The French authorities have announced that the relaxation of the travel restrictions for travellers coming from the UK into France from Friday 14 January 2022. Click through to our COVID page to see updates.

As you can imagine, we are receiving an extremely high number of calls at the moment and some of our team are working from home, as per UK Government guidelines. We are currently dealing with clients with imminent departures (i.e. clients due to depart within the next 48h) so if you are not travelling imminently then please do refer to the guidance on our COVID-19 page, which covers the most frequently asked questions.

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The French Alps ski specialist
Samoens village - Criou Peak
1 of 26 Samoens village - Criou Peak
Samoens Village - Sailing on the lake
2 of 26 Samoens Village - Sailing on the lake
Samoens Village (©ChristianMartelet) - Train
3 of 26 Samoens Village (©ChristianMartelet) - Train
Samoens Village - Lake
4 of 26 Samoens Village - Lake
Samoens Village - Bakery
5 of 26 Samoens Village - Bakery
Samoens Village - Outdoor leisure centre
6 of 26 Samoens Village - Outdoor leisure centre
Samoens Village
7 of 26 Samoens Village
Samoens Village - Train
8 of 26 Samoens Village - Train
Samoens Village (©ChristianMartelet) - Paragliding
9 of 26 Samoens Village (©ChristianMartelet) - Paragliding
Samoens Resort (©ChristianMartelet) - Local produce shop
10 of 26 Samoens Resort (©ChristianMartelet) - Local produce shop
Samoens Village (©ChristianMartelet) - Donkey walking
11 of 26 Samoens Village (©ChristianMartelet) - Donkey walking
Samoens Village
12 of 26 Samoens Village
Samoens Village
13 of 26 Samoens Village
Samoens Village - Stunning views
14 of 26 Samoens Village - Stunning views
Samoens Village
15 of 26 Samoens Village
Samoens Village
16 of 26 Samoens Village
Samoens Village - Beautiful scenery
17 of 26 Samoens Village - Beautiful scenery
Samoens Village - Waterfalls in Sixt fer a Cheval
18 of 26 Samoens Village - Waterfalls in Sixt fer a Cheval
Samoens Village - Rafting
19 of 26 Samoens Village - Rafting
Samoens Village - Beautiful scenery
20 of 26 Samoens Village - Beautiful scenery
Samoens Village - Climbing
21 of 26 Samoens Village - Climbing
Samoens Village - Criou Peak
22 of 26 Samoens Village - Criou Peak
Samoens Village - Mountain lake
23 of 26 Samoens Village - Mountain lake
Samoens Village - Mountain lake
24 of 26 Samoens Village - Mountain lake
Samoens Village - Beautiful lush mountains
25 of 26 Samoens Village - Beautiful lush mountains
Samoens Village - Lake
26 of 26 Samoens Village - Lake

Samoens

A pretty, undiscovered rural valley village set amid forest with easy access to the extensive alpine region of the Grand Massif.

Samoëns is the only winter and summer sports resort in France to be listed as an 'Historic Monument'. It is an ideal holiday destination if you enjoy walking, mountain biking or a range of other summer sports but its special character makes it equally popular with visitors looking for the charm of a friendly village. Once a thriving stone-cutting centre, the medieval village still retains an ancient church, medieval fountains and a variety of quaint old buildings.

Despite recent growth on the outskirts of Samoëns, the many excellent traditional-style bars and restaurants, its cobbled streets and its shops still give the village a feel of 'real' rural France. Don't miss market day on Wednesdays in the church square. 

There is so much to do in Samoëns and the surrounding areas, with the rivers Giffre, Dranse, and Arve for fun in the water and chairlifts/gondolas allowing access to the highest points for mountain walks. The 18 hole golf courses at Les Carroz and Les Gets boasts fantastic views and uncrowded fairways. 

The Giffre and nearby Fer à Cheval (with its beautiful waterfalls) provide the backdrop for endless itineraries that can be enjoyed by walkers, hikers and mountain bikers. Most activities can be enjoyed by adults and children alike, and both will enjoy the Indiana Adventure Park.

