Information & Facts
Chamonix has a swimming centre with pools, a sauna and Turkish
baths, and an indoor ice rink and bowling for holidaymakers to
enjoy. Paragliding can be arranged when the weather's good.
French is the official language.
The Euro (EUR) is the official currency in France. Currency can
be exchanged at banks, bureaux de change and some large hotels,
though you will get a better exchange rate at the ATMs. Major
credit cards are widely accepted, as are travellers cheques,
particularly in major tourist destinations. Foreign currency is not
The ski areas in Chamonix do not inter-connect and the base lift
stations are far apart, so a car is essential in Chamonix unless
you are happy to wait for the erratic shuttle buses. The beginner
slopes are separated from the main skiing areas making lunch
meetings hard to organise. Chamonix has its own microclimate and
the weather can be bad when neighbouring resorts are fine. If it is
clouded over, it's worth checking out the weather in Courmayeur in
Italy, a short trip away through the Mont Blanc tunnel.
Chamonix is known for its ski-hard-party-hard atmosphere and the
nightlife won't disappoint. The Bumble Bee and the Mill Street bar
in Chamonix and the Office Bar in Argentiere are popular choices
for après-ski drinks, and Wild Wallabies is an essential stop for
hard-drinking Brits and Scandinavians. There is a casino for those
wishing to try their luck on the tables.
Chamonix is alive with restaurants, ranging from first-class
French restaurants to Indian, Chinese, Italian and Japanese and
holidaymakers will not be disappointed. For Michelin-standard food,
book Albert Ist et Milan in the town centre. Argentiere has some
good local restaurants but much less choice than Chamonix. There
are some fine restaurants on the slopes too, including Le 3842, the
highest restaurant in Europe.
Chamonix is a year-round town and is packed with a selection of
shops - though most are aimed at skiers and climbers on holiday
here. There are plenty of supermarkets and delicatessens for
Local time is GMT +1 (GMT +2 between last Sunday in March and
last Sunday in October).