Zermatt, a picturesque mountain town nestled in the Swiss Alps, is a destination that attracts tourists from all over the world. While its stunning views of the Matterhorn are undoubtedly a highlight, there is another time of day that offers its own unique beauty: the blue hour.
The blue hour is a period of twilight that occurs twice a day, just before sunrise and just after sunset. During this time, the sky takes on a deep blue hue, and the landscape is bathed in a soft, ethereal light that is ideal for photography.
In Zermatt, the blue hour is particularly magical because of the town’s location in the Alps. As the sun sets behind the mountains, the light filters through the peaks and illuminates the town in a way that is both dramatic and enchanting.
Monte Rosa Massif, Gorner Glacier
One of the best places to experience the blue hour in Zermatt is from the top of the Gornergrat mountain. The Gornergrat is a 3,089-meter peak that offers panoramic views of the surrounding mountains, including the Matterhorn, the Monte Rosa Massif, and the Gorner Glacier.
To get to the top of the Gornergrat, visitors can take the Gornergratbahn, a historic cogwheel train that has been in operation since 1898. The train journey takes about 33 minutes and offers breathtaking views of the surrounding landscape.
Once at the top of the Gornergrat, visitors can explore the viewing platform, which offers 360-degree views of the surrounding mountains. During the blue hour, the sky takes on a deep, rich blue color, and the mountains are bathed in a soft, ethereal light. The Matterhorn, in particular, takes on a stunning golden glow as the sun sets behind it.
Things to do in Zermatt
For photographers, the blue hour is an ideal time to capture the beauty of the Alps. The soft, diffused light creates a dreamlike quality that is perfect for landscape photography. Whether you are an amateur photographer or a professional, the blue hour in Zermatt is a must-see.
But the blue hour is not just about photography. It is a time to soak up the beauty of the mountains and to appreciate the majesty of nature. From the top of the Gornergrat, visitors can take in the sweeping views of the Alps, breathe in the fresh mountain air, and simply relax in the peacefulness of the moment.
After experiencing the blue hour from the top of the Gornergrat, visitors can continue their exploration of Zermatt by taking a stroll through the town. Zermatt is a pedestrian-only town, which makes it easy to explore on foot. As visitors wander through the charming streets, they will discover cozy restaurants, boutique shops, and historic buildings that date back to the 16th century.
Iconic buildings in Zermatt
One of the most iconic buildings in Zermatt is the Matterhorn Museum, which is located in the center of town. The museum tells the story of the first ascent of the Matterhorn in 1865, as well as the history of Zermatt as a mountain town. Visitors can see artifacts from the first ascent, as well as exhibits on the geology, flora, and fauna of the Alps.
Another must-see attraction in Zermatt is the St. Mauritius Church. This beautiful church dates back to the 19th century and is known for its stunning stained glass windows and ornate interior. Visitors can attend a service, or simply take a moment to appreciate the beauty of this historic building.
For those who are feeling more adventurous, there are plenty of outdoor activities to enjoy in Zermatt. Skiing and snowboarding are popular in the winter months, while hiking and mountain biking are popular in the summer. There are also opportunities for paragliding and helicopter tours, which offer a unique perspective on the Alps.
Lakes in Zermatt, Switzerland
One popular hiking trail in Zermatt is the Five Lakes Walk, which takes hikers through alpine forests and past five stunning mountain lakes. Along the way, hikers can stop at rustic mountain huts to enjoy a traditional Swiss meal or a refreshing drink.
After a day of exploring, visitors can relax and unwind at one of Zermatt’s many spas. Many of the town’s hotels offer spa services, including massages, facials, and hydrotherapy treatments. There are also public thermal baths, such as the Leukerbad Thermal Baths, which are located about an hour’s drive from Zermatt.
When it comes to dining, Zermatt offers a range of options, from casual cafes to upscale restaurants. Traditional Swiss cuisine is a highlight, with dishes such as raclette, fondue, and rosti. There are also international options, including Italian, French, and Asian cuisine.
Dining at Igloo Village in Zermatt
One of the most unique dining experiences in Zermatt is at the Igloo Village, which is located at an altitude of 2,727 meters. Visitors can dine on Swiss specialties in a cozy igloo, surrounded by the stunning beauty of the Alps.
As night falls in Zermatt, the town takes on a different kind of magic. The streets are lit up with the warm glow of streetlamps, and the sound of cowbells can be heard in the distance. It’s a peaceful and serene atmosphere that is perfect for a leisurely stroll or a nightcap at a local bar.
Overall, the blue hour in Zermatt is a magical time that should not be missed. Whether you are a photographer, a nature lover, or simply someone who appreciates the beauty of the mountains, Zermatt offers an unforgettable experience. From the stunning views of the Alps to the charming streets of the town, Zermatt is a destination that will capture your heart and leave you longing to return.