Save Vs. Splurge on Switzerland Skiing
By Kati Clinton Robson Though Switzerland's mountain resorts are glorious destinations year-round, there's something special about a snowy retreat. In addition to some of the best skiing and snowboarding in the world, there are a wonderland of other snow-inspired activities—plus spas, shopping, and local food and wine to warm you. Here are some tips to plan your Swiss mountain resort trip, whatever your budget.
LodgingSave: You can save a bundle by moving farther down the mountain. Many lift passes include local train and bus service, so staying just outside the main resort area can result in cheaper accommodations and dining. Splurge: If you want five-star comfort in a more intimate setting, renting a slope-side chalet is the way to go. Rustic Alpine luxury mixes seamlessly with the best modern conveniences like indoor/outdoor Jacuzzis. Decadent catering packages are available too.
ActivitiesSave: If you don’t fancy the physical exertion—and cost—of skiing, you could always just go for a walk. Be sure your shoes have traction and rent poles for about 10 francs. Many resorts maintain walking trails for visitors, and as long as you start in the resort, there are no additional fees. If you want more panoramic views, consider buying a walkers pass to use certain lifts for a reduced rate. Splurge: If you like skiing virgin powder, indulge yourself at the biggest heli-trip center in the Alps at Zermatt. The daddy of all routes is Tour Monte Rosa, where you’ll descend from 4,200 meters (13,780 feet) to Zermatt. The drop’s not steep, but the glacial scenery and fresh powder make it worthwhile. Contact Zermatt Alpin Center for more info.
DiningSave: Self-catered apartments, including a serviceable kitchen, are available in all resorts. Visit the local Migros or Coop supermarket to save money, and enjoy a group-friendly alternative to dining out. Splurge: High-end restaurants are almost as prevalent as the snow. For "peak" gastronomic fare, indulge at one of the mountaintop options at Klosters, St. Moritz, and Zermatt.
TimingSave: Your money will go the furthest before Christmas, provided there is enough snow. January’s colder, shorter days, as well as later in the season in March and April, are less expensive too. Splurge: Most posh hotels require a 10- or 11-night stay over Christmas and New Year’s—and charge accordingly. School vacation for two to four weeks in February commands premium rates too. More on Switzerland
Member Comments Post a Comment
Be the first to comment!
Fodor's Top News & Features
- 15 Festivals to Attend Before You Die
- 10 Best National Parks to Visit This Winter
- Fodor's 2013 Holiday Gift Guides
- Fodor's 2013 Holiday Gift Guide: Under $100
- 10 Cheeses Worth Traveling For
- World's 10 Best Ski Towns for Foodies
- Fodor's 2013 Holiday Gift Guide: Stocking Stuffers
- Incredible Private Pools at 7 Worldwide Hotels
- Top 15 Warm-Weather Resorts for Families
- Fodor's 2013 Holiday Gift Guide: Kids
Fodor's Trip Planning Ideas
- Fodor's Go List 2014: Where we are going in 2014
- World Cup Fever: Start planning your trip to Brazil!
- Fodor's 100 Hotel Awards: Check out the winners of 2013
- Weekend Getaways: Fodor's Recommends the Best Weekend Escapes in the US
- Great American Vacation: Find Your Next U.S. Trip with Fodor's
- 80 Degrees: Fodor's Helps You Find Your Best Beach Vacation Spots
- Best of Europe: Fodor's Picks the Best Places to Visit in Europe
- $525 -- Luxe Rio de Janeiro Resort over New Year's EveSheraton Rio Hotel & Resort
- $699 & up -- Cancun All-Inclusive Beach Escape w/AirApple Vacations
- $949 & up -- Caribbean: 7-Nt. Cruise on World's Largest ShipRoyal Caribbean
- $599 & up -- Weeklong Southern Caribbean CruiseRoyal Caribbean
- $849 & up -- Westin Maui 3-Nt. Vacation w/AirPleasant Holidays
* Some taxes, fees additional