If you haven’t tired of superb panoramic views, you can make for the Montenvers rack railway, a train service which has been running up from Chamonix to the Mer de Glace (1913m) on the flanks of Mont Blanc since 1908; indeed the advent of the Montenvers rack railway effectively signalled the beginning of Alpine tourism in the region. Taking around twenty minutes, the little red train chugs its way up to the “Sea of Ice”, which, at 7km long and nearly 2000m at its widest point, is by far the largest glacier in the Alps. At the top you have the option of walking for twenty minutes or taking a short cable-car ride down into an ice cave freshly carved out of the Mer de Glace every summer – this is usually open between mid-June and September. Another excellent possibility is to make the relatively easy hike from Montenvers to the Plan du Midi (2hr) and take the cable car back down to Chamonix from there.

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