The Matterhorn is simply incredible. You have to see it with your own eyes! Beneath the world’s most immediately recognisable mountain lies the village of Zermatt, our alpine home for a week of breathtaking views.
See what's planned
- Capture incredible views of the impressive Matterhorn.
- Take a picturesque trip on the Görnergrat cog-wheel train for spectacular views of the Matterhorn and glaciers.
- Visit tranquil Lake Stellisee for more panoramic alpine views.
- Take the Matterhorn Express Gondola all the way up to Schwarzsee to enjoy coffee with a view!
- Explore the Dossen Glacier Garden and walk through the Gorner Gorge.
- Travel with ease using the Peak Pass, included in the holiday cost.
"The Matterhorn is simply incredible. you have to see it with your own eyes!" And 'see it' indeed you will, as well as Europe's second highest mountain, Monte Rosa, and 28 other 4000m plus peaks...not to mention the many glaciers in between.
Our holiday is based in the beautiful village of Zermatt high in the canton of Valais. Only accessible on foot, by train or cable car, it is a magical place. Whilst tourism is the main source of income, farming still plays an important part in village life. Beneath the world's most immediately recognisable mountain lies the village of Zermatt, our alpine home for a week of breathtaking views. Zermatt lies at a height of 1600m at the head of a high alpine valley, surrounded on three sides by thirty eight peaks towering to over 4,000m, massive glaciers and tumbling waterfalls. Dominating the views is the mighty Matterhorn, first climbed by Edward Whymper in 1865.
Cable cars and trains whisk us from the village to walks past pretty alpine huts and through flower-filled meadows. We use the excellent transport network to explore the Matterhorn region, visiting a different area every day. All the journeys to the start and from the end of the walks are spectacular – sit back and enjoy the mountain views as the trains and cable cars take the strain!
If you have never visited the Alps before the flowers will be a revelation!
- Return flights from London to Geneva
- Airport transfers
- Half board en suite accommodation with afternoon tea and cake
- All local transport costs, entrance fees and tipping
- Six day peak pass
What's not included?
- Personal Expenses (such as your bar bill)
- Discretionary Tips
- Optional Excursions
- Travel Insurance (you can add this when you book)
On an Adagio Plus holiday, there is more emphasis on getting out into the countryside with days having more of an active content, although the walks will be on unchallenging trails and at an undemanding pace. You will need to be able to walk for longer periods than on a standard Adagio holiday. Adagio Plus holidays, in general, have less sightseeing days and are more about being out in the open countryside. The maximum altitude reached on this holiday is at 3883m at the Kleine Matterhorn.
Our itinerary is expected to follow the daily schedule outlined below but please bear in mind that the order of the days may be amended, or walks substituted, due to weather conditions or changes beyond our control. Distances, ascent/descent and timings are all approximate and refer only to the countryside walking element of each day.
On arrival in Geneva we travel by rail to Zermatt (with one change of train during the journey) and take a short stroll to the Hotel Butterfly while our luggage is transferred to the hotel.
Transfer Time = 4 hours
Zermatt is a mountain resort which of course experiences mountain weather. Our itinerary is expected to follow the daily schedule outlined below but please bear in mind that the order of the days may be amended, or walks substituted, due to weather conditions, attraction opening times, public transport timetables or changes beyond our control.
After another hearty alpine breakfast we take the Gornergrat cog-wheel train to the top station, with spectacular views of the dramatic Matterhorn on the way. We walk to the viewing platform for impressive views of the Monte Rosa massif and dramatic glaciers. On a clear day it is possible to see 29 mountains over 4000 ft in altitude. After coffee we descend, first to Rifflesee (lake) for another classic view of the Matterhorn reflected in it's waters and then via Riffleberg to finish at Rifflealp station for return to Zermatt by train. Although the total distance is 4miles/7km it can be divided into 3 stages with the option to use the railway instead for any section.
We take the Sunnegga underground funicular and the Blauherd Gondola for a short walk to tranquil Lake Stellisee for some more wonderful views of the Matterhorn and weather permitting a superb photo opportunity at the turquoise lake. From the lake we could return to the Blauherd gondola for return to Zermatt on the funicular.
There are also two possible extra walks from the lake.
Today is a free day to explore the area more independently.
You can use your peak pass to travel on the whole of the Zermatt Cableway network!
Glacier Express. This famous train runs three times a day between Zermatt and St Moritz. It is too long a journey to do the full round trip but it is possible to travel to Andermatt and back with a couple of hours to visit and have lunch. It is a classic journey but it is not cheap! It can be very busy and advanced booking is recommended.
