Winter in Switzerland brings you to a world full of magic. It’s in fact one of the best times to visit this country. Always wanted to come here but you are in need of some inspiration? Read our article and get ready for your next trip!
1. World-class skiing & snowboarding
No matter if you’re a snow expert or just a beginner, there’s no better reason to visit Switzerland than for world-class skiing & snowboarding.
Discover these amazing spots with which you will fall in love:
- St. Moritz, a host of two Winter Olympic Games, it offers you 87 slopes,
- Zermatt, one of the most world-famous mountain resorts, is home to 38 of Switzerland’s 54 peaks above 4,000 meters,
- Davos, located at 1560 meters above sea level (the highest city in Europe).
There are also many more smaller resorts that will satisfy you: Saas-Fee in the Valais region with 37 kilometres of beginner trails plus areas for kids and learners, or the Arosa Lenzerheide resort area that offers lots of winter sunshine and plenty of slopes for intermediate skiers.
Remember: skiing & snowboarding in Switzerland are not just sports, they are also social adventures. At the end of the day-long outdoor sports session, there’s time to chill at the mountaintop restaurant with a cup of hot chocolate, a “Glühwein” or a warm meal, while socializing 😊.
2. Thermal baths
Thermal spas have a long history in Switzerland. For centuries even royals enjoyed the mineral-rich healing waters from the local springs. The experience of relaxing in a hot outdoor pool while snowflakes fall on your face is an absolutely must-try during your time in Switzerland in winter!
Check out these spots:
- Mineralbad & Spa Rigi Kaltbad which overlooks Lake Lucerne from the top of Mountain Rigi, with indoor and outdoor pool options (lounge area with a breathtaking view!)
- Termali Salini & Spa – the largest natural saltwater spa in Ticino with a stunning mountain panorama.
- Leukerbad-Therme – the largest spa resort in the Alps, uses water from its own private mineral-rich spring to fill 10 thermal baths with temperatures as high as 43 degrees Celsius.
Swiss people are the world leaders when it comes to chocolate consumption.
You can eat lots of this delicacy while in Switzerland but for a true experience, nothing can beat a factory tour, where you can see chocolate being made and get plenty of free samples along your way.
Discover these places:
- Maison Cailler Chocolate Factory in Broc, where you can learn about the history of chocolate all the way back to the Aztecs through their interactive museum tour,
- Läderach Chocolate Experience in Bilten allows you to create your very own chocolate while tasting artisan samples along the way.
Important: If you have no time in your schedule for a chocolate tour, you can always find a cozy café and try one of the many chocolate-based delicacies the country has to offer. Aside from the traditional milk chocolate ones, we recommend you to try flavors like coffee, hazelnut, or toffee.
4. Enjoy an adrenaline rush on the cliff walks
On more than 3000 meters above sea level, there are some suspension bridges that you must absolutely visit:
- Titlis Skywalk in Engelberg,
- Glacier 3000 peak walk in Les Diablerets,
- Europaweg Skywalk, Zermatt (with its 494 meters length, it is the longest pedestrian suspension bridge in the world!).
Stunning mountain views await you!
5. Ride the Glacier Express or the GoldenPass Line
The Glacier Express route between Zermatt and St. Moritz is an incredible one that leads you through the Swiss Alps, almost 300 bridges, lakes and tiny valleys. If you are in the French speaking area of Switzerland, the GoldenPass Line with its panoramic views and landscapes is an absolute must!
6. Ice skate on frozen lakes
The experience of ice skating on a natural rink is quite unforgettable. Surrounded by trees an mountains, often not even accessible by car, it guarantees you a special experience. You can find Europe’s largest natural ice rink in Davos. Also, in the Canton of Jura, there are many frozen lakes over winter – for example the Lax de Joux, Lac des Rousses and the Lac des Tailleres are great places to go. If you are closer to the Zurich area, make sure to check out Katzensee!
7. Go for a winter walk with St. Bernards dogs in Champex-Lac
This breed of dog became one of Switzerland’s most iconic ambassadors.
Throughout the winter, you have the opportunity to take part in 45-minutes walks with dogs in the gentle, dreamy winter landscape of Champex-Lac, thanks to Barry Foundation (the owner of the 300-year-old breeding kennel, the oldest and most important Saint Bernard kennel in the world).
„In the 11th century, monks founded a hospice as a refuge for travellers and pilgrims on the 2469 metre-high Great Saint Bernard Pass. Large mountain dogs have been kept at the hospice since the mid-17th century to guard and protect those staying there. Four-legged heroes from the Great Saint Bernard Pass saved the lives of a great number of people, averting many deaths in the snow.” – we read on Barry Foundation’s website.
8. Paradglide over Grindelwald
Winter paragliding in Switzerland is a pure perfection, and the best place to try it is over the village of Grindelwald.
Experience the Jungfrau Region from an eagle’s perspective during a tandem paragliding flight. There are also winter flights at Interlaken for a great view over the Lakes of Thun and Brienz, as well as flights over the ski slopes down the cliffs to the mountain village of Stechelberg.
9.The view from up top
Sometimes the best way to enjoy any country is from the up high! And there is no better way to do it than from a helicopter. A number of outfitters offer sightseeing flights over the snowcapped Alps, with jaw-dropping rides that last anywhere from 20 minutes to many hours.
From Zermatt, you can catch a helicopter tour all around the world-famous Matterhorn mountain, or head to Lauterbrunnen for a flight over the impressive glaciers of Eiger, Mönch, and Jungfrau, where scenes for James Bond movies were filmed.
You can also take a cable car or funicular ride to the top of Switzerland’s most famous mountains. Try out the gondola ride up the Grindelwald mountain or the Chaumont Mountain which offer a funicular that rides up 1,087 meters to the top of the mountain where you will find a great little restaurant.
10. Christmas Markets
One of Europe’s best Christmas markets take place in Switzerland! Zurich for example is home to the Christkindlimarkt, the largest indoor Christmas market in Europe, inside the main train station. In Basel you can find almost 200 artisans selling their products from inside tiny wooden chalets. While in Bern, Waisenhausplatz Christmas market, offers not only festive decorations but also souvenirs. Geneva has several Christmas markets known for their old-school carrousels, live caroling and focus on artisans’ work. Last but not least, in Montreux you can find authentic-looking medieval market at the Chateau de Chillon Castle. The highlight there: a flying Santa Claus!
If you are planning your stay, make sure to book your apartment in the best location on: VISIONAPARTMENTS