Geneva’s Home Mountain: Mont Salève

Geneva is home to the popular Mont Salève which invites people to find remarkable views of the city, lake, and as far as Mont Blanc on a clear day. The mesmerising views are perfect for selfies and photographs while elevated 1,097 meter high. Right on your doorstep, Salève is the place to go if you’re looking for an adventure together.

Located in the city centre of Geneva, it might surprise you to hear that Mont Salève rests on French terrain – so you’ll need your passport to cross the border. If the excitement of visiting two countries in one day isn’t enough for you, there are an abundance of opportunities on the mountain.

Mont Salève’s Mountain Rail

For over 120 years, Mont Salève has been connected to mountain rail. In 1887, a steam powered tram travelled from Geneva to the foot of Salève. By 1894, passengers were able to ride along the rock face edge of the mountain in somewhat dangerous – but romantic – electric cog carriages. Now, a safe cable car is installed to carry you up the steep ridge of the mountain from Les Pas de l’Echelle to Treize Arbres – close to the observatory where together you can soak in the sights of the city and neighbouring mountain ranges.

How to Get There

The cable car is accessible from Pas de l’Echelle. From the city centre, bus numbers 8, 34, 41 or 44 go to Veyrier-Ecole, Veyrier-Douane, Croix-de-Rozon Douane – stops within walking distance of where you can board the cable car. In five minutes, you will be transported to 1,100 meters high where you can tour the tops of the mountain. Open from April to 13th November, the car costs 13 CHF for adults and departs every 12 minutes.

What to Do

Once on the mountain, there are miles of paths to explore. Take things slow with a packed picnic for two and follow the mapped hiking trails with a camera around your neck. Or, there are higher rocky paths if you have a head for the hazardous. Beware of steep descents and overhanging rocks on the Grotte d’Orjobet and Balmes path.
Mont Salève is the perfect terrain for extreme pursuits. Paragliding, climbing, and mountain biking are just a handful of things to experience during your day on Geneva’s home mountain.