A winter wonderland in the Swiss canton Valais.
In January 2017, we went on a day trip to Zermatt in the canton Valais. After a 5 hours drive from Basel in the Northern part of Switzerland we finally arrived at Täsch which offers alternative transportation to car-free Zermatt. Make sure to plan your transportation and arrival before your trip as there are many ways to get to Zermatt. When you arrive by car, as we did, you can park at the Matterhorn Terminal Täsch and you can book your parking in advance online. Then take the shuttle train from the Matterhorn Terminal Täsch straight to the center of Zermatt. If you carry many things like Ski equipment and luggage, the parking space offers plenty of baggage carts or take a private taxi, but note that taxis in Switzerland are expensive.
The resort Zermatt is famous for the Matterhorn and its ski slopes, but also the town itself is just beautiful. We explored first the town a bit and then went for late lunch and we were just so impressed by this little winter wonderland that we decided to spend the night. We quickly booked last minute a hotel at a great rate and went shopping for basic necessities. After a short rest, we continued our exploration of the little alleys when we found the oldest restaurant in Zermatt. “Du Pont” serves traditional Valais food in a great homely ambience. Valais food is often cheese, potatoes and vegetables. Try the traditional cheese fondue or have some raclette cheese with small potatoes, pickled onions and sour gherkins, you can reorder as many portions as you like for a small price. After dinner we booked a ticket for Gornegrat mountain train to the summit of the Gornegrat (Gorner Ridge) at 3135 m. Situated between two glaciers it offers a great view at the Matterhorn and the other 20 surrounding four thousand metre peaks. A short walk from the Gornegrat station is the Kulm Hotel where you can enjoy a coffee or stay the night. The Gornegrat stellarium of the Kulm Hotel is great for stargazing into outer space, check their website for events and which days are best. Unfortunately our time was limited as we had to drive 5 hours back to Basel and we are already planning our next weekend in Zermatt.