Slightly further down the Giffre Valley from Morillon (4 minutes away) and just before Sixt, Samoëns is only a 20 minute drive from the motorway exit near the TGV train station of Cluses and only 55km from Geneva.

For more information read our blog about the top '5 Reasons for a Summer in Samoens' or our client's blog about her August family alpine holiday to Samoëns

Interested in buying an apartment in Samoëns? See our Buying in the Alps section 

Top summer activities to experience in Samoens

Please note Peak Retreats do not book any activities and most activities are payable. For more information about pricing and availability, please contact the Samoens Tourist Office on 0033 450 34 15 49 or visit www.samoens.com

Market in Samoëns
The village welcomes one of the biggest market of Haute-Savoie. Every Wednesday morning from 7am to 1pm.

Samoëns Indiana Parc
Forest assault course: the biggest forest adventure assault course in the region, 'for ages 2 to 102! Experience hours of escapist adventures and overcome obstacles. Footbridges, ladders, zip-lines (Tyroleans). Be an adventurer and experience a forest environment in complete safety. 

Samoens Little Train
Let the Septitrain take you on a trip round Samoëns at a gentle pace on an unusual and friendly guided tour. Guaranteed departure with at least 15 people. There are two tours, one lasting 30 mins or the full tour of 45 mins (10kms ). Both tours start in the town centre from either the main square or from behind the Tourist Office.

Samoens e-bikes
Discover the new Giant e-bikes range. Rental of semi-rigid bikes or full-suspension bikes.

Samoëns Mountain Biking
Take advantage of the many chairlifts that operate during the summer months in Samoëns. Discover 188km /117 miles of mountain bike itineraries on the area of Upper Giffre Valley. 64kms link Samoens, Morillon, Sixt and Verchaix.

For beginners and those looking to perfect their technique, mountain biking schools are available in Samoëns (try http://www.xtremeglisses-samoens.com as an example).

In the middle of the Alps, near the Portes du Soleil domain, 28 downhill MTB tracks await you. These freeride single tracks are made in the respect of nature and terrain. Fun, technical, these tracks go from the woods to crossing streams, grass fields, footbridges...

You're bound to enjoy an adrenalin rush with a 1,400-metre drop in altitude between the Tête de Saix and Samoëns or Morillon (the lowest points in the biking area) with a choice of black, red or blue runs. Recommended for children over ten years old only - the pistes are quite long and can be tiring for younger ages.

The Samoëns MTB tracks were recently dubbed "the jewel of the Alps" by Big Bike Magazine.

Grand Massif Walks
Thanks to the opening of the mountain lifts this summer, you can go walking with your family and discover some breathtaking panoramic views. Looking for ideas for easy walks in constantly-changing scenery? Leaving Samoëns behind, you can get a wonderful view of Mont-Blanc from the Tête des Saix. From there, head for La Combe de Gers with its lake and restaurant, then return to Samoëns or Sixt Fer-à-Cheval.

Samoens Water Activities
The Giffre river flows around and through Samoëns, offering a range of rafting options. Descend the river on inflatable 8-place rafts with the family. Adventure seekers battle the rapids on canoe-rafts, which are unsinkable dual-place rafts for those 12 years and over. Those in search of a solo descent enjoy the independence of “airboating” in an inflatable single-place canoe. Hydrospeed is a fantastic addition to the world of white water sports. You float down a river on your own with the help of a bodyboard, in and amongst the rapids, so the feeling is totally different! For a fresh, adventure-filled outing, you can combine rock climbing, caving and hiking in one single sport - canyoning! With the help of an expert guide you’ll jump, slide, swim and abseil down a natural canyon, filled with waterfalls and fun. Have you always wanted to try water skiing? On a private lake not far from the village, you can try slalom water skiing amongst experts.

Samoens leisure centre and lake
10 hectares of parkland, a few minutes walk from the heart of the village, Samoëns’ leisure centre at the “Lacs aux Dames” is the place to be for families. Around the two “Dames” lakes, you can always find a shady spot to escape the sun’s heat, while the children go wild in the specially designed play area. An enclosed area just for young children means they can go at their own speed while you watch on. Nearby, the swimming complex has a fun children’s pool.

