Valais is a land of superlatives. It is home to the Great Aletsch Glacier, the longest of its kind in the Alps. The Matterhorn is probably the world’s best known and most photographed mountain. The imposing Grande Dixence is the world’s highest gravity dam and, with a history stretching back over 1,500 years, the Abbey of Saint-Maurice is the oldest monastery in the Western world. These superlatives are well worth discovering – alongside many more highlights. Let us inspire you by showing you the many different faces of Valais!
If you love winter, you’ll love Valais! The majestic four-thousanders not only create impressive panorama, they also provide a unique setting in which to experience winter sports. The possibilities are endless and snow is guaranteed. That’s because Valais has the highest-altitude ski regions in Switzerland and can therefore offer a unique guarantee of snow on over 2,800 kilometres of pistes. It is also possible to enjoy the delights of winter in Valais at a more leisurely, relaxed pace. A hike through snowy forests, a toboggan ride or a snowshoe trek through the Alpine landscape help soul and spirit find their equilibrium.
With vineyards covering 5,000 hectares, Valais is the largest wine-making region in Switzerland: magnificent landscapes with unusually sunny hillsides, almost 60 grape varieties that form the basis for a number of great wines, and traditions that lend them character and identity. Fine aromas, intensely flavoured fruits, rare spices and golden cereals are the result of thousands of hours of sunshine that turn the Valais into a garden full of tasty delights and make it a source of inspiration for gourmet chefs throughout the land.
The hot water bubbles up from deep beneath the Valais mountains and offers utter bathing pleasure. Soothing and relaxing – the thermal baths are veritable oases of revitalisation. The therapeutic effect of the alpine thermal baths was known to the Romans, and by the Middle Ages the settlements had began to grow up around the thermal springs. Even Johann Wolfgang von Goethe could not resist the allure of the warm and beneficial thermal water, when he heard of the warm springs in Leukerbad on his journey through the Valais to Italy. The Goethe House on the village square still recalls Goethe’s stay in November 1779.