Klein Matterhorn. This area is locally known as the Matterhorn Glacier Paradise. The cableway from Zermatt leads directly to Trockner Steg. From here a spectacular cable car climbs to the Klein Matterhorn. From the upper station, a tunnel leads to a point directly below the highest point where a stairway leads to a viewing platform. On a clear day, Mont Blanc is visible 65 km to the west. There is no walking available from here but subject to snow conditions, it may be possible to take a short walk to a glacial lake from Trockner Steg.
Görner Gorge. This is a short walk from the cable car station at Winkelmatten. A series of wooden walkways have been constructed to lead walkers through a narrow ravine with a roaring torrent below. From the end you can walk back but it makes a nice circular route to continue back to Zermatt. There is an entrance charge of approximately 5CHF. Please note some sections of the Gorge may prove difficult for those who suffer from vertigo.
Dossen Glacier Garden. This is an area of great geological and glaciological interest showing the effects of very recent glaciation. It is accessed from the Furi Cable Car Station and involves an uphill walk and crossing a high suspension bridge. Once over the bridge there is a marked trail showing pot holes, alpine flowers and other sights such as a soapstone quarry
Zermatt and its history. Visit the Matterhorn museum, Church and “Old Town”. At lunchtime don’t forget to try the Rösti at the Café du Pont – the oldest cheese maker in Zermatt.. You can have a quiet day in Zermatt exploring the old town and visiting the church and alpine museum.
We walk along the picturesque riverside to then take the Matterhorn Express Gondola all the way up to Schwarzsee (2,583m). After enjoying the dramatic views and having coffee, we take a wide dirt track to descend under the Matterhorn itself. We descend on a path to reach Staffelalp where we can enjoy our picnic and drinks at a local cheese maker’s café.
Today we re-visit the Sunnegga and Blauherd areas, but first venture a little higher to the top of the Rothorn Mountain using the impressive cable car. This cable car does not open as early in the year as others, and closes earlier in the year than others so some early or late tours may find it closed. Here there are 360 degree views and we can explore the themed trail called ‘The Peak Collection’. We descend by cable car back to Blauherd to the start of another themed walk – the ‘Flower Trail’. This a long but easy descent on many short gentle zig-zags with information boards along the route to help us learn about the alpine flowers found in the area. Please note that if this walk is not available, then an equally impressive walk will be substituted.
Long before today you will have fallen in love with this beautiful place, but it’s time to say goodbye. After breakfast, we will return by rail to Geneva airport ready for our flight back to the UK.
Walks & Excursions
We use a mix of privately hired vehicles, taxis, and public transport which gives us some flexibility in our itinerary. We have a wonderful programme of walking, sightseeing and visits planned to let you fully experience the area along with opportunities to relax at our wonderful hotel and enjoy your surroundings.
Local transport costs, entrance fees and tips to local providers are included in your holiday price. You may wish to budget for any meals and drinks not included in the holiday arrangements, non-included entrance fees and any optional excursions you may choose to participate in locally. A general guideline for lunches and drinks is £10-£20 per person per day.
Zermatt Peak Pass
We include the the six day peak pass which gives you unlimited rides in the entire Matterhorn Paradise area (including the Görnergrat and Klein Matterhorn) as well as the Matterhorn Gotthard Bahn between Randa and Zermatt. Entrance to the glacier palace is also included. You can use your peak pass to travel on the whole of the Zermatt Cableway network!
Currency in Switzerland
The currency in Switzerland is the Swiss Franc. The euro is widely accepted in Switzerland, however occasionally change may be given in Swiss Francs. ATMs are widely available in most towns and villages throughout Switzerland.
We include tips in the holiday cost and your Adagio Leader will take care of making sure tips are given to hotel and restaurant staff and to local guides and drivers. If you feel that someone has gone out of their way to make your holiday enjoyable or help you in anyway, please feel free to give a personal tip to the person should you wish. If you are having an independent lunch or other service not included in the holiday arrangements, tipping is at your own discretion.
We believe that the best things come in small packages, and our Adagio holidays prove just that. We limit our groups to a maximum of 18 persons, plus the Adagio Leader, so that everyone has the opportunity to mix, share their love of travel and return home with new friendships. Small groups also have less detrimental local impact, allows us to use public transport on some days, eat at small local restaurants and, we believe, offers a better experience.
An Adagio Leader will accompany you throughout the holiday. They are all experienced travellers with a love for exploring and will help capture the true essence of the destination with their stories, knowledge and insights. They are well-organised, pay great attention to detail and enjoy being with people. They are there to help make your holiday as enjoyable and stress free as possible.