Samoëns Via Ferrata
The Via Ferrata is an activity that lies somewhere between walking and rock climbing; there are horizontal and vertical assents. The routes are equipped with cables and metal ladders which make the route a little easier, although it can remain demanding. 

Samoëns Swimming pool 
Open-air swimming pool in the exceptional surroundings of the leisure centre, with a magnificent panoramic view of the mountains around Samoëns.

A sports pool, and a beginners' pool, each measuring 25 x 12.5 metres, a paddling pool covering 50 sq. m and a 60-metre slide!! 6,000 sq. m of lawns, plus an area for ball games (volleyball, football, tennis) where your children are free to play.

Canyoning
Come and refresh in a path dug by nature. A hint of adventure, sensations and fun to travel during the activity.

Samoëns Fishing
In Samoëns fishing is FREE at the Lac aux Dames for resident holidaymakers.

Samoëns Tennis
Tennis Club Samoëns - court hire and tennis lessons

The Jaysinia Botanical Garden
The garden, which was created in 1906 by Marie- Louise Cognacq-Jaÿ, is sculpted into an area of 3 hectares on a mountainous outcrop overlooking the village. Water features and waterfalls, magnificent trees and leafy glades, ruins of the Tornalta castle (XV111th century), 8,000 plants from mountains the world over. This garden is managed jointly by the Cognacq- Jaÿ Foundation, Samoëns Town Council and the National Natural History Museum under the responsibility of the botanic and wildlife gardens department.

Restaurants and bars in Samoens

There is a good selection (around 20) of restaurants and bars in Samoens in the summer months which include creperies, fast food, pizzerias, mountain restaurants and gastronomic restaurants.

Amenities in Samoens

Cash points, doctors, 2 pharmacies, post office, physiotherapists, bakeries, butchers…

Supermarkets in Samoens
Carrefour (large supermarket on road between Samoens and Verchaix), Sherpa local convenience store, Petit Casino.

Market in Samoëns
The village is welcoming one of the biggest markets of Haute-Savoie. Every Wednesday morning from 7am to 1pm.

Accessing Samoens

By Road (self drive options pre-bookable with Peak Retreats): 
Driving distance from Calais 540 miles (approx 7hrs35)

From Calais, take A26 Motorway towards Reims and Troyes, then Dijon, Mâcon then ‘Autoroute Blanche’ Motorway (A40 Mâcon – Cluses) exit Cluses Scionzier. Follow signs to Samoens.

It takes approximately 20 minutes from the motorway exit to Samoëns.

By Rail (pre-bookable with Peak Retreats): 
Cluses train station is 25km/12 miles away.
Shuttle service to Samoëns from Cluses SNCF railway station - www.altibus.com 

By Plane (not pre-bookable):
Geneva is 67km from Samoëns (1 hour)
www.gva.ch

Chambery Airport is 117km from Samoëns (1 ½ hours)
www.chambery-airport.com

Grenoble Airport is 204km from Samoëns (2 hours)
www.grenoble-airport.com

Lyon Saint-Exupery is 204km from Samoëns (2 hours)
www.lyonaeroports.com

Samoëns Airport Transfer or Car Hire (pre-bookable with Peak Retreats):
Call our reservations team for details on 0844 576 0170 or email reservations@peakretreats.co.uk for a quote and availability.

Samoëns News and Events 2021/2022

Events:

