Sion and the Rhône Valley

Around Chalet Sky: the Rhône Valley

Like many Swiss towns, Sion is only known to tourists as a signpost that says “phew, we’re almost there”. Take the time to visit and you’ll return, as we did, to savour the pleasures of its Friday market, its terraces and lively streets. Sion boasts a fine Renaissance and medieval heritage, including Tourbillon Castle and the splendid Valère Basilica, which dominate the town from their rocky promontories. The Valais Nature Museum will be of interest to young and old alike.

Fascinated by golf? Valais has eight golf clubs, three of which are close to Sion. Challenged by via ferrata? You’re spoilt for choice. Prefer the more mellow atmosphere of the vineyards? There are paths through the vineyards and the wineries invite you to stop off for a bite to eat. Intrigued by the whims of nature? The Saint-Léonard underground is an enormous lake that you can explore in small boats.

Travelling through Switzerland by train is a magnificent way to experience all the diversity of this Alpine country. What’s more, the railways take you to places where the car can’t, to the heart of landscapes as unspoilt as they are wild. Panoramic trains such as the Bernina Express, the Glacier Express and the Gotthard Panorama Express are the jewels in Switzerland’s crown, covering some of the most attractive routes in the country. Martigny and the Gianadda Foundation are 13 minutes away. Visp, the gateway to the Zermatt amphitheatre, takes 30 minutes. Vevey and the unthinkable Chaplin Museum take 45 minutes, and Lausanne and its Olympic Museum 55 minutes.

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