Zermatt, Switzerland



Wow, Zermatt is swarming with tourists. The Matterhorn is indeed impressive to see. Except for a few high-end watch stores, the shops on bustling main street cater primarily to tourist souvenir buyers. Zermatt really thins out when the day-trippers leave town in late afternoon. It's really not that big a place.

Is this place hopping or is it dead in the summer?
Absolutely bursting with tourists--primarily Japanese wth Americans a close second. I think it's a rite of passage for the Japanese to visit Zermatt and the town goes out of its way to milk this with shops, restaurants and hotels catering to their needs.

Is there a lake and/or golf course in town?
Neither.

Arriving by car the only option?
It's a car-free town. Visitors park in large car parks a few miles down the mountain in the village of Taesch and take the train into Zermatt. On the edge of Zermatt are several car parks where residents (with police-issued permits) can park. Train service will take you from the valley floor town of Visp to Zermatt's city center--where the train line ends.

Does the place feel claustrophobic?
No.

Lots of choices for acccomodations (hotels/ chalets) and do I have recommendations?
Everything from one to five star hotels can be found here as well as camping. My memories of Zermatt hotels are very negative.

Could I spend a whole summer here or would I get bored?
No way. Too many tourists and not enough places to get away from them. A week would be my max.