Spectacular scenery and an excellent transport infrastructure combine to make Switzerland one of Europe’s top destinations for skiing, hiking and climbing.
For skiers and snowboarders, the choice is overwhelming: Verbier and Zermatt are especially renowned for their challenging on- and off-piste skiing, while the resorts of the Jungfrau region – Grindelwald, Mürren and Wengen – cater better for intermediates. Glaciers at Saas Fee and Zermatt allow summer skiing.
The Swiss love hiking, and with over 65,000km of marked trails, most of them revealing stunning Alpine vistas, it’s not hard to see why – the Jungfrau and Zermatt regions are particularly popular. Hiking trails are clearly signed in yellow. For our female travellers, check here for outdoor adventures for women, created by women.
Red signs mark the nationwide cycling network. Bikes (and trailers, e-bikes etc) can be rented from main stations, and in summer the largest cities also have free bike schemes (such as Zuri-rollt and Genève’roule). Ask at tourist offices or consult myswitzerland.com for routes and tips.
With its landscape of mountains, glaciers, deep gorges and fast-flowing rivers, Switzerland is ideal for adventure sports. Dozens of companies, in all the main resorts, offer activities through the summer, such as canyoning, river-rafting, bungee-jumping, zorbing (rolling down a mountainside strapped inside a giant plastic sphere) and flying fox (gliding across a chasm on a zip-line). Hang-gliding, paragliding and skydiving from 4000m can all be done alone or in tandem with an instructor.