This summer’s scorching heat seems to make everyone want to run as far away from the blazing sun as possible. And if you’re one of those people, we understand and have your back. Located in southern Switzerland’s Valais Canton, Zermatt lies just below the iconic pyramid-shaped Matterhorn peak. The village itself is at an elevation of 1,600 metres, always covered in snow and therefore known for skiing, ice-skating, and hiking.
The ski region encompasses a whopping 54 mountain railways and lifts, and the region called the Matterhorn Glacier Paradise is the largest and highest lying summer skiing region in Europe! You can get there by a cableway, and it would be apt to say that you’ll feel like you’re on top of the world. You could take the Gornergrat cog railway that winds its way more than 3,000 metres up the mountain, giving you one of the most astounding panoramic views you will ever witness. If you don’t want to be travelling around in cablecars and trains and prefer physical activity, take the Gorner Gorge footpath that goes across narrow bridges, steps, and even a rope route through a deeply scarped gorge. There are also several other walking trails through the high-Alpine terrain, as well as mountain-biking and climbing trails.
Several great men – including Edward Whymper, Theodore Roosevelt, and Winston Churchill – have scaled the massive monolith that is the Matterhorn. It’s just impossible to visit Zermatt without being absolutely smitten by the unique peak. Once you reach the top, by whichever way possible, skiing down the majestic Matterhorn is another ballgame altogether. With miles of outstanding slopes, the shining sun, glinting snow, and the most extraordinary views, there’s no way you’ll be satisfied with one trip down. We would advise you to plan your stay such that you can make multiple trips up and down the striking mountain to effectively take in everything that Zermatt and the Matterhorn offer.
Although Zermatt can bring out the daredevil in you, adventure is not the town’s only facet. The car-free, old-fashioned village is sprawling with brown chalets and winding alleys through which you can walk, take electrical vehicles or horse-drawn cabs to commute. You feel like you’ve stepped into a past that somehow still possesses the trendiest aspects of the present, as you walk through its main street, Bahnhofstrasse, which is lined with boutiques, hotels, and restaurants!