From world-class skiing to rustic charm, Davos has earned its Magic Mountain nickname.
PERCHED IN THE HEART OF the Swiss Alps, Davos is Europe’s highest-altitude city, offering unmatched views of snow-topped peaks, unspoilt valleys and clear blue lakes.
The city has earned the nickname Magic Mountain for its mix of exhilarating winter sports, après-ski fun and Instagram-worthy views.
Ringed by the soaring summits of the Parsenn, Madrisa and Schatzalp mountains, this postcard-like town provides easy access to the region’s best skiing, hiking, and natural scenery.
Parsenn is where the ski culture was born in Davos. Its wide, sunny runs attract skiers of all levels, including families and beginners, while its 12-kilometre downhill run is legendary. The high-altitude slopes ensure excellent snow conditions throughout the season.
Adventure lovers should head to Madrisa’s tree-lined pistes that wind through storybook-style mountain forests. For a blend of the two, set your sights on Schatzalp, where visitors discover a balance of accessibility with a hidden gem feel and a ride up its funicular affords stunning panoramas.
The majesty of the mountains framing this iconic Swiss retreat means that visitors are promised bucolic charm, thrilling outdoor experiences and the area’s famed mountain air.
Aside from skiing, guests visit Davos for its slopeside bars and nightlife, clubs, casinos and extensive entertainment — including The Ice Hockey Spengler Cup and the Art on Ice ice-skating show — all year. It’s also been home to The World Economic Forum since 1971.
This winter, it’s time to see firsthand why thousands of visitors return to Davos each year.
For stunning accommodations, guests love the four-star Mountain Plaza Hotel (formerly Hotel Sunstar) for its access to a variety of sporting experiences amidst the Grisons mountains. The hotel is located in a prime position close to the Jakobshorn and Bolgenareal mountains and offers serene relaxation. Hotel Alpina is another four-star option in Davos with a boutique hotel vibe and a focus on chic and trendy restaurants. To experience the highest elevation accommodation in the region, book a room at restaurant-weissfluhgipfel.ch, nestled at 2,843 metres. The rooms might be small, and the hotel is only reachable by cable car from the Weissfluhjoch summit, but the views are breathtaking.
There are endless cold weather experiences to be had in Davos — the hardest part will be deciding which ones to fill your days with in this snowy paradise. Join experts Christian and Markus in elite cold-weather sports workshops that include breathing exercises, focus drills and ice baths. Or try Ice Mini Golf, where 18 holes are played with a field hockey stick and puck on a sheet of ice — the perfect activity for families and friends.
Of course, the skiing in Davos is world-class, and none is better than the new Jakobshorn Summit Run, stretching from the Usser Isch Valley station along the Carjöler ski lift into Bolgen. Reserved only for advanced skiers and snowboarders, the trail will debut this winter season. If you prefer a more competitive day of skiing, try the Parsenn Derby, the oldest popular ski race in the world at 100 years old and considered one of Switzerland’s skiing classics.
However, new skiers need not be scared off by the pros in Davos. It’s easy to learn to ski in the mountain city, and there are plenty of experienced teachers ready to lead you down your first groomed slopes through powdery snow.
To enjoy the outdoors at a more relaxed pace, try winter hiking along 111 km of marked hiking trails. Stroll at your own pace through the pristine white landscape to truly see the area like a local. Snowshoeing is another favourite pastime. Strap on a pair of snowshoes and grab a set of poles to easily glide through the snow.
For cosier fun, book a horse carriage tour that ends with cheese fondue at Teufi Mountain Hut. Choose a 30-minute tour or spend the whole day exploring the terrain from a comfortable carriage before enjoying Switzerland’s most famous dish. You can also savour your fondue in a gondola on the rustic and traditional terrace of Hotel Steinbock.
Boasting epic skiing, new runs, and a vast trail network, Davos is a winter sports wonderland tucked amid stunning Alpine scenery. Ski Parsenn, Madrisa and Schatzalp, then unwind with snowshoeing, winter hikes and fondue. For outdoor adventure and quintessential Swiss charm, Davos is a magical mountain retreat.
Article Sponsored by Switzerland Tourism.
Lede Image photo by Marcel Giger and images courtesy of Switzerland Tourism, unless otherwise noted.