Why not get a panoramic view of the mountains from a helicopter on one of the many exhilarating tours available from Verbier.
The flexibility of helicopters means you can fly almost anywhere, and a flight over the famous Matterhorn in Zermatt or Mont Blanc in Chamonix will enhance any guests holiday experience in Switzerland. There are also tours of Verbier’s local mountains such as the Combin Glacier, which can be seen from the terraces of Chalet Spa Verbier.
You may also like to organise a surprise lunch on top of a remote mountain, or a cocktail party with a DJ far away from the crowds. There are many possibilities to give your helicopter trip an even bigger wow factor. Chairs carved into the ice and adorned with furs, an alfresco bar and staff can be waiting for your helicopter to touch down if you want to combine a tour with a bespoke event.
Activity: Helicopter tours, Half day and full day tours, Matterhorn & Zermatt (20 minutes), Mont Blanc & Chamonix (20 minutes), Combin & Combin Glacier (20 minutes) Location: Local Alps in Switzerland & France When: All year Distance: 20 minutes by helicopter
An amazing mountain awaits you right outside the front door of Chalet Spa. Savoleyres lies to the North of Verbier, and offers a range of well prepared walking trails through meadows and forests and along ancient mountain streams.
If walking up the mountain has less appeal, you can take the Savoleyres lift to the top and follow one of the many walks down from there. If you want to climb to the peak of the mountain the Pierre Avoi rock at 2475m is well signposted and after an incline, you can access the famous ladders to climb to the top!
Your reward is a spectacular panoromic view of the Combin Mountains and Mont Blanc as well as down valley to the Rhone Valley, Martigny and Sion below. This is a famous destination for taking photos and/or to picnic on the mountain!
Marlenaz is a popular mountain restaurant with a great menu and terrace for lunches and afternoon cakes. You can descend from the top of Savoleyres, taking in the ‘Sentier de Sculptures’ – a path with numerous animals and plants local to the Verbier valley all sculpted out of wood. At the end of this path is Marlenaz restaurant. We advise reserving a table in advance.
Activity: Hike to Pierre Avoi Rock Location: Behind Chalet Spa Verbier When: May to October Distance: Right outside the front door!
Mont Fort is the highest point in Verbier and offers breathtaking panoramic views which extend as far as Mont Blanc.
Using lifts and telecabines, starting with the main lift from Medran to Les Ruinettes. At the top of Les Ruinettes, the La Chaux Express which will take you up and over into the La Chaux bowl, and you will disembark near the Dahu Restaurant.
The telecabine Mont-Fort is a 3 minute walk from the arrival and this will deliver you to the foot of the mountain. The final short stairway leads to the summit and the rewarding views. Particularly attractive are the full moon and sunrise trips to Mont Fort every Thursday morning throughout the Summer.
Altitude: 3330m View: Val de Bagnes and Mauvoisin reservoir, Weisshorn, Matterhorn, Grand Combin, Mont Blanc, Dents du Midi and the Rhone Valley as far as the Bernese Alps.
You may choose to descend on foot for some way as there are well-marked trails to follow. Our recommendation would be to walk from La Chaux where you can follow the ‘bisse’, the ancient mountain man-made stream which used to supply remote villages with their water. La Chaux to Les Ruinettes is a 1 hour walk and if you continue on foot, expect the hike home to take about 2 – 3 hours from La Chaux. Alternatively you could hire an Trottinette scooter from Les Ruinettes for a faster descent.
Activity: Mont Fort Glacier Location: Verbier, Switzerland When: Open all year round Distance: In Verbier
The annual Verbier Bike Fest brings a new energy to the town, as over 10,000 motorbikers arrive to enjoy the weekend event. The main arena is surrounded by 40 tents displaying all types of motorbikes and biking products, as well as areas for food and drink.
The arena has a programme of events throughout the weekend that include aerial acrobatics with jumps of more than 20 metres long and 6 metres high, as well as bike and car displays.
Known for being the biggest bikers event in Switzerland, a gathering of bikers wind their way around the canton of Valais in convoy.
In addition there are 2 stages for the weekend with the “Rock Stage” featuring Rock Bands all day and the “After Stage” having a different vibe with DJs and Dancers making this a more adult event in the evening. Each year a new Harley Davidson is offered as a prize in a lottery draw.
Chalet Spa recommends this event for the aerial acrobatics, which are truly amazing. It is an informal environment and very welcoming to visitors, regardless of whether you are a biker or not.
Event: Verbier Bike Fest Location: Verbier, Switzerland When: 1st or 2nd weekend of September Distance: In Verbier
On July 6, 2014, a 70 metre high pedestrian suspension bridge was inaugurated in the Commune de Bagnes, one of the highest suspension bridges in Europe. Spanning 240 metres, the bridge connects the Cabane Brunet with the Cabane Panossiere and crosses over the dramatic landscape of the Corbassiere glacier.
