Culture

Why Chamonix Is Rising To The Top Of The Runner Bucket List

High in the mountains, adventure-seekers flock to this city in France for all sorts of outdoor activities.

Chamonix, France, and its high-alpine environs are a haven for sports. Adventure-seekers flock to the mountains to ski, mountaineer, climb, paraglide—and run, of course! Home to more than 300 miles of stunning trails and iconic off-road races such as the Marathon du Mont Blanc and ASICS Beat the Sun, the town has declared itself the Trail Valley (Vallée du Trail).

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That’s good news for runners, since there’s now a website (valleedutrail.com) and app. Stateside runners can do more than dream about a gondola ride to run through sheep-specked valleys—like locals, they can find the latest trail conditions and suggested routes.

Even though this picture was snapped on a perfect bluebird day, conditions in the mountains can turn on a euro. Trail-seekers must always be prepared with water, food, sunscreen, a rain jacket and a phone. A wallet comes in handy too—there are charming cafés in those mountains!