16 Best places for fall in Switzerland

Located in the middle of Europe, Switzerland has all seasons of the year, and fall is probably the prettiest. Yes, you can object, Switzerland is beautiful in every season, but Switzerland in the fall is like a fairy-tale come to life: the sun, which is still warm in the lowlands, the cool, crisp air in higher elevations, the colorful leaves…oh yeah, the leaves! From the end of September to October, taking a trip to Switzerland is like stepping into a world of mesmerizing color.

In this blog post, I wanted to break down the best places to go in Switzerland to ensure you make the most of your fall trip. My parents visit us regularly at this time of the year – just in time for the fall holidays, so we have tried all the tips below in the fall.

When is the best time to go?

The fall season in Switzerland is from September to mid-November. Most mountain resorts and cable cars in Switzerland stay open till the end of October (then they close for maintenance). If there is warm weather in early November, some mountains may re-open for weekends if the weather is nice. On the other hand, if there is early snow, they can quickly start their winter season. Please always check the website and the webcam of the place before you go. Some very popular tourist destinations (e.g., Titlis, Schilthorn, or Jungfraujoch) are open year-round, but in this post, I don’t want to focus mainly on them.

When do leaves change their color?

Peak foliage season can change from year to year. Leaves usually start changing colors in Switzerland in early October – depending on the altitude. There are so many factors that affect their color: rain, wind, temperature, etc. Here, you can find the foliage map, where you can check the foliage update in Switzerland.

Best places for fall in Switzerland

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1. Zermatt

I know I said I’d take you to the less touristy places, but guys, this is the Matterhorn! For most people, seeing the Matterhorn is a once-in-a-lifetime experience. And the reason I recommend visiting is that the Gornergrat Railway is open 365 days a year.

2. Jura mountains

Jura & Three-Lakes – the region in northwest Switzerland offers beautiful hiking routes near the lakes or on the ridges of the Jura, which spans 360 km in an arc on both sides of the French-Swiss border. For most of the hikes you don’t need any mountain transport.

3. Blausee in Bernese Oberland

This is the absolute classic if you visit the Bernese Alps. Blausee is a small lake in the Bernese Oberland, whose incredibly turquoise blue color takes your breath away. It is enclosed in a private nature park where you will find walking paths, a playground, a hotel with a restaurant, and a picnic area.

4. Elsigenalp

Another great spot in the Bernese Oberland. The cable car, which takes you in 7 minutes up to 1800 m.a.s.l., is open till the second half of October. Children up to and including the age of 15 travel free of charge when accompanied by their parents. Wow, isn’t it a great offer?

5. Felsenweg Bürgenstock

This is a family-friendly classic near Lucerne. The lovely walk begins at Bürgenstock Resort and continues along the Felsenpfad (rock nature trail) to the Hammetschwand Lift with 152m the highest external lift in Europe. It is open through to October from 9.30 am – 6.00 pm.

6. Stansterhorn

Take a ride with the world’s first Cabrio cable car to Mt. Stanserhorn. It is open till the end of November.

7. Areuse Gorge

Another tip in the Jura mountains is where you cross the iconic stone bridge spanning above the Areuse River.

8. Visiting a Pumpkin Farm

If you cannot imagine the fall without pumpkins, visit the famous Jucker Farm near Zurich. For many locals, it is “a must-see” place to see in the fall.

If you want a much quieter place, try the Wyeneth Pumpkin Farm near Solothurn.

9. Stockhorn

The Stockhorn cable car is open till mid-November, which makes the Stockhorn a great place to escape high above the autumn sea of fog.

10. Lake Thun area

The area around Lake Thun never disappoints. Head to the viewpoint to see the Bernese Alps in all their glory. No mountain transport is needed.

11. Schwarzsee (Black Lake)

This lovely lake in the pre-Alps is excellent both for families and proficient hikers. There is a theme trail along the lake, or you can hike on the hill above the lake. Also no mountain transport is needed.

12. Stoos

Stoos is a picturesque car-free mountain village located in the canton of Schwyz in central Switzerland, which is reached by the steepest funicular in the world. Before the winter maintenance, it is open till the end of October.

Best Switzerland towns to visit in the fall

13. Bern – the capital of Switzerland

In addition to its role as a federal city and thus the seat of government, Bern is also known for its landmarks Bärengraben, Münster, and Zytglogge.

14. Zurich – the biggest city in Switzerland

The charming cosmopolitan city of Zurich is the Swiss metropolis and offers a first-class quality of life. Zurich is known for its excellent shopping along the world-famous Bahnhofstrasse, and the town also provides many leisure activities.

15. Basel

The synonym for fall in Basel – the 3rd biggest city in Switzerland – is the Basler Herbstmesse, aka the funfair. In 2021, it celebrated 550 years of existence!

16. Neuchâtel

Neuchâtel, called Neuenburg in German, has a rich cultural and architectural past. Neuchâtel is well known for its watchmaking, vineyards, and beautiful lake promenade.

If you want to stay in Canton Bern

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Categories: Cities, hiking, Nature
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Hana Hurábová

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