You can begin your walk at Cabane Brunet being sure to carry water and wear good footwear. In the summer months, the trip is popular and as you head around the first lake, the path is well signposted. The paths are easy with some steeper inclines before you reach the glacier, and a smaller suspension bridge to cross on the way. Surrounded by mountains and wild flowers there are many places to stop to take in the view along the way. The new suspension bridge is not for the faint hearted but well worth the walk.
Our concierge would be happy to reserve a table for lunch at Cabane Brunet, which has a good menu and tables outside in view of Mont Rogneux. The walk takes approximately 3 to 4 hours depending on number of stops and is an excellent hike for all ages, who are fit and carry supplies. We can arrange for a guide to accompany you and lead the way.
Activity: Hike to the Courbassier Glacier Suspension Bridge Location: Commune de Bagnes When: May to October Distance: 3-4 hour hike, 10 minutes by helicopter
The Mauvoisin Dam is a concrete variable radius arch dam across the Val de Bagnes on the Dranse de Bagnes stream, in the canton of Valais in Switzerland.
It stands 250m high and is currently the 11th highest dam in the world, and the 6th highest arch dam. Built between 1951 and 1957, the dam was raised a further 13.5m in 1991. A journey to the dam will provide you with breathtaking views and it is possible to walk along the high wall of the dam. There is an amazing hike around the Mauvoisin lake, which journeys through the many tunnels and waterfalls along a well marked and easy to follow path. If you venture far enough you will reach the Cabane de Chanrion offering lunch and even an overnight stay. From the valley it is possible to view numerous glaciers, eagles, wild flowers, rare fauna and the famous Swiss edelweiss.
Water from the Mauvoisin Dam feeds two hydroelectric power stations. The two plants combined produce about 943 million kilowatt hours each year so it is of vital significance to the country and is therefore very well maintained in true Swiss style. The Dam also helps protect the Val de Bagnes and Rhone river valleys from glacial outburst floods.
Activity: Visit to Mauvoisin Dam Location: Val de Bagnes, near Verbier When: April to October Distance: 40 minutes by car
The Grand St Bernard Monastery is a hospice for travellers in Switzerland, and at 2469m altitude in the Pennine Alps, it sits just near the Italian border. The St Bernard dog was created at the hospice from cross-breeding dogs and the breed was originally raised to provide guard dogs for the hospice before they were used as rescue dogs.
The Hospice is steeped in history and contains various monuments for famous Alpine adventurers and is still inhabited by Augustine monks and large St Bernard dogs to this day. In June 1800, Napoleon Bonaparte ordered a monumental marble tomb to be built at the Hospice for one of his army leaders, Louis Desaix. Napolean’s men transported huge slabs of Italian marble up the mountain pass, and Desaix now rests under the monument in the chapel. There are some good short walks around the monastery, and if you’re lucky you can share some sweet tea with the monks.
From the monastery you can look down into Italy on one side and Switzerland on the other. The drive up is spectacular with hairpin bends and mountain scenery. The St Bernard Monastery is a popular destination for visitors in the Summer months, as the pass is closed during Winter due to heavy snowfall.
Activity: St Bernard Monastery Location: Grand St Bernard Pass When: Summer Distance: 45 minutes by car, 10 minute helicopter ride
Bains de Saillon
In the heart of the Valais vineyards, the Saillon thermal baths are a place to relax and recharge. There are 3 thermal pools at 32C – 34C, a semi-Olympic pool at 28C, a Thermal river, and a sauna village with Turkish baths. The baths have a children’s zone with a toboggan, water slide and paddling pool (in Summer). There is the Carpe Diem SPA and a fitness room.
The thermal river enjoys unobstructed views, and meanders for about 120 metres at a temperature between 32° and 34°C. Along the river are whirlpool baths, pergolas with massage benches, pressure jets and massage ducts. The sauna village and Turkish baths allow you to relax whilst enjoying the panoramic views of the Alps all around.
Supposedly the hottest thermal water in Switzerland, Lavey-les-Bains has two outdoor pools and an indoor pool at temperatures of between 32°C to 36°C. The water at Lavey comes from the hottest spring in Switzerland (62°C to 70°C) bought up from a depth of nearly 600m under Lavey itself. The water has virtues in the treatment of rheumatic musculoskeletal and dermatological problems.
The baths cover 1600m2 including a whirlpool, massage jets, swan necks, waterfalls and underwater massage. There are hammams, steam showers and vapour rooms as well as a Nordic Sauna.
Activity: Choice of Thermal Baths Location: Bains de Saillon or Lavey-les Bains, The Rhone Valley When: Open all year from 09h00-21h00 Distance: 40 minutes by car
Within a short distance of Verbier, the Bouvaret Aquapark will keep any child happy. Located at the delta of the the River Rhone, the park offers a full range of waterslides, whirl pools, and wave pools with a large outside area and beach. Designed to look like a tropical landscape with grottos and waterfalls, the park can be busy in school holidays but children can’t fail to love the experience. There are one or two more daring rides for the adults only too.
