Allein, Bionaz, Doues

This is an excerpt from the book “Aosta Valley Itineraries”.

Bionaz - Photo © Donato Arcaro, touristic and naturalistic guide of the Aosta Valley
Bionaz – Photo © Donato Arcaro, touristic and naturalistic guide of the Aosta Valley

Allein

Allein is a typical small mountain village situated on a splendid sunny position on the left side of the Artanavaz river, 15 km from Aosta on the SS 27 Great Saint Bernard road.

Sightseeing: in the hamlet of Ayez, there is an ancient house dating back to the 15th century with some particularly decorative worked-stone windows with a characteristic ogee motif. This building will be restored and, in future, will house a museum and a library.

The territory of Allein offers a wide range of paths and itineraries for summer excursions, the most important is the one to Mont Saron (2631 mt), a peak which is easy to reach and which is also the destination of an annual religious procession taking place at the end of July.

Talking about folklore, worthy of mention is Carnival which is celebrated by the population of the village in the month of February with a parade of multicolored and typical costumes which recall the uniforms of Napoleonic soldiers. The typical festival of this village is called “Feta di Trifolle” dedicated to the potato which takes place every year at the end of August.

Where to stay in Allein

There are high quality hotels, country houses and farm stays available, check them out and make a reservation here.

Bionaz in summer - Photo © giangi71
Bionaz in summer – Photo © giangi71

Bionaz

A vast territory along the Buthier river, Bionaz represents a crossroads connecting, through its various passes, several localities of the Valle d’Aosta and Switzerland. An amphitheatre of high mountains, the highest peak of which is the Dent Herens (4171 m), includes about twenty glaciers which feed alpine lakes and the hydroelectric dam of Place Moulin (105 million m3 of water). Being scarcely urbanized the area is populated by wild fauna (ibex, chamois, deer, roes, marmots, eagles etc.).

The village of Bionaz is situated at 1600 mt. above sea level, it offers examples of rural and religious life of the past centuries. You can admire the 17th – century parish church, the chapel, the bread ovens used traditionally for the baking of brown bread, some rascards made of wood, the parish house and the hostel La Batise.

As far as sport is concerned, during the summer there are the following possibilities: excursions for all levels (from the easiest to the most difficult), rock-climbing gyms, mountain-bike routes, trout fishing in alpine lakes and rivers, mountain tours of more days like the high mountain route n. 3 ”Alta Via n. 3”, the Tour du Cervin, and the religious path that starts from Col Collon and arrives at the cathedral in the town of Aosta. In winter you can do cross-country skiing, practice biathlon thanks to the new rifle range, go ski touring or climb on ice falls.

For tourists in Bionaz there is also an equipped picnic area around the Lexert lake, a youth hostel, an holiday home, an hotel, two farmhouse accommodation structures, a campsite, an area for campers and 9 alpine refuges.

Where to stay in Bionaz

There are high quality hotels, villas, condo hotels and B&Bs available, check them out and make a reservation here.

Country house in Doues - Photo © micioaldo2
Country house in Doues – Photo © micioaldo2

Doues

The village of Doues is situated on a wide morainic terrace that faces the Valpelline valley where it joins the Great Saint Bernard valley.

The name Doues probably derives from the latin word “Dovia” that means “duae viae”.

It indicates that in this locality the roads forked into two branches which led through the Alps.

The first road, which later became the most important one is the one that leads to the Great Saint Bernard Pass (called Mons Jovis during the Roman period); the second road is probably the one which leads to the Fenetre Durand, the pass situated in the Ollomont valley which was an important passage to the Swiss Wallis.

You can make several excursions in the area. Among the most interesting and fascinating is the climb to the “Colle Champillon” (2708 meters), from where you can admire a vast panorama of the Great Saint Bernard valley and of the central valley with the town of Aosta.

Other excursions are possible along the “Ru de By” and “Ru du Mont”, or along the old paths that are often used by herds on their way to the high mountain pastures, and back.

Very interesting are the ski-touring itineraries that, from the last hamlets of the village of Doues lead to the localities Creux and Champillon.

It is also possible to make many excursions with snow shoes in the woods of the district and it’s not rare to come across wild animals.

Where to stay in Doues

There are high quality hotels, apartments, country houses and guesthouses available, check them out and make a reservation here.