Holidays in Zermatt

Zermatt - famed for the Matterhorn and its mountaineering history. A charming mountain town with lots to discover

Zermatt is practically synonymous with the Matterhorn. This Swiss mountain town has long been a launch pad for mountaineers aiming for the notorious 4,478 metre peak – but the Matterhorn is just one of 38 mountains over 4,000 metres in the area, making for dramatic scenery perfect for exploring on foot - paths weave from villages and valleys, through gorges and Alpine meadows to the rockier terrain above. It’s easy to get carried away exploring the spectacular surroundings, but ensure you make time for wandering the pretty town and enjoying the views from one of Zermatt’s many sunny café terraces. This is also the realm of cycling, climbing, high ropes and via ferrata routes – even year-round glacier skiing.

Relax in Zermatt

Before the 19th Century race to climb the Matterhorn made Zermatt famous, the residents were quietly getting on with farming the green pastures here. Many of the old wooden buildings still frame the pedestrianised streets, window boxes overflowing with flowers. You can take your pick of bars, restaurants and shops – and of the suntrap terraces made for sipping a coffee under the watchful eye of the Matterhorn. To find out more about how mountaineering transformed Zermatt, duck into the underground Matterhorn Museum.

Exploring the Matterhorn region

The highest cable car in Europe takes adventurers up to Klein Matterhorn (3,883 metres). It’s no relation to the actual Matterhorn, which lies just a few kilometres across the mountain pass, but offers exceptional views of some of the highest glaciers and summits in the Alps, including Mont Blanc. Aptly named the Matterhorn Glacier Paradise, it's an Alpine wonderland up here. The restaurant serves Alpine food and wine, while a cinema screens short films of Zermatt’s wildlife and mountaineering history. Get a glimpse of life beneath the glacier in the Ice Palace or take a panoramic trip on the new Matterhorn Alpine Crossing – a luxurious cable car that connects Zermatt with the Italian village of Breuil-Cervinia.

Beyond the Matterhorn: mountains, lakes and gorges

Despite what some might say, there are mountains beyond the Matterhorn. Dive into the challenging trails of the Rothorn or visit the chapel at Schwarzee, dedicated to Mary of the Snows; it’s something of a sacred touchstone for mountaineers. The network of lifts and mountain railways around Zermatt makes getting to the best viewpoints easy and there's every flavour of footpath to discover. On the outskirts of town, staircases and boardwalks lead deep into the Gorner Gorge, which is a natural spectacle, showcasing the power of nature.

Mini mountain adventures

Gornergrat is one of the most family-friendly mountains in Zermatt. For starters, you get to travel aboard a 19th Century cog railway with views of the Matterhorn and the Monte Rosa massif. At the top, you can meet the cute black-nosed sheep that graze on the pastures, admire the plants in the highest Alpine garden in Europe, or wander one of the many well-signposted footpaths. Alternatively, take the funicular up to the playgrounds and swimming lakes of Sunnegga.

Why book a summer holiday in Zermatt with Inghams?

At Inghams, we do walking holidays differently. With no fixed itinerary, you have more time in your destination and the freedom to walk as much or as little as you like, discovering some of the Zermatt's best walking routes and activities at your own pace.

Plus, we've included two optional guided walks every week in Zermatt. Join a professional walking guide and really get to know the area (see more details in the ‘walking’ tab below).

With over 85 years of outdoor travel experience, our holiday packages to Zermatt include flights, transfers, and accommodation, so you can relax and leave the small details to us. Our experts can help you choose the best holiday for you, and our team in resort can give you the inside scoop on how to spend your time away with us.

Added value

Exclusive to Inghams: Two guided walks per week included with a professional, local guide (subject to availability)

Half price rail, bus and boat travel with the Swiss Half Fare Card (worth over £100 per person)

Free travel on Swiss Transport Network for children up to 15 years incl.

Inghams rep based in resort

Flights and train transfers included

Walking in and around Zermatt

On an Inghams walking holiday, you have the freedom to explore the area at your own pace. Each day, a new adventure, with as much or as little walking as you like.

