Graubünden (Grisons)

Graubünden (or Grisons), land of the wild mountain goat and source of the Rhine, is also Switzerland’s most popular holiday region. Head here for walking holidays amidst breathtaking scenery and visit world-famous resorts like St. Moritz, Davos and Arosa.

About this Switzerland walking region

Gaubünden is Switzerland’s most popular holiday region, renowned above all for its wide range of outdoor pursuits, supremely clean air, a sunny climate and some of the country’s most stunning scenery. Comprising no less than 150 valleys, 615 lakes and 937 mountain peaks, with glacial waters which launch the famous Rhine and Inn rivers, the canton of Gaubünden, which occupies the entire south eastern corner of Switzerland, is the country’s largest yet least densely populated region. The landscape of undulating valleys, verdant pine forests, towering mountain peaks and rushing rivers can make the region difficult to get around – but fortunately not for hikers, who are really spoilt for choice when it comes to exploring this wild and dramatic land.

Bordering Austria to the north and Italy to the south and east, Graubünden, a former Roman province, has three native languages – German, Italian and Romansch, a derivative of Latin, which is spoken in some remote mountain areas. You may therefore hear the canton referred to as Graubünden, Grigioni or Grischun.

Graubünden is home to some of the most famous, high-end resorts in the Alps, such as St. Moritz, Davos, Klosters and Arosa, which all make great bases for a walking holiday. Then there is the gorgeous Engadin valley, the epicentre of Romansh culture, which runs for almost 100km (62mi) along a southern terrace of the Alps, enjoying almost year-round blue skies and bright sunshine, which help to create that postcard-perfect image of the Alps at their finest. Heading south towards the Italian border, the stunning valleys of Bregaglia and Poschiavo are, as their names suggest, Italian speaking – and the vibe here is so wholly Mediterranean that you would be forgiven for thinking you were, in fact, in Italy.

Walking in Graubünden

Graubünden is a mecca for both walkers and mountaineers, with hiking trails totalling over 10,000km (6,214mi), which meander through the most incredible Alpine scenery. An extensive network of mountain trains, cable cars and post buses means that even the highest and most remote peaks are easily accessed.

No matter what your ability and experience level, you will find plenty of walking routes to suit you, from gentle rambles and day hikes to high-octane mountain climbing and via ferratas.

Arosa

Arosa

Remote but legendary – one of Switzerland’s most-loved resorts ● Discover this famous winter destination in summer ● 200km (124mi) of top walking and hiking trails ● Outstanding location at the end of a wild mountain valley ● Mt. Weisshorn (2,653m/8,704ft) ● Get inspired: the 10-Lakes-Hike and many other themed routes.

Bergün Filisur

Bergün Filisur

Seven hamlets and mountain villages tucked-away between the Flüela and Albula pass ● On a ‘UNESCO World Heritage’ railway section: Preda to Bergün ● Walking highlight of the region - the ‘Kesch Trek’: four superlative days in the Bündner Alps ● Don’t miss Lake ‘Lai da Palpuogna’, voted the most beautiful spot in Switzerland!

Chur and around

Chur and around

Graubünden’s lively capital, dating back to 11,000 BC ● Beautiful ‘Old Town’, full of medieval charm ● Brambrüesch hiking area: accessible directly from the city centre ● Mt. Dreibündenstein (2,174m/7,133ft) has loads of walking paths ● Cable cars, mountain railways and post buses ● ‘Park & ride’ for the well-known Arosa Express.

Disentis Sedrun

Disentis Sedrun

Two authentic villages in the upper region of the Surselva, idyllically hidden away between Chur and Andermatt ● Romansh is the everyday language here ● Over 350km (217mi) of walking paths ● Special highlights: Lai da Tuma, the source of the Rhine and the monastery in Disentis ● Easy access via the famous Glacier Express.

Engadine – Samnaun

Engadine – Samnaun

Former smuggler’s paradise in the “Swiss Austrian Italian triangle” ● Now a haven for walkers and mountain bikers ● Over 250km (155mi) of hiking trails and 150km (93mi) of mountain bike trails ● Explore the Swiss National Park ● First double-decker cable car in the world - capacity of 180 ● 5 lovely villages and a tax-free area!

Engadine – Scuol

Engadine – Scuol

13 enchanting villages and hamlets in the Lower Engadine ● Easy access to Swiss National Park ● Scuol: lovely old town with 300 days of sunshine a year and a spa used by the Romans ● The hamlet of Guarda – preserved in perfection ● Not to be missed: the fairytale castle ‘Tarasp’, built in 1040 ● Popular centre for river rafting.

Engadine – St. Moritz

Engadine – St. Moritz

St. Moritz, the crown of the Upper Engadine, plus a handful of attractive villages ● More than 580km (361mi) of hiking paths ● Glamorous St. Moritz is all you expect and more ● Zernez is a good starting point for exploring the Swiss National Park ● Cable cars, mountain railways and the magnificent Piz Bernina (4,049m/13,284ft).

Engadine – Val Bregaglia

Engadine – Val Bregaglia

Val Bregaglia (Bergell in German) a stunningly beautiful valley in the very south, almost at the Italian border ● Serene and a paradise for walkers and mountaineers ● 180km (112mi) marked hiking trails for all levels ● Here you’ll find peaks such as Monte Disgrazia (3,678m/1,2067ft) and many more of similarly lofty heights.

Engadine – Val Müstair (Müstair Valley)

Engadine – Val Müstair (Müstair Valley)

UNESCO Biosphere Val Müstair, one of Switzerland’s most beautiful Alpine valleys ● Chain of six authentic villages - quiet, secluded, Romansh-speaking ● Off-the-beaten-path, only accessible via a high-alpine mountain pass (Fuorn Pass/Ofenpass) ● Borders on Swiss National Park ● Place to go: the convent of St. John the Baptist.

Flims Laax Falera

Flims Laax Falera

Just 90 minutes from Zurich, but still a Swiss secret that isn’t shared by many international travellers ● Three fine villages, fantastic Alpine panoramas, majestic forests and crystal clear lakes ● Network of 250km (155mi) signposted hiking trails and 330km (205mi) cycling routes ● Welcoming and great for families too.

Heidiland

Heidiland

Borders Liechtenstein ● Follow in Heidi’s footsteps and re-live the stories by Johanna Spyri ● Marvel at beautiful Lake Walensee ● Visit Quinten; the tiny, pretty hamlet that can only be reached on foot or by boat ● Beneath the mighty '7 Churfirsten' mountains, rising up to 2,844m (9,330ft) ● Try the healing waters of Bad Ragaz.

Lenzerheide & Valbella

Lenzerheide & Valbella

Two mountain resorts, beautifully set on either side of Lake Heidsee ● 350km (217mi) of graded hiking trails and a variety of themed rambles ● Also, Lenzerheide is simply one big natural mountain bike fest, with 305km (190mi) of trails and a great skills park ● Plenty of soaring peaks, including Mt. Parpaner Rothorn (2,865m/9,400ft).


Photos

Travel Information

Best time for a walking holiday...
May/June to September/October

Fly to...
Zurich Kloten (CH), Friedrichshafen (DE) St. Gallen Altenrhein (CH)

Switzerland Walking Regions