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This is a holiday promising challenge and fulfilment, covering over 150km and at times reaching altitudes of almost 3,000 metres.

Type of Holiday: Walking Holidays
Price:

From £2225 (including rail) based on two people sharing

Duration: 12 Days
Departures: Various departures from June to October
Start point: Meiringen
End point: Zermatt
 

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We travelled to Zermatt on our Grand Tour of Switzerland. Here's our guide to this car-free resort in one of the most spectacular spots in the Alps. Famous as a ski resort, Zermatt is fast becoming a year-round destination attracting trekkers, cyclists and rock climbers in summer, drawn to its magnificent mountains, including the iconic Matterhorn.

Making Eurostar connections to the high speed European rail network is a breeze if you know the connections... here's our guide to connections in Paris, Brussels and Lille. Includes top tips on buying tickets, finding quiet carriages and power sockets and where to find good hotels near the stations.

The Grand Train Tour of Switzerland includes the most attractive panoramic rail routes across the country, and can be booked at any time of the year. The entire tour can be travelled with a single all-in-one ticket – the Swiss Travel Pass. The Grand Train Tour of Switzerland can best be booked for either four or eight days. The Swiss Travel System therefore recommends the 4-day or 8-day Swiss Travel Pass.

From the Eiger to the Matterhorn Iconic peaks of the Bernese Oberland & Valais

Between Switzerland’s most famous peaks, the Eiger and the Matterhorn, lies some of the best walking in all of the Alps. The journey from the famous north face to the iconic pyramid of the world’s most recognisable mountain is a thrilling challenge, leading over high-mountain passes on true alpine trails and deep into valleys via lakes, forest and classic mountain villages.

Accommodation:

Hotel Victoria: You can expect a warm welcome from Franzika and Simon Anderegg to their modern-style hotel situated in the centre of this picturesque village which nestles in a broad valley at the head of Lake Brienz. The light and bright twin and double bedrooms are very comfortable or you can choose to upgrade to a superior room with views over the Rosenlaui glacier. Dinner, however, is the highlight of your stay here, as Simon is a very accomplished chef, mixing his love of international cuisine with locally sourced ingredients.

Hotel Kreuz & Post: Behind the modern façade, the hotel has wonderful character, with the elegant lounge, bar and restaurant furnished with traditional pieces. Delicious dinners and a hearty breakfast are taken in full view of the Eiger; the same view which is enjoyed from the twin or double rooms, all of which have a balcony. A small spa area with sauna, steam room and hot-tub complete the picture.

Hotel Alpenrose: long-standing Inntravel favourite, this hotel has been run by the same family since 1881 and enjoys a tranquil position on the edge of the village overlooking the Lauterbrunnen valley. There is a comfortable lounge and airy restaurant or you could choose to relax in the shady gardens. The north-facing twin or double rooms with bath are warmly decorated in light wood, although we do highly recommend upgrading to a south-facing room with balcony overlooking the valley.

Hotel Bellevue: This friendly hotel is situated right in the centre of the traffic-free village of Mürren, perched high above the Lauterbrunnen valley and has sensational views over the mountains from the sun terrace and restaurant. The twin or double bedrooms are all individually decorated and all have a shower.

Berggasthaus Golderli: As most guests arrive at the guesthouse on foot, there is a real sense of camaraderie and shared experiences. Inntravel guests are accommodated in one of the twin bedrooms which are simply furnished. There are shared toilets on each floor and shower rooms in the basement. A home-cooked, hearty dinner is served together in the cosy dining room.

Belle Epoque Hotel Victoria: The hotel has two distinct parts; the original Ritter wing with its traditional wood-clad bedrooms and the larger Victorian ‘extension’ where the majority of bedrooms are situated along with the comfortable lounge and high-ceilinged restaurant which overlooks the gardens. Our included rooms are the hotel’s ‘Comfort’ rooms which are spacious, light and airy and all enjoy views over the surrounding peaks. There is also an indoor swimming pool and sauna.

Parkhotel Quellenhof: Martin and Bianca Rossel are your good-natured hosts and, together with their team, ensure a warm welcome and an enjoyable stay. The twin or double bedrooms are all spacious, furnished with light wood throughout, and have a balcony.

Hotel Arkanum: Having grown up in this wine-producing village, it was only natural for Sigi Moreillon to choose it as the location of his and his wife’s hotel. It is perfectly placed in the centre of the old village for an evening stroll after a dinner served under the vines of the hotel’s terrace. As you would expect, there is a good wine list, and Sigi and Rita will be happy to arrange a wine-tasting at a local vineyard for you during your stay.

Hotel Schwarzhorn: This friendly mountain hotel is perhaps the most remote of any of our accommodation in the Alps, though its scale reminds visitors of its Victorian heritage and the golden age of Alpine tourism. Most of your fellow guests are also long-distance walkers, creating a real camaraderie; the dinners of tasty mountain fare are informal, convivial affairs. Savour the tranquillity of the setting from the attractive garden, or enjoy a well-earned beer in the bar. You stay in comfortable twin bedrooms, with shared facilities.

Hotel la Ginabelle: La Ginabelle is elegant and full of charm, with carved wood-panelled ceiling and delicate hand-painted motifs, all in true Swiss style. The spacious bedrooms are all beautifully decorated and have a bath and a balcony. Should you wish to enjoy the view of the Matterhorn from your balcony, then you can upgrade to a room with a view or a larger superior room also with a view towards the peak.

What our customers say:

Mr R Adair of Richmond
A very enjoyable and sometimes challenging walk with some great scenery

Professor J Laidlaw of London
Having done about half of this before, we enjoyed every bit of that again, and the new sections were ful of wonderful highlights too. For instance we found the descent from Leukerbad, which begins in classic high alpine terrain, and ends in very southern European pine forest and vineyard, very moving and memorable.

Anon:
This is a demanding but thoroughly enjoyable walk across extraordinarily beautiful alpine scenery. There were plenty of late lying snow, rivers in full spate, peaks, glaciers, bell toting cows, wild flowers in profusion and welcoming accommodation. Although we did not attempt the three high passes because of late snow we walked for 13 days in beautiful weather exploring hidden coners of the Bernese Alps. Marvellous trip!

What price includes

 
  • 14 nights one mountain guesthouse and 4 hotels
  • 14 breakfasts, 14 dinners, 3 picnics
  • Luggage transported (1 bag per person)
  • Route notes and maps
  • Half-fare card
  • Some bus/train/cable car journeys, as specified in the itine
 

Location

 

Plan your journey by train

Meeting point:
Meiringen at the Hotel Victoria.

Nearest train station to meeting point:
Meiringen

Transfer to meeting point:
Guests make their own way to meeting point
Walk

How to get there:
UK-Paris (Eurostar), Paris-Meiringen (TGV/regional rail)

 
Plan your journey by train to Zermatt
 

Plan your journey by train

Finish point:
Zermatt

Nearest train station to finish point:
Zermatt

Transfer to finish point:
Operator drops guests off at station

How to get back:
Zermatt-Paris (TGV/regional rail), Paris-UK (Eurostar)

 
Plan your return train journey from Zermatt