Why we love walking in Zermatt

With nearly 400 kilometres of marked walking trails in the area that cater to all abilities there is so much to explore. You can take a leisurely stroll to gourmet mountain huts, walk to bucket-list viewpoints, enjoy memorable family adventures or take on an athletic challenge in nature. 

Without doubt, our favourite thing about walking in Zermatt is the spectacular scenery. It's got the dramatic mountains you'd expect from a Swiss holiday, including the iconic Matterhorn right on your doorstep. At 4,400 metres you'll struggle to escape its view - not that you'll want to! Enjoy picturesque mountain lakes and rustic huts, there's somewhere new to explore each day.

Guided walks

Don't forget, you have the option to join two included Inghams guided walks per week, with a local, professional guide. Get to know our favourite walking trails with insider knowledge and the company of other guests. Pre-booking is essential - scroll down for more information.

Getting around Zermatt

Zermatt has a fantastic network of lifts and mountain railways that make getting around the area really easy.

Mountain railways

The Gornergrat (normally open beginning May - end Sep) is a mountain railway that goes from the centre of Zermatt (opposite the train station) to the summit of the Gornergrat mountain at an altitude of 3,089 metres. There are stops you can get on or off along the route.


There are two main lift networks in Zermatt in the summer time. The lifts on the Rothorn mountain, and the lifts that take you up towards the Matterhorn Glacier Paradise. The lift connections open up lots of walking possibilities, fun activities and stunning viewpoints.

On the Rothorn:

  • Zermatt - Sunnegga (normally open end May - end Oct)
  • Sunnegga - Blauherd (normally open end May - beginning Oct)
  • Blauherd - Rothorn (normally open beginning Jul - beginning Oct)

Towards the Matterhorn Glacier Paradise:

  • Zermatt - Furi (normally open mid May - end Sep)
  • Furi - Schwarzsee (normally open end Jun - mid Oct)
  • Furi - Riffelberg (normally open beginning Jul - mid Aug)
  • Furi - Trockener Steg (normally open beginning May - end Oct)
  • Schwarzee - Trockener Steg (normally open end May - end Sep)
  • Trockener Steg - Matterhorn Glacier Paradise (normally open beginning May - end Oct)
  • Matterhorn Glacier Paradise - Testa Grigia in Italy (normally open beginning May - end Oct)

Download the Summer Panorama map from Zermatt Tourism to see a map of the lifts and mountain railway.

Public Transport

The Swiss transport system make getting around an absolute pleasure, and in addition to the mountain railways and lifts, there's also a network of local buses and trains.

The Matterhorn Gotthard Bahn runs down the valley from Zermatt, through neighbouring villages of Täsch and Randa, before continuing down to Visp and beyond, for connections further afield. You'll get your Swiss Half Fare Card included in the price of your holiday so will get discount on trains and other modes of transport, and if you choose to purchase the Zermatt Peak Pass, travel on the train between Zermatt, Täsch and Randa is included, opening up further walking opportunities.

Guided Walks

Inghams guided walks - included in your holiday

We’ve included one full-day and one half-day walk per week in Zermatt, just for Inghams guests. Join a small group and be led by a professional walking guide on some of their favourite trails. It’s a great way to get to know the area.

A full day walk will run every Monday and a half day walk runs every Friday. You can add them onto your holiday at the time of booking, through My Booking or by calling us on 01483 319 652.

For every walk you will need: suitable walking shoes with good grip, appropriate clothing, sun cream, sun glasses, rain jacket, a warmer layer, rucksack, at least a litre of water, a snack and cash for mountain huts/transport. You may find walking poles useful.

Early booking is strongly recommended as spaces are limited. All walks are subject to availability of local guides, weather conditions and maximum numbers. Planned routes are subject to change. Full details of the walks with the meeting points and routes will be provided to you on arrival. In some instances there may be a small charge for local transport that is payable locally. In resorts where the walks run over more than two days, the day of the walk will be allocated to you by your Rep in your welcome meeting. Where we cannot confirm your preferred option in resort, we will endeavour to offer an alternative subject to the above conditions.

Please ensure you are comfortable with the grade of walk, planned distance covered and terrain before booking. The decision of the guide on the suitability of the walk for you is final and no compensation will be paid where the guide believes, in their professional opinion, that it is not suitable. Please ensure you are well-equipped for the walk have suitable clothing and footwear. Walks are not recommended for guests under 12 years. Any guests under 18 years will need to be accompanied by an adult.

