Rotenboden-Riffelalp: the facts

  • Hiking time: 1h45
  • Difficulty: moderate
  • Elevation: 2209 – 2816 m
  • Distance: 5.1 km
  • Terrain: meadows, high-alpine surroundings, forests
  • Region: Matter Valley (Valais)

About this trail

There are plenty of impressive views along this alpine trail to Riffelalp. You will see the nearby Matterhorn, and clear weather conditions allow you to see the Bietschhorn as well, over 40 km (26 miles) away on the opposite side of the Rhone Valley.

This hike can be extended to Sunnegga or shortened by ending in Riffelberg, where you can take the train back to Zermatt.

Directions and map

How to travel to Rotenboden and from Riffelalp

Rotenboden can be reached by cogwheel trains which leave from Zermatt for the Gornergrat. Zermatt is car-free and can only be reached by train. Drivers can park in nearby Täsch. There are frequent train services from Täsch to Zermatt. From Riffelalp, take the train back to Zermatt.

The hiking route

  • Follow the signs to the Riffelsee, a beautiful small mountain lake.
  • Pass by the Riffelsee at its right side and go straight ahead at the fork.
  • Start following the signs to Riffelalp/Furi from the next junction.
  • Turn right at the chapel of Riffelberg. There is a train station at Riffelberg, so you may end your hike here if desired.
  • Follow the signs to Riffelalp. A bit later, at a fork, you should take the left path to Riffelalp, not the right one.
  • Keep heading for Riffelalp. You will pass by a church just before Riffelalp.
  • From Riffelalp, follow the signs to the station of the cog train. This path leads along a hotel and a tramway that connects the hotel with the Riffelalp train stop.

Rotenboden-Riffelsee-Riffelalp hiking trail on a map

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Page author: AnnikaSince early childhood I've been visiting Switzerland during my holidays and I just fell in love with the country. I spent many summers in the Bernese Oberland, which still feels like my second home, and then started to explore other areas. Traveling, hiking and photographing in the Swiss Alps are my absolute favorite activities.