Fastest journey1hr 42m
The Mont-Blanc Express train from Chamonix to Martigny runs all year round and is the perfect way of travelling from France’s Haute-Savoie region to canton Valais in Switzerland. This is a narrow-gauge mountain railway which runs through very difficult terrain over the frontier, skirting the northern edge of the Mont Blanc massif along the way. Choose a fine day and you’ll be rewarded with some great mountain views. The journey is equally impressive in fierce winter weather.
Tickets sold through Loco2 for this journey are at a fixed price so there is no real advantage in booking ages in advance. Bear in mind that we issue paper tickets for this journey, so book at least ten days prior to travel so that we can post your tickets to you.
Chamonix to Martigny
The name Mont-Blanc Express is a little misleading, for the wonderful ride from Chamonix to Martigny is hardly an express route. The train takes about 100 minutes for the 36-kilometre journey. Sit on the right for the best views of the Alps as the train climbs up steeply towards the Swiss border. You’ll see several glaciers, including the Mer de Glace and the Glacier d’Argentière.
It is normally necessary to change trains at Vallorcine just before the French-Swiss border, but this is very easy. The trains connect perfectly and you merely need to cross the platform to the waiting train for the onward journey. Trains run once each hour on this useful cross-border route, but note that there are no services after about seven in the evening.
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Image credits: Martigny Castle © Sebastian Czapnik