Cable cars arenít just for skiers
For those of us who donít ski, the achievements of the cable car system around Mont Blanc are little known. This feat of engineering can be used not only to shorten your hike into the high grounds, but also for some more leisurely lusting over landscapes on your day off from trekking. The most famous is the Aiguille du Midi cable car, a 20-minute ride out of Chamonix up to a height of 3,842m, with views over the French, Swiss and Italian Alps and, of course, Mont Blanc itself. It has two stages, with the first stop at the Plan de l'Aiguille (2,300m), a popular point for various day hikes, such as walking back to Montenvers railway station, where you can pick up a train back to Chamonix.
The second stage flies over Les Pelerins glacier before rising up the North Face of the Aiguille du Midi. You can toast your arrival at the aptly named 3842 Restaurant, the highest dining to be had in Europe. You can continue on to Italy from here too, with an additional panoramic voyage across the massif to Point Helbronner, and then another cable car down to Courmayeur.