About Via Ferrata

Via Ferrata means ‘iron way’ and they were invented by the Italians to get their troops across the steep mountains safely and quickly. It has now become a sport in it’s own right with hundreds of via ferrata routes set up on cliff faces around Europe.

A via ferrata route is made up of iron bars and holds strategically positioned in the rock to help you climb the route. The course is followed by a wire cable which you are attached to all the way round. To get across chasms and gorges, bridges are used which are sometimes no more than a precarious wire and other times include wooden boards. 

In the Southern French Alps there is also a via ferrata with giant tyrolean zip line descents to get back down from the top.

Choose Your Via Ferrata Adventure

All these via ferrata adventures are bookable online and are our most popular in the Southern French Alps. If you are looking for a different via ferrata experience not featured here or would like to book a private via ferrata guide for your group on a particular day, please contact us. If you would like to combine via ferrata with a range of other activities, have a look at Undiscovered Mountains fully customisable summer activity holiday packages

Via Ferrata Map

Have a look at the location of all the via ferratas proposed on our website. There are other via ferratas in the area, but these are our most popular ones. Most of these are currently bookable online with different time slots available throughout the summer. If you would like to arrange a private guided trip please contact us

What You Need to Know

Equipment

All the guides and companies proposing via ferrata adventures on our website will provide you with a specialist climbing harness with shock absorbing cows-tails attached and a helmet. These are what you clip on to the safety wire with, unclipping one at a time to get around obstacles. Our guides will also rope you together with an additional safety rope. For the via ferrata with tyrolean zip lines, they also provide the pulleys for the zip lines!

Safety

Via ferrata accidents are almost all due to user error with via ferraterers inadvertently unclipping from the safety wire.  Whenever you do a via ferarata with any of the guides featured on our website, you will be given clear advice and instruction on how to do a via ferrata safely and you will have an additional safety rope set up to protect against human error. All the via ferrata guides featured are UIAGM high mountain guides or experienced rock climbing instructors who are local to the Southern French Alps, all hand picked for their professionalism and attention to detail and safety. 

Best Time of Year for Via Ferrata in the Alps

Via ferratas can actually be done at almost any time of year except when there is a lot of ice and snow, but even then, as they are often on steep cliffs where snow doesn’t gather many via ferratas are actually possible all year round – you might just need a few extra layers!! The busiest time is June – September during the summer months. Spring and Autumn are great with slightly cooler temperatures on the rock and that spectacular spring and autumn light on the mountain scenery.

Get a Feel for Via Ferrata Adventure!

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