Leaders Evening Briefing
Your Adagio Leader will discuss the programme for the following day with the group at each evening briefing. This will be your opportunity to find out more details and ensure the planned activities suit your walking ability. Also, if you have any questions or concerns on clothing or lunch arrangements, this can be discussed then. If you wish to opt out of the organised group programme, this is fine, just let your Leader know.
Getting to your Holiday
We fly from London to Geneva and return. The flight takes about 1 hour 35 minutes.
Our transfer from Geneva Airport to Zermatt is by train and will take around about 4 hours. Our hotel is just a 5 minute walk from the train station but our luggage will be transferred from the train station to the hotel. Please note that it will be necessary to change trains once on the journey (in each direction) and you will be responsible for handling your own luggage, please therefore pack sensibly and a suitcase with wheels will be the easiest piece of luggage to navigate.
During the week we’ll travel on foot, by cogwheel-railway and cable car, train and bus.
Land only package: This applies if you will be organising your own travel arrangements to Zermatt and travelling to the hotel independently to the rest of the Adagio group. You will still be entitled to receive your Swiss rail tickets. This enables you to travel by train between the airport and Zermatt. To obtain this pass ahead of your holiday then please email Rebecca Allen at [email protected] and we can organise the delivery of your pass. Please be aware that the passes are not usually sent to the Adagio office until two weeks – ten days prior to the departure date. So you will receive the pass after this time. If we do not receive a request for your rail tickets then we will automatically send these to the leader to give to you on arrival at Zurich Airport with the rest of the group.
If you intend joining and leaving the party in Zermatt, we assume, unless you have advised us otherwise, that you will meet and leave the party at hotel. If this is not your intention, please let us know in writing at least 5 weeks before departure.
Booking Your Own Travel Arrangements
If you wish to organise your own flights from either a non-UK or UK regional airport, or travel by rail or car to your holiday destination, 'land only' reductions are often available. If you choose to do this, before finalising any independent travel arrangements, please check with us first - especially if doing so 12 weeks or more before your intended date of travel. If you do intend to join your holiday locally please do tell us at least 14 weeks in advance.
If you are joining and leaving your holiday overseas we assume, unless you advise us otherwise, that you will join and leave the holiday at the hotel. Although airport/train station transfers are not included for those making their own independent travel arrangements, if you wish to join the group at the overseas airport/train station, depending on your flight/train arrival time, you may be able to be included on the group's transfer. Please contact us at least 5 weeks before departure for more details.
Please note that your flight/train must arrive within 30 minutes of the group flight/train to be able to join the group transfer. We also need your flight/train number, arrival time and departure point so that your Adagio Leader is able to meet up with you.
Luggage Allowance & Tickets
When booking a flight or rail inclusive holiday with us, details of your travel arrangements and baggage allowance will be confirmed in your travel documents, sent to you approximately 10 days prior to departure.
Personal Details Check
Please ensure that the personal details we have on file for you are up to date and that you have provided the information we need to secure your holiday travel and accommodation arrangements.
Please check your passport details, date of birth and any other important details necessary for us to accurately manage your holiday booking are correct at the time of booking (including health and dietry requirements). You can view and update information already provided, and add details not yet asked for, by using the Manage My Booking facility on our website www.adagio.co.uk, or by calling our Sales and Reservations team on +44 (0)1707 386700. When you receive your booking confirmation please check the details as soon as possible.
General Passport Advice
It is a good idea to carry photocopies of the personal details pages of your passport page (with your photo on). Should you lose your passport, this may assist with the issue of replacement documents and your return to your home country. Passport and visa requirements can change at any time. It is your own responsibility to ensure that you inform yourself from a professionally qualified source on, and comply with, such requirements.
Brexit Passport Advice
You should have at least 6 months validity left on your passport from your date of arrival.
If you renewed a 10 year passport before it expired, extra months may have been added to your passport’s expiry date. These extra months will not count, so you should ensure that your passport is not older than 9 years and 6 months from the date of issue at the time of travel.
You may wish to renew your passport sooner rather than later, in order to make sure you have it in time for your holiday or travel plans.
Please ensure to regularly check the Foreign and Commonwealth Office website for updates on passport requirements leading up to and after Brexit or contact us for more assistance.
UK Government Brexit Information for Passports can be found at www.gov.uk/guidance/passport-rules-for-travel-to-europe-after-Brexit.
