Zermatt, skiing in the heart of Europe's highest ski area
Between Switzerland and Italy, Zermatt lies in the heart of the highest peaks in the Alps Indeed, more than a third of them rise above 4,000 m and as such they are sheer heaven for experienced skiers.
A resort nestled in an exceptional Alpine setting
Here at the foot of the Matterhorn, the most photographed mountain in the world, Zermatt extends a welcome to its visitors. Whilst the panorama certainly draws the crowds, this is also a unique and exceptional ski terrain. Given its elevation (between 1,620 and 3,882 metres), keen skiers can enjoy the snow all year round under the sun as they move freely between Italy and Switzerland.
Good to know: ski in summer or winter
In winter, this terrain boasts 360 km of pistes with something for all ability levels. In summer, 21 km of pistes await skiers on the Theodul Glacier. So, the fun is guaranteed 365 days a year with equipment hire available from one of the resort's ski rental shops.
A nice resort, surrounded by nature
To conserve its environment, the resort is only accessible to pedestrians and electric cars. As well as catering to all of your holiday shopping needs (ski rental, ski schools, grocery stores, etc.), the resort also offers many award-winning fine dining restaurants. This all makes Zermatt the perfect resort for skiing, relaxation and enjoying the clean mountain air.
Perfectly groomed pistes, shopping and ski rental available in the resort centre and panoramas you won’t find anywhere else in Europe all await when you holiday in Zermatt.
Located in the Swiss canton of Valais, Zermatt is your gateway to accessing Europe’s highest skiing atop the Theodul Glacier at the foot of the Matterhorn.
With its distinctive shape emblazoned on Toblerone chocolate bars, the Matterhorn needs no introduction. Zermatt offers access to year-round skiing thanks to the Theodul Glacier which lies between the Klein Matterhorn and the Matterhorn in a ski area known as the Matterhorn Glacier Paradise. Ascend to 3,883 m altitude for an unforgettable high-mountain ski experience.
Zermatt's glacier, where the pros hang out
Nothing could be simpler: if you're after year-round skiing, then make Zermatt's glacier your destination! The Matterhorn Glacier Paradise ski area features seven pistes (4 red runs and 3 blue runs) totalling 21 km and is often frequented in summer by national ski teams from the world over. At Plateau Rosà, fans of freestyle will even find a renowned snowpark featuring modules to suit all ability levels. The Matterhorn Glacier Paradise ski area can be accessed from the Italian resort of Breuil-Cervinia.
Matterhorn Glacier Paradise, an unforgettable experience
Much more than a high-altitude ski tour, a visit to the Theodul Glacier holds a real adventure in store. The thrills begin as you make your ascent in the Matterhorn Glacier Ride, the world's highest tricable gondola lift. Launched in 2018, this gondola features four Swarovski crystal-encrusted “Crystal Ride” cabins that can transport up to 2,000 passengers per hour. A few minutes after taking to the skies, the tinted glass floor becomes transparent and reveals the stunning glacier beneath your very feet.
Once you arrive at your destination, take the lift to the panoramic viewing platform. On a clear day, you can spot no fewer than 38 peaks that rise to over 4,000 m elevation, including Mont Blanc, the nearby Breithorn and the Gran Paradiso! If you’re not in a rush to get onto the slopes, you should head to the world’s highest Glacier Palace where you can enjoy an enchanting walk among the translucent statues. One last stop before you don your skis: the Cinema Lounge located in the Breithorn tunnel lets you experience spectacular images of the Alps during a showing like no other. There is also a restaurant offering food lovers the unique opportunity to have lunch at almost 4,000 m altitude.
Good to know: Advice about maintenance work!
The Matterhorn Glacier Ride is undergoing maintenance from September 28 to November 6, 2020. If you want to reach the ski area between these dates, you should catch the Trockener Steg cable car which departs from the station next to the Matterhorn Glacier Ride.
Glacier skiing remains a possibility in many European resorts, however, the Matterhorn Glacier Paradise’s altitude is unrivalled. Whether you come to Zermatt in summer or during the winter, an unforgettable day awaits at almost 4,000 m altitude facing Europe’s grandest mountain peaks.
With over 350 km of slopes, Zermatt is one of Switzerland’s most popular resorts. Between 16 and 19 January 2020, it will be hosting the 29th Horu Trophy, a must-witness curling tournament.
