The Tramway Du Mont-Blanc, touristic rack and pinion railway in Chamonix, France 1 097
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The Mont Blanc Tramway or Tramway du Mont-Blanc (TMB), is the highest mountain railway line in France, which was build in 1907. It is a major tourist attraction of Chamonix. The line is 12.4 km long, it runs from Saint-Gervais-les-Bains Le Fayet station to the Nid d'Aigle station at the foot of Bionnassay glacier, 2 372 meters above sea level. The railway takes passengers among meadows, pastures and small mountain lakes. The line is worked by three old trains, painted blue, green and red.
There are 6 possible stops:
- Le Fayet;
- village of Motivon (the village is only accesible by the tram);
- Les Seillières;
- Col-de-Voza (the Voza pass);
- Bellevue (the tram stops here in winter);
- Mont-Lachat (only in the summer);
- Nid d'Aigle (Glacier-de-Bionnassay).
At Bellevue, the Tramway du Mont Blanc crosses the mountain ridge, giving a 360° view over the Contamines Valley, the Aiguille du Goûter, the Aiguilles Rouges and the Aiguille du Midi. It takes 1 hour to get from Le Fayet to Bellevue. There are up to five trips operated per day.
Mountaineers and hikers use the tramway stops as the starting point for many trails. The normal alpine mountaineering route to climb Mont Blanc starts at the tramway's final stop (Nid d'Aigle). There are two places to have a meal on the route: restaurant at the Col de Voza pass, and the Nid d’Aigle mountain hut (offers snacks).