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The mythical Matterhorn is the most recognizable mountain in the world—and there’s no better way to fully appreciate it than by doing a 360-loop around it. Apart from its visual splendor witnessed from all sides, this 8-day hiking tour comes with a plethora of Alpine natural gems intertwined with the local culture. But you’ll have to work for it, getting big miles and elevation gains under your belt. The reward? Every single thing that reminds you of the Alps—glassy lakes, cows lounging around, snow-capped peaks, and wildflower-carpeted valleys. All of that combined with an eclectic mix of refuges, enchanting Swiss villages, and a vibrant community. Order yourself a Raclette and sip on a cooling cocktail with the view of the world’s most iconic peak.

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Adventure highlights

  • Paramount views of the almost-perfect pyramid of Matterhorn for 8 days in a row

  • Big elevation gains, challenging passes, and two glacier crossings

  • Perfect blend of Alpine peculiarities, Swiss cuisine, and vibrant culture

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Itinerary

An 8-day hiking tour of the Matterhorn is a full circuit around this iconic Alpine peak. Formed by several land masses slamming into one another, Matterhorn is arguably the most recognizable peak in the world—and you’re about to take in its beauty from all its sides. Use those Swiss summer days for explorations of crystalline lakes, verdant pastures, and rocky ridges, with plenty of photo and snack breaks. As the day draws to a close, get some rest in traditional refuges and quality hotels—but not before tasting authentic dishes and delicious wines. Bon voyage!

  • Since there will be plenty of walking on Day 1 of the tour, it is recommended that you arrive at St. Niklaus or somewhere near to it a day prior to the start day. Make sure to arrange your flight tickets and accommodation for that one night accordingly.

  • Kick off your tour of the Matterhorn with a traditional cable car that will take you to Jungu. That’s your starting point, from which you’ll begin hiking, enjoying the views of Monte Rosa in the background to the foot of the first pass—the Augstbordpass at 2,900 m (9,515 ft). Descend through Alpine meadows and larch forests until you reach the typical Alpine village of Gruben, where you will spend the night.
    Meals: Lunch and dinner
    Hiking: 6.5 hours
    Accommodation: Mountain refuge
    Elevation: +1,000 m / +3,280 ft | -1,100 m / -3,610 ft

    St. Niklaus village
  • Depending on how the group feels and weather conditions, there are several possibilities today. You will either climb up to the Col de Forclettaz at 2,874 m (9,430 ft) via the Chalte Berg or to the Meidpass at 2,790 m (9,155 ft). The Nava and Barneuza meadows welcome you to Val d’Annivier. Take a 30-minute drive to your accommodation for the night.
    Meals: Breakfast, lunch, and dinner
    Hiking: 6.5 hours
    Accommodation: Mountain refuge
    Elevation: +1,150 m / +3,770 ft | -1,400 m / -4,595 ft

    Val d'Anniviers valley
  • There’s a possibility of taking a short transfer to the Moiry Dam—or you can walk. Today you’ll be walking along the top of the scenic Moiry Dam, before climbing further up above it. Once you reach the Col du Tsaté, you’ll be rewarded with scenic views of the Arolla Valley. Reach the valley with a short transfer and settle in for the night.
    Meals: Breakfast, lunch, and dinner
    Hiking: 6.5 hours
    Accommodation: Hotel
    Elevation: +500 m / +1,640 ft | -1,200 m / -3,940 ft

    Moiry Dam in the Swiss Alps
  • Day 4 of the Matterhorn tour starts with an easy section on the high Arolla Glacier and a climb up to the Col Collon at over 3,000 m (9,845 ft). Soon you’ll reach the Prarayer refuge, nestled on the edge of the lake, which will be awaiting you at the end of a long and scenic descent.
    Meals: Breakfast, lunch, and dinner
    Hiking: 6.5 hours
    Accommodation: Mountain refuge (without luggage transfer)
    Elevation: +1,200 m / +3,940 ft | -1,200 m / -3,940 ft

    Arolla valley
  • Start the day with a long ascent to the Col de Valcournera at over 3,000 m (9,845 ft). A few cabled, though not too difficult sections, lead you up to the final major ascent. From the col, the cabled path provides an easy route to the Perucca Vuillermoz refuge perched on the rocky glacial landscape. One final hiking push is required to reach your accommodation for the night at the bottom of Valtournenche.
    Meals: Breakfast, lunch, and dinner
    Hiking: 6.5 hours
    Accommodation: Hotel
    Elevation: +1,350 m / +4,430 ft | -1,400 m / -4,595 ft

