Best Time to Visit Switzerland

Switzerland has long been one of the world’s most popular tourist destinations. Offering stunning mountain scenery and a wealth of outdoor adventure. The famous Alps offer endless activities. Hiking and paragliding in the summer to skiing and boarding in the winter. Well known for its cheese and chocolate, it’s also a great place to relax with a hot cocoa or indulge in mouthwatering fondue. Found out here the best time to visit Switzerland.

Generally, the best time to visit Switzerland is in the spring/early summer and in the early fall, April through June or September and October. This is when you’re unlikely to battle thick tourist crowds and enjoy some of the most pleasant weather. While it’s a country that can be visited year-round, the best time for your trip really depends on what you hope to do. We’ll break it down by seasons to help you make the best decision for an experience of a lifetime.

Interlaken, Switzerland
Lake Geneva, Switzerland

Spring/Shoulder Season (April through mid-June)

Spring is a shoulder season in Switzerland, generally considered to be April, May and the first half of June, just before the busy summer begins. It’s a great time to visit this country as you’ll still be able to see plenty of snow on the peaks. But the ski crowds will be gone and you’re likely to find discounted hotel rates and cheaper airfare too. While you may experience some wet weather. Those lush valleys and mountains will be dotted with colourful wildflowers and hiking is often ideal.

April may be best for the most tranquillity, with average temperatures hovering around 60 degrees Fahrenheit and fewer other tourists around. You can also experience the Tulip Festival, hosted along the shores of Lake Geneva throughout the month. Bringing more than 120,000 tulips to brighten the already dazzling landscapes. While May is warmer, it’s also unpredictable, usually with more rain. Early June is likely to be pleasantly warm with average afternoon highs climbing to 70 degrees. While days are long, bringing plenty of daylight for enjoying the spectacular sights.

Alps, Switzerland
St Moritz, Switzerland

Summer/High Seasons (mid-June through early September)

Summer is the high season, the busiest period of the year when most visitors arrive in Switzerland. They want to enjoy the idyllic warm weather and hike some of the highest mountain trails as the snow will be melted by now. In July, afternoon high temperatures climb to the mid-70s or even higher. Making it a great time to take advantage of the many lakes and other recreational opportunities, along with music and other fun festivals. The downside is that the prices may be as much as 50 percent more than they are during the shoulder or low seasons. Particularly in the mountain resort areas, and you’ll have to contend with crowded trails and crowded streets.

August 1st is Swiss National Day which brings fireworks, bonfires, processions, BBQs and more. You’ll see children parading through the streets with their paper lanterns and residents light candles in their windows, with some of the most impressive festivities along Lake Lucerne.

Lugano, Switzerland
Zermatt, Switzerland

Autumn/Shoulder Season (mid-September through October)

Early fall is one of the best times to visit Switzerland. The days are crisp and often ideal for hiking, with vibrant foliage blankets the mountain slopes. Afternoon highs range anywhere from the upper 50s to low 70s. While the summer crowds have diminished meaning no fighting for a spot on a cable car. And the grape harvests will be happening too. It’s also a less expensive time to visit. Just keep in mind that If you hope to drive the higher mountain passes, be aware they’ll begin closing in October.

In Lugano, which borders Italy along the shores of Lake Lugano. The beauty is especially dazzling, beneath the shadow of soaring peaks highlighted with golden yellows, fiery reds and brilliant oranges. The town also hosts the Autumn Festival over the first weekend of October. With a celebration of grapes and wine alongside folkloric music.

Winter/Low and High Season (November through March)

As Switzerland is famous for snow sports, winter is a bit of a mixed bag as a high and low season. The slopes will attract lots of tourists who come to ski or board down them. Especially around the Christmas holidays, as well as to enjoy the Christmas markets. Generally, prices will be high anywhere skiing is possible, and these will be the most crowded areas as well. The Valais region is breathtaking, including famous Zermatt, overlooked by the Matterhorn, and Saas-Fee. Where there are some 310 miles of boarding and skiing available.

November won’t be as busy, but there may not be enough snow for skiing expect at high elevation areas. The Christmas markets begin around mid-month, With holiday music and lights, melted cheeses and roasted chestnuts, mulled wine and local handcrafted items. By the time December rolls around, there will be plenty, with the average maximum temperature in the upper 30s.

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