Nestled in the heart of Europe, the Swiss Alps may not seem the most exotic mountains to visit. However, as the pretty foothills, decorated with chocolate-box chalets, pine woods and lush meadows, give way to towering granite peaks carved by glaciers into sharp serrated ridges, there’s no denying this is a dramatic and majestic range of global prominence. Our walking holidays in Switzerland guide you along trails-less-travelled and among beautiful scenery that could have been plucked straight from a fairy tale.
Walking in Switzerland also allows you to immerse yourself in the beautiful towns and villages scattered along the valleys, where you can explore local culture and sample some of the region’s delicious cuisine. Meanwhile, the higher routes and passes offer some serious challenges and adventures for those looking to really test their limits on trekking holidays in Switzerland.
From the famous Tour de Mont Blanc and the Matterhorn to walking in Kandersteg, this stunning country is a walker’s paradise with countless fabulous trails that wind through the Swiss Alps.
Switzerland Walking Holidays
15 Daysfrom£ 3,449
Guided Group (Excl. Flights)
Walk the classic circuit through France, Switzerland and Italy
Mont Blanc Bovine Route: Being the tallest peak in the Alps, Mont Blanc is a beautiful beast of a mountain and a seriously challenging trek, but the scenery you’ll encounter is well worth the effort. The Tour de Mont Blanc is split into 11 stages and the Bovine Route to Champex is a popular trail on walking holidays in Switzerland, which leads you through high alpine pastures and larch forests overlooking the Sion Valley. Along the trail you’ll pass pretty mountain cafes, perfect for taking a quick break and enjoying the traditional Swiss Rosti. From Champex Lac, a magnificent alpine lake surrounded by dramatic peaks, you can peer over to the Val Ferret from its eastern shore.
The Gasterntal and the Klus Gorge: The UNESCO-listed Gasterntal, known as Kandersteg’s ‘Hidden Valley’, sets the scene for one of the best trails on Switzerland walking holidays. Cascading waterfalls tumble down its rugged rock faces into the River Kander and the sound of water and scent of pine trees is like a sweet elixir for the senses. You can opt to walk higher up the valley or continue through the alpine meadows and woodlands to the Waldhaus Nature Reserve, where the landscape erupts with orchids and fire lilies. Following the stunning ravine of Klus Gorge with its roaring waterfalls, you’ll walk beneath the lofty slopes of the Balmhorn, Tatlishore and Atels.
Blausee and the Nordrampe: Imagine a dreamlike scene where bright turquoise and emerald waters are fringed by a canopy of towering firs and gnarled trees and it will give you some idea of how idyllic Blausee Nature Park is. Its natural beauty is so intense, it almost seems unreal, but then walking in Switzerland never ceases to amaze you at every turn. From here you can continue through the Kanderground valley to join the Nordrampe Bahnwanderweg. Walk along the mountain railway and past the ancient ruins of Felsenburg Tower where you’re hugged on all sides by breath-taking views.
Edelweiss Trail, Zermatt: Perhaps most synonymous with the song from ‘The Sound of Music’, Edelweiss is a pretty, alpine flower that carpets Swiss meadows, creating a sea of white stars across the landscape. The Edelweiss Trail in Zermatt is one of the most picturesque you’ll find on walking holidays in Switzerland and guides you up to a spectacular vantage point where the views are beyond compare. From here, as you ascend to Trift, views of the unmistakable Matterhorn begin to unfurl. With one last push uphill, you’ll reach Höhbalmen for even more spellbinding views of the Matterhorn.
The Golden Madonna Pass: Gazing down over the Monto-Moro Pass, which lies on the border of Italy and Switzerland, the Golden Statue of Mary takes centre stage atop a rocky summit. Winding around the central lake, explore this ancient walking route along the pass. The menacing peaks of Monte Rosa soon come into sight, and you can pause to inhale some of the most remarkable views you’ll find while walking in Switzerland
This was an excellent week of walking. The paths are steep in some places but well defined and Jose guided us with care and attention on the challenging ascents and descents of the Sierra Aitana. The walks were well-paced by Jose but the days are long so you do need to be fit. We trekked through a number of landscapes illustrating the historic and current use of the area and Jose with his local knowledge enhanced our understanding of how this area has evolved over the centuries as well as the current challenges. The views from the walks were amazing – one way you could see the coast from Alicante to Benidorm and beyond and the other the folding valleys and mountains of the interior. The skies were blue and the days sunny and warm and we experienced very little wind even on the summits. We were based at the Hostel Rincon de Pepe where we had a wonderful week being looked after by Raquel. The food was amazing and hearty (three courses plus wine). The terrace was also great place to have breakfast every morning as the sun rose out of the Med, as well as a beer or two after the walk as the sun disappeared behind the mountains.
This is a great week’s walking in a little-known (and underrated) part of Spain. The Aitana range is a compact set of mountains so you get to tick off almost all of it, and there are great views from the top of all the peaks, out to the coast and across to the surrounding peaks. Most of the walks are reasonably demanding, but also rewarding.
Being based in one location, with very short transfers (or none) for each walk makes for a very relaxing week aside from the walking. It’s also a fairly short transfer to/from Alicante Airport.
The vast majority of meals are included which makes it much better value than some other (apparently similarly priced) holidays.
Jose the guide is exceptional: hard-working, helpful, supportive and deeply knowledgeable about the area.