8 Highlights at Matterhorn Glacier Paradise
- The Matterhorn Glacier Paradise is located on the 3883 m high Klein Matterhorn.
- The highest mountain railroad station in Europe at 3821 m above sea level can be reached within 45 min by gondola from Zermatt.
- From the Matterhorn Glacier Paradise you walk in 3.5 hours with a mountain guide to the summit of the Breithorn (4164 m above sea level).
- At the Matterhorn Glacier Paradise lies the famous Theodul glacier.
- 15 m below the Theodul Glacier is the accessible Glacier Palace.
- The summer ski area on the Theodul glacier is the highest in Europe and is used by international ski athletes as a training location.
- The Gravity Snowpark offers the best conditions for jumping and slalom skiing.
- In winter you can use up to 360 km of slopes in the ski area, in summer 21 km.
What awaits you at Matterhorn Glacier Paradise
At 3821 m above sea level, the Matterhorn Glacier Paradise is home to the highest mountain railway station in Europe. Professional mountain guides start from here with mountain hikers to the 4000-mountain peak Breithorn
Matterhorn Glacier Paradise is the summit of an international ski resort open all year round. In summer it even becomes the largest ski resort in Europe. Many famous international winter sportsmen are attracted here in summer.
Klein Matterhorn at Matterhorn Glacier Paradise
The Klein Matterhorn is located at 3883 meters above sea level. Its viewing platform offers a far-reaching view that often reaches as far as the 4810-meter Mont Blanc in France. The Klein Matterhorn is separated from the Matterhorn by the Theodul Glacier.
Theodul Glacier at Matterhorn Glacier Paradise
The Theodul Glacier unites two glaciers at Matterhorn Glacier Paradise. Both stretch along between the Breithorn and the Matterhorn. They are called Upper and Lower Theodul Glacier and belong to the Gorner Glacier system.
At 1867 meters above sea level, Furi is located about three kilometers south of Zermatt. Furi is a transport hub within the ski area. From Furi there are direct connections via gondola lifts to:
- Trockener Steg
The gondola to Riffelberg connects the ski area of Klein Matterhorn with that of Gornergrat. Over a suspension bridge that spans the Gorner gorge, you can reach the glacier garden Dossen from Furi in 30 min. It is always open and shows traces of the last ice age
The forest playground Furi and the Ricola herb garden near Blatten provide fun and games for the whole family. Nearby is also the fireplace Schweigmatten.
Schwarzsee is situated at the foot of the Matterhorn at 2552 m above sea level. The mountain ridge of the same name (at 2583 m above sea level) can be reached from Furgg as well as from Furi. The mountain railway station is located on it. The view of the Hörnli ridge on the Matterhorn with the Hörnli hut is particularly impressive from here. Zermatt is also easy to see
The Matterhorn Glacier Trail and ascents of the Matterhorn start from the Schwarzsee station. The Hörnlihütte (at 3260 m above sea level) can be reached in about two hours. In winter the ski slopes run along here. Schwarzsee is the place that the sun reaches first in the morning within the ski area
About one kilometer from the tongue of the Theodul Glacier you will find the mountain station Trockener Steg. This mountain ridge stretches over altitudes between 2900 and 3000 meters above sea level between Zermatt and Furggsattel. The slopes are particularly steep here.
The Furggsattel lies on the border between Switzerland and Italy. The mountain pass is slightly higher than the nearby Theodulpass and reaches 3349 m above sea level. From Trockenen Steg you can reach it by chairlift. The Furggsattel is bordered by the mountain peaks Furgghorn (3451 m above sea level) and Theodulhorn (3469 m above sea level).
The Glacier Palace can also be found in the Matterhorn Glacier Paradise. It is located about fifteen meters below the surface of the Theodul Glacier. You can reach the Glacier Palace by a passenger elevator. It shows very old ice formations as well as sculptures artfully carved into the ice.
How to get to the Matterhorn Glacier Paradise by cable car
In the Matterhorn Glacier Paradise - Schwarzsee area, there are five gondola lifts, two aerial tramways and one 3S lift. In the winter season, five ski lifts operate here.
The fastest way to get from Zermatt to the Klein Matterhorn is to take the 8-seater gondola lift Matterhorn Express. The ride goes over four sections and takes up to 45 minutes with transfers. From Zermatt to the Klein Matterhorn, the cable cars cover about 2200 meters in altitude
A ride on the 3S Bahn is a special experience. It offers heated seats and takes you up to the highest mountain railway station in Europe in just nine minutes. The three-cable gondola lift is a large cabin lift.
Mountain railroads to Matterhorn Glacier Paradise
|Tal station||Altitude (m a.s.l.)||Mountain station||Altitude (m a.s.l.)||Lift type|
|Zermatt||1638||Furi||1871||8-seater gondola lift Matterhorn-Express 1|
|Furi||1871||Schwarzsee||2583||8-seater gondola Matterhorn Express 2|
|Schwarzsee||2583||Furgg||2432||8-seater gondola lift Matterhorn Express 3.1|
|Furgg||2432||Trockener Steg||2939||8-seater gondola lift Matterhorn Express 3.2|
|Trockener Steg||2929||Klein Matterhorn||3821||3S Bahn Matterhorn Glacier Ride|
|Furi||1867||Trockener Steg||2929||125-seater aerial tramway|
|Trockener Steg||2920||Matterhorn Glacier Paradise||3820||100-seater aerial tramway|
|Trockener Steg||2913||Furggsattel||3369||6-seater chairlift|
|Furgg||2427||Sandy Ground||2786||4-seater chairlift|
Restaurants at Matterhorn Glacier Paradise
On the way at the Matterhorn Glacier Paradise you will always find restaurants and ski bars. The stations of the mountain railroads are usually also attached to restaurants.