Our Favourite Walks

The walking in Zermatt is so good that every route could be classed as a favourite, but here are just a few routes that we really love:

Botanical Trail

  • Moderate walk
  • 4km (one way)
  • 732 metres of height gain

Look out for the elusive wild Edelweiss, colourful blue gentians and varieties of orchid on this trail that nature lovers will enjoy just as much as the butterflies that call these meadows home. This route starts in Zermatt and heads uphill to Trift following the Botanischer Lerhpfad signs - expect to take just over four hours for the full route (there and back).

Walk the Gorner Gorge

  • Easy walk on wooden walkways
  • Open end of May to mid-October

This spectacular journey through the deep Gorner Gorge is only around a 15-minute walk from Zermatt and is an exciting adventure for the whole family. See how the glacial water has carved deeper and deeper through the 220 million year old rock to form deep chasms and waterfalls. (Entry fee of around CHF5.00 for adults and CHF2.50 for children).

Five Lakes Walk

  • Moderate hike
  • 9.8km
  • 165 metres of height gain and 454 metres of height loss

This hike is a Zermatt classic. Discover five uniquely beautiful mountain lakes on this varied and exciting trail. See the reflection of the Matterhorn in the lakes, take a refreshing swim and look out for rare wild flowers. This hike starts at the Blauherd mountain station and follows the 5-Seenweg signs all the way to Sunnegga - expect to take around two and a half to three hours.

Hike to the longest pedestrian suspension bridge in the Alps

  • Moderate to challenging hike
  • Various starting points:
    • from Randa - two to two and a half hours walk
    • from Grächen - six to seven hours walk
    • from Zermatt - six to seven hours walk
  • Requires a good head for heights
  • Open May to October
  • Do not cross in a storm

The Charles Kuonen Suspension Bridge is exciting bridge that's almost 500 metres long and at the highest point, is 85 metres above the valley floor. Most easily accessed from Randa, to form part of a rewarding day hike with stunning views of towering mountains and glaciers.

More great walking route inspiration

You can view lots more recommended routes and download tour maps and pocket-sized printouts from Zermatt Tourism, you can also see the opening status of the routes here, too.

Useful Information & Guidelines

Recommended equipment

Comfy walking boots, waterproofs, rucksacks and walking poles are useful for hiking around Zermatt. There's plenty of places to buy walking equipment and you can rent poles from the Intersport (Dorsaz Sport) in Zermatt centre.

Walking maps and apps

For Zermatt we recommend picking up a walking map from the tourist office. Maps will have a key to help you understand the nature of the walk before you begin. You can also download the Matterhorn App from the app store or play store for live lift information and weather conditions.

You can view lots more recommended routes and download tour maps and pocket-sized printouts from Zermatt Tourism you can also see the opening status of the routes here, too.

Hiking guidelines

The mountains are a natural paradise, with lots to explore and discover. To help it stay that way, and remain an enjoyable and safe place for everyone, we recommend following our little list of do's and don'ts:

  • Plan your route well and don't overestimate yourself
  • Check the weather forecast
  • Tell someone where you're planning to walk and what time you're expecting to be back
  • Take all the recommended equipment
  • Make a note of emergency numbers:
    • Swiss Emergency Services: 144
    • Zermatt cable cars: (+41)27 966 01 01
  • Don't leave the marked trails or go onto a glacier without a guide
  • Let nature stay wild by not picking alpine flowers (it's illegal in some places) or getting close to/making contact with wild animals
  • Always leave gates as you found them
  • Leave no trace

Hotels in Zermatt

  • from£819pp
  • @accommodation.PropertyRating

    3.5 Rating

    We rate all of our accommodation based on their facilities, service level, character and customer feedback. Our ratings may vary from the official star rating.

  • 65 rooms
Hotel Butterfly Dining Room

A great location close to the Gornergrat and with easy access to walking routes and transport. The flower-filled balconies and welcoming staff will make you feel at home from the moment you arrive. The small spa provides somewhere to relax after a day of walking, and the generous and enjoyable meals will have you fuelled and ready for more.