    Valtournenche Valley
  • A short transfer takes you to the ski resort of Breuil Cervinia. You will hike up to the Theodul Pass at an altitude of 3,349 m (10,990 ft), where you will rope up and cross the glacier to Trockener Stegg. Descend down to Zermatt through quintessential Alpine pastures and typical, charming villages, whose buildings cling onto the slopes. Spend the night at an inn.
    Meals: Breakfast, lunch, and dinner
    Hiking: 6 hours
    Accommodation: Inn
    Elevation: +800 m / +2,625 ft | -1,360 m / -4,460 ft

    Zermatt and Matterhorn Peak
  • Today’s starting point is Randa, which you’ll reach by a short transfer, and start an ascent along a path on the left bank of the Matter Valley to the Topali Hut. This off-the-beaten-track path offers spectacular views of the Täschhorn.
    Meals: Breakfast, lunch, and dinner
    Hiking: 7.5 hours
    Accommodation: Mountain refuge
    Elevation: +1,520 m / +4,990 ft | -260 m / -855 ft

    Zermatt village in the morning
  • Depending on the group’s readiness and weather conditions, you’ve got two options for your final day: you can either walk along an Alpine path to the Wasulicke Pass at 3,114 m (10,125) before taking a cable car down to St. Niklaus, or you can walk straight down to St. Niklaus via varied paths. You’ll reach the town at around 4 pm, marking the official end of your adventure. If you’d like to stick around for a bit longer, just ask your guide for some recommendations!
    Meals: Breakfast and lunch
    Hiking: 6.5 hours
    Elevation: +440 m / +1,445 ft | -1,160 m / -3,805 ft

    Guided hiking tour of the Matterhorn Trek
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Meet your guides

Pierrick Delattre
5.00
Pierrick Delattre
Pierrick grew up in the Mont Blanc region and he is the founder of Watse Trekking. As a true mountain lover, he has transformed his passion into a profession, and happiness always remains the main priority. Pierrick will take you off-the-beaten path on routes that he has designed and mapped himself. His main focus is on sharing his experience and passion with other travelers, providing them with a sense of complete trust while they’re exploring new places, cultures, and communities.
Watse Trekking
5.00
Watse Trekking
Watse Trekking has been leading their guests across tailor-made routes all over the world since 2014. Their mission is a simple one: to take their travelers beyond the postcards, closer to reality, to achieve the most transformative experience possible. Watse Trekking runs tours all over the Alps and beyond—qualified mountain leaders will take you to the Andes, summits of Nepal, and more! Their objective is to push their guests in a safe, comfortable environment, and let them gain the satisfaction of achieving their goals.
5.00 (4 reviews)
Charlotte Page (source: Google Reviews)

Back from the Matterhorn Tour with Watse. 1st organized trek experience and I highly recommend. Real holidays, top organization, great advice. Just to walk and let yourself be guided. Thanks to Pierrick for his professionalism. My next experience will be with Watse.

Silva Franck (source: Google Reviews)

A trek with incredible landscapes and made unforgettable by the quality of Pierrick’s service: madly in love with his mountains, passionate, exciting, and very caring for his guests. We were won over and the next one, you know, will obviously go through you…at the other end of the world! A thousand thanks to you from the friends of Les Joigneaux

Thibaud Dufossé (source: Google Reviews)

Excellent. Well organized, good group atmosphere, top guide! To recommend without hesitation!

Fabien Gayno (source: Google Reviews)

A big thank you Pierrick for this magical week. Very high professionalism. See you soon

Things to know

  • What you get on this adventure:

      • An experienced, French mountain leader with extensive knowledge of the area
      • 8-day trekking tour of the Matterhorn
      • Accommodation in mountain huts and hotels (as listed in the itinerary)
      • All meals (listed in the itinerary) — half-board accommodation & picnics at lunchtime
      • Transportation during the tour
      • Luggage transfer except on day 4 and 7

    What’s not included:

      • Transportation to Switzerland
      • Airport transfers — we recommend Mountain Drop-Offs
      • Personal trekking and travel equipment
      • Sheet sleeping bag — mandatory for nights in mountain refuges
      • Drinks
      • Cancellation and repatriation assistance insurance — taken out at the time of booking
      • Transport to the meeting point and return transfer — possible to arrange with your guides
      • Any private transfers or cable cars not listed in the itinerary
      • Guide gratuities — optional
  • Hikers who would like to do the Matterhorn Trek should have an excellent level of fitness and experience with multi-day hiking. You will be hiking for 6-7 hours a day, 8 days in a row, and gaining up to 1,520 m (4,990 ft) of altitude. Keep in mind that you’ll be carrying a daypack filled with things you might need throughout the day.

