Earth, air, fire, water – depicting the four elements in one photo isn’t easy. But we think @fa_views has done it perfectly: in his picture of the Lake Sils, bathed in orange-pink light, all four elements seem to be united, and the gnarled tree in the middle creates a beautiful contrast. There are also other contrasts – or shall we say surprises – in store at the five-kilometre-long and 70-metre-deep lake in the @engadinmountains. Lei da Segl, as it’s called in Romansch, may not be the highest situated mountain lake in Switzerland, but it’s the biggest in the canton of @graubuenden and belongs to the three lakes of the Upper Engadin. And it’s also where a small ship makes its rounds during the summer months until October. What’s so surprising about that, you ask? Well, it’s not just any boat ride, it’s Europe’s highest scheduled ferry service. At 1,800 metres above sea level, to be precise. In 40 minutes, you can ride from Sils Maria to #Maloja and back. The ship breaks for winter, but that’s no reason not to visit this beautiful lake, because it’s an experience at any time of the year. How about skiing on the cross-country trail along the lake or, if you’re lucky and the ice cover is thick enough, a walk on the lake itself? Thanks for the great photo, @fa_views!
Getting there is half the fun – especially if the views are as colourful and spectacular as in this photo taken by @domihomi! The Flüela Pass, which is part of the road in the photo, is currently closed. But the next time you go on a road trip in Switzerland, you should definitely head to @graubuenden, specifically @davos.klosters. From there, the winding road leads into the Lower Engadin over the 2,363-metre-high Flüela Pass. Once you reach the top of the pass, it’s worth making a short stop by the small lake, where you can enjoy fantastic views of the Flüela Weisshorn and Schwarzhorn By the way, did you know that the Flüela Pass is one of the ten highest mountain pass roads in Switzerland? Others include the Bernina, Albula, Julier, Susten and Furka passes. Which ones have you crossed? ;-)
There it lies, Lac de Moiry… as if trapped between the peaks of the #Sasseneire in the west and the Garde de Bordon in the east. The lake is a reservoir, but it still exudes natural beauty, and is located in the municipality of #Anniviers in the canton of @valaiswallis at 2,249 metres above sea level. It is fed by several mountain streams such as the Gourge, which in turn comes from the Lac de Châteaupré and not only flows into the reservoir, but also out again. Even though you can only see part of it in this great photo taken by @thomas.luisier , rest assured that the entire reservoir, including the dam, is impressive. Driving from #Grimentz , the mighty dam wall is sure to amaze you, though maybe not as much as the stunning panorama from the top itself. Thanks for the photo!
“Not all those who wander are lost” wrote J. R. R. Tolkien, which we think perfectly describes this scenic photo taken by @federico.sette. This mesmeric location is one of the highest situated inhabited valleys in Europe – the Engadin. The sunny @engadin.stmoritz in @graubuenden stretches over 80 kilometres with an impressive natural landscape filled with rich contrasts, lakes, glaciers and world-famous towns such as @stmoritz. Incidentally, St. Moritz was the birthplace of Alpine winter holidays, having been recognised as a winter sports paradise from as early as 1864. It’s no wonder that two Winter Olympic Games have also been held there!
Welcome to @zermatt.matterhorn. You can’t quite see the #Matterhorn in this photo taken by @andreah1306 as it’s mostly hidden by clouds. And yet the town with a population of around 5,400 is just as captivating, appearing here as though it’s been dusted with icing sugar. Perhaps it’s the soothing, serene charm that Zermatt manages to exude despite its many visitors. After all, it’s one of Switzerland’s car-free resorts, with the streets reserved for pedestrians, electric vehicles and horse-drawn carriages. A walk through the old part of the town, or Hinterdorf, is particularly special – there, you’ll find barns, storehouses and old dwellings from the 16th to 18th century. As you wander through the narrow alleyways, it will feel as if you’ve been transported back in time. The quaint houses along the way are covered with heavy stone slabs and are made of larch wood, and can also be found in the area surrounding Zermatt. The houses were used for living, the barns for storing hay and the storehouses for keeping food such as dried meat. You see, there is also a lot to discover at the foot of the world-famous Matterhorn – you just have to look closely!