The UK Government has published a website tool to check the validity of your passport under these rules which can be found at www.passport.service.gov.uk/check-a-passport.
In the event the UK leaves the EU without a deal, UK citizens will be able to visit the EU for up to 90 days within a 180-day period without a visa. The UK Government also has information for travellers available at gov.uk/EUexit
Non British Passport holders should consult the host country’s embassy for applicable passport and visa entry requirements.
We enjoy breakfast and dinners in the hotel’s delightful restaurant. Breakfasts are a large buffet and include a wide selection of food including fruit, cereals, many varieties of freshly baked breads, ham, cheese, tomatoes, eggs, bacon, pancakes and more!
Dinner is a splendid five course menu consisting of a starter, soup, salad, a choice of two main courses and a dessert. The hotel caters well for specific dietary needs so please advise us at the time of booking.
After our walks we can return to the hotel to enjoy afternoon tea and cake in the lounge. We don’t include lunches in the price of the holiday – normally these can be taken as a picnic or in a mountain café.
Footwear & Kit List
Comfortable, broken in, walking boots or shoes with a good sole are recommended for this holiday. Walking shoes or other comfortable footwear will be suitable for sightseeing days.
General Kit List
We recommend you bring the following items with you:
- Walking boots or shoes with a good sole and waterproof uppers.
- Waterproof jacket and trousers. It does rain sometimes!
- A sunhat, fleece hat and gloves… to cover all weather eventualities.
- Sun cream.
- Hand sanitiser
- Swimwear in case there is time for swimming if the hotel has a pool
- A water bottle. (see Water-to-Go below)
- A picnic knife, fork and spoon, as required.
- A simple basic first aid kit.
- A daypack to hold all the above.
- Trekking poles (if you usually walk with poles)
Water To Go
An alternative to bottled water from single-use sealed water bottles is filtered water from a refillable bottle containing its own water filter such as a Water-to-go bottle available from www.watertogo.eu. Just fill up from any water source and save the environment from disposable plastic bottles.
We have negotiated an exclusive 15% discount with our partners Water-to-Go for you as a thank you for helping the environment. Please go to their website at www.watertogo.eu and enter the code RWH17 when ordering. In addition, Water-to-Go will match the discount with a donation to our charity, Heart & Sole, which will allow us to continue to make a difference in the countries you visit on our holidays.
Travel Document Checklist
To ensure your holiday gets off to a good start, please make sure that you bring the following documents and information with you:
- Passport (make sure it's yours and valid)
- Your travel tickets or e-ticket itinerary
- Any visa or electronic travel authorisation (if required)
- Holiday currency
- Credit or debit cards (and separate details of who to call if lost)
- Car parking ticket and car park directions (if prebooked)
- Coach or rail travel tickets (if prebooked)
- Your holiday Booking Confirmation document
- Your travel insurance details
- Alternative form of identification (such as a driving licence)
- Photocopy of the personal details pages of your passport
- A valid European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) if relevant
- Details of any medical condition or allergy your holiday leader should know about
Electricity in Switzerland
Electricity in Switzerland is supplied at 230 Volts. If you wish to use electrical equipment you will need a two prong round pin continental pug adapter which will fit into any three prong receptacle. More information can be found at www.power-plus-sockets.com.
Maps & Guidebooks
Ideal Maps & Guidebooks
Many local libraries stock a selection of travel guides and books which may offer you more information. Apart from any books available in local libraries, the internet is now an excellent resource for information about holiday destinations. You may find the below websites, books and programmes useful.
Maps of the areas we visit (1:200 000 scale) are available locally and at specialist map shops in the UK.
The best map of the area, and one which covers most of our walks, is the 1:25,000 scale Swiss Wanderkarte Map 2515 ‘Zermatt - Görnergrat.
A waterproof 1:50,000 map of the area is available at the Tourist Office (or the Newsagent) beside the station.
The Rough Guide to Switzerland has many pages on the Zermatt area and lots of other in-depth information about the country.
The Zermatt Tourist Office has lots of information on all sorts of things in Zermatt itself, and links to the other villages in the area. Their webcams, accessible via “Planning & Booking”, are particularly good.
Cicerone guide to Alpine Flowers. We like this pocket-sized book on the 230 Alpine flowers you are most likely to come across on a holiday in the Alps. There’s a really interesting introduction to the properties flowers need to survive life at altitude and good clear photos with short descriptions arranged according to the predominant colour of the flower. Order it from Cicerone directly and quote code RAMBWH for a 25% discount.
