Tour of the Matterhorn North

7 Days & 6 Nights
  • Complete the north section of the long distance trek around the iconic Matterhorn
  • Hike the famous two-day Europaweg balcony path and stay at the Europahut
  • Share stories with fellow walkers in authentic mountain hotels and huts
  • Enjoy Swiss specialties like potato roesti and rich local cheeses
  • Start in glamorous Zermatt, Europe’s famous outdoor capital
Walk the North section of the Tour of the Matterhorn through Switzerland on this self-guided inn to inn trek. This demanding long–distance hike circumnavigates the famous peak, offering superb mountain views, as well as an insight into the two distinct regions that surround it; the German speaking Mattertal and French speaking Val d’Anniviers. This is a tough and adventurous trek, but for fans of the Alps, it could not be more rewarding. Hike through alpine meadows, on rocky paths and over suspension bridges. You will be rewarded with brilliant views at every corner. Relax at the end of the day in atmospheric mountain hotels and huts, and experience the camaraderie that an Alpine trek has to offer. Chat to walkers from all over the world over a beer, swapping stories and advice from the trail.

What To Expect

This trek is ideal for experienced alpine hikers looking for their next challenge. The tour is rated strenuous with significant ascent and descent each day; on average 1000m a day. The terrain is tough, varied and exposed. There is no bag transfer available, adding to the difficulty. However for the walker who likes to get back to basics, this can be welcome and adds to your sense of achievement. 4 nights are spent in comfy mountain hotels in private rooms, and two nights are spent in mountain hut dorms.

Tour Style:

Self Guided | Go at your own pace on an independent active trip.

Activity:

Inn to Inn Walking | A classic point to point walking trip, staying in a different location each night

This trip is suitable for:

Avid Adventurers

Ideal if you have an interest in:

  • Personal Growth
  • National Parks & Trails
  • Mountains

Inspiration:

  • New
  • Classic

Activity Level & Terrain

This trip is graded strenuous with the average daily distance being 17km. Each day has significant ascent and descent and the paths are a mixture of woodland trails, rocky mountain paths, moraine, scree, gravel tracks, glaciated terrain (guided) and paved country roads. There is some light scrambling involved in places and there are cables, ropes and chains to aid ascent/descent in some places.

Please be aware that on the highest passes, there may be some residual snow lying in patches, but this will not require any special equipment or skills; just a steady foot, walking experience and a head for heights. Walking poles are highly recommended.To get the most of this trip, you should be in good physical shape and be an experienced walker, having already done some Alpine walking. 

Navigation

All trails are very well way-marked, and together with access to our GPS-following app, route notes and maps, you will have no problem finding your way on our suggested walks.  

Experience & Fitness

This trip is graded strenuous with the average daily distance being 17km. Each day has significant ascent and descent and the paths are a mixture of woodland trails, rocky mountain paths, moraine, scree, gravel tracks, glaciated terrain (guided) and paved country roads. There is some light scrambling involved in places and there are cables, ropes and chains to aid ascent/descent in some places. Please be aware that on the highest passes, there may be some residual snow lying in patches, but this will not require any special equipment or skills; just a steady foot, walking experience and a head for heights. Walking poles are highly recommended. To get the most from this trip you should be in good physical shape and be an experienced walker, having already done some Alpine walking.

Accommodations

Stay 5 nights in comfortable 3* hotels in private en-suite rooms, 3 nights in mountain hotels in private rooms with shared bathroom facilities and 2 nights in mixed-sex dorms in mountain huts with shared bathroom facilities. An example of the accommodation we normally use is detailed below. These accommodations are subject to availability and therefore alternatives of an equal standard may be offered. You can add on extra nights in any of the overnight locations on this tour. 

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.

Single Rooms & Solo Walkers

This trip is not available to solo walkers due to the difficulty of the terrain. Single rooms are on request and are available for 5 nights out of 10. A supplement is payable for this.

Meals

Breakfasts are included each day. Breakfast in the hotels is a buffet selection with lots of sweet treats like pastries, homemade jams fruit and cereals. Savoury tastes are also catered for with bread, cheese, ham and eggs are usually available.

Breakfasts in the mountain hotels and huts tend to be very basic; bread, butter, jams, coffee, tea and orange juice.  If you prefer something more substantial before walking, we recommend carrying a few energy bars with you each day and supplement your breakfast with one of these. Packed lunch items can be bought locally from supermarkets or the local boulangerie. If you are staying in a hut or small town without these facilities, order packed lunch with your accommodation providers upon arrival. 