Restaurant Matterhorn Glacier Paradise
At an altitude of 3883 m above sea level, you will find the highest mountain restaurant in Europe. The restaurant even has a fully equipped conference room. It is designed for up to 72 people.
On the menu are daily changing menus of the Valais cuisine. Burgers, pasta and stir-fry dishes are among them. A show kitchen lets you watch the preparation. Large panoramic windows provide a fantastic view of the mountains.
The building meets the latest environmental standards and supplies itself with 100% energy. A photovoltaic system on the south side takes care of this. A microbiological wastewater treatment plant completes the environmental concept.
open daily: 09:15 to 15:45
Schwarzsee Mountain Restaurant
The Schwarzsee mountain restaurant serves traditional Swiss cuisine at 2600 meters above sea level.
The gondola takes you up to the Schwarzsee station above Furi in about 20 minutes. On the way you already have breathtaking views of the Matterhorn.
Open daily during the season 09:00-15:30 Summer season: beginning of July - middle of September Winter season: 2nd week of December - 3rd week of April
Activities at Matterhorn Glacier Paradise
The Matterhorn Glacier Paradise is a year-round paradise for skiers and snowboarders. Snowshoe hikers benefit from an exceptionally beautiful Glacier Trail, where the four-thousand-meter peaks come very close to them.
Activities at Matterhorn Glacier Paradise include:
- Skiing, snowboarding and sledging
- ski touring
- Mountaineering and climbing
- Ski touring and cross-country skiing
- Mountain biking
By mountain bike, for example, the trail from Schwarzsee to Zermatt is worthwhile in summer. Mountain tours and via ferrata should be undertaken under professional mountain guidance if possible. The snowshoe hike over the Glacier Trail is also offered as a guided tour
Ski resort Matterhorn Glacier Paradise
The ski resort is regularly awarded as the best ski resort in the Alps. The famous Matterhorn is also always present. In total, from Matterhorn Glacier Paradise you can view 38 mountain giants that are at least 4000 meters high.
You have access to 360 km of slopes in the ski area of Zermatt including the Italian part Breuil Cervinia. The winter sports area stretches from about 1600 to 3899 meters above sea level. In summer there are 21 km of groomed slopes.
Young people up to the age of 16 ski or snowboard for free on Saturdays.
The ski schools in Zermatt offer lessons for adults, teens and children.
Ski tour offer at Swiss Activities:
Gravity Snowpark at Matterhorn Glacier Paradise
The snowpark is a fun park on the Plateau Rosà on the Theodul glacier. The freestyle hotspot is the highest within Europe. You'll find it near the Furggsattel glacier lift at 3250 m above sea level. Six creative lines are available over a length of around 1200 m.
The funslope is also suitable for children. It ensures a fun and yet action-packed descent. Depending on your skills, you take racy steep turns, ride through tunnels or over hills. Some obstacles on the way make the trail even more interesting.
Winter highlights in the snowpark include:
- Funslope for beginners & advanced riders
- Beginner Line with 12 jumps and 12 boxes
- Boardercross slope
- Rail Garden with 8 rails
- Slopestyle with 3 rails and 3 jumps
From Zermatt you can get here from Trockener Steg with the Matterhorn Glacier Ride (3S-Bahn), the Furggsattel chairlift or the aerial tramway.
open: October to mid-May_
Snowshoeing at the Matterhorn Glacier Paradise
The Matterhorn Glacier Trail is a trail that takes about 5 hours to complete. It is very popular already because of the view of the Matterhorn and is offered as a guided snowshoe hike.
Offer Matterhorn Glacier Trail at Swiss Activities:
Ski school at Matterhorn Glacier Paradise
All year round you can take advantage of a ski school at Matterhorn Glacier Paradise. Here you have the opportunity to improve your skiing and snowboarding skills under the guidance of a highly trained snow sports instructor. The ski instructors use modern learning aids for this purpose. The lessons take place in groups or as private lessons.
Swiss Activities offers for Ski School:
Offers Swiss Activities for Ski School Snowboard:
Offers Swiss Activities for Ski School Freestyle:
Hiking at the Matterhorn Glacier Paradise
Hikes around the Schwarzsee are very popular. Here you can feel the Matterhorn very close. Hikes between the individual mountain railway stations are also ideal in the summer months. Then you can continue with the cable cars to Zermatt.
Some hiking trails at the Matterhorn Glacier Paradise:
Säumerweg: Trockener Steg - Furi
- Distance: 7.6 km
- Duration: 2:30 hours
- Altitude difference: 1165 hm
- Season: June to October
Matterhorn Glacier Trail: Trockener Steg - Schwarzsee
- Distance: 6.5 km
- Duration: 2:00 hours
- Altitude difference: 363 hm
- Season: June to September
Larch path: Schwarzsee - Furi
- Distance: 4.4 km
- Duration: 1:40 hours
- difference in altitude: 716 hm
- Season: June to September
Climate at Matterhorn Glacier Paradise
The air is very thin at 3800 m above sea level. Not everyone can tolerate these heights, especially during athletic efforts. Headaches are not uncommon from 2500 m above sea level. Because of the lower air pressure, it is important to acclimatize a bit first in order not to risk any damage to your health. Pulmonary edema can be life threatening. Before visiting the Matterhorn Glacier Paradise, you should talk to your doctor about whether these altitudes could be a health risk for you.
Temperatures hardly reach more than +5 °C even in summer, thus maintaining the snow cover. In the months of January and February, it is not uncommon for temperatures to reach -35°C.
The Matterhorn Glacier Paradise is a very special destination for a winter vacation, even in summer. The huge mountains all around and always the view of the striking Matterhorn make the vacation an unforgettable experience.