The Map Shop
If you cannot find the maps or books locally we recommend:
The Map Shop
5 High Street
Upton upon Severn, Worcs
Tel: 01684 593 146
E-mail: [email protected]
If you key many of the local places mentioned in this holiday fact sheet into YouTube, you will find a vast array of spectacular footage of the area.
Find out more
German; French; Italian
2.5hrs from UK
Visas and Passports
No Visa Required
Avg. Rain: 80mm
Avg. Rain: 75mm
Avg. Rain: 83mm
Avg. Rain: 94mm
Avg. Rain: 114mm
Avg. Rain: 121mm
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Avg. Rain: 99mm
Avg. Rain: 93mm
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Avg. Rain: 86mm
Staying Healthy on Holiday
Health Advice for Switzerland
No compulsory immunisations are required for visits to Switzerland.
You should be up to date with the usual immunisations recommended in the UK.
You may wish to consider immunisations against Tetanus and Tick-borne Encephalitis.
Further Health Advice
For further advice please visit:
You might wish to take a small bottle of antibacterial hand gel with you for times when you're unable to wash your hands.
It is a condition of booking with Adagio that you have adequate valid travel insurance. It is your responsibility to arrange appropriate travel insurance and ensure you have read and understood the full terms and conditions of your travel insurance policy to ensure that you are covered for all activities you intend to undertake whilst on the trip, including all optional activities.
Your travel insurance policy must fully cover you for medical expenses and emergency repatriation. Please ensure your policy covers the entire duration of your holiday. If you are walking at altitude please ensure that there is no upper altitude limit which may limit or exclude cover for your trip. Medical and repatriation insurance cover are not mandatory for UK residents who are travelling on trips within the United Kingdom.
Whoever you insure with, please ensure that you take full details, and ideally the policy itself, with you on holiday and provide our tour leader with your insurer's name, the policy number and emergency assistance contact numbers.
Please note that it is very difficult to obtain travel insurance once your holiday arrangements have started.
Looking for travel insurance cover?
If you have not already arranged cover, please visit SunWorld who offer travel insurance.
SunWorld policies include cover for COVID-19, subject to applicable terms and conditions.
Please take your European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) with you; it will help you in the event of you needing medical assistance during your holiday. Please note that the EHIC has an expiry date, so please check that your card is valid for the duration of your holiday. Please note however the EHIC should not be considered a substitute for medical or travel insurance.
It is important to ensure while purchasing insurance that you are insured for guided walking up to 4000m as the highest point you will reach on our advertised programme is 3089m and if you wish to visit the Klein Matterhorn Glacier Paradise at 3883m on your free day.
We're committed to operating responsible tours in all our destinations as best we can. Our holidays are designed for you to discover the essence of the country you are visiting. Travelling in small groups not only gives you an up close and personal experience of your destination, but minimises your impact on the immediate environment. We feel that the most important starting point to protect the environment is to be out in it. For more details visit our website.
Ramblers Holidays Charitable Trust
Unlike many tour operators we have our own trust through which RWH Travel Ltd’s (inc Adagio) profits are channelled back into a variety of outdoor, walking-related or environmental conservation projects in the UK. The focus of the Trust’s financial support is Britain’s leading walking charity, The Ramblers, and their role in promoting the benefits and importance of walking to the British public.
In addition the Trust welcomes applications for small grants from local organisations in the UK who need support for walking-orientated activities. This includes the establishment of footpaths and bridleways, funding for rebuilding bridges and renovating huts, as well as bursary funding for the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award for children who could not otherwise afford to do it. Please visit the ‘About Us’ section of our website and click on the Charitable Trust link for more details.
Heart and Sole
We appreciate that we are in a fortunate position to be able to use our profits to help make a difference to people's lives. Heart & Sole is a venture managed by our office staff, whose aim is to reach the heart of the communities in the countries we visit. Through Heart & Sole, we hope to make more of a long term, direct impact to these communities, particularly in less developed countries where even a small amount goes a long way.
We welcome all comments about our holidays and value ideas for future holidays. If you have provided us with an email address we will invite you to complete an online questionnaire or to add feedback to our page on the independent review site 'Feefo'.
Please note that this Holiday Information sheet may be periodically updated and reissued.
In most cases the revisions will be minor and the overall nature of the holiday will remain unchanged. Should we make a major change to your holiday arrangements between you booking your holiday and your date of travel we will notify you to specifically draw your attention to any significant change.
We suggest that you may want to review the latest version of this Holiday Information Sheet online prior to travel.
Please note that any advertised offers, benefits or initiatives may be discontinued at any time.