Coronavirus is making people around the globe worried for their health. We are becoming even more health-conscious than ever. Everyone is on the lookout for a place where they can escape not only coronavirus but also many other viruses that are lurking around the corner.
Some may not know, but mountains are extremely beneficial for our health. Since they are secluded and less crowded than the city, mountains are the perfect place one can retreat to. There are many reasons why mountains are good for our health.
Why the mountains are good for our health?
Simply by living nearby the mountains, you reduce the risk of heart disease and possibly increase life expectancy. Our bodies burn a larger number of calories at higher altitude therefore it will be more difficult to gain weight than in the valley or beachside. The fresh mountain air is good for stress reduction and better night’s sleep. These are only some of the benefits of living close to the mountains.
Mountains in Switzerland
“We are now in the mountains and they are in us, kindling enthusiasm, making every nerve quiver, filling every pore and cell of us.” These are the words of John Muir who is also known as “John of the mountains”. The feeling he described when he said these words is easily reachable once you are in Switzerland.
Switzerland is home to many mountains. In fact, mountains in Switzerland cover 60 percent of the land area. The two main mountain ranges in Switzerland are the Alps (south and east) and Jura (north and west). These two ranges are separated by the Swiss Plateau which includes numerous hills. You will not make a mistake when you visit the mountains in Switzerland. Every single one is wondrous no matter what time of the year it is.
The Matterhorn is not only one of the most popular mountains in Switzerland but also in the world. People from around the globe come to visit it and enjoy its majestic beauty. It is said that the famous Toblerone chocolate’s shape is supposed to represent the Matterhorn, but the makers say otherwise.
The shape of the chocolate is supposed to represent something completely different. It was inspired by a show at the Folies Bergѐre – a famous music hall in Paris. At the end of the show, dancers formed a huge, human triangle which apparently impressed young Tobler (creator of the Toblerone chocolate).
Matterhorn is located in the Valais region where you will find some of the highest mountains in Switzerland. It is 4478m tall. The mountain sits on the Swiss-Italian border and with its jagged tooth-like appearance it amazes everyone. Matterhorn completely dominates the resort of Zermatt.
It is only natural that the most amazing views of the Matterhorn peak can be seen from Zermatt. People visit this area as it is a crown jewel of ski resorts in Switzerland. The ski area which is available here is massive. It is well connected as there are plenty of cable cars. The world’s highest tri-cable car system connects Trockener Steg with Matterhorn glacier paradise station at 3,883 meters. You can ski across two countries when you are here. Isn’t that fun?
Photographers adore this mountain. It is one of the most photographed mountains in the world. When you visit one of the many lakes that are in the proximity of the mountain, you will be able to see Matterhorn reflecting on its surface on a good day. It creates a scenery that cannot be found anywhere else in the world.
Be advised that only the most skilled mountain climbers can climb the Matterhorn.
Monta Rosa is the highest mountain in Switzerland. It is 4634 m high and is located in the Valais region. Only very skilled mountaineers can climb the mountain. It can be very dangerous for the rest. Monta Rosa can be reached from Saas-Fee or Zermatt.
Some people who don’t want to climb the mountain but still decide to come close stay overnight at the Monta Rosa hut. The hut is located at the foot of the mountain. To get to the hut you have to cross a small glacier. So, you must have the appropriate equipment and most importantly experience to do so. You should hire a guide to take you there from Zermatt. Some inexperienced tourists thought that they can do it alone but ended up being in danger. They had to call a helicopter to save them which ended up costing 4000 dollars. They bitterly regretted not hiring a guide.
The Monta Rosa hut opened in September 2009 and since its opening, it attracts many visitors. What draws people to come to this hut is not only the mountain but also the amazing design and innovative architecture.
Mountain Pilatus is not the highest mountain in Switzerland but it also is number one in the world for something. The mountain is 2129m high and is located in central Switzerland. It rises above the southwestern shore of Lake Lucerne.
To get to the mountain you can ride the world’s steepest cog railway. The railway was commissioned in 1889 at a gradient of up to 48 percent. The incline starts at Alpnachstad and ends at Pilatus Kulm. When you are riding it, you get to see amazing alpine meadows and breathtaking rock formations.
History of the world’s steepest cog railway
When railway’s engineer Eduard Locher presented his plans in 19 century, most of the people thought that he has gone insane. But to their disbelief, the railway opened in 1889. It was 4618 meters long and it connected Apnachstad with Pilatus Kulm. For the train to move forward at a 48% gradient, the Eduard Locher came up with an ingenious design. Two horizontally rotating cogwheels made the climb possible. The incline was not reduced since its opening until today and this cog railway still stands as the world’s steepest.
Other ways to reaching Pilatus
The cog railway is not the only way to reach the mountain. You can get there by using a gondola from Kriens or hike up from Alpnachstadt. This hike is for extremely fit people and is insanely hard. It takes 4 to 6 hours to complete it.
Pilatus, the mountain of dragons
People around the world have always been mesmerized by the idea that dragons had existed. Pilatus is also called dragon’s lair and many stories connect this mountain with these magical creatures.
The mountain of dragons, Pilatus, inspires artists to this day. Steven Reineke composed a true masterpiece “Pilatus: Mountain of Dragons” in 2002”. This composition depicts travelers climbing the mountain Pilatus in search of the dragons.
In the Middle Ages, people believed that dragons lived in the rugged clefts and crevices of the mountain. These dragons had healing powers too.
Legend says that in summer 1421 a huge dragon flew to the mountain Pilatus and crashed to the ground. It happens that the dragon crashed very close to the farmer Stempflin and the farmer fainted. When he recovered the dragon was gone. The things this creature left behind were a lump of clotted blood and the Dragon Stone. In the year 1509, this stone was legally declared to have healing powers.
Switzerland is an amazing country and definitely worth your visit. It is the best place to get away and enjoy the things our glorious planet has to offer. You will feel amazing when you visit the mountains. You may even meet dragons high up. Who knows? If you’re feeling adventurous, hire one of our limousines to take to these amazing places.