When you visit Switzerland, the Alps has definitely got to be on your list, whether you ski or not. Ben and I visited in early September, so it wasn’t ski season just yet – which is fine, since neither of us know how to anyway. When it’s not ski season, there are various trails you can hike, or even mountain bike along. If neither of those are your thing, you can take the Gornergrat Railway all the way up from Zermatt to Gornergrat, where you’ll get magnificent views of the Matterhorn along the way.
We opted for a combination of hiking and the railway. There are various stops along the railway, where you can get off and hike to the next station, if you please. We took the railway from Zermatt to Rotenboden, and hiked one mile down to Riffelberg, since we figured the hike down would be more doable. This is where the famous lake, Riffelsee is, the one where you can see the reflection of the Matterhorn. The hike took us about 45 minutes with all the picture-taking. It was a relatively easy hike, except for a few muddy and/or steep parts here and there.
Since we had the unlimited railway pass for the day (prices vary depending on the season), we then took the railway from Riffelberg to Gornergrat, and enjoyed a nice lunch up there. If you’re not used to high elevations, it might not be a good idea to go straight from Zermatt to Gornergrat. Even though Ben and I had made various stops, he still felt a bit of altitude sickness after we stayed up at Gornergrat for about an hour.
We took the railway straight down back to Zermatt and had a few hours to explore/souvenir shop before it was time for dinner.