Are you spending a few days in Zermatt with your family, friends or loved one? Or planning a longterm workation stay in Zermatt? This Guide is brought to you by our team at Zermatt Holidays and gives you all the insights from a local perspective. We’ve compiled our knowledge of Zermatt since 1988 to help you get the most out of your stay!
Zermatt Village is located at the end of a valley in the south of the canton Valais (Wallis). Zermatt and its ski area is linked with that of Cervinia (Italy), very close to the Italian border. You can literally have lunch in a different country while skiing, quite James Bond like, right?
Despite its remoteness Zermatt is quite easy to get to. The nearest airports to Zermatt are Sion, Geneva, Zurich and Milan. All of the airports have good connections to Zermatt via Brig or Visp.
The most environmentally friendly and convenient way to get to Zermatt is and will be by train. Since Zermatt is car-free since 1931(!), only residents with special permission are allowed to drive to the entrance of Zermatt by car. Everyone else has to park their car on one of the 2400 spots of the parking lot in Täsch. The train infrastructure in Switzerland is one of the most reliable and efficient in the world.
Get a break from congestion, Zermatt has remained a uniquely car-free resort making the air as fresh and clean as you can imagine. Your first breath will sooth those traveling from cities and comfort nature fans.
Time transfer (by train): Zurich - 3h10min, Basel - 3h15min, Geneva - 3h30min
These are the travel times by train from the main station. Travelling by car will increase the time by around 15% especially when there’s traffic, which is often the case.
Electro Taxi: The most unique but also pricey way of getting to your destination. The small taxis all run on electricity and are truly unique to Zermatt. Charged up and produced in Zermatt you should definitely at least check them out once!
Buses: The electro bus is free with your lift pass but can be very busy at times. There are two bus routes, red and green, the bus bumper indicates which route it takes.
Bicycle: Especially in the warm months it is a great feeling to ride through the streets with a refreshing breeze around you. Many spots will let you rent their modern E-Bikes.
On foot: no better way to go for an extended walk than Zermatt, everything in the town of Zermatt if fairly close together and mostly you will discover unique spots on less beaten paths.
Dominated by Switzerland’s most famous landmark – the Matterhorn – Zermatt is definitely the best known Swiss ski-resort. A fun-filled place in the Alps, Zermatt continues to attract visitors from all over the globe.
The winter season opens traditionally in the middle of November when skiers from Bavaria spend a week on the slopes of the largest summer skiing area in Europe. Until the middle of December, the skiers have the pistes to themselves. The few visitors spend their days walking the paths that are yet not covered with snow, and appreciating the atmosphere of this village as it must have been before winter tourism began after the Second World War. The apartment prices usually are now at their lowest.
From the middle of December onwards, visitors from five continents arrive to create the international atmosphere. Many winter visitors do not ski. They come here to breathe the uplifting mountain air, wander the narrow cobbled streets and hill paths, admire the breathtaking Matterhorn, and enjoy the cosmopolitan ambience on the main street (Bahnhofstrasse) with its many shops and restaurants in Zermatt. Maybe, one day, they decide to take Europe's highest cableway up to the Klein Matterhorn, to look over into Italy, or to walk up to one of the hamlets above the village where cosy mountain restaurants serve local dishes accompanied by a carafe of Valais wine. The horse-drawn carriages on the narrow streets enhance the fairytale atmosphere.
After the exciting hustle and bustle of Christmas and New Year in Zermatt has passed, some calm returns to the valley. January is quieter now. One can easily imagine what sort of village the first climbers discovered when they came out here in the middle of the last century. January is also the curlers month, and many visitors come to watch the daily events on the ice rink in the middle of the village.
The longer days of February and March bring thousands of skiers to the slopes. These are also the months for the sun worshippers and those who are fleeing the cold damp climates of northern Europe. This area is well known as the sunniest area of Switzerland. The mists that block out the sun until midday in the plains, are unknown here. Until a couple of weeks after Easter, Zermatt is in full swing.
There is an abundance of activities to do in Zermatt in the winter. You won’t only enjoy one of the most beautiful landscapes in Europe but you will discover what pure alpine air can do for your well-being.
Zermatt is not just a world-famous winter ski resort! With long and sunny summers, holiday packages including hikes, cable -car excursions to the peaks, biking, paragliding, golf, historical village tours, and fishing are all available. For the super fit thrill seekers, a glacier traverse above 3000m or a climb to one of the highest peaks in Europe is all in range of possibilities.
June is the month for wild flowers. The alpine roses present a lush red carpet decorating the wooded hillsides above the village. The serious walkers are returning, taking advantage of the fact that this is still pre-season, prices are lower and not even the Bahnhofstrasse is crowded.
By July the summer is in full swing. In the early mornings, groups of young people can be seen hurrying to the cable-car stations to make the most of the morning skiing. Hikers with their rucksacks set out for a day in the mountains. The more leisurely visitors enjoy breakfast on a sunny restaurant terrace before planning their day. Day trippers pour from the trains, and make their way up the main street eager for a first glimpse of the fabled Matterhorn. The goats returning to the village in the evenings are a popular tourist attraction.
Many of September’s visitors return to Zermatt year after year. The valley almost invariably has long sunny autumns which frequently extend into November. On the occasional rainy day in late autumn it is fascinating to watch the snow gradually creeping further down the mountains, until one morning, a sprinkling of snow covers the meadows surrounding the village, and Zermatt knows that once again it will be having a white Christmas.
As you can see, Zermatt is always worth a visit, no matter the weather or season we guarantee it will never get boring. We will continuously update this guide to become your go-to guide when visiting Zermatt.
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