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Switzerland in Winter for Non-Skiers

  • Maya Keller
  • Post category:Travel Tips
  • Reading time:12 mins read
  • Published: 20 November, 2023

When winter blankets Switzerland in a pristine layer of snow, you might wonder if it’s a destination exclusively for skiers. The good news is that Switzerland has much more to offer in winter, making it an ideal wonderland for non-skiers. Explore things to do in Switzerland in winter for non-skiers

Beyond the famous ski slopes, Switzerland unveils a world of enchantment for those who prefer to stay off the skis. From picturesque towns in the Swiss Alps to lively Christmas markets, there’s something for everyone.

Immerse yourself in the breathtaking Alpine scenery of St. Moritz. There, the snow-covered mountains and frozen Lake St. Moritz create a magical setting. Try your hand at ice skating on the frozen lake or indulge in luxury at the spa. Don’t miss scenic train rides like the Glacier Express for a unique perspective of the Swiss landscape.

In Zermatt, take a cable car to witness the iconic Matterhorn mountain or explore its charming streets and quaint villages. The ‘Top of Europe,’ Jungfraujoch, offers unparalleled views from the Sphinx Observatory.

So, let’s dive deeper into Switzerland’s winter charm.

Best Ski Towns for Non-Skiers

Switzerland is renowned for its picturesque ski towns, which aren’t just for skiers. These towns offer a wide range of activities for those who prefer to keep their feet on solid ground. While there are several charming ski towns across Switzerland, some stand out as the most famous and welcoming for non-skiers.

  • St. Moritz: Located in the Swiss Alps, St. Moritz is not only a paradise for skiers but also a haven for non-skiers. It’s renowned for its stunning alpine scenery, with snow-covered mountains and a frozen Lake St. Moritz. Visitors can indulge in activities like ice skating on the lake and pampering themselves in luxurious spas. Scenic train rides like the Glacier Express offer a unique way to explore the region’s breathtaking landscapes.
  • Zermatt: Home to the iconic Matterhorn mountain. Zermatt is another captivating destination for both skiers and non-skiers. Take a cable car ride to witness the awe-inspiring views or explore the town’s charming streets and quaint villages. The ‘Top of Europe,’ Jungfraujoch, is a short train journey away, offering magnificent views from the Sphinx Observatory.

While St. Moritz and Zermatt are the most famous, Switzerland boasts other ski towns like Davos, Verbier, and Gstaad. Each of them has its unique charm and attractions. These towns invite non-skiers to immerse themselves in the winter wonderland. They offer an array of activities that celebrate the Swiss Alps’ natural beauty. Whether you choose to relax in luxury, explore charming streets, or embark on scenic train rides, these ski towns are more than just winter destinations. They are gateways to a world of non-skiing adventures amidst the snowy Swiss landscape.

An evening view of Zermatt with the Matterhorn and village lights reflecting off the snow

The Most Popular Activities for Non-Skiers in Switzerland

Switzerland is celebrated for its winter sports. However, there’s no shortage of exciting activities in Switzerland in winter for non-skiers. Here are some of the most popular options:

  • Scenic train rides: Switzerland offers some of the world’s most breathtaking train journeys. The Glacier Express and Bernina Express take you through the snow-covered landscapes. They pass by charming villages and magnificent alpine scenery.
  • Ice skating: Glide gracefully on frozen lakes in picturesque settings like St. Moritz or Lake Zurich. It’s a quintessential winter experience.
  • Christmas markets: Switzerland’s Christmas markets are a festive delight. Explore the charming stalls, savor local treats, and soak in the holiday spirit.
  • Spa retreats: Pamper yourself in luxury at Switzerland’s world-class spas. Enjoy massages, thermal pools, and rejuvenating treatments.
  • Cultural exploration: Immerse yourself in Swiss culture. Visit museums, historic sites, and picturesque villages. Explore the old towns of Lucerne and Geneva for a glimpse of the past.
  • Foodie adventures: Switzerland’s culinary scene is a treat for the taste buds. Try Swiss cheese and chocolate, and indulge in gourmet dining experiences.
  • Hiking and winter walks: Lace up your boots for winter hikes on well-maintained trails. Enjoy the pristine beauty of the Swiss landscape.
  • Lake cruises: Take a leisurely cruise on Swiss lakes like Lake Geneva or Lake Lucerne. Admire the winter scenery from a different perspective.
  • Hot air ballooning: For a unique adventure, take a hot air balloon ride over the snow-covered Swiss landscapes.

These activities ensure that non-skiers can relish the beauty and culture of Switzerland in winter. They create lasting memories in this snowy wonderland.

a winter scene in Switzerland, with a snow-covered chalet and mountains in the background


Things to Do in St. Moritz for Non-Skiers

St. Moritz, a jewel nestled in the heart of the Swiss Alps, beckons to winter enthusiasts, both skiers and non-skiers alike. If you’re looking to savor the Swiss winter without the ski gear, here’s a list of things to do in St. Moritz for non-skiers.

