School Trips to the Swiss Alps

The Valais region of Switzerland makes a fantastic location for a geography field trip overseas. Popular Swiss Alp geography visits for school groups include the imposing peak of the Matterhorn, the Aletsch Glacier, the well-known resort of Zermatt, the proposed Winter Olympic centre of Sion and Mattmark’s hydro-electric dam all within easy reach.

A geography school trip to this stunning region of Switzerland offers pupils a great opportunity for hands on data collection and fieldwork techniques. Our most popular Swiss Alp geography tours are designed to cover a host of study themes. Your pupils will be rewarded with ample learning opportunities in a range of spectacular locations. 

Our Swiss Alp based geography school trips include the services of an NST Field Studies Guide who will assist you throughout your stay.

If you’re looking to plan your ideal school trip, get in touch with one of our travel experts today for more free information and advice.

Geography school trips to the Swiss Alps 

 

The Valais region of Switzerland makes a fantastic location for a geography field trip overseas. Popular Swiss Alp geography visits for school groups include the imposing peak of the Matterhorn, the Aletsch Glacier, the well-known resort of Zermatt, the proposed Winter Olympic centre of Sion and Mattmark’s hydro-electric dam all within easy reach.

 

Swiss Alps highlights - our groups love...

Saas Grund

Saas Grund

The Saas Valley, with Grund at its centre, is situated on the Italian border and has traditionally been an important trade route. The settlements now boast the international ski resorts of Saas Fee and Zermatt. This option provides an introduction to the surrounding landscape and the history of the area. It gives pupils an opportunity to soak up the awe and wonder of their surroundings.

The Aletsch Glacier

The Aletsch Glacier

The longest glacier in Europe, the Aletsch forms part of the largest continuously glaciated area in the Alps. The glacier and the surrounding area is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. From a number of vantage points above the village of Riederalp, the Aletsch stretches into the distance. Your Field Studies Guide will assist your students to identify the numerous landscape features and processes here. The best glacier viewpoints can be accessed by return cable car.

 

The Mattmark Dam

The Mattmark Dam

The Dam forms part of a hydro-electric scheme that transports the water from the surrounding glacier into a holding lake, which is contained by the largest natural earth dam in Europe. From here the water is released and used to provide power for the whole region. The controlling scheme has allowed the development of villages and the ski industry.

 

Zermatt & the Matterhorn

Zermatt & the Matterhorn

This classic Alpine mountain sits on the Italian border and helps attract 4 million tourists a year to Zermatt. This renowned ski area has rebranded itself as a summer adventure capital. The village, situated in a hanging valley, is accessed by a train, widely considered to be Europe’s best rail journey. This can extend to a full day study if time and budget allows. This excursion will involve additional costs for cable cars and trains (payable locally).

 

Mittelallalin & the Ice Caves

Mittelallalin & the Ice Caves

Take the world’s highest underground train to the world’s largest ice caves then relax in the world’s highest revolving café where the spectacular views change every few minutes. Set in the middle of the glaciers on the edge of the permanent snow is the Mittellalin. This is an excellent place to appreciate the power of the ice in shaping the landscape and the ability of the Swiss to engineer access into it. This excursion will involve additional costs for cable cars and trains (payable locally).

Saas Fee

Saas Fee

Until 1954 it was only possible to reach the village of Saas Fee by foot. Since the construction of the road, an international ski resort has been built. The village is known as the ‘Pearl’ of the Alps and is surrounded by 4,000m peaks. Trains and public galleries run under the ice and all village vehicles are electric. Saas Fee provides excellent examples of impacts of tourism on the natural environment and also provides some innovative management solutions.

Explore the Swiss Alps with our Field Studies Guides...

Equipped with first-hand knowledge of the culture, climate, history and subject knowledge of geography and geology, our expert guides will assist with programme delivery, tailoring your group’s experience to suit your specific learning needs.

Your guide will contact you ahead of your geography trip for a pre-tour discussion, assist with teaching, guiding, and practical investigation, whilst also providing advice, support and assistance with on-tour logistics.

Planning your first school trip?

If you're planning your first school trip, our essential guide will take you through each step of the process.

