Zermatt nestles at the foot of the Matterhorn at about 1,610 meters above sea level and is one of the most popular of Switzerland’s renowned holiday resorts. Recreational opportunities abound in and around the village that is car-free.
Zermatt and leisure time activities
The 400 km of marked foot trails around Zermatt practically invite you on extended walking tours. The one-of-a-kind mountain scenery stays almost constantly in view for non-stop amazement. A great diversity of flora and fauna frames the stunning mountain experience.
But action-oriented vacationers will also delight in the mountain biking and equestrian trails and paragliding venues. And even golfers get their due at the alpine 9-hole golf course situated between Täsch and Randa. Surprisingly, it is “flat as a pancake” … not exactly what you would expect from a “mountain golf course”…
In winter, Zermatt, with a total of 200 (!) runs is truly a winter sports paradise. The ski area with guaranteed snow offers over 300 km of pistes in three different ski areas: the Sunnegga-Rothorn paradise, Gornergrat-Stockhorn and the Schwarzsee-Matterhorn glacier paradise.
Non-athletic types will also find a trip to the idyllic mountain village well worth their while. A train ride to the Gornergrat or a scenic tour by helicopter are just two options for a fabulous vacation experience.
The aerial shot below showing the Matterhorn and the Gornergrat train by Swissview reveals the breathtaking beauty of the mountainscape around Zermatt (also available in full length version on DVD in Swissview’s online shop).
The Gorner Gorge is one of Zermatt’s most fascinating natural wonders. Located just a few minutes’ walk from the southern end of Zermatt village, it is within easy reach. The gorge was carved over millennia by the Gornera River and is remarkable for its bizarre formations and picturesque waterfalls.
A secure path with catwalks and wooden stairs winds through the gorge. Of course, to descend into the thundering gorge you need to have just a modicum of faith in the engineers’ handiwork….
Designer lodgings in Zermatt
You can find just about any type of accommodations in Zermatt: from holiday apartments to simple B&Bs to trendy hotels with chic designed into them…
For our weekend, we decided on the Matthiol boutique hotel – with never a second’s regret for our choice! The hotel offers beautiful rooms, exquisite service and a gourmet cuisine.
Tourism and Zermatt
Obviously, tourists are not going to stay away from Zermatt. Still, we were surprised that we did not encounter just Japanese, Chinese and Indians. Clearly, Zermatt still attracts very many Europeans to its vacation paradise.
In some respects, Zermatt does live up to the stereotypical Swiss image – expect to be greeted by an alpenhorn serenade at the train station. Understandably, you won’t just find foreign visitors gathered around. Being typical urbanites, we, too, could not resist taking pictures of the alpenhorn ensemble. :-)
See more photo highlights here: [slickr-flickr search=sets set=”72157630639285748″ type=”gallery”]