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Sunnegga-Rothorn


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Must knows about Sunnegga-Rothorn

  • You can travel up to Sunnegga, Blauherd and Rothorn from Zermatt by three different types of transportation.
  • The mountain stations are easy to reach and offers iconic views of the Matterhorn.
  • On windless days, you can see the mountains reflected in several small lakes. These are perfect spots for photographers.
  • The area is interesting for lovers of alpine fauna. Marmots, chamois and ibex can be spotted too.
Matterhorn view from Sunnegga

View of the Matterhorn from Sunnegga near Zermatt, Switzerland.

Viewing point Sunnegga-Rothorn

Great views of the Matterhorn, reflective mountain lakes and lots of hiking trails and ski runs: that's what you can expect at the Sunnegga-Rothorn area above Zermatt.

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  • Attraction type: Natural site, Mountain top, By cable car;
    Natural site, Mountain top, By funicular
  • Escort: independent (no guide)
  • Region: Zermatt (Valais)
  • Duration: 1 day or less

A quick overview of Sunnegga-Rothorn

The top station of Rothorn above Zermatt can be reached by several types of mountain transportation and via 2 mid-way stations. There’s a funicular to Sunnegga, a chairlift or gondola to Blauherd, plus a cable car to Rothorn.

All mountain stations offer fantastic views of the Matterhorn. Whether you’re relaxing in the restaurant at Sunnegga, hiking from Blauherd or skiing from Rothorn: you’ll enjoy yourself here year-round!

Sunnegga (2288 m)

From Zermatt, you’ll first reach the station of Sunnegga at 2288 m above sea level. Sunnegga means 'sunny corner'.

This is what to expect in summer:

  • The Leisee is a small mountain lake at a few minutes from the funicular station. You can bathe here. A barbecue area and picnic spots are available too. 
  • There's a marmot watching station.
  • The views can be watched from a self-service restaurant with a panoramic terrace.
  • Sunnegga is as a starting point for many beautiful hikes, including the famous Five Lakes Walk. You’ll hike between the stations of Blauherd and Sunnegga, along several small mountain lakes. On windstill days, some of them show beautiful reflections of the Matterhorn. Examples are the Stellisee and the Grindjisee.
  • There are mountainbike and kickbike trails.
  • Kids will love the Wolli adventure playground. 

These are the winter options at Sunnegga:

  • The station offers access to ski and snowboard runs, some of them connected to the Gornergrat ski area.
  • Snowshoe and regular winter hiking are possible too.
  • The Wolli ski and snowboard park is inviting for beginning skiers and children.

Blauherd (2571 m)

In summer, a gondola brings you from Sunnegga to Blauherd, located at 2571 m. In winter, a chairlift is operational. A children’s playground is available here too, and in favorable weather you can watch paragliders take off. You can descend to Sunnegga using mountain carts.

Several summer hikes start from Blauherd, and if you’re lucky you can spot ibex and chamois along the way. Some examples:

  • the themed Marmot Trail via the Stellisee, ending up at the Sunnegga playground;
  • the Panorama Walk to Tufteren;
  • the Flower Walk, with a 1,5-hour descent of medium difficulty. Along the trail, edelweiss, gentian and many other alpine flowers can be spotted;
  • shorter trails to the Stellisee or Grindjisee. You don’t necessarily have to do the entire Five Lakes Walk to pass some of the lakes and their mountain reflections.

In winter, there are skiing, snowboarding and winter hiking options. Skiers and hikers can reach the Blue Lounge, a modern mountain restaurant with superb views.

Rothorn (3103 m)

The top station at 3103 m is officially called 'Unterrothorn' and can be reached by cable car from Blauherd. You’ll have a stunning panoramic view of Zermatt’s mountain range, including the Matterhorn and Weisshorn. There's an Italian restaurant.

Demanding trails for experienced hikers start here. There's also an easy 30-minute hike during which you'll see artistic sculptures of the mountains. It's called the Peak Collection. For a unique experience and beautiful photo options, you can book a sunrise trip.

In winter, multiple ski and snowboard trails start from Rothorn. Moonlight descents can be booked in advance.

Combine your visit to Sunnegga-Rothorn with other activities

You can enjoy yourself a full day up at Sunnegga, Blauherd and Rothorn. If you opt for a shorter visit, you can combine your trip with other activities near Zermatt. Please find options here.

A nice combination with a visit to the Gornergrat can be made if you hike from Sunnegga to Riffelalp, or the other way around.

Preparation

Check the weather forecast as there's no point in going up if the mountain area is covered in clouds. Dress in multiple thinner layers so that you can adapt to the different temperatures at all altitudes. Note that it can be windy. Take along gloves, sun glasses and perhaps a hat. Solid shoes are recommended if you plan to hike.

The mountain stations are all over 2000 m high. Anyone can suffer from (light) altitude sickness from this altitude. Usually it helps to take things slow and sit down for a while. Special precautions apply to children under 2 years old, as well as people who are pregnant or in poor health: before visiting areas over 2500 m, you'd better consult your doctor. In most cases though, staying at such altitudes for just a few hours is no problem.

Insider tips about Sunnegga-Rothorn

  • An easy 30-minute hike from Sunnegga brings you to the authentic hamlet of Tufteren. You can photograph wooden barns along with alpine flowers and the Matterhorn.
  • There are restaurants at Sunnegga and Rothorn. In winter there’s also the Blue Lounge near Blauherd, to be reached on foot or by ski.
  • The ride to Sunnegga is shorter and cheaper than other mountain rides from Zermatt. It still offers an amazing view of the Matterhorn.
  • The funicular to Sunnegga spends most of its 4-minute trip in a tunnel. If you have claustrophobia you may not like this ride.
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