13 Awesome Facts to Know About Matterhorn – The Highest Mountain in Switzerland

13 Awesome Facts to Know About Matterhorn – The Highest Mountain in Switzerland

The Matterhorn – The highest mountain in Switzerland has been a popular tourist attraction for centuries. The Matterhorn is a mountain of the Alps, straddling the main watershed and border between Switzerland and Italy. It is a large, near-symmetrical pyramidal peak in the extended Monte Rosa area of the Pennine Alps, whose summit is high. The mountain lends its name to the Swiss canton which lies almost entirely within the canton of Valais, the mountainous border to the southwest being Switzerland.

Popular as “The Matterhorn” by Anglo-Saxons, although it is not technically a horn at all; Horn in German is “Kemnitz”. It lay uninhabited for centuries, with improved mountain travel and mountaineering technology.


Overview of Matterhorn – The Highest Mountain in Switzerland

Matterhorn | Image Source – Pinterest
  • Location – Alps
  • Map
  • Weather – Highest 14c | Lowest -5c
  • Popular Means of Transport – Shuttle | Train | Car | Air

Read more: Experience conquering the Matterhorn 

13 Interesting Facts About the Matterhorn – The Highest Mountain in Switzerland

Matterhorn is the 12th Highest Mountain in Europe, the 10th Highest Mountain in Switzerland

Matterhorn Standing Tall | Image Source – Pinterest

Did you know that the Matterhorn is the 4th Tallest Mountain in the Alps?

The first ascent of the Matterhorn was on July 14, 1865, by Edward Whymper, an English mountain climber. Whymper was known for making hair-raising Alpine climbs that had resulted in at least four of his seven guides losing their lives.

Whymper and two other climbers, both from Zermatt, Switzerland were the first to summit the mountain.

Around 3000 Climbers Climb the Matterhorn Every Year

Climbing Matterhorn | Image Source – Pinterest

Isn’t it amazing to know that around 3000 climbers attempt to summit the Matterhorn every year?

Matterhorn is Popular with Climbers Since 1865. The Matterhorn has been popular since Whymper’s first ascent in 1865, and today it is climbed by about 300 people each year.

It is one of the most difficult mountains to climb in the Alps because of its pyramidal summit and vertical faces. The Matterhorn has 3 faces – the South face, the West (or normal) face, and the North Face.

More than 500 People Have Died Climbing the Matterhorn – Both on the Way Up and Down

Dangerous Matterhorn from Afar | Image Source – Pinterest

This is such a tragedy as it is also one of the deadliest mountains on earth. It was estimated in the late 1800s that more than 500 people have died while climbing the Matterhorn since 1985.

Did you know that around 40 people have died while descending from the summit of the Matterhorn?

The Matterhorn has a Serious Avalanche Problem.

This is because the north face of the mountain, which rises 1,400 m (4,600 ft) above the town of Zermatt, is an enormous slab of glacial ice.

Of the 15 climbers who have died climbing to the Matterhorn summit, around 8 of them died because of an avalanche.

Air Zermatt Flies About 15 Times a Year to Rescue Climbers

Air Zermatt | Image Source – Pinterest

In case of an accident, rescue from the top of the mountain can be a logistical challenge as there is no road access to the Matterhorn.

In case of an emergency, air rescue from Zermatt is undertaken by Air Zermatt or other helicopter companies.

Most Climbers Start their Trek from Hornlihutte Before Dawn. There are 130 Seats Available Here and it is Open from July to September

Hornlihutte | Image Source – Pinterest

Starting the trek early in the morning is a must since climbers face the deadliest avalanche hazard when they are forced to climb over the glacier-covered slopes when temperatures rise.

Most Climbers Make it to the Top of Matterhorn in 5-6 Hours. The summit is reached by experienced climbers after about 6 hours.

At CHF150/night, Hornlihutte is One of the Most Expensive Mountain Retreats in the World

Hornlihutte Mountain Retreat | Image Source – The Hornlihutte

This is probably why only 130 people are allowed here every night. The Matterhorn’s Heights Varies Depending on the Season. This is mostly to reduce the number of climbers who are trying to summit the mountain at any given time.

The First Climbers Made their Trek on July 14, 1865 – Just Over 150 years ago. Four of the Seven Climbers in the Group Died on the Way Down

Matterhorn Disaster in 1865 | Image Source – Wikimedia

Edward Whymper and Whymper’s Party Reached the Summit at 12:30 pm, Once There Whymper Exhibited a Flag of England and a Union Jack to Celebrate the British Ascent of One of Switzerland’s Most Famous Mountains.

The First Woman to Climb the Matterhorn was Lucy Walker in 1871. She was Also the First Woman to Summit the Eiger (1864).

Lucy Walker | Image Source – Outsideonline

The First Woman to Reach the Summit of the Matterhorn was Lucy Walker on June 22, 1871. She Made the Trek Along with Her Husband William.

The Oldest Person to Reach the Top of the Matterhorn is Ulrich Inderbinen. When He Made this Record, He Was 89 years old. He was born in Zermatt in 1900, First Climbing the Mountain when He Was 20 years old.