  • from£899pp
  • @accommodation.PropertyRating

    4.5 Rating

    We rate all of our accommodation based on their facilities, service level, character and customer feedback. Our ratings may vary from the official star rating.

  • 61 rooms
Veranda Breakfast (12)

Chic and elegant, you can enjoy a mountain holiday in style at Le Mirabeau. Soak tired muscles in the Alpine Hideaway Spa, enjoy delicious cocktails in Marie's Deli, or lounge in the garden and take in the spectacular scenery.

  • from£959pp
  • @accommodation.PropertyRating

    4.5 Rating

    We rate all of our accommodation based on their facilities, service level, character and customer feedback. Our ratings may vary from the official star rating.

  • 84 rooms
Wellness Whirlpool 030 Lowres

This Zermatt institution offers excellent food, impeccable service, and impressive wellness facilities. Located just off the main street and a minute's walk from the train station, it doesn't get much more convenient. With a local bus stop and the Gornergratbahn nearby, it's also easy to access the mountain and walking trails too.

  • from£959pp
  • @accommodation.PropertyRating

    4.5 Rating

    We rate all of our accommodation based on their facilities, service level, character and customer feedback. Our ratings may vary from the official star rating.

  • 48 rooms
schonegg zermatt terrace with Matterhorn views

With an elevated position and large Matterhorn-facing sun terrace, the views from Hotel Schönegg are hard to beat. It's comfortable and welcoming with it's elegant chalet-style. The small spa is perfect for relaxing after a day walking, and the food and wine is excellent.

  • from£1559pp
  • @accommodation.PropertyRating

    4.5 Rating

    We rate all of our accommodation based on their facilities, service level, character and customer feedback. Our ratings may vary from the official star rating.

  • 54 rooms
Lounge Hotel National Zermatt Switzerland (5)

This friendly and welcoming hotel offers excellent service, delicious meals, and a luxurious swimming pool and spa area. All rooms have sunny, south-facing balconies which offer the perfect place to enjoy the views. An easy walk from the town centre, the hotel is opposite the Sunnegga funicular, giving easy access to the mountains and walking trails.

Swiss Half Fare Card

The Swiss transport network is an excellent combination of trains, mountain railways, cable-cars, boats and buses that make it a pleasure to get around and explore at your own pace. 

Swiss Half Fare Card included for all Inghams guests

The Swiss Half Fare Card is included in the price of your holiday and is sent to you as part of your rail transfer tickets. This card can be used around Switzerland for up to 50% discount on various modes of transport - so make sure you keep it with you. It also gives free travel to children from 6 to 15 years old, when accompanied by a parent with the Family Card.

Zermatt Peak Pass

In addition to the Swiss Half Fare Card you may wish to purchase other travel passes depending on your holiday plans, such as the Peak Pass - you can add this to your holiday at the time of booking.

Peak Pass

The ideal pass for sightseers, walkers and nature lovers, the Peak Pass gives you unlimited trips on the local cable-cars, gondolas and mountains of Zermatt, including:

  • Gornergrat (normally open beginning May - end Sep)
  • Furi (normally open mid May - end Sep)
  • Schwarzsee (normally open end Jun - mid Oct)
  • Riffelberg (normally open end Jun - mid Aug)
  • Matterhorn Glacier Paradise (normally open mid Jun - end Sep)
  • Entrance to the Glacier Palace
  • Travel on the Matterhorn Gotthardbahn between the villages of Randa, Täsch and Zermatt
  • Travel on the local bus

Available for 3 or 6 consecutive days. Other durations are available locally, children 8 and younger travel for free. Applies to walkers’ lifts only (ski lifts are extra). Lift opening times subject to change. 

Please note: the Peak Pass doesn't include the new Matterhorn Alpine Crossing to Cervinia.

Subject to change.

Things To Do

An authentic mountain village

Wander the quaint village streets and discover boutique shops, mouth-watering pastry and Swiss-made chocolate. Get a taste of the local culture with various folklore evenings and concerts throughout the summer, or visit some of the churches and chapels in the town. The Matterhorn Museum in the village centre gives an interesting insight into Zermatt's history.

