Oh, well Zermatt was just a dream. The most idyllic little town hidden in the mountains; there are no cars, only electric buggies and horses, it's beautiful and small enough that you can walk around the entire place in one evening. The perfect little ski town.
We lugged our suitcases through the narrow streets form the train station up to our hotel, which was as traditional and old fashioned as they come but it had a balcony with a table and a few chairs overlooking the main street and you could peek up towards the mountains on the other side. I was *so* excited to be there, and so glad we were there for a few nights.
The evening we arrived, we explored and settled in our room, before heading out to find somewhere for dinner. Vivienne is a pretty good eater and had promised she'd try different foods while we were away; so we chose raclette with potatoes and some sort of jam, and rösti (pretty plain stuff for 'trying something new' but we both loved it!) I'd say we had an early night ahead of skiing the next day, but we ended up in PJs watching Friends on Netflix a little too late..
The next day we were up to have breakfast, collect skis, boots and poles and dragged our kit to buy lift passes to the starter ski slopes. I know I sound like a typical parent, but Vivienne did so well. She's always been a pretty cautious kid, but I was so impressed at how she took to skiing. we were on the baby slopes and practised snow plough and some turns, before going down a slightly steeper slope together (me going down backwards with her facing me). We skiied until about 1pm, then headed over to a different lift to make the trip higher and higher to reach the Glacier Paradise Experience.
The Glacier Paradise Experience (I'll link at the bottom), is at the highest point and has a viewing platform at 4000m, where you can see the Matterhorn on a clear day. Unfortunately visibility was zero they day we went up, which can't be helped, but we still visited the glacier experience while we were up there. It meant that we walked down a carved tunnel inside a glacier to a 'palace' which was full of ice sculptures, tunnels, slides, steps.. it was so bizarre. I think Vivienne felt slightly worried at the prospect of being in there too long "in case it collapsed on us", but loved it nonetheless.
Being so high up, it wasn't long before our hearts were racing and we couldn't catch our breath, we had some chocolate milk (Viv), beer (me) and frites before heading back down into Zermatt for our final night there.
We explored the chocolate shops (it's Switzerland, after all), grabbed some food and wandered around the beautiful town one last time. We wrote postcards, updated travel diaries, and packed up a little - the next day we would get the train to Zurich ahead of getting a night train to Vienna the following evening! We FaceTimed home and told Dav all about skiing, before falling asleep, exhausted, after what had ended up being a long and tiring day..
You can see a different variety of photographs from our time in Zermatt over on my photography blog here.
NEXT STOP - ZURICH!