Scenic blog post alert… The past several weeks have been HOT here in N.E. Switzerland. 33-34°C every afternoon is a bit too much of a good thing – I wished several times I was halfway up a mountain, enjoying the snow squeaking under my feet.
On the left we have our local mountain, the Säntis, with the other peaks in the Alpstein range, and Lake Constance in the foreground. At 2,502m, Säntis is a baby compared to some, so let’s have a quiz question – which is the highest mountain in Switzerland? (Answer at the end of the post.)
Most famous has to be the Matterhorn, in Canton Valais. I’ve seen it a few times, and it’s actually quite rare to be able to take a photo without clouds floating around the peak. (This pic isn’t mine.) The resort town Zermatt lies below the Matterhorn – famous for boutiques and après-ski.
Another everyone knows is the Jungfrau. It’s in Canton Berne, and anyone who enjoyed The Chalet School books as a child will recognise the photo below immediately – it’s the view from Joey’s living room, those years the school was in the Bernese Oberland.
Below, we have the Jungfrau plus the others which make up the trio Eiger, Mönch and Jungfrau. Best seen from Interlaken, the town between two lakes. (Thun and Brienz).
And here’s Kleine Scheidegg and that famous ‘north face of the Eiger’.
Moving towards central Switzerland now, we have Pilatus, the mountain right next to the city of Lucerne. The views from here are terrific, and it’s easy to get to – though it tends to be rather busy in summer…
It’s back to Valais again for Monte Rosa, surrounded by glaciers and less easy to get to; it’s the only mountain in this post I’ve never visited. Piedmont in Italy lies on the other side.
For a touch of James Bond mystique we have the Schilthorn and its revolving restaurant – I’ve had hot chocolate in that restaurant. It wasn’t the least expensive ‘heisse Schoggi’ I’ve ever had, but the views were something else…
So – which is the highest? Drum roll…
It’s Monte Rosa, at 4,634m.
The Matterhorn is 4,478m, Eiger 3,967m, Mönch 4,107, Jungfrau 4,158m, Pilatus 2,132m, and Schilthorn 2,970m. I think the best time to visit any of them is autumn, when the air seems clearer. I haven’t been to the Pilatus for a while… maybe I’ll do that, and give it a blog post to itself in a month or two.