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Glacier Express route-map

Trip Details at-a-Glance

Cost From: $4695  
Length: 8 days
Arrive: Zermatt, Switzerland
Depart: Guarda or Ardez, Switzerland
Lodging: 7 nights hotels
Meals: All meals included except 2 dinners
Activity: Hiking / Trekking
Trip Level: 6 hiking days on easy to moderate trails, 2-6 hours a day (depending on trail option), van support (for luggage or tired feet)


  • Easy to moderate hiking options each day—your choice!
  • The picture-perfect Swiss mountain towns of Zermatt and the Engadine
  • Ride Switzerland’s Glacier Express through an incredible mountain panorama, take the Gornergrat Railway for absolutely stunning views of the Alps
  • Wonderfully atmospheric hotels and terrific food, from rösti to Engadiner Torte

Six days of hiking in spectacular Alpine settings, staying in beautiful, family-run hotels, extraordinary food, and experienced trip leaders who offered different hiking options and adjusted transparently to every challenge presented by the weather, all combined to create a great experience for us—just what we've come to expect from WT!Niles and Linda B.—Madison, WI

Choosing the Right Trip

We work hard to help you choose the right trip for you, paying attention to your individual interests, abilities, and needs. If you have questions about the level of comfort or any of the activities described in this itinerary, please contact us.


We are proud to have an exceptionally high rate of repeat travelers. For more information, we would be happy to put you in touch with a client who has traveled with us.

Departure Notes

Once you have signed up on the trip, we send a complete packing list, relevant health information, and required travel documents.

Significant Currency Discount Available for this Trip!

The US Dollar has strengthened dramatically against the Swiss Franc, and we want to pass the savings on to you! The amount of the discount will be calculated on the day you sign up, and will be locked in at that rate, no matter how many months away your trip dates are. Call or email us to find out today’s discount, or with any questions you may have. This is the year to visit Europe — Call soon! The US Dollar may not maintain this level of strength for long.

Want to get the perfect taste of Switzerland? We’ve crafted a superb adventure with easy or moderate hiking options each day (take your pick!) in two of the country’s most enchanting regions—and a gorgeous journey on the famed Glacier Express links the two. From the captivating mountain town of Zermatt, home to Switzerland’s most famous icon, the Matterhorn, to the Upper Engadine, a storybook setting of mountains, lakes, and antique jewel-box villages, our exclusive itinerary offers incredible day hikes in a magical realm of mountains, glaciers, sun-splashed valleys, and alpine meadows full of wildflowers. We use Switzerland’s ingenious transportation system to get you high into the mountains for exhilarating hikes and unbelievable views, while cozy hotels with Old World ambiance are your wonderful reward at the end of each thrilling day.

Itinerary at a Glance

For a more complete description, Download Full Detailed Itinerary

Days 1-2

From Zermatt, the quintessential and pedestrian-friendly (no cars!) mountain town, our hikes bring you to an alpine plateau with iconic views of the Matterhorn and its reflection in the deep blue alpine lake at its base, and to a ridge overlooking the five-mile-long Findel Glacier. From the top station of the historic Gornergrat Railway, our trail offers surpassing views of a glistening sea of ice and some 50 peaks including the Matterhorn and Monte Rosa.

Day 3
Glacier Express / Pontresina

Our ride (and fun champagne lunch) on the Glacier Express is an exhilarating journey past tumbling waterfalls, deep forests, and green pastures surrounding tiny villages with steepled churches. In the Engadine Valley, with its string of alpine lakes set amid the magnificent Bernina Alps, we overnight at the wonderful 4-star Hotel Walther, a Belle Epoque hotel in the historic resort town of Pontresina, where we are welcomed like family.

Days 4-6

From Pontresina, hike on panoramic trails and explore the Engadine’s timeless villages, where sturdy stone-built houses are adorned by colorful sgraffitti. One moderate hike brings you along the lateral moraine of the Morteratsch Glacier to the Boval Hut, where you can sample classic Engadine specialties and soak up absolutely stupendous views of glacier fields, ice cliffs, and snowy summits. An easier hiking option leads to Alp Languard (7,421’), with its spectacular views of the entire Engadine Valley, while another follows the Via Engadina, a long-distance footpath through the charming towns of Zernez, Susch, and Lavin.

Days 7-8

Guarda, set on a sunny terrace above the valley of the Inn River, is our base for a hike past lovely hamlets, farmhouses, and meadows grazed by cattle to Tarasp, graced by a picture-book medieval castle that’s the perfect backdrop for our delightful farewell picnic lunch. Depart on Day 8.

For a more complete description, Download Full Detailed Itinerary

What the Trip is Like

This trip is Level 2 and 3, Easy to Moderate. We enjoy two hiking choices each day—easy to moderate—so you can choose a hike that suits your interests for the day. Our day hikes vary from 2-6 hours in length, with cable cars, gondolas, and cog and funicular railways taking care of many of the steep ascents and descents. Our support vehicle will transport the group’s luggage, so you only need to carry a daypack for items you need for the day (sweater, camera, water bottle), and you are always free to skip a day’s hike and travel to the next destination in the support vehicle. Some hiking experience is recommended (no climbing or mountaineering experience is necessary), and all participants must be in good physical condition. Each evening we return to our comfortable hotels to sample the culinary delights that Switzerland has to offer.

