Tuesday, August 31, 2010


The one thing Matterhorn reminds me during my young and ignorant days is that it was the name of a cheap cigarette brand back then. Its a menthol, so I guess thats what it refers too, you know, cooling menthol cigarette like the the cool Matterhorn. Its just a theory of course, but I strongly suspect, that was the connection. :)

Zermatt, the Alpine tourist village where Matterhorn lies just nearby on top of the mountain range, is about 3 hours drive from Geneva. Of course, this is a must visit place in Switzerland, and I planned to hit all the top tourist spot while I am here. Alang-alang dah duduk kat sini, rugi kalau tak pergi tengok.

With my love one and daughters tagging along, we drove to Visp, about 2 hours drive, park our car there and hop on the train to Zermatt. The number one reason I did that was they dont allow any fossil fuel run vehicle to be driven in Zermatt. Its banned. Meaning, no fumes discarding transportation are allowed. Its to keep the air in Zermatt especially, fresh and clean. The second reason was that, taking the train will allow me to indulge in my picture taking hobby, without any interruption. (Not that I tried taking pics while driving though, if you are wondering).

Gorgeous viewS, with valleys, and rivers along the way while the train heaved itself up the mountain tracks. Arrived in Zermatt after about one hour.

Zermatt was packed with tourist from all over the globe. Thats the best way to describe the hustle and bustle of this alpine town. From here one can go hiking up to Matterhorn or visit the many glaciers on the mountain range. Mountain biking, para gliding are but many other options available for the active and nature loving tourists.

Us? None of that, thank you. We just strolled in and out of the cobbled streets and and alleyways in Zermatt, soaking up its busy atmosphere. Horse carriages were not a rare sight here. Its served to transport the newly arrive tourists to their respective accommodations. Theres the small and compact taxis, run and fed by their battery juices of course. If you dont like getting cramped in the taxis, choose mountain bike instead and if that still doesnt suit you, just walk to get around.

The best place to view Matterhorn is on the bridge in the center of the town near Zermatt's old chapel where its cemeteries are packed with graves of fallen mountaineers who unfortunately met their final destiny while scaling the majestic Matterhorn. I went to visit the cemetery and read the their families final farewells and thoughts carved on their tombstone. Some were really quite moving. About 500 climbers had died 1865 up to 1995. A deadly mountain, to say the least.

The children wanted to learn something about the Zermatt's and Matterhorn, so we hit Zermatlantis, a local museum dedicated in preserving the history of both places. Old climbing gears, cameras, even the original clothing of a dead mountaineer were prominently displayed inside the museum. The children thought it was cool, since they could see how things were back then.

Its interesting to note that Matterhorn are shared by both Italy and Switzerland.

Food was rather expensive in Zermatt, and so were other stuff. Souvenirs cost a lot more here than other popular tourist spots I have been in Switzerland. Its the same phenomenon all over the tourist world, I suppose. Charge the tourist as much as they could. Capitalism and free market at its worst.

That aside, we had a wonderful time in Zermatt. We viewed the famous Matterhorn (the mountain, not the menthol cigarette, mind you), had a blast learning a little bit about the history of this alpine kampung and its famous but deadly mountain.


  1. wow, cantiknya zermatt..im speechless. kalau nak pergi Zermatt from zurich kena tidur sana lah jawabnya kan, kalau balik hari like u said before, possible but tiring kan. nampak gayanya i takkan dapat menjejakkan kaki ke zermat kalau gitu. so sad. tq for sharing, boleh jugak i rasa pengalaman u dengan family naik ke zermatt

    driving dekat sana macam mana susah tak?

    i dengan suami suka countryside, dekat mana lagi boleh rasa suasana countryside yang membolehkan kitorang balik semula ke zurich on the same day? sepanjang ke sana tak penah dapat tengok lembu loceng pun lagi. bila pergi selalu tak kena musim agaknya. time kitorang pergi lembu masih dalam kandang. none of them yang pakai loceng.

    cuma dapat jumpa kambing loceng dekat heidiland.

  2. Lady of Leisure: THanks. Banyak lagi gambor Zermatt tapi ada dalam FB. Ni pun pilih sebab nak sesuaikan dengan cerita. Glad you like it. :)

    Driving is quite okay. Generally Swiss patuh undang-undang and considerate.

    If you are based in Zurich, banyak tempat actually kalau nak pergi lepak kat countryside dia. Try surf this website http://www.myswitzerland.com/en/home.html.
    Good info plus evenys, etc.

    Lembu turun gunung masa autumn, diorang siap ada macam festival. Lembu tu hias dengan crown, loceng etc. Ada gambar tapi rasanya tak tulis dalam blog kot.

    Heidiland kami tak pernah pegi lagi. Maybe next outing.

  3. i see.. tq for the link, nanti i ll check it out(the website).. teringin nak tengok lembu loceng tu, di heidiland kitorang jumpa kambing loceng, very pleasant bila dengar sayup2 bunyi loceng dalam keadaan sunyi atas bukit tu.. hehe.. im sure your kids will love heidiland esp kalau dorang suka cerita heidi, famous in swiss literature kan.. manja kambing2 heidi tu.

    kalau pergi heidiland, boleh singgah liechtenstein sekali, dekat juga kan.. dengan bad ragaz jugak, katanya situ ada thermal spring, famous katanya, tapi kitorang tak sempat singgah pun.

  4. Lady of Leisure: I am sure they will. will check it out.