Haute Route to Zermatt Highlights

Panoramic view from Haute Route to Zermatt Highlights Trek

Haute Route to Zermatt Highlights


From $1,395USD


Guided / Self-Guided

Mountain Hut, Guesthouse, Hotel

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Hike this classic 7-day trek in the Alps taking you to the base of the Matterhorn

Trek the highlights of the famous haute route to Zermatt.

Discover Zermatt, one of the mountaineering capitals of Europe.

Enjoy great Swiss food and unique views of the Alps in cozy mountain accommodations.

End this self-guided trek with a perfect view of the mythical Matterhorn.

This self-guided or guided trek follows the Swiss portion of the classic Walkers Haute Route, which connects Chamonix to Zermatt. This trek is as classic a trek as you can get in the Alps.

The complete Haute Route connects the two most famous mountains in Europe: Chamonix and Zermatt. This route is a shortened version, and the starting point of this adventure is Martigny, Switzerland, just to the northeast of the Mont Blanc. Mont Blanc is the highest mountain in the Alps and the birthplace of mountaineering. You will enjoy outstanding views of the area’s glaciers and rock spires.

Heading east, you will hike through breathtaking Swiss valleys and mountain passes towards Zermatt and the Matterhorn. The Matterhorn is known for its name – it gave it to several others around the globe – and for its shape. It is often said to be one of the most beautiful mountains in the world. You can see for yourself!

This self-guided hike in Switzerland can also be done as a guided tour, with most trekkers saying that completing the Haute Route was a highlight of their trekking in the Alps. The route combines excellent views of alpine peaks, glaciers, and valleys, comfortable and cozy accommodations, and tasty meals every day. It is a demanding trek, but the rewards easily outweigh the effort. Doing the Haute Route to Zermatt trek is an awesome way to spend your holiday!

Haute Route Trek to Zermatt Itinerary

Day 1 Transfer to Fionnay and hike to Cabane de Louvie

The tour departs from the train station in Martigny at noon. Your transfer by bus will take you to Fionnay, the starting point of this trek. From there, the Haute Route starts, and the ascent is immediate. The landscape is immediately beautiful and gives a good indication of what this trek is all about. The Louvie Hut is a typical and beautiful Alpine hut located in a pristine natural setting. Enjoy excellent views of the Combins massif and keep your eyes open for marmots and ibex! Note that for this day luggage transfer is not available, so you’ll need to pack your gear for the night and the next two days.
Total distance: 2.5 hours of walking, 750m of ascent
Meals included: Dinner

Overnight Location
Cabane de Louvie

Day 2 Trek to Cabane de Prafleuri Hut over Col de la Louvie and Col de Prafleuri

The second leg of this trek on the Walkers Haute route between Chamonix and Zermatt provides plenty of highlights and pastoral scenery. Hiking in a rocky landscape, you will get a closer look at the Rosablanche Glacier (3,336 m) and cross the Col de Louvie (2,921 m) and Col de Prafleuri (2,987 m). After crossing these mountain passes, descend to the Prafleuri Hut (2,624 m) to spend the night. This newer hut is comfortable and offers more opportunities to see wildlife. After a tasty meal, you can relax by playing one of their board games.

*Note that due to the remoteness of this hut, luggage transfer is not available until tomorrow.
Total distance: 6 hours of walking, 970m of ascent, 560m of descent
Meals included: Breakfast,Dinner

Overnight Location
Prafleuri Hut

Day 3 Trek to Arolla via Col des Roux and Col de Riedmatten

Get up early for this long and beautiful day trekking on the Haute Route to Zermatt which includes two very pretty mountain passes (known as Col’s in French). Today you will hike up to the Col des Roux (2,804 m) and reach a balcony above Lake Dix. Take a moment to enjoy these fantastic views as you will later climb to the Col de Riedmatten (2,919 m), the high point of the day. From there, drop down to Arolla (2,067 m), a quaint little village with typical Swiss cottages on the picturesque Val d'Hérens.
Total distance: 7 hours of walking, 750m of ascent and 1,320m of descent.
Meals included: Breakfast, Dinner

Overnight Location
Guesthouse in Arolla

Day 4 Trek to Zinal via the Col de Torrent

Start the day by hopping on a bus to reach Les Haudères, where the Haute Route to Zermatt trek continues. From Villa (1,730 m), ascend through flower-laden meadows to the highest point of the day, the scenic Col de Torrent (2,918m). You will hike near the beautiful Lake Autannes and also Lake Moiry (2,250 m). Here, you have two options: continue through the Horn of Sorebois or catch a shuttle from the Moiry dam to your accommodation in Zinal (1,675 m), another pretty Swiss Village.
Total distance: 5.5 hours of walking, 1,200m of ascent and 670m of descent
Meals included: Breakfast, Dinner

