The Gornergrat is the most famous excursion from Zermatt and the one that most people undertake in order to see the slender silhouette of the Matterhorn at close range. It is also the most expensive, but the many highlights that this trip to the top of the Gornergrat brings make your visit a must.
Excursion with the Gornergrat rack railway
If you only think about reaching the top station at 3100 meters and seeing the Matterhorn from there, you will make a big mistake, because you will miss a lot of incredible places. But if you have little time and want to go straight there, you have no doubt, as the view from the Gornergrat platform is absolutely outstanding.
Contrary to other trains or cable cars in Zermatt, the highest rack railway of Europe is located right in front of the station of Zermatt, so that you do not have to walk far.
The first part of the trip is amazing, as the views to Zermatt with the Matterhorn in the background are grandiose.
In about 8 minutes you will reach the first station Findelbach (1’774 m), from where there are wonderful excursions such as the Alpenweiler Findeln..
Riffelalp: a paradise 15 minutes from Zermatt
We continue the journey to Riffelalp (2,211 m), where you will arrive in 14 minutes from Zermatt. A beautiful red tram will take you to the Riffelalp Resort that will cost you only 2 CHF per ride.
There is also a garden area, a small playground, a fountain and even a tennis court, all in an incomparable setting with a wonderful view of the Matterhorn.
After you have left such a landscape behind you, you can continue your journey by train and stop at the next station: Riffelberg, at 2,582m. Eight additional minutes separate the two stations, and in front of you there is an extraordinary panorama of the Matterhorn.
As soon as you leave the station, the children can have their picture taken with the red Swiss cow or with Wolli, the mascot of the region.
We also recommend a trip to the Riffelsee, one of the most beautiful lakes in Switzerland.
It is perfectly signposted as soon as you leave the station and the way is easy. You are 50 minutes away from this postcard lake, where the Matterhorn reflects the Riffelsee.
At this point you only have to make one last stop. In just half an hour, one can drive up from Zermatt to the Gornergrat.
Gornergrat: the kingdom of the four thousand
During the last trip to the Gornergrat, the views are again fantastic, with the Gorner Glacier, the twin mountains Castor and Pollux, the Liskamm or the Monterosa itself, all four thousand snow-covered peaks.
On the right side of the Matterhorn you can admire other mythical mountains like the Colossus of the Weisshorn (4,505 m), the Dent Blanche (4,356 m) or the Zinalrothorn (4,221 m).
You can also enter into the beautiful chapel next to the hotel or have a drink on the terrace of the Kulm Hotel and enjoy one of the best panoramic views in Europe.
When you have completed the whole tour, just as the sun sets and the last rays of sunshine accentuate the beauty of this magical mountain you will be able to view such a landscape at the best possible time enjoying the peace of such beautiful place.
The last train goes down to Zermatt around 8 p.m., just when the sun sends out its last rays.