Vegan in Chamonix Valley

Our stay in the Chamonix Valley was unique in that we spent most of our time in Les Houches, where there were no vegan options, much less takeaway options like the abundance in Mexico City. It’s a tiny mountain resort town in France, so we weren’t expecting much. We cooked in every meal except 1 while we stayed in Les Houches, the 1 meal out being at Monkey while we spent the day in Chamonix with friends. While in Chamonix we also cooked every meal except 1, which was a to-go order from Monkey once again after Matt’s UTMB race.

We shopped at the local Carrefour grocery store in Les Houches, which thankfully had two vegan pre-made soy product options, soy nuggets and soy steaks. We ate one of those every day, and at 2-2.50 Euros a box, it was a fairly cheap way to get in an easy protein source. Otherwise we ate lots of lentils, pasta, rice, veggies, salad, bread, and chocolate. The Super U in Les Houches was not only a further walk from us (about 30 minutes vs. 15 to Carrefour), but it didn’t offer the vegan soy products that Carrefour did. While in Chamonix we shopped at both the Casino stores, mainly the one by the Ravanel running store, and the Super U in the center of town, but never found the same soy products we found at the Carrefour in Les Houches.

If traveling to the Chamonix Valley on a vegan diet, I wouldn’t expect to eat out a lot, or at least not much variety if you end up repeating the same restaurants. If you have access to a kitchen, which we always did, the availability of produce, bread, grains, and sources of protein was just fine. We were completely happy to cook most of our time there because it was much cheaper that way. Also, with having Paavo we tend to only order takeaway food since sitting in a restaurant with him is not very fun.

Fast Facts:

When: July 6-August 29th, 2016

Where we stayed: Mainly Les Houches with a few days in Chamonix

Paavo’s age: 7-9 months

Places tried: 1 in Chamonix

Best meal: Falafel sandwiches and fries at Monkey

Summary:

Options: Very few. None in Les Houches and a few in Chamonix with vegan options; nothing strictly vegan

Proximity: If staying in Chamonix, the few places offering vegan options are within walking distance

Value: Good at Monkey. 11 Euros for a huge falafel wrap and 4 Euros for a good portion of fries, an option of either regular or sweet potato.

Memorable experiences: Only ate out at Monkey because it was open most of the day, to-go food was an option, and it was mainly Brits that worked there, so they spoke English, which made it way easier to order.

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