We spend our nights in comfortable small hotels. Although the rooms in our alpine hotels and inns are not always of uniform or international size, our leaders try their best to assign rooms in a fair way so that all participants experience an equal advantage throughout the trip as a whole. Most lunches will be in mountain huts or restaurants, and most evenings we have dinner at our hotel. Vegetarians please note that we will accommodate dietary needs as best as possible, but it is a good idea to bring along protein bars and other supplements. Luggage space is limited in our van, so we ask that you restrict your luggage to one piece, plus your daypack. Please note that in Europe, the dinner hour is considerably later than what it is in the U.S. We do our best to secure early reservations for our groups, but most often the evening meal will be at 7:30 pm.

Explanation of Trip Levels


Departures & Leaders

Jul 11-18, 2015  Tim Burford
Aug 14-21, 2015

Sep 12-19, 2015  Mike Browder

Trip Cost

Prices are for 2015
$4695 (12-14 members)
$4995 (9-11 members)
$5295 (6-8 members)
Single supplement: $830
Forced single supplement: $630
Swiss transportation pass: $480 (subject to change)
more on pricing

Trip Payment Schedule

At time of reservation: $500
120 days prior to departure: 20% of trip cost
60 days prior to departure: Balance

Cancellation and Transfer Fee Schedule

More than 90 days prior to departure: No charge!
90-46 days prior to departure: 25% of trip cost
45 days or less: 100% of trip cost

Trip Cost Includes:

  • Expert leadership of two Wilderness Travel Trip Leaders
  • Accommodations in hotels and comfortable inns
  • All meals included except 2 dinners
  • A glass of wine or beer with dinner
  • Ground transportation throughout the trip
  • Sightseeing and entrance fees on group tours
  • Cable cars, funiculars, and cog rails to and from trailheads for scheduled hikes

Trip Cost Does Not Include:

International airfare, airport transfers, any meals not specified, airport departure taxes, optional tipping or gratuities to leaders or staff, additional hotel nights made necessary by airline schedule changes or other factors, Swiss Rail Pass (see separate cost above), pre-trip expenses such as immunizations (if any), travel insurance, or passports and visas, and other expenses of a personal nature (alcoholic beverages, laundry, etc.).

Arrival & Departure Information

You are responsible for your own transportation arriving to Zermatt, Switzerland, and departing from Guarda or Ardez, Switzerland. For more detailed information, including transfers, please download the Detailed Itinerary.

Please do not purchase your tickets until you are confirmed on the trip and have reviewed your proposed air schedule with our office. Once your tickets have been purchased, please send us a copy of your airline schedule.

Meeting Place:
Zermatt, Switzerland
Date: Day 1

Suggested Arrival Airport:
Zurich (airport code ZRH)
Suggested Arrival Time: One day before the start of the trip


Guarda or Ardez, Switzerland
Date: Day 8

Suggested Airport for Departure:
Zurich (airport code ZRH)
Suggested Departure Time: No earlier than than 1:00 pm if going to the airport directly from Guarda

Parkhotel Beau Site Zermatt

Parkhotel Beau Site Zermatt

Days 1 to 2 (2 nights), Zermatt, Switzerland

We enjoy famous Swiss hospitality at this traditional century-old hotel, with its understated old world elegance and wonderful views of the ...
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Hotel Walther

Hotel Walther

Days 3 to 5 (3 nights), Pontresina, Switzerland

There’s stellar service at this family-owned Relais & Chateaux property, along with beautifully appointed rooms, full spa services, and a ...
Click here for full description and more photos

Hotels in the Lower Engadine

Days 6 to 7 (2 nights), Lower Engadine, Switzerland

In the Lower Engadine, we stay at one of the following porperties:

Note: Listed above are our signature accommodations for this trip. Although it is highly unlikely, we may make substitutions when necessary.

Our Trip Leaders

Here are the Trip Leaders scheduled for this journey (please note that leader assignments are subject to change).

Stefano Baldi

Departure Dates: August 14-21, 2015

Stefano Baldi, of Tuscany, has led hiking trips in Europe for us for nearly 15 years. He has spent most of his life living in the beautiful rural countryside of Tuscany, except for a few years in Florence as a student. His love for nature led him to found an agricultural co-op with friends in the ...
Click here for a full bio and list of all upcoming trips

Mike Browder

Departure Dates: September 12-19, 2015

Mike Browder leads WT adventures from Corsica to the Alps and northward to the fjords of Norway. He has worked in outdoor settings all his life, directing parks and recreation programs in Bend, Oregon, coaching ski teams, and mountain climbing in North America and Asia, including a 2003 ascent of ...
Click here for a full bio and list of all upcoming trips

Tim Burford

Departure Dates: July 11-18, 2015

With a big smile on his face and hiking poles in hand, Tim’s jovial persistence to explore the ends of the world, which led him to write hiking guidebooks for such destinations as Chile and Alaska, is only matched by his contagious passion to lead hiking adventures closer to his native ...
Click here for a full bio and list of all upcoming trips

James Fuss

Departure Dates: August 14-21, 2015

James Fuss is a trekking guide, photographer, cyclist, and chef extraordinaire. Born and raised in South Australia, James found his wanderlust early on family camping trips across Australia. His love of the culinary arts is deep-rooted as well, and as a young chef, he headed off to Europe to ...
Click here for a full bio and list of all upcoming trips