August is a bustling month for the village, with the 1st of August being Swiss National Day - expect traditional music and fireworks to celebrate. The largest cultural event of the summer is undoubtedly the Folklore Festival (normally around 12-13 August) where the weekend is taken over with tradition, dancing and music, colourful costumes and tasty traditional food. 

Visit the Matterhorn Glacier Paradise

Enjoy unrivalled views from the highest cable car station in Europe at 3,883 metres above sea level. You'll need plenty of time to explore up here as the air is quite thin, but the views will certainly keep you entertained for a long while. You can also visit the Glacier Palace which is a network of tunnels and caves 15 metres below the surface of the ice, with sculptures and an ice toboggan run. 

Why not take a trip into Italy while you're there, too? The new 3S cable car link completes the Matterhorn Alpine Crossing which enables cable car travel over into Italy on a stunning panoramic journey.

Exciting active adventures

From mountain biking and paragliding, mountain carting to dirt scooting, Zermatt is an adrenaline lovers dream. Try a bit of summer skiing on the 21 kilometres of pistes open all year round, or hop on a bike and explore some of the steady flow trails or more technical alpine routes, all with stunning mountain views. Teenagers and adventurous adults will love the Forest Fun high ropes course or perhaps try some via ferrata, which is climbing a network of iron pegs in the mountain side, taking mountain hiking to another level.

Fun for the little ones

Meeting the sheep on Gornergrat is a definite highlight of a Zermatt holiday for children and adults alike. From the start of July to mid September, these cute black nosed sheep are tracked with GPS and looked after by Shepherdess Deborah whilst they enjoy the sunshine and graze the alpine pastures. 

Children will also love the adventure playgrounds and exciting theme trails, treasure hunts and places to swim. Discover the Furi adventure world for a variety of games and excitement including the Furi suspension bridge.


Pre-book your excursions online or give us a call

Gornergrat Rack Railway from £34, daily

Enjoy a scenic train transfer up the Gornergrat on the famous Gornergrat Rack Railway – the highest open-track railway in Europe. At the top, incredible 360 degree views of the surrounding mountains await, including the most amazing views of the Matterhorn.

Saas Fee Glacier Village from £36, daily

Visit the pretty, traffic free mountain village of Saas Fee on this popular excursion. Explore the charming winding streets or discover the superb walking opportunities the region has to offer.

Book Locally

Matterhorn Glacier Paradise from CHF50, daily

The highest cable-car station in Switzerland - on a clear day views stretch as far as the Jungfrau and Mont Blanc. Go up for lunch at the summit restaurant, or visit the famous Glacier Ice Palace! (Ice Palace entrance is extra)

Many more options available locally through your Representative.

Prices shown include Travel Card discount.

Please note that the price of excursions will vary depending on the resort you are staying in. We act at all times as a selling agent for the suppliers. All excursions require minimum numbers to run and are subject to change. Some excursions may not be available to pre-book in low season but may be available to book locally subject to numbers. Prices will be confirmed at the time of booking. Please see our Terms & Conditions.

Bernina Express.jpg

This 9 night tour is an excellent overview of Switzerland's special highlights, designed for those seeking a true taste of this stunning country, including unforgettable experiences on two of the most spectacular panoramic journeys in the world, the ‘Bernina’ and ‘Glacier Express’.


Combining stays in three contrasting areas of Switzerland, this 3 centre independent rail holiday gives you a fantastic overview of Switzerland’s varied scenery and also includes a journey on one of the most famous train lines in the world – the dramatic ‘Glacier Express’.

Good to know

Walking trails: Around 400km of well-marked walking routes and easy access to lifts and neighbouring villages

Terrain: Diverse terrain from shady woodland to towering 4000m peaks

Best time to go: end of May to end of September. It can get hot in July and August but heading up the lifts is a great way to cool off

Recommended for: New and regular walkers, experienced hikers, families with kids, families with teens

Fly into: Geneva or Zurich (approx. 2 hours)

Transfer time: approx. 3 hours 45 minutes by train (journey will require changes of train)

Rep service: In-resort

Resort card: Swiss Half Fare Card included for all hotels - travel passes are available to pre-book

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