Considered to be one of the most beautiful places on earth, Switzerland needs no introduction. The snowlines of the Alps, lakes with brilliant blue-green waters, emerald coloured meadows, vast farms full of flowers, and mystic castles looming high in the clouds- all conjure up images of a magical place.
Best places to visit in Switzerland
Several high peaks including the 13,642 ft high Jungfrau and others like Monch, Eiger, and the Fiescherwand flank the Jungfrau area, which is a part of the Bernese Oberland. Jungfrau houses picture-postcard like hamlets, valleys, and small lakes. The mountains in this area are permanently covered in snow and include a 15-mile glacial river.
One of the most popular attractions to see while in this region are the Lauterbrunnen & Waterfalls. They are located in a village by the same name in a deep valley. The place has around 70 waterfalls, the most impressive of which is the 1000 ft tall Staubbach Falls. This is one of the tallest free-falling waterfalls in entire Europe. Another massive waterfall is Trummelbach, which falls from a height of 600 ft, cutting into a rock face. This waterfall is accessible only in summers.
One must not miss seeing alpine villages while on a trip to Switzerland. Located in one of the lower valleys of Jungfrau, Wengen is one of the most charming hamlets in this region. A typical Swiss village with lush green meadows, colourful houses, winding roads, and breathtaking views of the mountains, it is a must-visit. This is one of the sunniest places in this region and is car-free. A famous winter sports destination, people visit Wengen from all over Europe to ski on its more than 60 miles of snowy terrain.
Swiss National Park
Located in the Zernez region, this is the oldest national park in Switzerland, which was founded in 1914. The park, stretching over 170 sqkm is famous for its pristine landscape and abundance of alpine animals and birds. While here, one must most definitely take the National Park Panorama Trail, which leads hikers through a landscape of unbelievable beauty dotted with the Uinaschlucht Gorge cut by the valleys of Val Mustair, Val Mora forests, and the lakes in Sesvennapass. See the St. Johann ZuMustair Monastery, a UNESCO World Heritage site.
You will see diverse flora native to this region and if you are lucky you can even spot the exotic golden eagles, chamois, ibexes, marmots, etc.
The Rhine Falls
No trip to Switzerland is complete without visiting the mighty Rhine Falls, located in the town of Schaffhausen. The falls make their presence felt by a vibrating roar even when one is miles away from them. Imagine the power of these 23 metre high falls when you are close to them! Adventure enthusiasts must try the various boat trips that promise to leave you with an experience of a lifetime. Choose between boat tours that take you up close to the Rhine Falls rocks and ones that let you circumvent the basin around the falls. Other boat trips take you to interesting routes between Worth Castle and Laufen Castle. The observation decks near Laufen Castle bring you very close to the waters. At certain vantage points, you can see the huge expanse of the waterfalls through livecams.
Plan your trip to Rhine Falls between April to October as that’s when the boat trips can be best experienced. The water flow is at its highest during these months, for you to enjoy the grandeur of these falls.
Located in Zermatt, the legendary Matterhorn is one of the most photographed and uniquely shaped 4-thousander in the region of Upper Valais. The sharp pyramid shape of the peak induces awe as well as a feeling of surrealism, filling one with wonder at the beauty of nature. Interestingly, this peak is the inspiration of the logo of Toblerone chocolate! Wintersport enthusiasts from all over Europe visit the slopes of Matterhorn to ski. In fact, Zermatt is one of the most popular skiing locations in Europe. There is a beautiful lake just beneath the slopes of the mountain famous for its turquoise green waters, which cannot be missed.
After taking in the views of the mountain and the lake, visit the village of Zermatt. Like most Swiss villages, it is car-free thereby assuring you of peaceful time. Explore 16th-century architecture here, shop at the clothing stores, and indulge in a huge range of delicious coffee at cafes with gorgeous views of the landscape.
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Chateau de Chillon
Located amid the Swiss Riviera, is the Chillon Castle. The grandeur, enormity, and the surreal gothic atmosphere of the place need to be visited to believe. This castle, dating back 400 years, was owned by Counts of Savoy. Step back into time as you see 14th-century pictures, magnificent residential quarters, weapons, furniture, and the personal belongings of the royal families. Chateau de Chillon is a cluster of 25 buildings like Great Halls where royal banquets were served, Bernese Chambers or the bedrooms, chapel, etc.
It has a century-old wine cellar and a wine press, open to the public. You can also buy some of these at the museum shop. Don’t miss to see the huge and lush vineyard on the property that edges along Lake Geneva.
There is a permanent exhibition on display at the castle, which showshow the place and art have evolved from the time of the Counts vis-à-vis changes in the contemporary landscapes. The castle, one of the top destinations in Switzerland, is easy to reach by foot, boat, or bus from the town of Montreux.
Switzerland is an all-year destination and one doesn’t need to look far to delve into the pristine beauty of the place. Every nook and corner that you see looks straight of a picture postcard. The people are warm & friendly and the country has an excellent public transport system for tourists connecting all major attractions.