Why visit Grenoble in the summertime

Grenoble, the capital of the Alps, one of the French’ preferred ski resort. What took us so long to go visit this small French town located in the Alps, I don’t know, but what I know for sure is that if you like hikes, Grenoble is your destination. And you should visit Grenoble in the summer too.

The city is literally surrounded by mountains, such that, Stendhal, described his natal town with “at the end of each street, a mountain”. Boy, is that true!! The gorgeous river of Isère with the Alps on the background animates Grenoble and everywhere you look you get yourself a postcard view.

“At the end of each street, a mountain” – Stendhal


 So here’s why you should visit Grenoble during summer

Empty streets of Grenoble with mountains in the background

For less crowd

As I mentioned in my post on Lyon, the French cities are empty during summer holidays. Everyone goes in vacation to the beach or elsewhere out of France, thus you have more space to visit and see non popular places in France. Grenoble is one of them!

You guessed it from the introduction that Grenoble is crowded during ski season. There’s no way to have a spare moment alone. If you’re like me and prefer to replenish your batteries without the craziness of a rush-hour or tourist crowds, come visit Grenoble off-season!

For the weather

Oh, the weather! Recently there’s been a wave heat in France; everyone suffered. There have been fires burning down wittered vegetation and forests in the south of France.

We were a little skeptical about avoiding the heat and pollution peak announced in Paris, because the heat wave was predicted everywhere. Oh well, in the forest and mountains, not only you avoid the heat, but also the pollution.

For the first time in a long period I felt I could breath clean air. Paris air is very toxic and every day my lungs feel squished and cluttered by the pollution. On the mountains I could BREATHE!

So this leads to another important point of why visit Grenoble in this period:

For the hikes

One of the best hiking spots is Chamchaude a 4h itinerary, where the spectacular scenery unwinds during your ascension. The forest will cover you from the heat of the sun and while you climb, the surrounding mountains will begin to distinguish themselves in the horizon.

Close to the end, the hike becomes rough and the path steep. If you have enough experience, you can try and finish it.

For Grenoble

Go see for yourself!

View on Grenoble river of Isère
Bastille view on Isere river and Via Ferrata climbing spot
The eggs cable-cars of Grenoble will bring you up and down Bastille
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18 thoughts on “Why visit Grenoble in the summertime”

  1. Grenoble is charming and holds the promise of a lovely experience. The fact that it has lovely weather and less crowds makes it more attractive. The experience of some stunning hikes makes it a great experience. Hope to get there someday.

  2. I’m a huge lover of mountains, and less a fan of the beach, so I believe a summer trip here would be perfect for me. It’s a gorgeous place and perhaps the summer is considered the “off season” and things are cheaper then?

    1. Tara, yes, definitely much cheaper if we talk about a place to stay during your holiday. Snowy winters get really crowded, so hotels/motels/airbnb/etc tend to be full or the price skyrockets.

  3. Hi Ana Marie, I know I mentioned previously what I liked about your blog and I think it’s a great idea to include quotes like you did with photos, they Stendhal one. That one is particularly apt. Keep up the great work!

  4. I love hiking in the mountains and this spot looks beautiful. I couldn’t help but notice how blue the river is! We have nice brown rivers here in the US! LOL Great post, thanks for sharing.

    1. Hey, Matt, thanks for passing by! I haven’t been to the US (yet), so your comment is intriguing me. It’s not the first to mention the colour of the river. Which rivers are you thinking of?

  5. The water in the river in Grenoble almost looks like the Caribbean! I agree that the French alps are gorgeous and summer is an ideal time to enjoy the summer cheeses and wear off the calories by hiking!

  6. I have never thought about visiting in the summer, only winter on my way to go skiing. Thanks for the post, I am definitely going to add this to my list.

    1. Oh, everyone has his priorities. I don’t ski, and even though I LOVE snow, we tend to avoid touristy destinations in their high season. It tends to be very pricey. You’ll love the Alps in the sumertime. 🙂

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