Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Wandering Wednesday - Zermatt, Switzerland

Seeing as two friends of ours from Australia are moving to Switzerland today, I thought it seemed like perfect timing for my next Wandering Wednesday post to reflect on this gorgeous little snowy country. Growing up in Australia, neither Mitch or I had ever experienced a white Christmas and so we decided that Switzerland would be the perfect location for our first Christmas away from home in 2007. Although I loved all of the towns we visited, Zermatt would have to be my overall favourite. The village had a really nice feel to it - it was beautifully decorated for Christmas, the houses were cute, people were friendly, food was great and the mountains - well, they are still some of the most spectacular mountains I've seen.



The first thing that struck me about this town was the lack of cars: it's one of those ski resorts where cars are a no-no. Although it's not a huge town by far, it's certainly not teeny tiny either so some people choose to scoot around on little electric golf carts instead which I found amusing. And being Christmas time, there were also plenty of horses & carriages around - I thought it was easier to walk everywhere, but they sure added to the Christmas-y atmosphere.



The Matterhorn mountain was one of the key reasons we chose Zermatt as one of our holiday destinations. Pictured in so many brochures for Switzerland, this uniquely shaped mountain didn't disappoint in person. It was especially nice waking up to this view from our hotel room every morning!



My favourite thing about Zermatt was the ice skating rink. I love skating and even took on figure skating as an adult (it started off as a bit of a joke with a friend, but it stuck - not that I was ever any good at it) so to be able to skate outdoors, under the mighty Matterhorn was an incredible experience. I took my skates with me and skated a few times every day while Mitch kicked back with a mulled wine watching me practice my jumps and spins!


We also took the looong cable car ride up to Klein Matterhorn, for both the views and the ice cave. For us Aussies, the -16deg temperatures at the top were almost unbearably cold but we hung in there until Mitch's lips turned blue and then we decided it would probably be a good idea to start defrosting. At an end point of 3820m, the cable car is the highest in Europe but after climbing up the stairs to a lookout, you end up at a scary 3883m. I imagine the views from here would have been spectacular over France, Italy and Switzerland, but it was snowing so heavily we saw almost nothing! Despite this, it was still worth the trip - watching brave skiers make their way down the run and the views on from the cable car on the way down are something I'll never forget.






I really had a memorable holiday in Zermatt and I'm so excited for our friends who are moving to the land of Lindt - I'm sure we'll be making plenty of trips down to Switzerland over the next couple of years, I can't wait to go back!

2 comments:

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  2. The Zermatt is a beautiful village in Switzerland and is immensely beautiful and attractive surrounded by lush green and serene valleys and mountains with a pleasant weather for visitors.

    The mountains are famous for skiing and snowboarding activities in winter. It has so many restaurants and shopping places for travelers.

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