Overnight Location
Guesthouse in Zinal

Day 5 Trek to Gruben via Col de la Forcletta

Today is a wonderful day walking on the Haute Route to Zermatt. You’ll leave the pretty Val d’Anniviers and head for the ridge and Col of the Forcletta (2,894 m). The panorama from the col is stunning, with great views of the Turtmanntal pastures and Gruben valley (1,822 m), which hang at the foot of the glaciers covering parts of 4,000 m peaks. Descend into the small Swiss village of Gruben for the night.
Total distance:7 hours of walking, 1,200m of ascent, 1,050m of descent
Meals included: Breakfast, Dinner

Overnight Location
Guesthouse in Gruben with shared rooms

Day 6 Trek to Zermatt

This is the final day trekking on the Haute Route to Zermatt. You’ll start todays hike by trekking past the Swiss chalets above Grüobu. Next you’ll cross the Augstbord Pass (2,894 m), your last high pass on this self-guided trek to Zermatt. After descending from the col, reach the village of St. Niklaus by cable car. From there, hop on the train and you’ll soon arrive in Zermatt by rail on a scenic ride.
Total distance: 5 hours of walking, 1,150m of ascent, 900m of descent
Meals included: Breakfast

Overnight Location
Hotel in Zermatt

Day 7 Zmutt to Zermatt

Today is the last day of the tour. Today you will hike to the pretty hamlet of Zmutt, a small village with almost perfect views of typical Swiss chalets with the Matterhorn prominent in the background. Return to Zermatt via a series of balcony trails.

Many guests stay on in Zermatt for a couple more days and hike the exceptional trails around Zermatt. Contact us to add additional nights onto your tour. Otherwise, once back in Zermatt your tour is complete.
Total distance: 3.5 hours of walking, 320m of ascent, 400m of descent
Meals included: Breakfast

Overnight Location

Self-Guided Haute Route to Zermatt Trekking Tour

This self-guided Haute Route to Zermatt trekking tour is always run as a private tour for your group only and the price depends on your group size.

You can also book this tour as guided (please enquire about the pricing). Those looking to book this tour cheaper can also opt out of luggage transfers.

The prices below are per person:

  • Self-guided group of 2: $2,175USD per person
  • Self-guided group of 3: $1,825USD per person
  • Self-guided groups of 4-5: $1,595USD per person
  • Self-guided groups of 6+: $1,395USD per person
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Accommodation on Haute Route to Zermatt Highlights Tour

This route has a variety of accommodations, including mountain huts, guest house and hotels. Mountain huts traditionally offer “dormitory” and aren’t reachable by car. Cabane de la Louvie (Day 1) has only a few double rooms available and Cabane de Prafleuri (Day 2) has none. In Grüben (Day 5), rooms are from 2 to 4 persons and you may have to share a room.

Single Rooms and Solo Travelers
You can pay a supplement of $295USD to have a private room in hotels as a solo travelers. In mountain huts you will share a room. In some cases, there may be other solo travelers, and if desired we can try to match you with participants of the same sex.

Louvie Hut

The Cabane de la Louvie is a stunning mountain hut. There is no Wi-Fi or other services, but you will have stunning mountain views and might spot some wildlife.

Prafleuri Hut

The Prafleuri Hut offers comfortable dormitory accommodation with bathrooms and pay showers. The meals are plentiful and tasty. You can also spend the evening playing cards or board games from the collection they have in the common room.

Night 3

Hotel in Arolla

You’ll have a double or twin room in a hotel in the charming village of Arolla.

Night 4

Guest house in Zinal

You’ll have a double or twin room in a hotel in the charming village of Zinal.

Night 5

Guest house in Gruben

You’ll be in a shared room for 2 or 4 in a Guest house in the village of Gruben.

Night 6

Hotel in Zermatt

You’ll have a private room in a 3-star in the pretty village of Zermatt.

Hotels on Standard Tour

What’s included in the Haute Route to Zermatt Highlights Tour?


6 breakfasts, 5 dinners. Lunches are your own responsibility and can be ordered in each refuge or village. You can also pay a supplement and include lunches.


The accommodation included is as described in the itinerary. 2 nights in dormitories, 2 nights in guesthouses and 2 nights in hotels.

Transportation during the Tour

Luggage transport is included in this tour, however you won't have access to your luggage the evening of Day 1 in La Louvie or Day 2 in Prafleuri, as cars cannot reach these huts. You will need to take a small daypack for any gear you'll need for these first few days.

The transfer between Arolla and Les Haudères is also included.

