- Discovering Samoëns
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All year round, daily.
What strikes you when you arrive in Samoëns is the quietness and charm of the place. This semi-pedestrian village promises you a complete change of scenery in the idyllic setting of the Alps. It is the ideal place for your next visit.
Samoëns is a village in Haute-Savoie, situated in the heart of the Giffre valley in the French Alps. At an altitude of 700 meters, Samoëns benefits from an ideal location only one hour from Geneva, Annecy, and Chamonix. Overlooked by the Cirque de Sixt-Fer-à-Cheval, the Aiguille du Criou, and the Col de Joux Plane, the village perfectly reflects the beauty of the surrounding countryside.
Originally, Samoëns refers to a medieval expression meaning "the seven mountains" which then surrounded the village (Cuidex, Vigny, Folly, Oddaz, Bostan, Chardonnière, Freterolles, La Vullie). "The seven mountains" today resonate with the name given to the inhabitants of Samoëns: the Septimontains.
The main asset of Samoëns?
Its central square retracing the village's history. Between the Grenette, the Château de la Tour, the large lime tree, the church, and the fountain with its bronze spouts, this square is the historic heart of Samoëns and retraces the local know-how of the Septimontains.
Samoëns is also structured around 9 hamlets, each with an exceptional chapel. Among the most important hamlets: Bérouze, Chantemerle, Vercland, Allamands, and Vallons.
At the junction of every street, every path, or every chapel, another story is proudly displayed, that of the stonemasons.
In 1659, the frahans (the name given to the stonemasons) were so numerous in Samoëns and their know-how so renowned, that they formed a very famous brotherhood
In 1659, the frahans (the name given to the stonemasons) were so numerous in Samoëns and their know-how so renowned, that they formed a very famous brotherhood which was called upon on the biggest sites throughout the world: by Vauban for his fortifications, then by Bonaparte for the canals of Saint Quentin, in Givors and even further afield in Poland or Louisiana.
Testimonials of their talent remain in the architecture of the village and even today, stonemasons perpetuate the tradition and the brotherhood has been transformed into an association with a cultural purpose:« la Société des Maçons ».
Discover the history of Samoens and it’s architecture, with this guided tour.
The ecomuseum farm of Clos Parchet in Samoëns is an old traditional farm. It displays a considerable collection of antique utensils. Above all, it illustrates daily life on the adrets of Samoëns.
Guided tour of the rural heritage in the villages of Les Vallons. Breathe in the fresh air in this pretty little valley where the scenery is dotted with farmhouses and outbuildings such as barns, vegetable plots, sheds and orchards.
Discover the traditional life on the slopes of Giffre mountains. Discover an old farm of the 19th century located in nature. Live a sensory experience, expressions of the everyday-life of that time.