Labyrinthe adventure is an outdoor park with the main feature being the worlds largest natural labyrinth maze. Spanning three kilometres, the maze is lined with 18,000 Thuja trees and is full of mysterious treasure hunts and hidden games waiting to be discovered.
When you manage to escape the maze, there are plenty of other activities to keep you busy. Enormous slides up to 30 metres in length twist around a wooden tower. There are trampolines and a climbing wall, mini golf, and inflatable castles.
The park is aimed at all ages, but visitors with children will really enjoy a visit.
Activity: Aquapark, Labyrinthe Adventure Location: Bouveret, The Rhone Valley When: Aquapark is open all year round Distance: 45 minutes by car
Mined since 1684, the Salt Mines of Bex are still being exploited and still producing salt. A walking tour through the mines tells the story of the origins of the mine and of the conquest to mine ‘white gold’.
The journey begins on board the miners train, which travels down into the heart of the mountains.
There are 50km of tunnels and a vast maze of shafts and boreholes, with various demonstrations of excavation techniques that have been used since 1684 to today. The mine provides an interesting insight into an industry that most would not expect to find in Switzerland.
Activity: Visit the Swiss salt mines Location: Rhone Valley When: All year Distance: 40 minutes by car
The subterranean lake of St Leonard is located along the Rhone valley in the heart of the Swiss Alps.
With a length of 300 metres, the lake can be explored by boat. A 30 minute boat trip on the crystal clear water is both peaceful and fascinating while you process the unusual example of Mother Nature at its best.
Occasionally concerts are conducted alongside the lake as the caverns and coves provide for interesting acoustics.
Activity: Boat trip under the Swiss Alps! Location: Rhone Valley Website:www.lac-souterrain.com When: From March to early November Distance: 55 minutes by car, 15 minutes by helicopter
The beautiful lakeside town of Montreux provides for a great day out from Verbier and is easily accessible with the help of our chauffeur.
Chateau de Chillon is one of the most historic buildings in Switzerland, and also the most visited tourist attraction in the country. A medieval fortress on the lake, it provided the inspiration for Lord Byron’s poetry and is worth a visit.
From Montreux, it is also possible to take a boat ride on Lake Geneva. The paddle steamer travels the length of the lake throughout the summer and you can relax on its wooden decks or enjoy some fine dining in the restaurant as you take in the scenery.
The famous Goldenpass train leaves from Montreux station, as well as the popular ‘Chocolate Train’ and the Cheese Train. Itineraries can be arranged to enable you to enjoy these tours as part of your day trip to Montreux.
A walk along the lakeside of Montreux is always beautiful as the microclimate allows for tropical trees and flowers to blossom. You can see the Freddie Mercury tribute statue and visit the old Mountain recording studio at the Montreux Casino where Queen and many artists recorded their greatest hits.
Finally, Montreux plays hosts to many festivals throughout the year. The Montreux jazz festival, the popular Christmas market, and the Comedy Festival are an example of some great events that make Montreux worthy of a visit.
Activity: Montreux & The Swiss Riviera, Chateau de Chillon, Paddle boat on Lake Geneva, Goldenpass vintage train to Gstaad, The Chocolate Train, The Cheese Train to Gruyere, The Queen Freddie Mercury Museum, The Montreux Casino, Montreux Christmas Market, Montreux Jazz & Rock Festival, Montreux Comedy Festival Location: Montreux When: All year and for Festivals Distance: 50 minutes by car
Freddie Mercury, the singer of the rock band Queen, settled in Montreux and the group bought the Mountain Recording Studio to record some of their greatest hits.
As with many writers, poets, musicians and artists, the peace and tranquility of Montreux, and the discretion of the Swiss people provided Queen with an ideal location to live in relative privacy.
Mountain Recording Studio is now a museum to Queen and Freddie and is entered through the Montreux Casino. A 3 metre statue of Freddie Mercury faces the lake near his home and stands as a reminder of one of Montreux’s famous residents. Each year this provides the meeting point for the memorial celebration of Freddie’s life.
One of the last songs Freddie Mercury recorded in the Mountain Recording Studio with his band was ‘Made in Heaven’ shortly before he died.
Activity: Freddie Mercury Memorial, The Queen Museum & Mountain Studios, Culture by the lake Location: Montreux When: All year Distance: 50 minutes by car
Lake Geneva or Lac Leman is the largest lake in Switzerland and France and one of the largest bodies of freshwater in Europe.
Pleasure cruises on the lake are a wonderful way to experience the beauty of the Swiss riviera. Many of the boats are Belle Epoque Paddle Steamers and La Suisse (1910) is without doubt the grande dame of the the fleet.
There are currently five working paddle steamers sailing on Lac Leman, and whether you dine in the ships restaurant or relax on the deck, the Riviera boat cruise is not to be missed.
Tours can be taken from point to point as part of a day out, or you can enjoy a complete lake circuit, even disembarking in France for lunch. In the Summer months, there are also some evening cruises.
Activity: Lake Cruise, Original Swiss paddle steamer Location: Montreux Riviera When: All year Distance: 50 minutes by car