When we decided that Switzerland would be the final stop on our summer tour of Europe, I knew immediately that I wanted to visit Zermatt.
Living in Southern California, I get to visit Disneyland regularly, and the magic of the Matterhorn has always captured my imagination. I promised myself I would see the real mountain one day...
And that day finally arrived!
While Jess rekindled her love for the beautiful city of Paris, my husband and I took a 12-hour train ride through France and into Switzerland. We passed trees that looked like stalks of bent asparagus planted in gold fields, rows of bright yellow sun flowers and light purple lavender, and rolling green farmland surrounded by craggy hills topped with white wind mills. The train ride was lovely, and the little Swiss village that greeted us at the end of our travel was unbelievably charming.
Traveling Teddy thought so too...
We arrived just in time for the 150th anniversary celebration of the first ascent up the Matterhorn. We learned a lot about the expedition, and you can too by clicking here.
Jess joined us on our second day in town, and we spent a lovely morning hiking the Matterhorn trails. We crossed wood and stone bridges spanning milk colored rapids...
fields of lavender and daisies in full bloom...
and historic huts built from wood logs and granite tiles.
The cliff-side walkways of the Gorner Gorge offer an adrenaline rush for the daring hiker...
I tell you there is nothing as satisfying after a long Alpine hike as a fresh grilled brat and a local craft beer.
Of course, then it's time for a nap.
From the stunning natural beauty and Swiss village charm to the warm and inviting local residents, Zermatt surpassed all of our expectations and reminded us of the importance of taking risks in order to follow our dreams.
What all of these experiences have in common is a balance of joy and fear that only travel can bring. Being outside your comfort zone, absent the defining bumpers of your daily life, forces a kind of humility and openness.
It is precisely this vulnerability that, ironically, has the power to embolden you to overcome any number of fears—fear of not being able to communicate in a foreign language, fear of feeling like a rube, fear of being a tourist rather than a traveler. . . .
That we get to break our own stereotypes of ourselves when we are in different places is perhaps the greatest pleasure of all.
~ Pilar Guzmán, Editor-in-Chief, Conde Nast Traveler ~
Wishing you happy travels wherever your own journey through life takes you!
~ Nel ~