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Hiking Trail

Heidaweg in Visperterminen

Hiking Trail · Valais
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Valais/Wallis Promotion Verified partner  Explorers Choice 
  • Hike through Europe’s highest vineyard
    / Hike through Europe’s highest vineyard
    Photo: CC BY-ND
  • Hikers on the trail «Reblehrpfad - Heidaweg» to Visperterminen
    / Hikers on the trail «Reblehrpfad - Heidaweg» to Visperterminen
    Photo: CC BY-ND, Heidadorf Visperterminen Tourismus
  • Hiking on the trail «Reblehrpfad - Heidaweg» to Visperterminen
    / Hiking on the trail «Reblehrpfad - Heidaweg» to Visperterminen
    Photo: CC BY-ND, Heidadorf Visperterminen Tourismus
  • Grapevines on the Europe’s highest vineyard
    / Grapevines on the Europe’s highest vineyard
    Photo: CC BY-ND, Heidadorf Visperterminen Tourismus
  • Europe’s highest vineyard in Visperterminen
    / Europe’s highest vineyard in Visperterminen
    Photo: CC BY-ND, Heidadorf Visperterminen Tourismus
  • Hikers on the trail «Reblehrpfad - Heidaweg» to Visperterminen
    / Hikers on the trail «Reblehrpfad - Heidaweg» to Visperterminen
    Photo: CC BY-ND, Heidadorf Visperterminen Tourismus
800 1000 1200 1400 1600 m km 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 Visp Visperterminen SVG

Scenic theme trail leading from the Rhône valley up to Europe’s highest vineyards. The path explores centuries of winemaking tradition around the local Heida, «pearl of Alpine wines».

moderate
7.9 km
3:00 h
742 m
46 m

The highest connected vineyards in continental Europe lie on a sunny slope high above the river Vispa, culminating at an altitude of 1,150 m. A fascinating theme trail leads from the floor of the Rhône valley through the vineyards and up to the village of Visperterminen.

Local winegrowers cultivate a range of grape varieties of which the most prestigious is the golden Heida. This rare member of the Savagnin Blanc family of grapes flourishes on the light soils here, and produces an aromatic straw-yellow wine with notes of nuts, honey and exotic fruits.

Our trail begins in Visp, and leads through the twisting alleys of the Old Town before reaching the first of the vineyards, which extend from the banks of the Vispa for 500 vertical metres up the mountainside. The path zig-zags up through the vines before turning south to climb to the village of Visperterminen. The views of the Vispa valley – which leads to the resorts of Zermatt and Saas-Fee – and of the snow-capped peaks in the distance are enchanting.

Along the trail, information panels tell a fascinating story. The vineyards here date back to Celtic, pre-Roman times – hence the name «Heida», derived from the word for «pagan». Many kilometres of dry-stone walls, painstakingly built and maintained by hand, support the narrow terraces of the steep vineyards; the rocks store warmth from the sun and radiate it out again through the night, helping the vines flourish at this high altitude.

Hundreds of part-time winegrowers working tiny plots handed down over generations cultivate grapes for the main cooperative winery, the St. Jodern Kellerei, open for visits. Restaurants along the route also offer the chance to taste the wines along with local delicacies.

 

Highlights

  • Fascinating theme trail on wine and winemaking through dramatic terraced vineyards
  • Old Town of Visp, charming mountain village of Visperterminen
  • Glorious mountain scenery; tasting opportunities en route

Author’s recommendation

Taste some of the other Valais wines produced here as well as the iconic Heida – ideally with a platter of local meats and cheeses.

Difficulty
moderate
Technique
Stamina
Experience
Landscape
Altitude
1345 m
647 m
Highest point
Visperterminen (1345 m)
Lowest point
Visp, railway station (647 m)
Best time of year
Jan
Feb
Mar
Apr
May
Jun
Jul
Aug
Sep
Oct
Nov
Dec

Safety information

Use of the trails and the information on this website is at hikers’ own risk. Local conditions may entail changes to routes. Valais/Wallis Promotion accepts no liability for the accuracy and completeness of information on this website.

 

For all hikes: 

  • Bring a map. Download full description of this route including large-scale map by clicking on «Print» icon, top right of this page.
  • Use marked trails only, and observe all signposting – for your own safety, to safeguard grazing animals and to avoid disturbing wildlife.
  • Close gates after passing through.
  • Please be considerate to other trail users, and to the plants and animals.
  • Do not leave any waste in nature.

For mountain hikes:

  • Take extra care protecting yourself from the sun at altitude. UV radiation can be exceptionally strong, even in cloudy weather.
  • Plan hike carefully: take into consideration fitness level of each participant, weather forecast and season.
  • Weather conditions can change quickly in the mountains, without warning. Appropriate clothing is therefore essential, along with adequate supplies of food and water. In uncertain weather, turn back in good time.

For high-altitude hikes:

  • Inform others of the route you plan to take. Whenever possible, avoid going alone.
  • Do not venture onto glaciers without a mountain guide.
  • Take note of the warning signs that point out the constant danger in river beds and along watercourses below dams and reservoirs: water levels may rise rapidly without warning.

Equipment

We recommend:  

  • good footwear
  • clothing suitable for the weather: always carry a waterproof jacket
  • hat or cap
  • sunscreen
  • bottle for water
  • picnic
  • camera
  • binoculars (optional)
  • hiking poles (optional)
  • printout of this hike (click «Print» icon, to download)  

For certain walks:

  • Swimwear

Tips, hints and links

More information about the destination:

Start

Visp, railway station (648 m)
Coordinates:
Geographic
46.293771, 7.881645
UTM
32T 413862 5127296

Destination

Visperterminen

Turn-by-turn directions

The trail begins at Visp railway station: thanks to the new Lötschberg Base Tunnel, less than an hour by train from the Swiss capital. Our route leads south through the picturesque Old Town, whose ancient buildings show Visp’s historical importance on a number of alpine pass routes. 

Our itinerary continues to the vineyards, where the theme trail is clearly marked.

The St Jodern Kellerei is located in Unterstalden, about 0.5 km south of the main terraced vineyards.

The trail is also the setting for one of the region’s most popular gourmet events: the «Wii-Grill Fäscht», held every autumn. Local wines and delicacies are served at a sequence of stops between Visp and Oberstalden; reservation required.

Public transport

Public transport friendly

Train to Visp. At end of hike, postal bus from Visperterminen back to Visp. Find full timetable information at sbb.ch

Getting there

A9 motorway and main road up the Rhône valley to Visp.

Parking

Car park by Visp station, follow the local car-park routeing in Visp.

Arrival by train, car, foot or bike

Book recommendation by the author

The tourist office in Visperterminen has got brochures and information material about hiking in the region.

Author’s map recommendations

SwissTopo maps 1:25’000: 1288 Raron

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Difficulty
moderate
Distance
7.9 km
Duration
3:00 h
Ascent
742 m
Descent
46 m
Public transport friendly In and out Scenic With refreshment stops Cultural/historical value Geological highlights Botanical highlights

Statistics

: h
 km
 m
 m
Highest point
 m
Lowest point
 m
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