Zermatt… Matterhorn… You could just sit outside on your balcony with Matterhorn view (if lucky enough) and boom, that’s your holiday. Matterhorn is hypnotising. The light, weather change the face of that big boy every second. I’ve been lucky enough to live there for 6 years and during this time I don’t even want to count how many Matterhorn photos I took. Instead of sitting on your bum all the time and watching the time pass by you can explore a bit.
1. Go skiing/ snowboarding
365 days a year, 360 km of slopes, 2 countries. What else do you need? Zermatt is now nr 1 ski resort of the world and it is slowly growing…soon there will be even more slopes, which means more slopes more fun. Check this post to learn more about the skiing areas in Z.
After whole day of skiing, or half day, or even when you didn’t go skiing because you didn’t feel like it – you deserve some good après-ski time. That means – it’s going to get dirty. There’s quite a lot spots in Zermatt to have a glass or 2 or more.
Starting with the slopes: Igloo Village on Gornergrat side (watch out, still a long way down to the village), Blue Lounge and Adler Hitta on Sunnegga side and when skiing down to the village stop by the Champagne Bar and later in Cervo for some live music. When skiing down from Klein Matterhorn don’t forget to pop by Hennu Stall for some ‘ski shots’.
In the village itself there’s quite a few places to pop by. My favourites: Papperla Pub with the outside bar, amazing atmosphere, Jäger bombs, rainbow shots, hot shots, strong mulled wine, live music inside; Cable Car which opens in the evenings and is a place where you can play pool, darts, bowling, a bit more chilled, but sometimes with huge parties; Brown Cow – buzzing pub with good snacks and quite an atmosphere; Snowboat – few minutes walk from Sunnegga station, a pretty place with amazing cocktails and a sunny terrace. Not to forget: Z’alt Hischi in the old part of the village. Watch out -when you order gin tonic or whatever else, there’s not much space for your soda. That would be enough….
3. Go hiking
Hiking in winter? In Zermatt? YES! It’s not only summer trails that leave you breathless. The village has quite a few winter hiking and snowshoe trails to offer for those who don’t feel like skiing. You can hike up to one of the places where your mates will take a lunch break and easily go back later on. Perfect. Some useful info: here.
Not for the people scared of heights or open spaces. It was one of the best experiences in my life. You can choose your starting point and depending on the weather you can go from: Riffelberg, Blauherd, Schwarzsee, Rothorn, Gornergrat, Rotenboden or the heighest point which is Klein Matterhorn. I flew with Fly Zermatt and recommend them strongly.
5. Tobogganing fun!
I have written already about toboggan run on Rotenboden. It is fun. It is a time to relax and enjoy a scenery with not that much physical effort. There’s also an option of an evening tobogganing. You take a lift at 6.30 p.m. up to Furi, enjoy a meal in one of the restaurants and toboggan your way down. More info here.
6. Take a train up to Gornergrat
If you’re not a skier/ snowboarder and don’t feel like hiking then taking a train up to Gornergrat (3 089 m) should be on your ‘must do’ list. It is a bit expensive but totally worth the money. The train ride itself will already make your jaw drop. When already up on Gornergrat take a little stroll up to a panorama point. From there Monte Rosa massif, 29 4000 m peaks and Gorner Glacier are in front of your eyes. Not bad at all.
7. Go to Zermatt Unplugged Festival
Around 80 concerts, 5 days, 14 different stages. First edition took place in 2007 and since then every April Zermatt Unplugged is back in the village. Different artists, dj’s perform up on the mountains and in Zermatt itself. Lots of free concerts that are really worth going to if you’re not feeling like spending too much money on tickets. More info: here.
8. Eat out
Zermatt is a well-known ski resort. What goes with it is an amazing gastronomic background. Traditional Swiss fondue, röstis, Italian pizza, Thai, Japanese, Chinese food, yummy burgers and some ‘fusion’ (no confusion) cuisine. It’s all there. There’s few restaurants I visited more often like: Walliserkanne – really everything for everyone, good food and good price, Vieux-Valais da Nico – delicious Italian food, Snowboat – as written before perfect place to have a drink, but also a stunning dinner. Honestly, eat anywhere. It is really hard to find a bad restaurant in Zermatt. If you find one let me know.
9. Go ice-skating, curling or just watch a hockey game
In the center of Zermatt there’s a big ice rink when sometimes hockey games take place. You can enjoy a bit of ice fun on your own as well if you feel like it. Every year there’s a curling tournament. So yes, ice fun! (not my thing really)
10. Walk around
Zermatt is a pretty village. Old town is quite small but picturesque, walking around Zermatt with the Matterhorn looking at you all the time is quite a nice activity for one evening. Get lost (well you probably won’t since it’s not that huge).
Also one more tip. When feeling lazy and feel like having coffee, wine or whatever else – go to Sport Pavillion. Chilled place in the center of the village with a terrace and a stunning view.
Text: Agnieszka Wajs