Photo Credit: Francisco Antunes

Switzerland offers a vast range of things to do year round for all ages and fitness levels. The summer sees people enjoying the great outdoors where hiking, swimming, walking, paragliding, sailing, and biking are paramount. But Switzerland is known its winter sports and boasts some of the best skiing in the world. Whether it's downhill, cross-country, snow shoeing, snowboarding, sledding, or ice skating, a fun powder day is never far away.

From the mountains to the valleys and the cities, there is something for everyone to enjoy in Switzerland. The cities are home to some of the best museums and UNESCO World Heritage sites in the world, while the countryside and mountains provide a great backdrop for the many active pursuits.

The Swiss Alps are considered to be one the premier hiking destination in the world. Serious hikers will be elated to explore famous routes such as the Jungfrau, Appenzell and Engadine, but for most visitors, it pays to hire an experienced guide or join a tour. Alpenwild will happily organize a trip to suit any ability level in a small group setting of six to ten guests. Another popular company is Ryder-Walker Alpine Adventures, which provides fun inn-to-inn hiking tours.

Boating on Switzerland's many lakes is a popular summer activity. There are absolutely beautiful waterways to enjoy by motor boat, sail boat or kayak. Lake Geneva is a popular option, as are Vierwaldstattersee, Lac de Neuchatel and Bodensee. You can either rent the vessels for the day and go at it on your own or choose a guided tour. Swiss Trails can arrange daytrips for groups or individuals. Those that want a longer experience (up to six-days on the water) can contact Trango Eventagentur.

If boating does not provide enough of an adrenaline rush, guided white water rafting trips are another option. Switzerland has plenty of Alpine rivers that offer some of the best rapids in Europe, from beginner to advanced . Some of the most popular routes are the Luetschental, Rheinschlucht gorge and Simme. Swiss River Adventures or SwissChallenge can arrange adventures that suits all levels of competence.

Switzerland is home to many extreme sports, many of which are becoming mainstream such as paragliding, which has been popular among locals for many years. Paragliding Interlaken provides lessons and allows beginners to experience the joys of flight with an experienced instructor on tandem rides. Verbier Summits can organize more advanced trips for enthusiasts that want to maximize flying time.

Another extreme sport that is gaining popularity is canyoning, which involves walking, jumping, abseiling, and swimming in or through canyons. Alpine Raft and Swiss Alpine Guides are found in the heart of Switzerland’s sporting capital, Interlaken to take you through the abyss. Both companies offer a wide range of canyoning options for all abilities in a range of different locations.

An increasingly popular way to experience Switzerland's countryside is by taking a motorcycle tour. These trips allow visitors to enjoy the twisting passes, breath the fresh mountain air and stop wherever the heart pleases. Admo Tours will arrange motorcycle daytrips or longer eight-day journeys graded by difficulty and include rentals of BMWs and Suzukis. also organizes overnight excursions through the Swiss Alps.

Golfing might not be the first thing that comes to mind when daydreaming about snowy Switzerland, but the country is actually home to more than 60 courses and some of the most dramatic greens in the world have the Swiss Alps as their backdrop! Green Golf offers golf tours to some of the leading clubs in Geneva, Lucerne, Davos, and Interlaken. Golf in Switzerland can also arrange tailor-made golf trips, which include sightseeing.

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