To reach Zermatt, Switzerland, you have to take a train that leads into a bowl surrounded by mountains. It is a quaint little mountain village with tons of chalets and a lot of transplants from other areas. While I met people who were born and raised in Zermatt, the vast majority arrived in the area and just never went home.
And I can appreciate why that is: The area is stunning – and perfect for people who love being outside. In the summer, there are miles upon miles of hiking trails throughout the Swiss Alps. And in the winter, these mountains turn into a skier’s paradise. It’s a bit hard to imagine this place in the winter without actually seeing it as there aren’t any clearly marked ski trails, but I’m told that Zermatt packs in the snow lovers every season who come for the skiing and snowboarding.
Of course, Zermatt is most famous as being the home of the Matterhorn. I remember learning about the Matterhorn in grade school when we read “Banner in the Sky.” I even remember putting together a faux newsletter about a dishwasher at a restaurant in Zermatt who wanted so badly to raise funds to climb the mountain as my book-related project.
It was strange to think about that childhood memory while I was in Zermatt, yet I kept coming back to it throughout my time in this little Swiss mountain town.
Highlights of my trip to Zermatt:
Enjoying the rain from the gondola – and catching a rainbow (on the left side of the picture).
Hiking through the mountains. Who gets tired of views like these?
Despite crummy weather early in the week, I got up early to catch the sunrise on our last morning. I’m glad I looked behind me to catch this view in the valley beyond. The light was incredible!
But perhaps most stunning was my first view of the Matterhorn. It really is as awesome as I imagined.