There’s no Alpine experience quite like Switzerland, with the Alps’s dramatic snowcapped peaks, historic castles, emerald green valleys and quaint medieval villages, you may forget all about the adventurous skiing that awaits you.
Before You Go: Need-to-know info
Entry requirements: Passport
Languages: Switzerland has four national languages: German and French in Western Switzerland; Italian in Southern Switzerland; and Romansch in Southeastern Switzerland. English is also widely spoken.
Currency: Swiss franc
Flight time (to Zurich): about 8 hours from New York City; 11 hours from LA
When to Go: Switzerland at its best
Best weather: You’ll find the best weather (and the largest crowds) between June and August, when temps range between 65 and 76 degrees Fahrenheit, though May and September are also good times to go (temps are just a bit cooler). Of course, expect freezing temperatures on the slopes.
What to Do
Enjoy world-class skiing: There’s no place to ski quite like the Swiss Alps. Make your way to Zermatt, and while there, ride up to the Matterhorn glacier by cable car for the best views in the country. After a long day of skiing, find a cozy lodge to warm up and cuddle in.
Ride the glacier express: After you’re skied out, take a ride through the untouched mountain valleys by mountain railway. Or ride the SBB train to Broc, home of the Nestle factory; swing through Montreux to see the Chateau de Chillon (the most notable castle in the country); then eat your way through Gruyeres and its many cheese factories.
Explore Zurich: Located just north of the Alps, Zurich is a metropolis set amongst lush mountains and the blue River Limmat. There, you’ll find a plethora of arts and culture. Zurich is home to more than 50 museums and 100 galleries and houses some interesting examples of design and architecture, including the Fraumünster church with stunning Chagall-designed stained-glass windows.