The Matterhorn, Switzerland

The Matterhorn in Switzerland is one of the world’s most recognizable mountains.  To view the summit, you must travel to the town of Zermatt.  After reaching Zermatt, a separate ticket needs to be purchased for the red train (in the photo below you can see the train behind me) that will take you to a higher summit where you can enjoy unobstructed views of the mountain.  Remember to stay hydrated at high altitudes!  Zermatt is easily accessible by train from Interlaken (about a 2 hour train ride) or Geneva (about 4 hours each way).  Zermatt itself is really touristy and not charming but viewing the Matterhorn is well worth the journey.

Saya Matterhorn

WHEN TO VISIT Switzerland:

The best months are the summer months for clear weather.  However, these are also the busiest months for tourism.  You can save a good chunk of money and avoid the bulk of the crowds by visiting slightly off season in May or September.

WHAT TO WEAR IN Switzerland:

Zermatt is at an elevation of 5,276 feet, and the viewing point of the Matterhorn is even higher.  Remember to bring layers as the temperature may change quickly.

HOW TO GET TO Zermatt:

The town of Zermatt does not allow cars, so the best way to arrive here is by train.  The Swiss rail system connects Zermatt to Interlaken and Zermatt to Bern in just over 2 hours by rail.  Hotel prices in Bern tend to be slightly cheaper than those in Interlaken.

Switzerland’s Wine Country

Most people don’t realize that Switzerland has beautiful vineyards.  Travelers can take a mild to moderately challenging hike passing (or stumbling, depending on how often you stop for a tasting) through several vineyards located on the shores of Lake Geneva.  The entire Lavaux wine region is a UNESCO world heritage site and stretches 30 kilometers from Lausanne to Montreux.  One of the most scenic hiking trails starts in the small town of Cully (about a 20 minute train ride from Lausanne).  Take the train to the town of Cully and begin your hike here.   Between here and the town of Rivaz (about 5 km from Cully) you will have great views of immaculate terraced vineyards, Lake Geneva, and the French Alps.  If you have more time in this region, stay overnight in Montreux or Lausanne and catch a music festival in the summer (Paléo Festival de Nyon, Montreux Jazz Festival).

Headed to Rivaz

Swiss Vineyard

Vineyards Sign