When thinking about Switzerland, most people think of beautiful nature and impressive mountains. And that has its obvious reasons. In fact, Switzerland is in the heart of the Alps, Europes biggest, most famous and probably most spectacular mountain range. And Switzerland hosts some of the most famous mountains of the entire Alps, like the Mount Blanc, Europes tallest mountain with over 4800 meters, and the Zermatt (or Matterhorn) with its unforgettable sharp shape.
It is, therefore, no surprise that Switzerland attracts many adventurers every year. Its virgin mountains and many lakes of glacial origin are a paradise for any hiker in Summer and Winter sports aficionado in Winter. Today, let’s look into some of the most spectacular, beautiful and purest hiking trails any hiker can enjoy during the warm Swiss seasons.
When to visit Switzerland for hikes:
Switzerland is majestic at any time of the year, a gift given by its mountains. Every season has its perks, with skiing and hockey in Winter, colorful flowers in Spring, blue skies, and cool temperatures in Summer and golden trees and chestnuts in Fall. But when it comes to hiking, we warmly recommend visiting Switzerland in Spring and Summer. The friendly temperatures light up nature with intense green adorned by shimmering crystal blu lakes and vivid flowers. A spectacular view for anyone who wants a break from the city and some refreshing in virgin nature.
What to bring:
While any healthy person is able to hike, we warmly recommend you to consider your outfit and some essential items for every hike. Just as you can’t go scuba diving without oxygen and proper preparation, do not underestimate the power of mountains. Most hikes will be easy and relaxing, but things can change very quickly on the mountain. Be prepared! Here is a list of items that you should carry with you on any hike:
- Sun Screen – Atmosphere is a natural filter of UV sunlight. It reflects them back into space. But since 90% of the Earth’s atmosphere is concentrated in the first 10.000 meters, you are heavily exposed to dangerous Sun rays when hiking in Switzerland. You will usually hike over 2.000 meters, thus your natural protection decreases over 1/5. Sunscreen will protect you from unpleasant surprises. Face, neck, arms, and legs are usually the most exposed body parts on a hike. CREAM THEM UP!
- Mountain Shoes – Ever seen someone on Mt.Everest with a pair of Nike? Neither have we! Mountain Shoes are strong, resistant, and usually waterproof. They protect you from minor injuries a wild path can cause, but mainly, give you the grip you need! Because the last thing you want to happen when hiking is to lose the ground under you. It can be a matter of life and death! Furthermore, hiking shoes protect you from ankle sprains, scratches, and other minor injuries.
- Backpack – Hiking stands to backpack as glows stand to Winter. They are simply inseparable. Why? Because you need your hands when hiking. A handbag is a terrible idea for any hike! So, pack your stuff in a backpack. Your hiking trails will determine what kind of backpack you need. The Active series of RUIGOR has been created for tracks as the ones following.
- Rain Coat – A raincoat can make the difference between a one week cold in the bed, and a fun hike. Particularly recommended for young and old, but with the intensity of Swiss Spring and Summer storms, anyone is advised to carry one. It weighs nothing and costs even less.
- Water and Food – Bring water with you. You will get thirsty sooner or later. And some snacks like chocolate (after all you are in Switzerland) will get you the extra motivation to keep hiking when your power seems to fade.
5 Best Hiking Trails in Switzerland for Summer
1. The 5 Lake Hike
Close to Zurich expects you a unique hike. 5 lakes are on the route, the wonderful Matterhorn and if you are lucky, some friendly sheep.
Easily accessible through the Pizol Gondola in Wangs, the cableway takes you up to the mountains. From here, fresh air and mountain flair await you immediately, and your tour can begin. 4 hours of hiking will get you to the end, another cableway from which you can descend to the valley.
For detailed information, please visit the official site for tracking of Swizterland.
2. Mount Rigi Panorama Trail
Look at that view!! Now you already know why this makes it to the N.2 in our list. A wonderful wide view on one of the typically green Swiss valleys. The tour is all around the Lake of Lucerne which makes it perfect for a short trip. The hike is mostly flat, which makes it great for a family tour with young children, or lazy Sunday strolls.
It is also a hike within reach from anyone coming from Zurich. Check out the location maps here.
3. Lauterbrunnental Glacial Valley
A valley with waterfalls falling from sky hight? Welcome to the Lautbrunnental valley! A valley forged by the powers of past glaciers, destroying any soft rock and scratching the resistant one. And skyrocketing still existing glaciers provide the excessive water for these spectacular waterfalls!
The hike can be a relaxing walk for families but becomes a real hike once the valley reaches its end. The glaciers wall is a challenge to climb for anyone. But in most cases, you will take this as a relaxing excursion for anyone. A picnic with a great view might be a wonderful idea here!
4. Parc Ela
Park Ela has the beautiful advantage of being a round hike. You will end from where you started, without walking back the same route. Isn’t it cool? Exploring new places, seeing new mountains, and bathing in different lakes and rivers all day long.
The hike presents an elevation of 400 meters, which is quite comfortable but still needs some effort. A nice middle way between extreme days and lazy walks. On the way you will see many cows, eating happily the nourishing herbs of the Alpine mountains. A wonderful scenario, and usually totally safe. Make sure not to come to close to cows since they might get nervous and accidentally harm you. They are peaceful animals and not territorial, yet, they happen to be unpredictable. Enjoy their presence and their big bells hanging from their necks. A tool used by the shepherds to know where to find them during their “Summer break” in the mountains.
An elevation of 480 meters, 3,5 hours of hike, and 8km will get you all along the Oechinesee, a crystal clear blue lake like in a fable book. This hike is a famous route and very civilized. While the lake is really as pure as the pictures suggest, you will hardly enjoy the view alone. Oechinesee has many recreational facilities, from boats to picnic areas to bathing areas. It comes without saying, that that attacks masses! Yet it needs to be said that all the activities and people are in harmony, even though it will be louder than most Swiss hikes.
And for all of you who like some extra fun, here is a mega slide for young and old, directly on the lake!
Switzerland is a country of nature and adventure. Its mountains are a fabulous place to find yourself and the nature we miss so often in our busy cities. In our top 5 hiking trails in Swizterland for Summer, you have found some information. We hope above all, to have awakened your curiosity. If you want to find more hiking trails, make sure to check out the official Swiss website for hikes. It is full of details and information about the tracks. Please keep in mind the advice given at the beginning of the article, since they might change everything! A hike should be a pleasant time, not a struggle. Remember to check out RUIGOR’s professional hiking bags. Swiss bags for Swiss mountains!