Hiking in the Swiss Alps

There are numerous possibilities for hiking in the Swiss Alps. Two of the best are in the Bernese Oberland and Matterhorn regions.

To hike in the Bernese Oberland start your journey by taking the mountain train from Interlaken to Grindelwald. When you arrive there is an array of hotels, restaurants and trails awaiting you here.

This is a popular destination so make reservations in advance. Another popular option is Switzerland’s Mountain Inns: A Walking Vacation in a World Apart

Trail 1, First in the Bernese Oberland
This is a great introduction to hiking in the Swiss Alps.I strongly recommend you take a 35 minute ride on the cable car to a place named First. From the café at the top you have a sweeping view of the mountains and there are a numbered of well signed trails.

A favourite option is to hike to Bachalpsee which takes about one hour and then you continue down into the valley. Or you can start immediately down the moiuntain which takes about 2 ½ hours to reach Grindelwald.

Trail 2,  Mannlichen and the Eiger, Bernese Oberland
For a second hiking in the Swiss Alps climb up the mountain which takes about four hours. You can also take the cable car to the restaurant at the top which is what most people. From the top ridge you are able to see the mountains in all four directions, absolutely awesome.

Continue along the 1 ½ hour hiking trail from Mannlichen to Kleine Scheidegg located on the north face of the Eiger, the most popular trail in the area. Then from Kleine Scheidegg you can hike part way up the Eiger Mountain. To return simply walk down the mountain or as most people do take the mountain train.

Trail 3,  Gornergrat at  Zermatt
When you think of hiking in Swiss Alps the Matterhorn is perhaps the most famous mountain that comes to mind. To get to Zermatt take the mountain train from Brig for the 1 ½ hour ride up to Zermatt. This is truly a walking holiday destination as you only find hikers, mountain bikes and electric carts in town as no cars are permitted.

The helpful tourist information office is located in the train station. Leaving the train station you must either walk or take one of the electric carts to your accommodation as no cars are permitted in town. You have plenty of options for hiking in the Swiss Alps here as there are 36 mountains over 4,000 meters.

One of the best hiking in the Swiss Alps is to take the Gornergrat mountain railway on the valley opposite the Matterhorn. Then use one of several trails to hike to the Sunnegga Funicular for the rid back to Zermatt.

Trail 4, The Matterhorn near  Zermatt
Many hikers chose to take the cable cars to Klein Matterhorn, on top of Europe, with sweeping views of the Swiss Alps. From nearby Schwarzsee is an easy, but long seven hour walk back down the mountain to Zermatt.

If you have a Swiss rail pass you can get discounts from the various mountain railways and cable car operators. Evenings are interesting in Zermatt as everyone is a hiker or mountain biker and they are all walking this scenic village with backpacks before locating a restaurant for dinner after a full day of outdoor walking.

Click here for other hiking vacation ideas. Hiking in the Swiss Alps is the ultimate walking holiday experience.

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