fun things to do with kids in valais switzerland   Travel for Kids


The Valais region in Switzerland is famous for the Matterhorn, but the entire region has gorgeous mountain scenery, alpine meadows, glaciers, sparkling lakes. This is a superb area for outdoor activities with kids, in summer put on your hiking shoes to explore miles of hiking trails. Also ride trains and cable cars for more spectacular views of the Alps year round.
    Zermatt Matterhorn
st bernard dog
  Meet Saint Bernard dogs (Grand Saint Bernard Pass) – The Grand Saint Bernard Pass, near Martigny, has been a route through the Alps for centuries. Travelers who were lost in the snow were rescued by Saint Bernard dogs. The monks at the Saint Bernard monastery bred and trained these brave dogs, which can smell people even in the snow. Today, at Grand Saint Bernard Pass, the monastery is run by a foundation, visit the museum about the history of the dogs.
      The Saint Bernard dogs spend their summers here in the kennels, and when volunteers walk the dogs, kids can meet and pet the dogs (there's no set schedule). Also, kids will want to buy Saint Bernard stuffed animals, the perfect traveling companions.

Schwimmbad Geschina (Brig) – Staying overnight in Brig? Relax in this swim complex with outdoor swimming pool, children's pool, water slide, restaurant, lockers.  Open May to September.

    Rhone Glacier (Rhonegletscher) Furka Pass

Rhone Glacier –This glacier, one of the largest in Switzerland, is the source of the Rhone River. Park at the Hotel Belvedere for glacier views, but most fun is a visit to the Ice Cave (Eisgrotte). The Eisgrotte is a long tunnel, about 300 ft long, carved into the glacier. The bluish light of the ancient ice (200 - 300 years old) is fascinating for kids. Tip: It's very cold in the Eisgrotte, so bring your sweaters.


Gletsch Nature Trail – In Gletsch, go for a walk in the valley along the Rhone River, as it flows down from the glacier above. The trail goes through mossy alpine meadows, filled with wildflowers in season, next to the river, which is a floury green-blue (the floury color is from finely ground up rock from the glacier in the water). Pick up the trail at the parking lot at the north end of town, next to the bridge.


Furka steam railway – In summer, ride the Furka cogwheel steam railway from Oberwald or Gletsch to Realp. On the 2 1/2 hour ride, the train chugs up the to the Furka Pass, with views of the glacier, passing through tunnels and over bridges (one of which is folded up in winter). An engineering tour de force, kids can imagine what it was like a hundred years ago to build this railway over such mountainous terrain.

      Tip: If you want a short steam train ride, ride between Oberwald and Gletsch one direction, and take the PostAuto bus back.
kids books switzerland
dogs in the dead of night
Dogs in the Dead of Night
Mary Pope Osborne

Jack and Annie are whirled back in time to the Great Saint Bernard Pass in the Swiss Alps. Immediately buried by an avalanche, the children are rescued by Saint Bernard dogs and monks in the monastery. They meet Barry, the most heroic dog, and for a time, Jack and Annie find out what it's like to be a Saint Bernard. (Easy reader)


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