As winter gradually approaches, the Gastlosen have already had their first bit of snow. The prominent mountain range lying between the cantons of Bern, Vaud and Fribourg is sometimes referred to as the Dolomites of the Saanenland due to its rugged, barren and steep nature. While mostly famous for climbing and hiking tours, there are also plenty of things going on here in winter. The “Trophée des Gastlosen” is a particular sporting highlight, where ski mountaineers compete against each other in a race. For those who prefer a more leisurely pace, the best way to experience the Gastlosen is via the mountain pass road from Jaun, which takes you more or less directly to the foot of the mountains. Thanks for the great photo, @iwanschuwey
Around 120 years ago, Sir Ernest Cassel decided he would build a villa on a near-inaccessible mountain in the middle of nowhere. Many people probably thought he was crazy at the time. But when you see the Villa Cassel now, it’s difficult to imagine a more perfect location. Clear views of the mighty Alps in all directions (Matterhorn included), complete tranquillity, fresh mountain air… what more could you want? Today, a downhill ski run even leads past the villa. You’ll find the time-honoured building in Riederalp in the @aletscharena_ch. Thanks for the great photo, @michelphotography_ch.
Ever heard of the Lueg mountain in @emmentalvalley? We won’t hold it against you if you haven’t. Less than a thousand metres tall, it’s more of a hill by Swiss standards – but what it lacks in stature, it more than makes up for in charm and importance. During the First World War, the Lueg served as a key military signal post due to the far-reaching views it affords, which are just as breathtaking and phenomenal today. And when visibility isn’t great, you can still admire the surrounding fairytale-like meadows, forests and country villages shrouded in mist. Thanks for the beautiful photo, @noberson.
We Swiss do love our mountains. We hike up them, ski down them, drill miles of tunnels through them and even build suspension bridges between them. In fact, the Peak Walk in the @diablerets ski area in the canton of Vaud was the first bridge in the world to connect two mountain peaks. Measuring an impressive 107 metres in length, it’s open all year and can be crossed free of charge on the @glacier3000.ch cable car. We don’t really need to tell you why it’s worth visiting, do we? This photo taken by @_leila_ae says it all.
Let there be light! One of the nice things about winter nights in Switzerland is that any light is reflected in the snow – romantic, isn’t it? Especially when the surroundings are as impressive as the stoic mountains and idyllic wooden huts in this photo of @grindelwald_eiger taken by @sassychris1! Located in the @madeinbern Oberland, the village serves as a gateway to the world-famous Jungfrau Region with its spectacular Alpine peaks, and is especially popular among skiers, hikers and daring mountaineers, who use it as a base camp for climbing the legendary Eiger north face. Meanwhile, other guests can settle down in a cosy café and enjoy the mesmerising panoramic views.
That sea of fog is quite something! We can’t tell where the snow stops and the fog begins... But does anyone know where this great photo by @across__the__mountains was taken? Give yourself a point if you said Engelberg. There are some spectacular mountains here – like the Titlis, which is 3,229 metres high. From the top, you get a breathtaking panoramic view. And the ride to the summit is an experience in itself on the world’s first rotating gondola. Seriously: the TITLIS Rotair – as the gondola’s called – rotates on its own axis as you travel. This means that no matter where you’re standing, you get an all-round view. You have to admit that’s impressive!
Take a lake with a small island, cover everything in autumn colours, and you’ve got a beautiful snapshot of Switzerland. But this photo by @christofs70 is more than just a simple snapshot. It features a small island you may never have heard of – Ogoz Island in #LakeGruyère . The island can be reached from nearby Le Bry. Do you also notice the two towers of the castle and the small chapel? They are the remains of a small town dating back to the 13th century that disappeared into the water in 1947 when the River Saane was dammed. Today, you can book the chapel as a venue for weddings and other events. Another interesting fact: if the winter has been particularly snowy, the amount of melt water flowing into the lake has to be controlled. This means that the water level drops and the island stands out even more. And when the water’s especially low, you can actually wade to the island. But don’t worry, there’s also a boat to ferry you across.