Zermatt lies at the foot of the Matterhorn. The town's touristic development is closely linked to what is most probably the world's most famous mountain. The vacation destination is a car-free zone, has preserved its original character and offers nearly unlimited possibilities as far as excursions are concerned.
The location of Zermatt at the foot of the Matterhorn and in the middle of an enormous hiking and ski region makes it one of the world's most attractive vacation villages. The ski region encompasses 54 mountain railways and lifts as well as 360 kilometers of pistes. The region called "Matterhorn glacier paradise" is Europe's largest and highest lying summer skiing region. Numerous national ski teams train here in the summer.
The region is legendary amongst mountaineers: the Haute Route, a challenging international route that takes several days to complete, leads from Mont Blanc to Zermatt. Over 400 kilometers of hiking trails lead through and out of the Matter Valley, including the mule traders' trails, which date back to the 13th century (a part of these paths is paved).