Zermatt and the Matterhorn… Switzerland’s most famous mountain and the village at its base, has filled people with awe and wonder for centuries. Nothing is more quintessentially Swiss, from the world-class hotels to the high mountain huts, timely Swiss transport and an extensive interlocking web of trails. We visit Zermatt many times throughout the summer, on our Matterhorn, Classic Peaks, and Haute Route tours, but this itinerary is hard to beat. On this tour, we’ll escape the crowds on a high level circuit of the Zermatt valley beginning and ending in Zermatt. Beginning with 2 nights in our gorgeous 4-star Zermatt base, our adventure takes off as we head up into the quiet countryside, staying 3 nights in quiet inns and one 5-star hotel above the valley at Fluhalp, Riffelalp, and the newly renovated Hornli hut, high above town on the northeast flank of the Matterhorn, before descending for a final night in town. Each day will bring unforgettable mountain views and many surprises, on this unique tour of one of the world’s most famous mountain regions.
Our typical day starts with a continental buffet breakfast at our hotel. In Zermatt this will be delicious fresh baked bread and croissants, local meats and cheeses, cereal, fruit, coffee and juice, while the huts and inns will feature simpler fare, but still with a heartly selection giving us the energy needed for day’s hike. Soon we’ll be out on the trail, where you’ll get to choose between an easier walk or more strenuous hike for the day. Each morning, you’ll be handed a lunch to carry, and at a mid-point along the way we’ll choose a beautiful spot to stop and enjoy our picnic. We get a lot of compliments on our imaginative lunches – making them something to look forward to as well!
We should finish our hike and reach our next destination around 4 pm, giving you time to wash up, relax, and enjoy the accomplishment. After that, we’ll enjoy dinner together at our hotel. These are multi-course feasts, featuring both local and international specialties like chicken, fish, or cheese fondue. Our hotels enjoy excellent reputations for their fine cuisine.
Zermatt – Arrive in Switzerland, and transfer by train to our meeting point in Zermatt.
There is a train station in both the Zurich and Geneva airports, and traveling to our meeting point will be easy and scenic. In Zermatt, we stay near the center of town in a beautiful and friendly 4-star hotel. (Hotel Europe)
Zermatt – We like to get off the beaten path in Zermatt, and the Trift valley is ideal for quiet trails and sweeping views.
Take a secret trail to a favorite viewpoint high above town, then enjoy a refreshing stop at the Trift inn, known for their homemade ice tea made from local alpine herbs. Afterwards, we’ll enjoy exquisite food and great Matterhorn views from our hotel on our 2nd night in Zermatt. (Hotel Europe)
Fluhalp – Hiking past small alpine lakes with the Matterhorn a constant backdrop, we’ll reach an historic inn at Fluhalp, a simple mountain inn with private rooms and 5-star views.
Riffelalp – Taking quiet trails through fields and forest from Fluhalp, we have a couple of choices up to the wide ridge of Gornergrat, past marmots and small glacial lakes, to what has to be one of the finest viewpoints in Europe.
The jumbled mass of the Gorner glacier stretches out before us, and behind that, Dom, Monte Rosa, the Breithorn, and the Matterhorn form a spectacular backdrop. We’ll stay high on the ridge at the Riffelalp Resort, a tasteful and luxurious oasis high in the mountains. Luggage will be transferred here. (Riffelalp Resort)
Schwarzsee/Hornli hut – The Hornli hut serves as a kind of Matterhorn base camp – the highest hikeable point on the ridge reaching up from Zermatt to the Matterhorn’s peak.
We’ll take a scenic and enjoyable route from Riffelberg up to the hut, newly remodeled in 2015, for an stop at 10,690 ft, and then descend down to Schwarzsee for the night. (Schwarzsee inn)
Zermatt – Leaving Schwarzsee, we’ll pass through the centuries-old hamlets of Zum See and Zmutt, with more gorgeous views, before returning to the wonderful spa and friendly reception at the Hotel Europe in Zermatt.
Enjoy a gourmet dinner and celebratory last night from our favorite family-run hotel in Zermatt. (Hotel Europe)
depart – After breakfast at our hotel, we’ll say our good-byes and leave for our post-trip destinations.
A guided tour of a region filled with great hikes and jaw-dropping views, anchored by the Matterhorn – one of the world’s defining mountains…Learn more ›
Our guided inn-to-inn hike from Chamonix to Zermatt, with comfortable inns and rugged landscapes.Learn more ›