Also Included

  • A roadbook for the route, as well as a map and booking vouchers for each group.
  • Emergency hotline that is staffed 24/7 should you have any issues.
  • Access to a mobile phone app that includes GPS guidance.

Not included

  • This trip has some expenses for transport you will need to pay, specifically:
    • Transfers by local bus: Swiss Postbuses Martigny-Fionnay (indicative price €20 EUR per person); Lake Moiry-Zinal (roughly €23 EUR per person)
    • Cable car between Jungu and St. Niklaus (indicative price €12 EUR per person)
    • Transfer by train St. Niklaus - Zermatt (indicative price €25 EUR per person)
  • Transportation to the starting point of the trek in Martigny and from Zermatt, where the trek ends
  • Cancellation insurance / interruption of stay / loss of luggage and assistance
  • For any booking within 30 days of departure there is a priority processing fee of $50USD for the tour.
  • Contribution fees to the Compensation Fund of the Office of Consumer Protection, which are set at 0.1% of the value of services rendered, airfare and cost of the circuit.
  • Lunches (grocery store, mini-markets, or refuges for your picnics)
  • Evening meal of day 6 in Zermatt (around €30 EUR in a restaurant)
  • The hotel taxes in Zermatt, about 5CHF (Swiss francs) per room (about €4 EUR)
  • Any additional drinks and snacks
  • Shower fees in mountain huts

Optional Extras

  • Daily packed lunch (days 2-6): €80 EUR per person

Frequenty Asked Questions about Haute Route to Zermatt Highlights

How hard is this tour?

We rate this tour as a 4 / 5. You will spend around 6 hours a day (15 to 18 kilometers of distance) walking on the trail and will gain approximately 700 to 1,000 meters of elevation every day.

Do I need a Visa?

Check with your local country to find out more about visa requirements. You can also visit this website, although your government has the latest information.

Are meals included? How does it work?

6 breakfasts and 5 dinners are included. Please refer to the description of each day to know which days they are included. Typically, breakfasts are cold and dinners are hot. You will not run out of food as the hosts know you need fuel for this self-guided trek. Meals are prepared by the hosts. Lunches are not included in the tour. You can either buy a lunch pack at the huts or carry your own food. There are also sometimes huts or grocery stores along the way for you to buy food. Please plan accordingly to ensure you have enough food.

Do I need insurance?

Yes, it is mandatory to have Health and Medical insurance to join this trip. You can get travel insurance here.

Are the tours in English?

Yes, the tour guide is English speaking.

Where does the tour start?

The tour starts at the train station in Martigny.

Where does the tour end?

The tour ends in Zermatt.

What equipment will I need?

You will need comfortable hiking clothes. You will also need shoes or boots in which you can hike comfortably for 6 to 8 hours every day. Bring a hat and sunglasses to protect from the sun and water to stay hydrated. You should also bring warm and waterproof layers as the weather can be cold and wet in the mountains even though you will be trekking in summer. You can also bring any additional equipment you think you may need, such as pharmacy items, a pocketknife, trekking poles, etc.

Are the trails easy to follow?

You should know how to use a map, a compass, or a GPS. The roadbook will also give you plenty of information. You can also ask your hosts for directions. The Chamonix to Zermatt trek is one of the most popular in the Alps. You should see plenty of signs and hikers.

How do I access Martigny and Zermatt?

Martigny has a train station and is therefore easily accessible from any surrounding city, and even from Paris. Genève and Lyon are other popular airports to which international tourists fly to trek in the Chamonix area. There are options to travel from Zermatt to Martigny. If you arrive by car, Martigny is easily accessible, but Zermatt is a pedestrian city.

Do I need vaccines?

Please check with your family doctor.

When should I book a trek on the Haute Route to Zermatt?

Trekking the Haute Route is popular, and early booking provides a much higher chance of finding a suitable accommodation on the dates you want. During booking, the itinerary may need to be changed to find accommodation.

What's the earliest I can hike the Haute Route to Zermatt?

Most hikers don't start the Haute Route until mid to late June. The reason is that there is the possibility of snow remaining on the trail, making this trip more challenging, and in some cases dangerous. In addition, many huts don't open until the middle or end of June.

Can I upgrade my accommodation?

This tour is largely staying in mountain huts. There are no other nearby hotels, so the mountain huts are the only option. For many people, staying in a mountain hut is a highlight of the trip, though mountain huts are not for everyone.


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From $1,395USD


Guided / Self-Guided

Mountain Hut, Guesthouse, Hotel

Start Your Booking

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Tour Difficulty

We rate this tour as a 4 / 5. You will spend around 6 hours a day (15 to 18 kilometers of distance) walking on the trail and will gain approximately 700 to 1,000 meters of elevation every day.

Read about our scale for Tour Difficulty Ratings.

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Chamonix, France

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