Escape to Morzine in Summer

Winter was cancelled.  Summer is a hope.  If you are able to head across the Channel in 2021, Morzine in the French Alps is a great choice.  It’s easily accessible by car and a short hop from Geneva.  And there’s a whole lot to do there in summer.

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Foreign travel is possibly going to open up from mid-May, though nothing is certain.

The French Foreign Ministry has indicated that travel restrictions for Brits could be eased sooner rather than later.

However there may well be some restrictions on returning to the UK.

It does though mean we can start daring to dream that a summer holiday abroad in the mountains in 2021 may be a reality.

Morzine, which links with Les Gets and Avoriaz to form the Portes du Soleil ski area, has plenty to do in the warmer months.

There are around 380km of marked hiking and biking trails in the area with varying degrees of technical skill required, as well as 15 mapped road cycling itineraries to explore.

Hiking in Morzine – © Ollie Godbold

For adrenalin junkies there is canyoning, paragliding and white water rafting.

There is a range of climbing, trekking and fishing excursions.

There’s horse riding in the mountains and traditional horse-drawn carriage rides through the village.

The more relaxed activities include outdoor yoga and foodie walking tours.

Le Refuge, Morzine ©Le Refuge

Local tourism providers have been working hard ahead of the summer season.

Morzine has been awarded the ‘SafeGuard’ label by the Bureau Veritas France.

It is a guarantee that the resort respects the protective sanitary protocols put in place by the authorities and those recommended by the World Health Organisation, while also ensuring appropriate COVID-19 training for village workers.

A number of health and safety measures will be in place throughout the village but the ski lifts, which are used by hikers and bikers in summer, are set to operate at 100% capacity.

Cycling in Morzine – © Keno Derleyn

New Accomodation

New for 2021, Chalet La Godille is the latest luxury chalet from More Mountain.  It’s a two-minute walk from the central bars, restaurants and Super Morzine bubble lift.  It can host up to 12 guests in six bedrooms, each with an en suite and balcony.  It has panoramic views of the mountains, a south-facing terrace and a whirlpool.

Forest Bathing

There is a new wellness activity which draws on the Japanese practice of Shinrin-yoku. Literally meaning ‘forest bathing’, it is a form of natural therapy, which despite the name, does not involve getting into water.

Devised by the wilderness expert Simone Simpson, the half-day experience is designed to help participants stimulate their five senses, through special breathing, walking, and listening techniques, in forest surroundings.

Forest in Morzine © Sam Ingles

It’s available every Tuesday morning during the summer.

It is said that Shinrin-yoku has the power to counter depression, anxiety, and stress, with some even suggesting it can help with blood pressure and sleeplessness.

It costs €30 per person and can be booked through Morzine Mountain Cooperative, with the price including transport from the village centre, equipment, and light refreshments.

New drinks venue

Morzine is fast developing a name for its variety of alcoholic beverages.

The Ibex and Bec Jaune micro-breweries serve up a range of Alpine lagers, ales and stouts, while those that prefer a drop of red, a glass of white, or something sparkling, can head to Morzine’s latest drinks venue, WineNot .

The bespoke wine cellar opened this year and is the brainchild of Véronique and Thierry Marchand, who run the popular local restaurant La Chaudanne.

Winenot, Morzine ©Thierry Marchand

Visitors can choose from more than 400 different types of wine (and 60 spirits), with bottles available from every French wine region, along with some international varieties. The resident sommelier Michael is on hand to provide tastings, guidance on food pairings, and expert advice on the best regional vintages.

Give me a price

A seven-night stay with Inghams, at the three-star Hôtel La Clef des Champs in Morzine, on a half board basis, arriving 3 July 2021, is priced from £859 pp based on two sharing a standard room. Includes return flights from London Gatwick to Geneva and transfers. www.inghams.co.uk

Morzine in Summer © Ollie Godbold

For more on Morzine,  please visit the resort website.

MAIN PHOTO:  © Ollie Godbold – All photographs courtesy of Morzine Tourism.

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