Let’s face it, there are two kinds of people: those who hail the Swiss Alps as a skiing, snowboarding, cliff-walking mecca, and those who vaguely remember seeing some mountains on the side of a Toblerone box while on a confectionery binge.
I hate to admit it but until a few weeks ago I fell into the chocolate-shovelling category. More concerned with sun-lounging, lilo-lazing and otherwise overindulging when planning my holidays, I’d never given a trip up a cold, snowy mountain a second thought.
But when the chance came to visit the Swiss Alps with Topdeck, I quickly learnt the error of my ways.
To all my fellow thrill-dodgers, this is my non-sporty girl’s guide to easing yourself into the Swiss Alps. Spread the word.
1. Thermals are your friend
I know it’s an alien concept but layering up while away (as opposed to stripping off) actually feels good. Get ready for a different kind of holiday heat: cosiness. Who doesn’t love a nice, thick sock? Mmmm. #Hygge
2. Snow is fun
Remember that childish joy when you opened your curtains to dazzling white and your mum told you that school had been cancelled? It’s time to reconnect with it.
Grab a snowball. Jump on a sledge. Faceplant. Make a snow angel. Get snow in your hair. Smudge your makeup. Don’t even check your mirror. Living. On. The. Edge.
3. Mountain landscapes are really beautiful
Who knew that white slopes and snow-heavy trees could steal your heart? Move over, beach. From now on my holiday mood board consists solely of spruce trees, icy peaks and chocolate-box houses.
And did I mention that the Swiss Alps pack some of the starriest winter nights around?
4. Everyone is super friendly
The people I met in the Swiss Alps were honestly some of the nicest, most welcoming humans I have ever met. Flash them a smile, say ‘hallo’ (or ‘bonjour’, or ‘buongiorno’, depending on where you are) and they will do their utmost to help you out, even if that’s where your linguistic prowess ends.
5. Ski lodges are a great place for a drink
Looking for a bar halfway up a mountain that plays Xzibit? No? I didn’t know I was either. Try it, you’ll never look back.
Also noteworthy: the local beers are really great. And the bar snacks are 👀👌
6. Breakfast is unbelievable
We’re talking bircher muesli, porridge, berries, vitamin shots… AKA hearty fare for days. This stuff is not only delicious but it’s also perfect fuel for all those giddy snow-based hijinks you’ll no doubt be having (refer to point 2).
7. There are some sweet souvenirs on offer (not even joking)
Yes, I’m that person that sends postcards home and who always buys a little trinket to commemorate my trip. I know it’s lame, but Swiss souvenirs are just really good.
Keyrings with cowbells on? Yes please. Magnets with little dangling ice skates? Take my money.
So there it is – the non-sporty girl’s guide to the Swiss Alps. Though I didn’t so much as lift a ski during my visit, there was plenty more to keep me occupied during my mountain stay.
And trust me, I’m working up to the winter sports part. There’s always next time…
Has our non-sporty girl’s guide to the Swiss Alps got you keen to travel in Switzerland? Let’s do this.
Wanna fuel that wanderlust and check out more of Europe? This blog post is for you.