  • Vélo Vert Festival 3rd-5th June 2022 In a friendly atmosphere, the event will host, on a new playground conducive to all types of practices, enduro, cross-country, electric mountain bike, sports or family events. To discover for lovers of the Green Bike Festival, in a formula well known to festival-goers composed of a fair-tests, hikes, competitions, animations and conviviality.
  • 13th Botanical Days 11th-12th June 2022 During the Botanical Days, Samoëns and it's exceptional alpine garden La Jaÿsinia (with its 4800 varieties of mountain flowers from all 5 continents), welcome you. All the natural beauties will be offered to you. with this year's theme: recycling and the use of nature for nature.
  • Samoëns Trail Tour 16th-19th June 2022 Ultra-Trail du Haut-Giffre is one of the biggest and the most amazing mountain races in the Valley to discover without any hesitation!
  • Samoëns American Festival 13th edition 30th June-3rd July 2022 Samoëns invites you to come dance and immerse yourself in American culture for a weekend, with dance courses, frenzied concerts and balls, as well as equestrian and mechanical shows.
  • F'Estival Les Pépites 7th July-25th August 2022 Every Thursday of the summer, Samoëns offers a high quality musical programming. Emerging artists of national or international stature will share their music, passion and talent for unforgettable moments.
  • "Adopte 1 Col" : Morzine to Joux Plane 24th July 2022 Don’t miss climbing this legendary col that’s at 1690 meters altitude and crossed 11 times by the Tour de France and 3 times by the Critérium du Dauphiné!
  • Musical journey around the flutes of Guy Angelloz 7th August 2022 Flute concert given by Guy Angelloz and Elodie Baile revisiting Bach, Mozart, Vivaldi, Handel, Paganini and many others.
  • World championships of Mölkky 18th-21st August 2022 Samoëns hosts the Mölkky World Championships, with many bowling nations of Finnish origin coming to compete, to become Mölkky World Champion! Tournament accessible to all. 

Accommodation in Grand Massif

Les Chalets de Layssia

Self Catered Apartments Sleeps 1 - 10 Directors' Choice | Luxury

In a few words... These luxury 4* apartments are ideally located in the centre of Samoens. Facilities include indoor heated pool, hot tub, sauna and steam room.

Directors' Choice | Luxury

La Reine des Pres

Self Catered Apartments Sleeps 1 - 8 Directors' Choice | Superior

In a few words... These lovely 4* apartments are really well located, just a 5 minutes walk from the main village square. Facilities include indoor pool and spa.

Directors' Choice | Superior

Alexane

Self Catered Apartments Sleeps 1 - 8 Luxury

Perfectly located just 150m from the resort centre, the excellent Residence Alexane, enjoys one of the most convenient positions in the resort.

Luxury

Suites d’Alexane

Hotel Sleeps 1 - 4 Superior

Perfectly located 150m from the resort centre, this brand new 4* superior hotel, the Suites d’Alexane adjoins the 4* superior residence of the same name, and enjoys one of the most convenient positions in the resort.

Superior

La Residence Club Samoens Village

Self Catered Apartments Sleeps 1 - 10 New to programme

The Grand Massif Express cable car, which takes you to Samoens 1600, is a 10-minute walk away. From here you can access many walking and mountain bike trails and access to further lifts up the mountain.

New to programme

Les Fermes de Samoens

Self Catered Apartments Sleeps 1 - 10

Les Fermes de Samoens is located 800m from the village centre, 400m from the nearest shops and 200m from bike tracks.

Hotel Neige et Roc

Hotel & Apartments Sleeps 1 - 6 Superior

Situated on the edge of the village, Hotel Neige et Roc offers the opportunity to sample French village life, with the centre and its shops only a short walk away.

Superior

Chalet La Remise

Self Catered Chalet Sleeps 1 - 12

Situated in ‘Le Vallon d’en Haut’ hamlet, 1.5km from the centre of Samoens, Chalet La Remise is set in lovely rural surroundings.

Rose

Self Catered Apartments Sleeps 1 - 6

Chalet Rose enjoys an ideal location 350m from the heart of the village (100m from a mini-market). Built to a very high specification with extensive use of wood, Chalet Rose is a traditional chalet comprising 4 high standard apartments.

Chalet Arnica

Self Catered Chalet Sleeps 1 - 12

Ideally located minutes from the heart of the village, Chalet Arnica is set in a quiet location amongst other large chalets, a short walk from the resort swimming-pool and tennis courts.

Chalet La Ferme de Fontany

Self Catered Chalet Sleeps 1 - 10

Situated just above the village, Ferme de Fontany is located 1km from the village centre. It is a large distinguished traditional farmhouse that has been completely tastefully renovated in pure antique Savoyard style with contemporary and modern facilities for the comfort of clients. It is extremely spacious with 280m2 of floor space.

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Also, don’t forget you can give us a call on 023 9283 9310 or email reservations@peakretreats.co.uk if you couldn’t find what you needed.
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