The Hiker’s Haute Route Express consists of a spectacular series of trails linking Grimentz to Zermatt, marked by high, steep passes, quiet trails, and stunning mountain scenery. It’s one of the world’s classic hikes, with a wild beauty deserving of it’s name. For those without time for the full tour, we’ve designed this Express Haute Route covering the stunning second half of the tour from the Anniviers valley to Zermatt.
Arriving in Switzerland, you’ll travel by train and bus to the Anniviers valley, to Grimentz, a beautiful village of dark-timbered chalets covered with geraniums. From here, you’re choice of moderate or strenuous routes leads you high into the mountains to the Moiry hut, one of the most beautiful huts along the Haute Route. Descending from Moiry, you’ll reach Zinal, the mid-point of the tour, and another charming small village. From Zinal, you cross a high pass to the remote Turtman valley, where you overnight in a popular hiker’s inn. Finally, one last pass brings you to the Mattertal, where you catch a short train to Zermatt, the classic alpine village at the foot of the Matterhorn. This trip can easily be extended with additional nights in Zinal and/or Zermatt.
What about Luggage transport? Our self-guided Haute Route tours automatically include luggage transport. Luggage will be transferred from Grimentz to Zinal and Zermatt. If you are planning to carry everything and don’t need luggage transfers at all, we can leave it off and reduce the price. Please ask if you have questions about luggage transfers for your tour.
Your typical day starts with a continental buffet breakfast at your inn – delicious fresh baked bread, local cheeses, cereal, fruit, coffee and juice – which gives you the energy needed for a full day of high mountain hiking. Before setting out on your hike, visit a bakery and market for lunch supplies, or buy a packed lunch from your hotel or inn before setting out. Reminders will be included in your route notes. Soon you’ll be out on the trail for 7-9 hours, with detailed directions to get you to your next stop.
You should finish your hike around 4-5 pm, giving you time to wash up and relax followed by dinner at your inn. These are multi-course feasts, often featuring local French and Swiss specialties, and will definitely be hearty, filling, well-earned and very delicious.
Grimentz – Arrive in Europe and transfer by train to the sleepy village of Grimentz, a postcard-perfect village of dark timbered houses bursting with colorful geraniums.
Grimentz is a wonderfully under-the-radar mountain village in the heart of one of the prettiest valleys in the Alps. You’ll stay here in a comfortable 3-star hotel in town.
Moiry hut – Starting right from town, a scenic traverse of the valley brings you through high meadows to the Moiry reservoir. Those who would like an easier hike today can start with a bus ride to the reservoir instead.
From the blue-green waters of the Moiry reservoir, your trail continues up, high into the rocks to the newly renovated Moiry hut, a gorgeous base camp surrounded by a sea of ice.
Zinal – A slightly easier day leads you over a minor pass and gives you a chance to further explore the Val d’Anniviers, an unforgettable valley with a great blend of ancient villages, quiet trails, and breathtaking views.
Descend to the village of Zinal, a postcard-perfect village tucked at the far end of this quiet valley. A modest, family-run 3-star hotel is your home for the night.
Gruben – Leaving the Anniviers valley, your Haute Route itinerary continues over the Meidpass to the Turtmann valley and into the German-speaking portion of the Wallis.
Capped by the stunning Weisshorn mountain, this is a quiet, wonderful valley with surprising views around every corner. Stay at a hiker’s inn at the base of the valley.
Zermatt – Your final pass brings us up to more grand views of the Weisshorn and Dom, two of Switzerland’s highest mountains, before dropping down to the valley where you catch a short train ride to Zermatt.
Zermatt is a lively village, filled with energy and history, and dominated by the towering presence of the Matterhorn. It also retains its alpine charm, with quiet back alleys, scenic nearby hamlets, and classy shops. Check out the town, take a short walk around Zermatt, or enjoy the local Matterhorn museum or the spa, before settling in for dinner at your friendly village hotel.
depart – After breakfast at your hotel, depart for your post-trip destinations.
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