Lying at the foot of the Matterhorn, Zermatt offers a magnificent ski area and some stunning views. From 16 to 19 January, this dreamy setting will be the backdrop to the Horu Trophy, a major curling event with a following from all over Europe.
The famed Zermatt Horu Trophy
For almost three decades, on the third weekend in January, Zermatt has hosted the Horu Trophy, a curling tournament that has acquired legendary status. In 2020, the event will run from 16 to 19 January and see up to 304 curlers gather at the Valais resort. The largest open-air tournament of its kind in Europe, it will unfold under the majestic shadow of the Matterhorn. Up to 76 teams of 4 players are expected to attend, and you can watch them play on no less than 19 curling rinks in Zermatt.
The competition is mixed, with women making up 35% of last year’s competitors. Invented in Scotland during the Middle Ages, curling has become very popular in Switzerland. Patrick Hürlimann, Mirjam Ott and Luzia Ebnöther are three of the country’s major champions of the sport. A fun and much-loved gathering, the Zermatt Horu Trophy is free for spectators, from the knock-out stages right through to the final.
Sport and a great atmosphere in Zermatt
The Zermatt Horu Trophy is a chance not just to watch the many curling matches, but also to immerse yourself in the cheerful atmosphere of the Swiss resort. The Haut-Valais is renowned for its hospitality as it is, but you’ll notice a particularly warm vibe between 16 and 19 January 2020. The tournament will take place on the rinks of Zermatt’s two ice fields, not far from the Curling Club, and a small village will be set up for the public’s convenience. Open all weekend, it will feature a grilled meat stand, a bar and a shop selling curling equipment. And on Saturday, there’ll be a barbecue night with entertainment from a traditional band.
Worth knowing: why is it called the “Horu” Trophy?
Are you wondering where the name “Horu” comes from? Once again, the answer lies in the Matterhorn, Zermatt’s emblematic mountain. “Horu” means “horn” in the local dialect, which is the nickname for the famous peak among the inhabitants of Zermatt.
Lying at an altitude of 1,620 metres, Zermatt has a ski area that stretches up to 3,880 metres, making it the highest resort in Europe. From 16 to 19 January, its visitors will have something to watch too: the Horu Trophy, Europe’s largest open-air curling tournament. If there’s one place to discover the tactical and technical subtleties of curling this winter, it’s Zermatt!
A holiday in the Swiss Alps doesn't need to be all about extreme sports and reconnecting with nature. While a mountaintop might be the perfect spot for activities like skiing, snowboarding, mountain biking and climbing, it's also a wonderful place to relax and unwind - and in Zermatt, you'll find plenty of places to go for some of that all-important me time.
Whether you want to get a massage, spend some time in a sauna, do some yoga or indulge in a beauty treatment, Zermatt offers a wide range of options to suit your requirements. Here are some options to consider:
● Alpenhof Spa - Part of the Hotel Alpenhof, this beautiful facility is one of the many hotel-spas in Zermatt, and it has been carefully designed for the ultimate in luxury. Large windows flood the rooms with natural sunlight and treatments are available for face, body, feet and hands. There's also a gorgeous indoor swimming pool, an outdoor whirlpool, a log cabin sauna, steam baths and relaxation rooms. The spa is always available to hotel guests and is also open to external guests in the summer.
● Body & Mind Zermatt - This Pilates and yoga studio in the middle of the village offers a variety of regular courses, which visitors are welcome to join. The studio also offers beginners' workshops, which provide a thorough introduction to Pilates, including breathing exercises, stretching advice and careful demonstration of the different postures.
● Mountain Massage - This is a mobile service, meaning you can enjoy all the relaxing benefits of a massage, all from the comfort of your own accommodation. Massage is also a great way to soothe tired muscles after a day of vigorous outdoor activities.
● Lake of the Leisee - It may not be a wellness facility, but this high-altitude lake is a popular destination for relaxation in the summer. Find a grassy spot where you can soak up the sun and enjoy the view, unwind with a picnic or go for a paddle in the crystal-clear waters. Mind, body and spirit will all be rejuvenated in no time.
The winter months and cold weather mean that snow across the Alps is prevalent, but as the temperatures start to rise and the year progresses into the summer, many of the resorts have to close to skiers and snowboarders. But the good news for those who love winter sports is that there is actually quite a lot of glacier skiing available throughout the summer in the Alps. You just need to know where to look.
