When you’re visiting Chamonix your first port of call should be the Aiguille du Midi cable car. Not only will you catch the finest view in Chamonix, dare yourself to stand in the ‘Step into the Void’ glass box suspended over a horrifying 1000m sheer drop.
The Aiguille du Midi ascends to the dizzying height of 3842m and gives an incredible 360 degree panoramic view of over the French, Swiss & Italian Alps. It’s the closest you can get to western Europe’s highest mountain Mont Blanc, without strapping on crampons, wielding an ice axe & hiring a guide.
A ride up the Aiguille du Midi is definitely a go go for families who love adventure, and the Step into the Void glass box is now a huge new draw to one of the most popular Chamonix attractions. Whether you’re planning a summer road trip through France, flying in for a week’s skiing or on a day trip from Geneva, visiting the Aiguille du Midi is a must.
Our post tells you all about visiting both the Aiguille du Midi and the Step into the Void glass box.
Read more: Don’t forget to take the iconic Montenver Train to visit France’s longest glacier the Mer de Glace & the famous Chamonix ice caves
Aiguille du Midi Cable Car – Chamonix
What can you do at the top of the Aiguille du Midi cable car?
At the top of the Aiguille du Midi cable car, visitors wishing to eat have a choice to dine in a fancy panoramic restaurant or a more affordable café which sells hot drinks & quick bites such as paninis.
Visitors have a host of various viewing platforms to gaze at spectacular jaw dropping scenery.
One of the best things to do up the Aiguille du Midi is to go through the ice tunnel to watch mountaineers set off on their adventures. The ice tunnel leads to a ridge which skiers, snowboarders and mountaineers must walk down to access the longest off piste ski run in the world, the Vallée Blanche.
And of course, visit the newest addition of the Aiguille du Midi – the Step into the Void glass box. We talk more about this in detail below.
The queue atmosphere was upbeat with anticipation with the main interest checking out the ‘mouffles’ (slippers) that each user are asked to wear to prevent scratching the glass.
Our girls were captivated by the equipment that one member of staff was deftly using to move different sized slippers into range for users approaching the front of the queue.
The slipper picker-upper, a rod with a pincer like movement (not unlike a litter picker rod) was used to prevent multiple bend downs to pick up slippers to give to new users.
Fascinated by this, the queue time shrunk into mere minutes and we were shown our way into the glass box before we knew it.
The staff operating the experience were fantastic, happily taking a multitude of photos of each visitor in turn.
We were lucky with the short queue on our visit to the Mont Blanc glass box. I have heard of long queues so I would definitely recommend visiting first thing before the queues start. Opening times vary, so check ahead before going.
TOP TIP: After the staff have taken a raft of photos of you standing in the void, ask them ever so nicely if they could open the exit door (less than 1 metre away) and take a snap of you from outside of the cube.
Or queue separately with a friend and get them to wait on the outside to take your picture inside the cube – this is definitely the best instagram shot you’ll get!
From the Aiguille du Midi you can also take a further cable car in the summer months over to Italy! Yes you heard correctly! There is a cable car that links France and Italy. You can read about our experience of taking this incredible cable car in our post here. It is only possible to take this cable car in very good weather days during the summer, therefore it’s impossible to book tickets in advance. Ask in Chamonix at the bottom of the Aiguille du Midi whilst you are buying your ticket if the Helbronner cable car is open. You can then buy a ticket which will connect to over to the Italian side and include a further cable car, the Skyway Monte Bianco, to the village of La Palud near the Italian town of Courmayeur in the Aosta Valley. Your ticket then includes a bus back through to France through the Mont Blanc tunnel. Yes you can do this trip all in one day. It’s also the perfect way to start the second half of the Tour du Mont Blanc from Courmayeur to Chamonix although very hard to plan.
We would definitely recommend this day trip to families visiting Chamonix. The new ‘Step into the Void’ Mont Blanc box is definitely a winner for kids. Plus the woo factor of the pendulum swing of the cable car’s return descent over the pylons will leave them with a smile on their face. A must do day out whilst visiting Chamonix.
PRACTICAL INFO VISITING THE AIGUILLE DU MIDI CABLE CAR
- Children under 3 are not permitted up to the top because of the high altitude.
- Children under 2 are not permitted to the mid-station.
- Elderly people have access up to the mid-station unless doctors have advised against such high altitude activities.
- The air is much thinner at altitude so breathing can be an issue for some people. Be mindful of this if you are elderly or suffer from heart or breathing problems. Whilst you may not notice it initially, after an hour or so at that altitude, you can begin to feel a little lightheaded, so take it easy and don’t rush. Breathing apparatus is available in medical emergencies.
2020 PRICES OF THE AIGUILLE DU MIDI CABLE CAR
Family pass: 201.60 € (2 adults parents or grandparents + 5 children)
Adult – one way: 50.50 €
Adult – round trip: 65.00 €
Child (5-14 years) – one way : 42.90 €
Child (5-14 years)- round trip: 55.30 €
Free entry for children < 5 years
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