Here are 7 good reasons to love Zermatt, Switzerland

Visiting Zermatt - Matterhorn at Riffelsee

Zermatt has more to offer than an iconic mountain top. (We're obviously talking about the Matterhorn.)

This Alpine valley features lots of hiking trails with scenic vistas, plenty of slopes for gravity sports and a number of climbing walls for vertical adventures! During the warm seasons, it is worth exploring the charming creeks and waterfalls. But if snow and ice are your elements, you will get a kick out of skiing on top of one of the glaciers - year-round!

 

Zermatt is a water paradise

Up until 1831, Zermatt was actually referred to as "Prato Borni" - "meadow among natural springs". This is no coincidence since Zermatt has a total of 94 natural springs and is at the junction of four mountain rivers: Gornera, Triftbach, Zmuttbach and Findelbach.

The latter two rivers combine to make the Matter Vispa, which is the dominant stream in the town of Zermatt. During our recent stay, it was the raging waters of the Matter Vispa which completed the sensory experience of viewing the Matterhorn from our hotel balcony.

It's fun to imagine how the eroding forces of water have influenced the landscape of Zermatt over time. The rivers are constantly at work, transporting rocks out of the valley (OK, ice and a portion of gravity are helping, too). So during your visit, embrace H2O and enjoy the acoustic landscape of Zermatt!

 

The town lends itself to strolling around. It is literally 100% Swissness overload!

Zermatt - Idyllic Streets
 

Just a brief walk from the village, you will find these rustic cottages.

Zermatt - Rustic Cottages
 

Hiking - Need we say more?

As of 2012, Zermatt had approximately 50 mountain lakes. This number varies, however, as the landscape is constantly evolving. We decided to check out just five of these lakes on the Five Lake Hike (duh!).

READ
On the Trails of Swiss Chocolatier Suchard in Neuchâtel

Starting at the Blauherd station with our destination across the valley at Riffelalp, the breathtaking trail highlighted the beautiful mountain lakes of Zermatt. We even spotted some Murmeli groundhogs along the way...

Zermatt Hiking
 
Another hike I can recommend is the Matterhorn Glacier Trail from the Trockener Steg station. It felt like walking on the surface of the moon as we crossed vast areas of rocks near the base of the Matterhorn.

Matterhorn Glacier Trail

Visiting Zermatt - Hiking
 

Where else can you get up close and personal with a glacier?

Matterhorn Glacier
 

Meeting those cheeky Valais goats

You never know where you are going to find them! First, you will notice them grazing along the train tracks as you approach Zermatt. And then, they might turn into road barriers of a goat-y kind when you go for a hike in Zermatt...

Visiting Zermatt - Valais Goats
Visiting Zermatt - Valais Goats
 

Marveling at the Matterhorn

When in Zermatt, I always feel the presence of the Matterhorn. Whether clearly visible or hidden by a layer of clouds, it is always going to be there, looking down on the town.

Matterhorn at Dawn
 
I can highly recommend paying extra to get a hotel room with view of the Matterhorn. I think it is incredible to watch the first sun rays caress the slopes of the mountain, witness how clouds embrace the Horu and quickly disappear, and marvel at the sunset colors reflecting off of its slopes...

Drinking from a fountain

Due to an abundance of natural springs, Zermatt is 100% self-sufficient when it comes to the supply of potable water. It is always a pleasure to fill up an empty bottle at one of the fountains or take a sip of water during a hike!

According to the water quality report, the water is only 3-4 degrees Celcius when it pours from the tap. Believe me, that's very cold (but refreshing)!

READ
THE OMNIA Mountain Lodge in Zermatt has it all

Bragging Rights/Something to write home about

Atop the Gornergrat at 3089 m above see, the view of the Matterhorn in the distance could not be any better! As any tourist will attest, the first person to greet you when you get off the train is not actually a person, but rather a St. Bernhard.

Specifically, it will be Biscuit, the most easy going yet adorable mascot for your true Zermatt experience! We get our picture done there every single time...

Visiting Zermatt - Gornergrat Picture
 

Does waking up to this count?

Visiting Zermatt - Matterhorn
 

Have you decided to put Zermatt on your bucket list yet? Or do you have any valuable tips to share?

 

Additional resources about Zermatt

- THE OMNIA Mountain Lodge in Zermatt has it all
- An unforgettable winter weekend at the CERVO Zermatt
- 14 facts about the majestic Matterhorn
- You know you're from Valais if...

Follow me

Dimitri Burkhard

Founder, Editor-in-Chief at Newly Swissed GmbH
As the founder, editor and community manager of Newly Swissed, Dimitri owns the strategic vision. He is passionate about storytelling and is a member of the Swiss Travelwriters Club.

Dimitri loves discovering new trends and covers architecture, design, start-ups and tourism.
Follow me
10 replies
  1. Bill Harby
    Bill Harby says:

    I love that there are NO CARS in Zermatt. We loved our stay at the architecturally intriguing little Hotel Alex. For a spicy lunch, try the Afro-Carib sandwiches at The Pipe. And for luscious wood-fired lamb, pull up a chair at Chez Heini.

    Reply
  2. Moonchild
    Moonchild says:

    LOVE Zermatt! So quaint in amazingly beautiful surroundings! Love how the Matterhorn looms over everything. So much to see in Switzerland, we rarely do the same thing twice. But my family was just discussing how we all want to go back to Zermatt.

    Reply
  3. Pieter
    Pieter says:

    I love this article and I love Switzerland (and this website). Been twice to Zermatt, once in winter and once in summer. Both times I found the trainride into Zermatt stunning. The Gornergrat trainride itself is also a must-do. Fun fact: Zermatt has the highest ski lift in Europe (on top of Klein Matterhorn at 3900m.).

    Reply
  4. M2000
    M2000 says:

    HI
    Beautiful photos
    May I know when you took those photos (ie Early or end of which month?) . especially the first one and the last one.

    Reply
  5. Derya Ford
    Derya Ford says:

    I love Zermatt too.I was there yesterday (August 2013) and I truly fell in love with it.I agree with the spring waters all aorund Zermatt. They are incredibly cold,but great to drink in hot summer days.As there is no traffic, it is very relaxing to walk aound the city center. The river in Zermatt is very nice too.The cable car ride to Klein Matternhorn was truly scary.It was a real adventure for me,but I was really scared.However ,you get used to it by the time you arrive “klein Matternhorn”,and going down is a great fun! It is like as if somebody threw you out of a cliff and you are just rolling down the hill.The view and panorama from the “only” glass made cable car is breathtaking !If you have a heart problem avoid the cable car.It is made of glass and unless you close your eyes you see eveything including the houses ,mountains,rivers,waterfalls sliding down under your feet….!It is definitely worth seeing that beautiful part of the world.

    Reply
      • Derya Ford
        Derya Ford says:

        I should also mention” Buscuit” the St Bernard dog.I just loved it.As soon as I came to the cable car station (just before klein Matterhorn station),he met me and immediately grabbed my attention with its pure white, clean cut fluffy look.He is a friendly dog and enjoys posing ! I have two wonderful pictures with him and I would like to also thank the photographer gentleman.I love the quality of the photos ,good job! Many thanks and I hope to see you and buscuit again..I will definitely visit Zermatt again in the near future ,hopefully with some friends .Zermatt is the real “summary” of traditional, beautiful Switzerland that you see on the post cards and brochures.

Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. […] to many conversations with locals (and my own observations during previous trips), I came up with a list of surefire ways to know you are from […]

Leave a Reply

Want to join the discussion?
Feel free to contribute!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *