- Hike in authentic Switzerland with views to the Matterhorn
- Walk to peaceful alpine lakes and meadows
- Stay in Hotel Weisshorn, once a hub for Victorian-era mountaineers
- Easy to navigate and well-maintained trails
- Relax with a warming raclette and a glass of Valais wine
Explore this little-known valley on this inn to inn walking holiday through the Val d’Anniviers; the quiet side of the Matterhorn.
Hike in the shadow of the Weisshorn, Dent Blanche and Matterhorn peaks, with a choice of walks on most days to suit you.
Immerse yourself in the Swiss lifestyle and stay in authentic chalet-style hotels, where relaxation and hearty fondues are the order of the day. You will also spend one night in Hotel Weisshorn, steeped in mountaineering history and a fantastic atmosphere.
DAY 1: Arrive Zinal
Immerse yourself in a traditional Swiss village. Dotted with traditional log cabins and Alpine cows, Zinal is nestled in the Anniviers valley and surrounded by the majestic peaks of Dent Blanche, Weisshorn, Zinalhorn, Bishorn, Obergablehorn and the Matterhorn.
Overnight and dinner: Zinal
DAY 2: Walk to Lac d'Arpitettaz
Heading along the valley floor, enjoy the views of the snow covered peaks. After crossing the river, the trail ascends steeply as you make your way above Zinal to your destination for the day; Lac d’Arpitettaz.Relax as you soak up the views of the Besso and Pointe de Zinal, before returning to Zinal via the same path.
Walking: 12 km, 560m ascent/descent
DAY 3: Walk around Lac de Moiry
Take a direct bus from Zinal to the barrage de Moiry (35 mins) from where you have various options to explore the aqua marine Moiry reservoir. We recommend taking a route around the entire lake. Start with a ‘low route’ around the right bank of the lac, with views to the Glacier de Moiry in the distance. At the head of the lake, follow the trail as it ascends before returning to the barrage on the high path. Return to Zinal by bus.
Walking: 11 km, 370m ascent/descent
DAY 4: Walk to Hotel Weisshorn
A steep ascent out of Zinal through farmland brings you high above the valley floor. Look behind you for views of the 4,000m peaks, including the Matterhorn.
Hotel Weisshorn is a mountain hotel with an interesting history. Once the favoured stomping ground of late 19th century adventurers, enjoy the camaraderie and atmosphere while you tuck into the delicious house speciality- ‘tarte aux myrtilles’.
Walking: 12 km, 750 ascent/90m descent
Overnight and dinner: Hotel Weisshorn
DAY 5: Walk to St Luc
Bid ‘au-revoir’ to Weisshorn and follow the Planets trail to Tignousa. The trail is a fun and interesting work of art produced by the near-by observatory; walk through a scale version of the solar system with each kilometre representing 1 million kilometres in reality. Once you reach Tignousa it’s time to come back down to Earth by taking the funicular down to the town of St. Luc.
If you prefer a longer walk today, continue on the path past the funicular to the charming village of Chandolin. From here take a bus to St-Luc.
Walk: 5 or 8.5 km, 90m ascent/250 descent or 150m ascent/460 descent.
Overnight and dinner: St Luc
DAY 6: The Three Lakes Walk
Return to Tignousa by funicular for the start of today’s walk; a circular route which visits the alpine lakes of Lac de Combavert, Lac de Armina and Lac de la Bella Tola. Each lake is as serene as the last and you will soon find yourself at the foot of Bella Tola, which at a height of 3,025m is the highest peak in the area. The hardy may wish to continue to the peak for sublime views of the surrounding mountain range. Continue on the circular route and you will soon come across Cabane Bella Tola, a popular mountain lodge, also serving lunch. Why not try one of their gourmet salads topped with dried alpine flowers?
Walk: 13 km, 580m ascent/descent
Overnight and dinner: St Luc
DAY 7: Free day in St Luc
Spend the day relaxing in your hotel or exploring the town of St. Luc, or any of the neighbouring villages. For those keen to walk more, there are numerous walking trails in the area to choose from.
Overnight and dinner: St Luc
DAY 8: Onward Travel
After breakfast check out of your hotel and make your onward journey. If you are planning a longer European tour, the Italian Lakes combine perfectly with the Swiss Alps.
Stay 6 nights in 3* standard hotels and 1 night in a private room with shared bathroom facilities in a mountain hotel. The accommodation we normally use is detailed on the following pages, and on our website, however is subject to availability and therefore alternatives of an equal standard may be offered.
Please be aware that twin & double rooms in Switzerland are typically 2 single mattresses side by side in one double bed frame with two separate duvet covers and pillows.
7 breakfasts and 5 dinners are included in your trip (on days 1, 4, 5, 6 & 7). On nights where dinner is not included (in Zinal on days 2 & 3) there are a few restaurants in the village to choose from. Lunch is not included as standard and this can be picked up from the local supermarket or bakery, or your hotel may be able to provide a packed lunch (ask for this upon arrival).
Upgrade to Hotel Bella Tola
We recommend upgrading your accommodation in St-Luc to the fabulous 4 star historic hotel– the Hotel Bella Tola. Facilities include a library, sauna, hamman and an indoor pool with the most magical view of the mountains. For more details and prices please contact one of our team or refer to our website.
Single Rooms & Solo Walkers
This trip is available to solo walkers and a solo walker supplement is payable. If you require single rooms within your party we would be happy to
accommodate you but there is a supplement payable.
You can add on extra nights in any of the overnight locations on this tour.
Hotel Europe - Zinal
Only a few minutes’ walk from the bus and cable car stops, tourist info and a supermarket. The hotel is modern, clean and comfortable and has everything you may need for an enjoyable stay. Dinner is served in the on-site restaurant with the chef mixing French, Swiss and Italian cuisine.
An historical hotel originally built in 1883, it has undergone many renovations and changes of hands. What has remained is the unrivalled atmosphere and charm of the hotel and of course the fabulous location. Surrounded by mountains and with a belly full of hearty mountain food, you are bound to get a fantastic nights’ sleep here. Rooms are private with shared bathroom facilities. p>
Le Grand Chalet Favre – St Luc
A traditional chalet style hotel with individually decorated rooms, this hotel has been welcoming guests since 1933. With only 15 rooms you can be sure of personal service from the efficient team here. Relax on the terrace and take in the views of the peaks in the distance with a home-made aperitif before dining in the on-site restaurant.p>
This trip is available to start any day of the week, from the end of June until the end of August. It is possible to complete the trip until the end of September this, however some of the public transport will not be running and taxis will need to be taken to the start/end of some of the Lac de Moiry walk, this would be payable locally. Contact your Destination Specialist for more information.
Time of Year
The best months for walking are in the summer months between June and mid-September when the wild flowers are in bloom and the weather is generally fair. Mid-September to mid- October is also a lovely time to do this trip, the landscape becomes a collage of vibrant burnt oranges, reds and browns. The area is also very tranquil at this time of the year.
Please be aware that earlier in the season there may be some residual snow lying in patches, but this will not require any special equipment or skills.
Travel During the Trip
Public transport in Switzerland really does live up to the cliché and is seamless. Some of the walks on this tour require a bus journey to the start or from the end of the walk back to your accommodation. The buses used in the valley are called ‘post buses’ and work very well. More info about the buses and timetables can be found here.
Pass Anniviers Liberté
At your first hotel you will receive a ‘Pass Anniviers Liberté which entitles you to free use of most of the postbus lines in the valley, some cable cars, swimming pools and many other attractions. For a full list of inclusions, have a look here. Please note that your bus from Sierre train station to Zinal is not included and needs to be paid locally.
Grade & Terrain
This trip is graded ‘moderate’ overall, as the walks are around 5-15km, and some have significant ascent and descent. The walk to Lac d'Apitettaz from Zinal involves a small section with the use of chains to help you climb/scramble. However the majority of walks are optional and you can really make this tour as easy or as difficult as you would like. Walking poles are recommended.
Navigation, Route Notes & Maps
Trails are way-marked, and together with hiking maps, the route notes and GPX tracks for our suggested walks, you will have no problem finding your way.
Your bags will be transferred between Zinal and St. Luc. Due to its location, bags cannot be transferred to Hotel Weisshorn so you will pack your overnight things in your day bag and take this along when you hike to Weisshorn. You will be reunited with your main bag in St. Luc on day 5.
It is a requirement of booking this tour with Macs Adventure that you have suitable travel insurance which covers you for the activity, emergency evacuation and hospital care.
The distances and ascents/descents are approximations of the recommended routes. Please be prepared by packing all necessary items,for example, proper rain gear (jackets and trousers), sun hat and sunscreen. Your information pack has a detailed equipment list which includes standard walking gear such as good walking shoes or boots, warm and waterproof clothes for the cooler months and lightweight clothing for summer and a day pack.
Getting to Zinal
For general travel planning and information in Switzerland, please go to: www.myswitzerland.com/en-gb/transport-travel/getting-around
Fly into Geneva, Zurich or Bern then continue by train to Sierre. (2 , 3 or 1 hours) From Sierre take a postbus to Vissoie and then change for a postbus to Zinal (each journey about 30 mins in duration– transfer time depends on time of day) Train timetables and details of public transportation in Switzerland are available via the excellent travel planner at www.sbb.ch.
Getting from St Luc
From St-Luc take the bus down to the valley floor to Vissoie, then change bus to return to Sierre (approx. 1 hour total). From Sierre train station, all airports mentioned above are easily reached, as well as a number of other Swiss and European destinations.
- 6 Nights in 3* hotels
- 1 Night in a mountain hotel in a private room
- 7 Breakfasts
- 5 Dinners
- Bag transfers from Zinal to St Luc
- Detailed pre-departure information pack
- Detailed route notes, maps and GPX tracks
- The “Anniviers Liberty Pass” which includes over 20 free activities in the valley and most local bus services and cable cars/funiculars
- 24-hour emergency telephone assistance
- Flights to and from Switzerland
- Travel from/to airport to Zinal/from St Luc
- Travel Insurance Personal expenses such as drinks, phone calls, extra transfers, tips, etc.
- Any items not specifically mentioned in the program
- Single room supplement(s) if applicable
- upgrade to Hotel Bella Tola in St Luc
How fit do I need to be?
The walking is graded moderate so you will enjoy the holiday more if you already enjoy an active lifestyle. Daily walks are a mixture of country paths and forest trails. If you have a good level of fitness you will have no problem with the walk.
How far in advance do I need to book?
We suggest you book as soon as your plans are finalised as this holiday is extremely popular especially in the summer months. Please note you can start this holiday on any day of the week.
What personal equipment do I need?
You will need good walking shoes/boots, comfortable walking clothes, waterproof jacket and trousers, a daypack, warm clothing in the early/late part of the year and hats etc during the summer. We supply a detailed packing list with your information pack.