The village of Zermatt has been shaped by ancient traditions and modern tourism. If you have never been to Zermatt before, this is one of the walk you have to do while in Zermatt. The thrilling contrasts can be explored on a walk through the village. In the old village, there is about 30 ancient buildings that show the traditional building style of the original Walser residents. The barns and grain stores, which are up to 500 years old, are a piece of living history and reveals how the mountain farmers of Zermatt once lived. Anyone who is interested in the lifestyle of local people in days gone by should visit Zermatlantis or the Matterhorn Museum.
This walk starts at Zermatt and ends at Zermatt with total distance of 1.83 kilometers taking approximately an hour and 30 minutes. The highest point is at 1632 meters with an ascent of 49 meters and descent of 49 meters. Zermatt is also home to more than 100 hotels and numerous chalets, some ancient and others very modern. The resort does not, however, have any giant hotel blocks or flat roofs. Many hotels have bars open to non-residents where visitors can experience all the hospitality and charm that characterize Zermatt’s hotel tradition.
The Bahnhofstrasse is Zermatt’s main street, and a delight to walk along at any time with its bars, restaurants, boutiques, souvenir shops, bakeries and shops selling cakes and chocolates. From the steps of the church of St.Mauritius or from the Kirchbrucke bridge, visitors enjoy a fine view of the south-west of the Matterhorn rising majestically into the sky. Depending on the weather, the peak may be sparkling in the sunshine or adorned with clouds. Since 1961, Zermatt has been closed to traffic. The Bahnhofstrasse is the domain of horse-drawn carriages where you can enjoy strolling along the streets in a pleasure. In high summer, a herd of about 50 Valais Blackneck goats descends on the Bahnhofstrasse every day at about 9am and 5pm. With their twisted horns and long-haired, black-and-white coats, these photogenic animals are the secret stars of the Matterhorn village.
Anyone who rises early to see the sunrise on the Matterhorn is treated to a magical sight. The pinnacle catches the very first rays from the sun, which gradually work their way down the east face of the Matterhorn as Zermatt awakens to a new day. Bahnhofstrasse is the perfect place to stroll for window shopping or just to look around. Past the shopping area, you can walk to the old part of the village or the English church where there is mountaineer’s cemetery and monument to the mountain guides. During summer not only can you see those cute Valais Blackneck goats walking along but there is Zermatt’s summer of folklore with music such as alphorns and accordion at various locations in the village center.
This walk is something everyone can really enjoy. It is basically a introduction walk to Zermatt. You can enjoy buying souvenirs at the gift shops or eat some delicious Swiss Chocolates while walking along the main streets of Zermatt. The main street is usually close to most of hotels allowing visitors to have a delicious lunch or dinner before and or after going back to their rooms. Since it is open all season, you can enjoy many faces of Zermatt.