During the last couple of years, there has been a great demand for active holidays in Switzerland, hence the need for innovation is large. If you visit Switzerland as a tourist, the local tourist offices throughout Switzerland are able to inform about events and activities in the area where you are staying.
One of the activities on the summer tourists’ top list is hiking. The Swiss themselves like to hike as well and there is a huge network of hiking trails (35.000 km.) which are all marked. This is true both in the lowlands and in mountainous regions that are detailed with maps and yellow signs that identify the hiking tracks.
Mountain Hiking in Switzerland
With the right equipment you can handle regular hikes on your own. Remember to bring good hiking boots, lightweight rain gear, a warm sweater and a small backpack with supplies. On the traditional trails can all participate it just requires good footwear. The actual mountain trails have greater demands regarding one’s fitness and require special hiking boots. This hiking refers to the yellow signs with a red/white tip. Alpine hikes and glacier walks have a blue tip on the yellow sign. Such hiking’s have to be led by a mountaineer (Bergführer).
Mountain Climbing in Switzerland
You have to be taught and trained in this discipline. It is possible to participate in the holiday course for beginners and advanced in large parts of Switzerland. Areas famous for mountain climbing are: Grindelwald, Meiringen, Pontresina or Braunwald.
The new happening “slow-up” is now a common activity in Switzerland. On certain days it can be a scenic stretch of for instance 30 km which blocks the traffic. It allows for families, in all ages, to bicycle or simply move around in nature. Usually slow-ups take place on Sundays and is accompanied by festive and cheerful people. In 2005 there were 310,000 participants in slow-ups around Switzerland. For more information, see www.slowup.ch
Bicycling in Switzerland
Bike tours and bike holidays have become very popular, possibly combined with hikes. These can easily be implemented in Switzerland where more than 200 train stations have bicycles for hire and can be delivered at a different train station. The current big hit is mountain tours on mountain bikes, where you will find endless opportunities for both beginners and advanced. Read more on www.veloland.ch
In the Canton Thurgau and at Lake Constance you will find a paradise for inline skaters and bicycle enthusiasts. It offers a pleasant topography overlooking the lake, forest and the Alps with snow on the summits. The Thurgau´s have made special skater routes (200 km.), which are arranged with maximum safety and minimal traffic. The inline routes are connected with the public traffic system, so that you have the opportunity to skate in the countryside on a marked route and possibly take the train back.
Water Sports in Switzerland
The many lakes and rivers in Switzerland are not only used for swimming, sailing or surfing. It is also possible to river canoeing or kayaking for example on the rivers: Aare, Thur, Reuss, Ticino.
River rafting can also be arranged with an inflatable boat in the rivers: Vorderrhein, Saane, Simme, Aare and Inn. The water may be cold and it is therefore necessary to wear a wetsuit.
Something new is “Hydrospeed”, where you wear a helmet and rubber suit and whizz down a rushing river on a swim pillow. This is a normal practice in the Saane river between Saanen and Chateau d’Oex.
Tennis and golf in Switzerland
In almost every town and hotel in Switzerland there is a tennis court, which is very popular and practised diligently. Golf is also getting increasingly popular and it is possible to combine a trip into the countryside with stunning views. A new phenomenon on offer is winter golf, among other places in Arosa and Engadin. Read more on www.swissgolfhotels.ch
Winter in Switzerland
Winter sports are practised in all mountainous regions. This includes everything from skiing, bobsledding, curling, ice skating, sleigh riding and so on. For snowboarders, there are special slopes to meet the growing demand.
Language course in Switzerland
If you want to go for a more social activity, a language course might be an idea. Switzerland offers the opportunity to exploit its four languages while experiencing nature in a beautiful region. There are many different courses at universities, schools or private lessons. A good place to start is at Migros Klubschule which offers more than 30,000 courses spread across 54 locations in Switzerland. Read more on www.klubschule.ch
that is becoming increasingly popular in Switzerland is wellness. The concept comes from the English words Wellbeing and Fitness and can be enjoyed by all people regardless of age, fitness or background. It is about one’s wellbeing both physically and mentally. This somewhat luxurious activity is offered at several hotels and spas with Jacuzzi, sauna and massages. Wellness is initially based on four pillars:
- Proper nutrition.
- Individual adapted motion.
- Mental relaxation and anti-stress
- The relationship between nature and enjoyment
For more information, visit www.swisswellness.ch