Driving the Col du Mont-Cenis in the French Alps

Written by on September 21, 2016 in Driving in France, Rhône Alpes

driving-french-alps

If you’re into scenic routes, Mont-Cenis pass in Savoie should definitely be on your list.

It’s one of the highest mountain passes of the Alps and it’s practically a line between the Cottian and Graian Alps. If you’re traveling to or from Italy, ditch the Frejus tunnel and go this way instead – you won’t be disappointed. The roads are nice but curvy, it is a mountain pass after all, but the nature all around is spectacular. Watching the sheep and birds while the wind is blowing in your hair, it’s pretty awesome. You can even see a small waterfall or two on the road as well.

The cherry on the cake is most definitely the Lac du Mont-Cenis, a beautiful, big, turquoise lake. It’s not appropriate for swimming, but what a view you get when you see it from the road. Magnificent.

lac-du-mont-cenis

The best view is from the ruins of the 19th century Italian fortress. If you’re traveling on a hot summer day, the breeze up here is so refreshing.

There are plenty of quiet little tracks to walk on or cycle and dogs will love it too.

mont-cenis-savoie

Not very far away from the lake there are plenty of small hotels where you can rent a room or stay in your camper for the night if you’re just passing by on your road trip. It’s quite popular but it’s still pretty much unspoiled and there are a lot less people around than you might expect in a place that’s this awesome.

If you’re into mountains, fresh air and stunning views, you shouldn’t miss this drive. In the warmer part of the year that is, as in the colder months this pass can be closed if the conditions are bad.

col-de-mont-cenis-savoie

So, what are you waiting for? Get your bike, car or camper ready and hit the road!

Sanja Cvitic is a travel enthusiast, who sees beauty in small things and enjoys great views. She loves everything about France, especially food, language and culture. She tries to capture all the great moments, not just in her head, but also in photos and says writing about those moments makes them last forever.

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