriond
Over the Col de Joux Plane in Morzine, nestled in the mountains, this has lifeguards and is a pretty place for a picnic and a day’s swimming.
Waterfall Beyond La Rosière
There is a waterfall just beyond ‘La Rosière’, which is great for a mountain fresh cold shower or mud bath on a hot day! From ‘La Rosière’, just walk towards Les Allamands and wait to hear the sound of crashing water. Look out for three of our Mountain People properties in the hamlets just before you reach the carpark in la Rosière.
Cascade du Nant d’Ant
If you’re a budding climber, there is a beautiful waterfall plunge pool about midway up the waterfall here. You will find the starting point for this walk across the river from the ski lift. To get to the pool, you will need to climb up the rocks in the centre of the waterfall (avoid the steep banks). Be very careful, the rocks can be slippery and dangerous.
Please Note: Wild Swimming can be dangerous – swim in all of these places at your own risk!