Novice hikers and tourists interested in hiking and trekking or sightseeing can find it daunting to explore the Swiss Alps. However, Alpenwild, a company that offers hiking, walking, and trekking adventure tours, notes that the Alps are one of the most accessible mountains in the world. They have well-maintained trails and various meal options available for visitors.
Accessibility of the Alps
The Alps are considered accessible because they are serviced by networks of fast and convenient cable cars, gondolas, funiculars, and cog railways that bring hikers around. The rides and the available viewing platforms are all handicap accessible.
This is suitable for those who have limited time to explore but want to see as much of the Alps as they can. Visitors can, for instance, elect to hike to the summit and take a ride down so they only need to hike one way and can avoid hiking down the same path. This saves time for hikers who want to reach the summit and explore other trails and spots around the mountain.
The ease and accessibility of getting around also means hikers can quickly get to spots with good views and trails. This is great for those who wish to visit different scenic viewpoints and spots.
Novice hikers may believe that an adventure in the Alps requires heavy climbing gear and equipment. However, an overloaded backpack and special gear is not required for most trails because they are well-maintained and easily accessible. Some hikers may even choose to wear running shoes instead of heavy and bulky hiking boots to hikes with medium or difficult ratings. Well-kept trails mean hikers do not have to worry about struggling against overgrowth in the path.
Trails in the Alps are also easy to follow as most are single track paths. At each juncture and spread throughout each trail, there are clearly displayed bright yellow signs with directions and the estimated time it will take to reach a certain landmark. This reduces the likelihood of hikers getting lost and having to constantly check a map for their location.
Compared to trails on many other mountains, the hiking and trekking trails in the Alps come with restaurants situated beside them. Some of these high-elevation restaurants serve three-course meals with wine. This can re-energize visitors and boost mood for another round of hiking or of further exploring the scenery. It also makes it unnecessary to bring snacks like sandwiches or a granola bar up the mountain.
Despite the accessibility and relative ease of hiking in the Alps, simple day hikes still come with essentials to bring. This list includes a backpack, a water bottle, communication devices, extra clothing, snacks, and sunscreen. Hikers need to keep in mind that altitude increases risk of sunburn and the weather is often colder at higher elevations.
As the Swiss Alps are widely accessible and have well-maintained trails with food options, visitors are able to get around easily and hike, trek, and explore the mountain’s various scenic spots.