Take in the Alpine scenery

The moment you set foot in St. Moritz, you’ll be greeted by nature’s grandeur. The snow-clad peaks, pristine landscapes, and the frozen expanse of Lake St. Moritz create an enchanting setting. Capture these breathtaking views, and you’ll find that St. Moritz’s beauty extends far beyond the ski slopes.

Ice skating 

Glide gracefully across the frozen lake and let the crisp, clean air invigorate your senses. Ice skating on Lake St. Moritz is not just an activity; it’s a quintessential winter experience you can enjoy with family and friends. Embrace the winter wonderland as you twirl and glide on the glistening ice.

Spa and luxury 

St. Moritz is synonymous with luxury and indulgence. Treat yourself to a day of relaxation at one of the town’s luxurious spas. Unwind in style, whether it’s a rejuvenating massage, a soothing soak in a hot tub, or a dip in an outdoor thermal pool. For the ultimate taste of luxury, consider caviar tasting, where you can savor this delicacy in a setting that exudes elegance.

Scenic train rides 

If you’re eager to explore the stunning landscapes of the region, hop on board the Glacier Express or the Bernina Express. These scenic train journeys offer a front-row seat to the mesmerizing beauty of the alpine. From panoramic windows, you’ll witness snow-covered valleys, charming villages, and majestic peaks. It’s a captivating way to immerse yourself in the Swiss landscape, all while staying warm and comfortable on the train.

In St. Moritz, non-skiers are not just spectators. They’re active participants in the enchanting world of winter. St. Moritz offers a diverse range of experiences that celebrate the magic of the season.

Things to Do in Zermatt for Non-Skiers 

There are a lot of things to do in Zermatt for non-skiers. Whether you’re gliding gracefully on frozen lakes, indulging in luxurious spa retreats, or embarking on scenic train journeys, Switzerland caters to your desires in the midst of snow-covered mountains and picturesque villages. The Swiss Alps create a backdrop that transforms winter into a magical season for everyone. The memories you create here will be nothing short of enchanting. So, pack your winter attire and your sense of adventure. Head to Switzerland for an unforgettable winter experience; no skis are required.

Zermatt is a captivating destination for both skiers and non-skiers. Here are some fantastic things to do in Zermatt for non-skiers:

  • Take the cable car: While skiers head down the slopes, you can embark on an unforgettable journey. Take a cable car from Zermatt to the viewing platform of the Matterhorn mountain. The views are simply awe-inspiring, and don’t forget to pose with a box of Toblerone, a Swiss classic, for that perfect photo.
  • Top of Europe: Journey to Jungfraujoch, often called the ‘Top of Europe.’ This excursion takes you to one of the highest accessible points in Europe. There, the Sphinx Observatory offers spectacular views, particularly in the early evening. It’s a mesmerizing experience that you won’t want to miss.
  • Town exploration: Zermatt is a town filled with charm. Wander through its delightful streets, lined with traditional Swiss architecture. Explore the quaint villages that surround it. Immerse yourself in the Swiss atmosphere. Try local cuisine and discover the culture that defines this alpine wonderland.

Zermatt isn’t just a ski destination. It’s a place where non-skiers can create memorable experiences amidst the stunning Swiss scenery.


Switzerland in winter for non-skiers is a captivating wonderland that extends its warm embrace to both skiers and non-skiers. While the country is renowned for its ski resorts, it’s equally famous for the charming experiences it offers to those who prefer solid ground beneath their feet. Two of the most famous towns, St. Moritz and Zermatt stand out as exceptional destinations for non-skiers.

Traserbas is one of the leading car rental service providers in Switzerland. We offer professional car hire services for any occasion. This includes limousines, minivans, and minibusses with experienced drivers. Traserbas provides year-round safe and comfortable transport when traveling from Zurich Airport to Zermatt. This comes with easy and fast booking. For Zurich Airport to St. Moritz transfers, Traserbas ensures an unbeatable fair price. The journey takes 2 hours and 45 minutes for the 208 kilometers between Zurich and St. Moritz.


The best time for non-skiers to visit Switzerland in winter is from November to February when the country turns into a winter wonderland.

No, non-skiing activities in Switzerland are diverse and suitable for various fitness levels.

Yes, non-skiing activities in Switzerland are family-friendly. They offer something for every member of the family to enjoy.

Pack winter-appropriate clothing, including snow-proof attire, comfortable walking shoes, a winter parka, warm beanies, and a universal adaptor for your electronics to make the most of your trip.

Maya Keller author

Maya Keller

Maya Keller is a passionate traveler and writer focused on exploring and sharing the best of Zurich and Basel in Switzerland. With a love for uncovering hidden gems and sharing practical travel tips, Maya aims to inspire fellow adventure seekers to experience the beauty and culture of Swiss cities.