So, if you'd like to strap on a pair of skis in June or July, here are three of the top European spots to consider:
1.Tignes - This French resort offers access to the Grand Motte Glacier from mid-June to early September, but you have to get up early, as the pistes are shut at 1 pm every day. It has varied terrain, with a good mix of blue, red and black runs and access is via a combination of chairlifts and drags. An underground funicular will take you to the base of the glacier in just seven minutes from the resort. The glacier also features a snowpark, which is popular among freestylers, pros and amateurs, and features a half-pipe, rails, moguls, quarter-ramps and a rainbow rail. Summer ski school is also available, for those who prefer learning a winter sport in a warmer climate.
2.Zermatt - Located in Switzerland, this resort boasts 25km of summer skiing on the Theodul Glacier, comprising 13 runs divided into blues and reds, and there's also a Gravity Park with a half-pipe, kickers, rails and a spectacular view. Glacier skiing is open every day from May until mid-November and is accessed via the Klein Matterhorn cable car. The glacier is actually shared with Cervinia in Italy, so if you'd prefer a trip to Italy, you might want to consider accommodation there instead.
3.Les Deux Alpes - Another French resort, this one has one of Europe's largest summer ski areas. The Mont-de-Lans Glacier is open from mid-June to early September, and various transport methods are available, including a funicular railway, chairlifts and drags. There are eight runs (two green, four blue and two red) and a snowpark offering big air, tables, a half-pipe, kickers and rails.
It wasn't long ago that the only way to plan out a ski route was to sit down with a big paper map and trace your finger along the trails, finding an option that seemed good.
But now, thanks to modern technology, there are several useful tools to help you plan out a great day of skiing or snowboarding - and for anyone heading to Zermatt this winter, one bit of tech you should definitely add to your digital toolkit is the Skiguide Zermatt app.
The famous Swiss resort's lift company, Zermatt Bergbahnen, recently announced that it had updated the year-old app, adding new features and improvements that should really help snow sports enthusiasts.
One new feature is the "User Perspective". It's still in beta development, but is available to use and shows users what the actual terrain looks like on their selected route.
The developer calls it a mixed-reality feature that "fuses reality and virtuality, allowing users to immerse themselves completely in the 3D map and experience the surroundings as a low-poly world', generated specially for the app." This approach, combined with pinpoint accuracy using GPS navigation should make it easy for users to find their way around the ski area and provide a convenient way to get information about their immediate surroundings.
One of the app's most useful features is the intuitive route finder, which should help users figure out how to reach certain points on the mountain - such as a favourite mountain restaurant or a lift. It also provides up-to-date information about how long it should take them to get there using the lifts and pistes that are currently open - and it calculates this information based on the level of ability entered in the personal settings.
The entire map feature is interactive, providing details about lifts, pistes, restaurants and other points of interest, and other features include online ticketing, personalised graphs showing elevation changes, webcam views, weather updates, avalanche hazard levels and safety alerts.
The app is available free of charge and is available for both Android and iOS
For your rental at Zermatt, Skiset takes care of everything. Reservation is quick and easy. We pass your order on to the shop in Zermatt resort who will prepare your order in advance. Whether you want to order skis or a snowboard, we offer both adult and child packs. Skiset is made up of 800 rental shops in 400 resorts in Europe and the USA, so there's bound to be one near to your accommodation at Zermatt
At Skiset you will be welcomed by professionals who are passionate about the mountains. Renowned skiers or instructors of Zermatt resort, our advisors are best able to advise you according to your preferences, your level and also the snow conditions in Zermatt resort. Located in the most convenient areas of Zermatt resort, our shops are dedicated to the enjoyment of skiing. Depending on the range of equipment you choose to hire, you may also change your skis or try a snowboard during your stay at Zermatt
An accompaniment to all events and to the preparation of skiers, that's the Skiset mindset.
For almost 20 years Skiset have been equipping skiers, thanks to its teams of professionals in European and North American ski resorts. Hiring ski equipment is quick and easy in Zermatt resort
Choose your closest Skiset shop in Zermatt by using our resort map and then select the dates of your stay. Then choose your material from the array of state of the art skis and snowboards on offer, let us know your address and then pay.
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You can rent your ski gear in Swiss, Andorra and Spain resorts where ski lifts are opened.
For other ski destinations, due to the ski lifts closure, the booking of equipments for authorized winter sports (cross-country skis, skating, nordic/touring or sledges) is generally not available online. These equipments can be offered for hire directly, on site, at the shops. Subject to availability.
See you soon in our resorts.