Ulrich Inderbinen | Image Source -Summitpost

Ulrich Inderbinen was an inspired mountaineer. Born in the year 1900, he lost his son and grandson to an avalanche on the Matterhorn in 1979.

The Matterhorn First Appeared on the Famous Toblerone Packaging in 1960

Matterhorn in Toblerone Chocolate Packaging | Image Source – Pinterest

The packaging of the Toblerone in 1960 was the first to feature the Matterhorn. The advert showed a bear next to the mountain. The brand was inspired by the concept and named the chocolate Toblerone.

This Very Famous Poster of the Matterhorn was Designed by Emil Cardinaux in 1903 and is Considered the First Modern Travel Poster

Matterhorn Poster by Emil Cardinaux | Image Source – Pinterest

The first modern Swiss poster was created in 1903 by Emil Cardinaux. The poster depicted a stylized view of the Matterhorn with a hiker standing before it, his backpack almost touching the peak of the mountain.

Experience Conquering the Matterhorn – The Highest Mountain in Switzerland

Beauty of Matterhorn | Image Source – Flickr

Conquering the Matterhorn is an extremely adventurous activity. You can take help from swiss guide tours to make your trip a memorable one when you travel in Switzerland. This is the highest mountain in Switzerland and you can take up this exciting expedition with an experienced and professional mountain guide.

It is the highest peak in the Alps, and it rises to 4,478 meters or 14,690 feet above sea level. It is also one of the most dangerous mountains in Europe because more than 500 climbers have died on this mountain over the years.

You can climb the Matterhorn during any season, but summers are generally considered to be the safest time since there are fewer avalanches. The best months are June through September, however, you can attempt an early climb during May or late September. April is also another good option for climbing, but it does get very cold in the mountains at that time.

The Matterhorn has a high risk of falling rocks and sometimes even icefalls, so climbers must be careful when they are scaling this mountain. Ascending this peak requires proper climbing equipment and good footwear.

The average duration of a climb to the top is about six hours, however, it can take many more hours if you are athletically challenged. As a result, climbers can’t reach the summit before sunrise or after sunset – that would be too dangerous at this altitude.

Tips to Consider Before Conquering the Matterhorn

If you are planning an expedition to this mountain, there are some tips that you must keep in mind.

  • First, choose the best time of the year to climb, preferably from June to September for a safe and easier ascent.
  • Secondly, make sure that you have proper equipment for climbing stored securely in your backpack. This includes crampons, ice axes, helmets, and spiked boots. You should also have a rope for support.
  • Finally, hire the services of a professional guide to help you reach the top safely. He will be able to inform you about all the precautions that need to be taken during your climb so that everybody stays safe and reaches the summit in good health. You can find the best guides in Zermatt.

So, if you are interested in conquering the Matterhorn, make sure that you follow all these suggestions, and your trip will be a success!

The Beautiful City of Zermatt | Image Source – Pinterest

What is the Best Time to Visit the Matterhorn in Switzerland?

The best season for a trip to the Matterhorn is between June and September.

Is it Possible to Visit During Winter?

It is not possible to climb this mountain during winter. The weather conditions make climbing extremely difficult, and there are high chances of facing avalanches. However, you can visit the Matterhorn all around the year for a hike.

Where is the Matterhorn Park?

The Matterhorn Park is located in Zermatt, Switzerland.

How High is the Matterhorn?

The height of the Matterhorn mountain is 4478 meters or 14690 feet above sea level.

What Can I See From the Top of the Matterhorn?

At an elevation of about 14000 feet, the top of the Matterhorn offers an amazing view of nearby mountains and glaciers. You can also see the beautiful city of Zermatt from here.

Is it Possible to Get Snowed in on the Matterhorn?

It is not possible to be snowed in on the Matterhorn, but you may face extremely low temperatures while scaling this mountain.

What Can I Do if I Get Tired During My Climb?

You will not be able to rest on the Matterhorn, because there is no place for sitting. However, if you get tired midway through your climb, you may ask the guide to help you take a short break.

Are There Any Cable Cars or Railways on this Mountain?

The Matterhorn does not have a cable car, but it has an aerial tramway that goes all the way to Hohtälli Mountain. There is also a rotating restaurant located near the base of the mountain which you can visit if you don’t want to scale this peak.

How Long Does it Take to Climb the Matterhorn?

It takes about six hours to climb this mountain. You can hire a guide who will help you reach the top safely.

Is There Any Vegetation on the Matterhorn?

The lower slopes of this mountain are covered in forests, but there isn’t much vegetation at such an altitude.


Matterhorn – The highest mountain in Switzerland is one place that everyone wishes to visit in their lifetime. The thrill and excitement associated with conquering this peak are unmatched. If you are planning to embark on an expedition, take the help of a professional guide and follow all safety precautions to enjoy your trip in good health.

Moreover, Matterhorn will offer you a stunning view of the nearby mountains and glaciers. There is also an aerial tramway and a rotating restaurant at its base, which you can visit if climbing this peak seems like too much effort for you.

Luu Duc Hoang

Luu Duc Hoang

I am just a simple man, carrying around his laptop in a backpack. “Traveling combined with volunteering is always what I aim for”

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