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VILLARS

New Horizons

Vaud Alps Wonders

Situated at 1300 m, on a sunny south-facing terrace high above the Rhone valley, the holiday resort of Villars-sur-Ollon in the heart of the Vaud Alps enjoys breathtaking views of the Dents-du-Midi and the Mont Blanc massif and as far as Lake Geneva.

THE AREA

Villars offers an international ambience, with guests of all ages – there are a number of exclusive private schools located here. Its smaller neighbour Gryon is a little lower down, on the more easterly side of the valley. Together, they make up the holiday destination of Villars-Gryon. You reach these resorts by driving from Ollon or Bex in the Rhone valley. In summer, it is possible to drive to Les Diablerets over the Col de la Croix. From Bex there is also a narrow-gauge railway which winds its way in tight curves through Gryon and up to the sunshine terrace of Villars and on to Bretaye, the starting point for numerous sporting and leisure activities.

WINTER

The skiing area of Villars incorporates the two smaller areas of Villars/Bretaye and Gryon and is also linked via the route over Le Meilleret with the Les Diablerets skiing area, including a glacier skiing area at 3000 m. Altogether, this creates a skiing arena with 44 lifts and 125 km of ski slopes. In addition there are three snowparks, a snow kindergarten, 44 km of cross-country skiing trails, sledging runs and numerous winter walking routes – not to mention a lively après-ski scene. Those in need of relaxation can visit the amenities and wellness centres at the thermal baths in Lavey. Tee off overlooking the breezy blue waters of the Pacific Ocean at the Jack Nicklaus-designed Pacifico Course, rated among the best in Latin America. Pacifico is renowned for its optional 19th hole, the “Tail of the Whale,” a 199-yard par-three where you tee off over the Pacific Ocean onto a large island green. The Bahia, another Nicklaus-designed championship course, has six ocean holes, and is lined by beach sands and gated resort properties controlling course access.

SUMMER

In summer the main activities are hiking, mountain biking and golf. You can choose from over 300 km of signposted footpaths and 150 km of mountain bike routes. One enjoyable tour leads up to the mountain lakes of Lac de Chavonnes, Lac de Bretaye and Lac Noir. Visitors can look forward to gastronomic walking tours and treasure hunts. A beautifully scenic 18-hole golf course located at 1600 m allows you to play golf in the heart of the mountains, with views of Mont Blanc. Other sporting activities include an educational woodland walk with a picnic hut, Nordic walking trails, a sport centre with ice rink, swimming pool and climbing walls and a via ferrata (fixed-cable climb).

Villars Experience

Earth's Journey

On 4.6 exciting kilometers between Bretaye and Villars, you can experience our earth’s history, which spans about 4.6 billion years. On the informative theme trail, the most important aspects and events of our planet are explained at nine stations. The explanations in English and French are illustrated by means of iron sculptures. You will find information on the first mammals, photosynthesis, and the origin of man. This theme trail is interesting for young and old alike.

Golf in the Alps

Which golfers don’t dream of being able to hone their swing against the backdrop of a magnificent Alpine panorama? Villars Golf Club, the only 18-hole course in the Canton of Vaud, makes this possible, with challenging south-facing greens offering views of Mont Blanc. After a round of golf, some relaxation and recovery in the thermal spa of Villars is called for. Villars Golf Club, situated at an altitude of 1,660m in the Vaud Alps, was founded in 1922. The 18-hole, 5,288m course (par 70) is open to all members of a golf club and also offers beginners and experienced golfers a covered practice area and pitching and putting greens.

Fun Hunt

In Villars junior detectives will get their money’s worth thanks to a treasure hunt on three exciting trails. The four-hour tours invite hikers to discover Villars and Brettaye. Before embarking on the treasure hunt, the visitors register at the tourist office. Then the treasure hunt can begin. On the way, the hikers have to answer questions about the surroundings of Villars and exciting riddles have to be solved, which ultimately lead to the treasure. Fabulous prizes will be raffled among all participating families.

Hiking Secrets

On the approximately two-hour hike you will discover exciting secrets of the forest and enjoy a wonderful view of Villars-sur-Ollon and the surrounding mountain world. The picturesque hike takes you in two hours from Col de Bretaye via Tête de Teissa-Joux and Col de Soud to Villars-sur-Ollon. On the 6.7 km hike you can enjoy magnificent views of the valley and hike through magnificent forests. The last kilometers of the hike are on the theme trail “Sentier du Renardeau”, an educational forest trail that leads down to Villars. Twenty signposts that are interesting for the young and young at heart give the hiker detailed information about forest life: flora, fauna, scents, forest professions and tree species.

Vineyard Paradise

Explore the Vaud vineyard on foot and sample the winery’s drops in all colours. Those visiting the wine estate of Pierre and Michel Anex in Ollon are welcomed personally by the winemaker couple. On a walk through the vines, you’ll hear anecdotes about the region and fascinating tales of working in the vineyard. Adults can then head to the cellar for a tasting of white wine, rosé and red wine, while children will have fun playing on the swing outside. A homemade snack of local products rounds of this family outing in Ollon.

Travel to Villars

BY TRAIN

The metre gauge BVB (Bex-Villars-Bretaye railway) operated by TPC connects the village from Bex in the valley. Trains run roughly hourly and take 40 minutes. Bex is easily accessible by train from either Saint-Maurice or Montreux.

BY CAR

The easiest way to access Villars by car is from the south. Exit the motorway A9 either at Aigle or at Bex-Monthey and follow the signs. It is also possible to drive from les Diablerets via the Col de la Croix pass.

BY BUS

Villars-sur-Ollon has hourly bus connections from Aigle (35 min). During the summer months there is also a bus from Les Diablerets (35 min), but there are only three courses a day.

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