Last weekend, I left sunny Barcelona for snowy Switzerland to visit my dad, who was in town for the week. My Thursday evening flight was quick and a even included a bit of Swiss chocolate after the in-flight meal. The wind hit me as soon as I got off the plane, and I was immediately grateful for the mild weather we’ve had in Barcelona.
Dad and I spent Friday touring around Zurich and taking a cable car up for great views of the city. We ate at a traditional Swiss restaurant and had (of course) more chocolate. Since the start of planning the trip, we’d gone back and forth about what to do Saturday. Stay in Zurich? Train to Lucerne? The Matterhorn?
Perhaps inspired by a few Disneyland visits, we began to lean toward the Matterhorn idea. Nearly everyone advised us against it. It was too far, they said. But after looking into it and finding a train pass deal, we thought about it over dinner and decided to take the plunge and head to Zermatt the next day.
The train ride was perhaps a bit long for a day trip. But it would be difficult to come across more beautiful scenery. As we got closer to Zermatt, we had spectacular views of snow-covered mountains and wide open fields. The snow began to fall once we were within an hour’s distance, and the temperature had dropped drastically.
The train climbed up and we could see little villages down below, in between the mountains. Once we’d reached Zermatt, we were pleasantly surprised by the charm of the town. It was one long street, filled with shops, lodges, restaurants and a few bars. We walked up and down the street and bought another train ticket on the Gornergrat Bahn, the train up the mountain to see the Matterhorn.
We reached the top, surrounded by skiers and falling snow. After having lunch at a restaurant in Gornergrat, we were disappointed to find that with all the snow and fog, the Matterhorn was impossible to see. We did find a charming little church and walked around in the snow.
With a bit of time to kill before the journey back to Zurich, dad and I shopped around some more and went to a pub, reflecting on the day. True, we hadn’t seen what we’d hoped for. And true, we were a bit worn out by the trek.
But part of the fun of travel can sometimes be the unexpected. We had the best day seeing the Swiss countryside and exploring a new little town together. Plus, our lack of a Matterhorn sighting just gives us an excuse to go back.
More Blogs From This Author
<p><span style="color: rgb(29, 29, 29); font-family: Arial, Verdana, sans-serif; font-size: 12px; line-height: normal; background-color: rgb(237, 237, 237);">Hi there! I'm a California native studying journalism in one of the coolest cities in the world, at The University of Texas at Austin. I'm a fan of chocolate, watching sports (go Giants), nice people, anything vintage and pretty much all music. I write as much as I can, whether it's a news article, a blog, or just a journal entry. When I'm not writing, I love to run, try new recipes in my little kitchen, take dance classes and catch up with friends. My goal is to see every continent someday. I'm getting there!</span></p>