Holiday resorts and Holiday Regions in Switzerland under switzerland-hiking.ch
   

Valais | Thyon

Holiday resorts and holiday regions in Switzerland

 
Wintertime in Thyon

The resort and ski area at Thyon were built recently, and they were built specifically with wintertime fun and creature comforts in mind. This gives Thyon some serious advantages over one-time mountain farming villages which have haphazardly thrown up a few ski-lifts here and there (or even a lot of them), wherever there was some place left: in Thyon 2000, everything is laid out conveniently, because it was all designed with tourists and their needs in mind. However, the resort also blends into the wild alpine scenery, and open pastures and mountain forests still run right up to the edge of each village. The overall impression is an agreeable combination of natural alpine tranquillity and the amenities, convenience and activities range of a much larger resort.

If Thyon has succeeded in blending into its natural surroundings very well, it may also be because the whole area appears to have been designed by some Higher Power with winter sports in mind. Topographically and meteorologically, it just doesn’t get much better than Thyon-Région. At 2100 meters above sea level and far from the major European truck transit routes that affect the air quality in other alpine valleys, every breath you take in Thyon reminds you that you are in one of the most pristine, well-preserved valleys in the Alps.

In addition, the micro-climate in the Central Valais, which is protected by towering peaks from both northbound and southbound rain clouds, makes for an inordinately high number of sunny days, which is why the farmers down in the Rhone Valley built the bisses, or suspended irrigation waterways, down from the glaciers to the valley floor hundreds of years ago. In spite of this sunny and dry climate, the envy of the rest of Switzerland, the snowpack is not a problem in Thyon 2000 -- it is, after all, one of the highest-altitude resorts in the Alps. Thyon’s base altitude is higher than the top of the mountain in many other ski areas, and this makes for early-season and late-season snow – plus plenty in between. And when Mother Nature disappoints, the snow-makers kick in. Winter sports fans can count on a good snowpack from November until April. As for the contours of the mountain itself, it’s the perfect mix of slopes and exposures, and as Thyon is part of the huge 4 Vallées Ski Region, the possibilities are basically limitless. From Thyon, one can ski dozens of great runs in the linked areas of Veysonnaz, Nendaz, La Tzoumaz and of course Verbier.

Thyon’s snowpark was voted Best in Switzerland by the Swiss Snowboard Association in 2001, and the Swiss Snowboard Championships were also held in Thyon in 2001 – just one of many international competitions held on Thyon’s pistes.

Summertime in Thyon

Summer is also a wonderful season in Thyon, perfect for getting off the beaten track and out into the magnificent and timeless alpine world. The mountains don’t change, but those who hike them just might! Hike through stunning scenery up to a tiny little mountain hut for the night, or amble along one of the age-old bisses farmers chiselled into the mountainside to bring water down from the glaciers to their crops: with 600 km of marked trails at all difficulty levels, Thyon has the hike for everyone. Thyon is also a mountain-biking paradise, with a host of trails: in fact, the Grand-Raid Cristalp, said to be the hardest MtB race in the world, goes right through the region. (Those who prefer motor sports should note that the Rallye International du Valais also goes through Thyon.) The region is also well equipped for other outdoor sports, such as tennis.