Dinner is included at each overnight location with the exception of Zermatt. Dinner in the mountain hotels and huts tend to be a convivial affair, and you will be seated with the other guests. Meal times are a real highlight, and you can enjoy the company of people from all over the world while you dine on good honest home-cooked food. Dinner is typically soup with bread, a main course consisting of meat and rice or pasta, a side salad or vegetables, followed by dessert or cheese. If you have any dietary requirements, please tell us upon booking and we can arrange this with the huts.

In Zermatt, dinner is not included so you are free to choose from the available options. Dining options in Zermatt are plentiful and you will be spoilt for choice. Swiss specialities are mostly based on cheese and potatoes, such as raclette and potato roesti. Zermatt also has many fine-dining and haute cuisine choices, should you want to treat yourself at the end of your trek!

Included
  • 3 Nights in 3* hotels, 2 nights in mountain hotels and 1 night in a mixed sex dorm in a mountain hut
  • 6 Breakfasts
  • 5 Dinners
  • Detailed pre-departure information pack
  • Route notes, maps, GPX tracks and access to our GPS smartphone app
  • 24-hour emergency telephone assistance
Excluded
  • Flights to and from Switzerland
  • Travel to starting point/from finish point
  • Public transport such as cable cars
  • Travel Insurance Personal expenses such as drinks, phone calls, extra transfers, tips, etc.
  • Any items not specifically mentioned in the program
Extras
  • Extra nights

When To Go

This trip is available to start any day of the week, from the beginning of July to the middle of September. 

Getting to the Start

Fly into Geneva, Zurich or Bern then continue by train to Zermatt. (3.5 , 3.5 or 2 hours) Train timetables and details of public transportation in Switzerland are available via the excellent travel planner at www.sbb.ch.


Getting from the End

Zinal is not on a train line but there are regular postbuses serving the town. Take the bus from Zinal to Sierre (about 2 hours with one change). From Sierre, you can take the train to any Swiss destination. To Zurich airport it takes approx. 3.5 hours, 2 to Geneva and 1.5 to Bern. Check www.sbb.ch for more details.

General Information

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.

Can my bags be transferred?

Unfortunately bag transfer is not available on this trip. You will need to carry your things in your backpack for the duration of your hike. Keeping this in mind, you should try to pack as light as possible, we recommend a rucksack of no more than 40 litres in size to keep things manageable. You can, of course, leave excess baggage at your hotel in Zermatt and pick it up again when you finish your trek.

Equipment

You will need crampon compatible walking boots, comfortable walking clothes, waterproof jacket and trousers and warm layers just to mention a few of the items required. We supply a detailed packing list with your information pack. Equipment needed for the glacier crossings, i.e. crampons, ice axe etc. will be provided by the guide. 

Travel Insurance

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.

How fit do I need to be?
Can my bags be transferred?
How far in advance do I need to book?
What personal equipment do I need?

Itinerary

Day 1 Arrive Zermatt Day 2 Cable car to Sunnegga and walk to Europahut 11 miles / 17 km Day 3 Walk to St Niklaus 10 miles / 16 km Day 4 Walk to Gruben 9 miles / 14.5 km Day 5 Walk to Hotel Weisshorn 7 miles / 11 km Day 6 Walk to Zinal 7.5 miles / 12 km Day 7 Onward Travel

The Macs Way

  • Custom-made Adventures Custom-made Adventures
  • Freedom Freedom
  • Book with Confidence Book with Confidence
  • Expertise Expertise
  • Positive Impact Positive Impact
Build your perfect adventure your way
  • Flexible itineraries built around you
  • Knowledgeable and helpful specialist trip planners
  • Customize your trip to suit your interests
  • Start on any date that suits you
  • Choose your ideal trip length and difficulty
  • Range of accommodation comfort levels
  • Choice of trip styles
Authentic adventure travel experiences on your own terms
  • Choose your own travel companions
  • Walk, cycle and explore at your own pace
  • Make your own decisions
  • Choose your own path
  • Indulge your passions
Feel secure in making the right choice for your precious adventure time
  • 14,000+ unbiased trip & service reviews
  • Feefo Gold Award 2019
  • 25,000+ travelers trust us each year
  • As featured in the Guardian, Times, Nat Geo Traveler
  • Founder owned & operated since 2003
  • 100+ passionate team members across the US, UK & Europe
You can be confident that every detail of your journey has been expertly planned
  • Carefully planned adventures
  • Quality, hand-picked accommodations
  • Seamless and reliable arrangements
  • Comprehensive trip information & insider tips
  • Detailed maps, route notes and mobile GPS app
  • Helpful 24/7 support should you need it
Travel the right way and make a positive impact
  • Travel responsibly
  • Explore off the beaten track
  • Support locally owned businesses
  • Engage with local communities
  • Minimize your impact
  • Maximize the benefit of your travel
  • Challenge yourself & grow