Photo courtesy of Salome Abrial/Office de Tourisme de Chamonix
In contrast to the adrenaline-fueled activities on the slopes, the Musée Alpin, located in the former Palais Chamonix, is a peaceful place to explore the fascinating history of Alpine mountaineering and winter sports. Spread over two floors, exhibits go all the way back to when the earliest explorers climbed Mont Blanc in 1786. Viewing the basic equipment used on such journeys leaves one with a deep appreciation for the bravery of the very first climbers. From there, you can learn about everything from when Chamonix hosted the first Winter Olympic Games in 1924, to how the town has expanded over time with modern resorts, all through photos, videos, and intriguing personal accounts.