Ski and Snowboard Switzerland from the Montreux Riviera


Montreux, in Canton Vaud on Lake Geneva, is famous for the Montreux Jazz Festival and is the setting for Deep Purple's "Smoke on the Water". The town is in a beautiful setting, facing South towards France across Lake Geneva and surrounded by the Alps. On the outskirts of the town lies the Chateau de Chillon, one of the most famous castles in Europe.

For the winter sports enthusiast, however, the benefit of the Montreux Riviera is that it lies at the heart of an efficient road network and a metronomically reliable public transport system which enables you to easily reach the resorts of French-speaking Vaud and Valais.

Resorts which are easy to reach for a day trip are Villars, Gstaad, Leysin, Glacier3000,Les Diablerets, Les Portes du Soleil and Verbier.

In addition the resort of Caux/Rochers de Naye is served by a cog railway running out of Montreux itself. However there are only 8km of what are very challenging runs in the ski area. But not everyone goes up for the skiing. The views are stunning and there are a handful of pleasant mountain restaurants.

For one, two or six day outings, Swiss Rail runs the outstanding Snow'n'Rail scheme to many resorts, providing a discount on both public transport and lift passes. Montreux hotels also provide guests with a pass that provides free public transport along the Montreux Riviera. This can also can be used to get a discount on the trains to Rochers de Naye.

My preferred hotel in Montreux is the 4 star Grand Hotel Suisse Majestic, opposite the station with views over Lake Geneva, and the best restaurant is probably the Safran in the Hotel Eurotel. To book accommodation I recommend