  • Here’s a list of the equipment you need to bring:

      • Day pack large enough to carry things you’ll need throughout the day (25-40L bag)
      • Hiking poles — optional
      • Water bottle or hydration bladder (2L capacity)
      • Sheet sleeping bag — mandatory
      • Earplugs — optional, but recommended
      • Lightweight hiking boots or shoes
      • Comfortable clothing for 8 days of hiking
      • Spare clothes for layering
      • Waterproof rain jacket
      • Sunhat
      • Toiletries (sunscreen, hand sanitizer, bug spray, toilet paper, etc.)
      • Headlamp or flashlight with a red bulb — least likely to disturb other guests at huts
      • Sunglasses
      • Camera — optional (but recommended)

    Dress comfortably and for the weather in clothes you can move in. We suggest bringing clothing appropriate for the season. Layers are best and don’t wear jeans.

  • Group sizes and prices:

      • For this tour of the Matterhorn Trek, the usual client-to-guide ratio is 12:1. The maximum number of people for this tour is 12.
      • It takes a minimum of 4 people for this tour to run.
      • The cost does not decrease as the group grows.
      • During the tour, you will stay in hotels and mountain refuges, which vary with different dormitory sizes. On some nights in refuges, it will be possible to sleep in private rooms for 2, 3, or 4 people. Let us know your preferences upon booking and we will try to accommodate you.

    Trekking the Matterhorn can be arranged for larger groups. Contact us to make arrangements.

    Min. age requirements:

      • If you are older than 18, you’re good to go.
      • Minors younger than 18 may be permitted to join the hike on a case-by-case basis, but must be in the presence of a parent or legal guardian.

    If your group has hikers under the age of 18, contact us prior to booking to make arrangements.

  • To get to St. Niklaus in Switzerland, the starting point of your Matterhorn Trek, most people fly into Zurich Airport (ZRH), Geneva Airport (GVA), or Milano Malpensa Airport (MXP). From there, you can take the train or rent a car—it will take you around 3 hours to reach St. Niklaus. If you land in Geneva, check out Mountain Drop Offs—they provide door-to-door service in their comfy and spacious shuttles. Use the code 57HCHX to get a 5% discount!

    Once you and your guide agree on the details of your itinerary, your guide will suggest the best place to meet. Since you’ll be walking for more than 6 hours on Day 1 of the tour, you should be in St. Niklaus a day prior to the official start of the tour.

  • 57hours is committed to providing safe outdoor adventure experiences. We require all guides using our platform to have a COVID-19 safety plan and to make the details of that plan accessible to travelers. In most cases, group sizes will be reduced, guides will avoid overcrowded locations, and other safety measures will be met depending on the location and activity.

    We also expect clients to respect local regulations and take measures to protect themselves, their guides, and the communities they’re traveling to. For more information on COVID-19 measures in Switzerland, please refer to COVID-19 information by Switzerland’s Federal Office of Public Health.

    Please contact us if you have any questions or require further information. We are happy to provide you with the most up-to-date information!

  • Secure your spot for 2025 with a 10% deposit! This tour gets sold out very quickly, but with early-bird booking, you’ll be the first one to know. Pick the month that suits you best and we’ll let you know once the dates are live—don’t risk missing out on your bucket list adventure!

      • Only 10% of the total amount should be paid as a deposit upon booking. This deposit is non-refundable, but can be transferred to another 57hours adventure in case the dates don’t suit you by the end of the year.
      • Once the set dates for the following season are live, you can confirm your booking by the end of this year by paying another 20% of the total amount.
      • The final balance is due 3 months (90 days) prior to departure.

    For set dates, a 30% deposit to secure your place is due upon booking. The remaining amount is paid 2 months (60 days) prior to departure. Once the trip is confirmed by the guide, the cancellation policy stated below applies. If Client cancels the booking:

      • Sixty (60) or more calendar days in advance of the trip contemplated by the booking, Client is entitled to a full refund minus the 5% of the total trip amount with a minimum of €50 per person.
      • From thirty-one (31) to sixty (60) days, Client is entitled to a refund in the amount of eighty-five percent (85%)
      • From twenty-one (21) to sixty (30) days, Client is entitled to a refund in the amount of sixty-five percent (65%)
      • From sixteen (16) to twenty (20) days, Client is entitled to a refund in the amount of fifty percent (50%)
      • From seven (7) to fifteen (15) days, Client is entitled to a refund in the amount of twenty-five percent (25%)
      • After that deadline, Client is not entitled to any refund. Any reimbursable expenses arising out of the Booking incurred by Guide prior to the date of cancellation (including but not limited to plane tickets, car rental payments, and lodging or transportation fees) are non-refundable as soon as they are incurred by the Guide.
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