 

  • Choosing your destination
  • Gaining approval from your Local Authority and/or your Head
  • Promoting your tour in school
  • Confirming your booking
  • Tailor-make your tour
  • Completing your risk assessments (including a sample risk assessment)
  • Quick reference timeline
  • Pre-tour checklist

Additional support, resources & information:

Tour planning service

Tour planning service

With NST, you’ll get your own dedicated, knowledgeable Tour Co-ordinator who’ll work with you from start to finish. You’ll benefit from their unrivalled destination knowledge, and their experience gained from working with many other groups too. They’ll tailor-make your itinerary from scratch and take care of everything for you:

  • Pulling together an itinerary that runs smoothly
  • Planning the right balance of visits every day with realistic timings
  • Pre-arranging and pre-booking your visits, entrance tickets, passes and meals


You’ll receive your final itinerary a full 4-weeks before you travel too.

FREE school trip promotion pack

FREE school trip promotion pack

We’ll support you and provide everything you need to advertise your school trip around school and to parents. Our free school trip promotion pack consists of:

  • Parents’ letter & permission slip template for you to complete
  • A3 posters to promote your trip around school
  • PowerPoint presentation templates which you can tailor to your own needs
  • Parents’ leaflets covering how NST manage safety, financial protection and details of our travel insurance
  • Online parents’ video which showcases the benefits of taking a school trip


For selected destinations, we’ll provide a trip launch web page using video footage and imagery. This web page is provided by a weblink and can be shared with pupils and parents in many ways.

Risk assessment support including preview visits

Risk assessment support including preview visits

Risk assessment plays a vitally important part in the planning and organisation on any school tour.

Our risk assessment guide aims to help you understand more about your obligations and how you can more effectively manage group safety on your next educational visit and provide you with risk assessments for your trip.

Planning first school trip

Planning first school trip

Organising your first school trip can appear to be a daunting process.  If you're planning your first school trip, our guide will help to take you through each step of the planning process, answering frequently asked questions and providing tips and support along the way.  Our helpful guide covers the following: 

  • Choosing your destination 
  • Gaining approval from your Local Authority and/or your Head 
  • Promoting your tour in school 
  • Confirming your booking
  • Tailor-make your tour
  • Completing your risk assessments (including a sample risk assessment) 
  • Quick reference timeline 
  • Pre-tour checklist 


View our essential guide to a successful school trip here

Get live updates on your group's tour location

Get live updates on your group's tour location

Locate My Trip uses GPS technology and is the easy, convenient way for your school to follow your location whilst on tour. Specifically designed to provide reassurance to both parents and teachers, NST will know where your group are 24/7. If your schedule needs to change, we’ll put plans in place to keep your tour on track. 

With Locate My Trip your group can also share photos and videos with the school and parents, via a secure link, to keep them updated on your experience whilst you’re away.

Watch our short Locate My Trip video here.

Your online school trip organiser - My Tour Manager

Your online school trip organiser - My Tour Manager

Save time and stay on track with your school trip admin with our online orgnaniser - designed to help busy teachers like you. 

With My Tour Manager, you'll be able to download FREE resources and access trip paperwork online and in one place. Your personalised checklist details what you need to do and by when, plus you'll receive fortnightly reminders too. 

What's more, you can take all your trip documents on the go whilst on your tour with our app, My Tour Manager-On-the-Go. 

Find out more and watch out short My Tour Manager video here

Free classroom resources

Free classroom resources

We've created a range of free resources and educational posters to brighten up your classroom! 

Take a look at our downloadable posters here

Speak to one of our school travel experts

Our team of school travel experts have unrivalled destination knowledge and experience so they can help to bring your tour ideas to life and might even suggest options you hadn’t already thought of too! So get in touch today and we'll help to create a bespoke, budget-friendly tour itinerary to meet your specific learning requirements.

Why choose NST...

Here's why thousands of teachers choose NST each year...

  • Unrivalled knowledge

Your dedicated Tour Co-ordinator will use their unrivalled local knowledge and expertise of the Swiss Alps to create a tailor-made, curriculum-linked itinerary to meet your group’s exact needs.

  • Making it easier for you

With our online school trip organiser, travel app, free classroom posters and trip launch resources to support your in-school promotion.

  • Free group leader inspection visits

We offer a free inspection visit to your chosen destination to support your risk assessment planning. 

  • Value for money

We’re committed to bringing you the best possible value trips to help make every penny count.

  • More than 50 years’ experience

With over 50 years’ experience, with NST you can rest assured that your group is in safe hands.

  • Risk assessment guidance

Our risk assessment guidance will help you to manage group safety on your next educational trip.

  • Peace of mind

Your group’s location can be followed with our trip tracking device - Locate My Trip - plus you’ll have 24/7 support from us whilst you’re away.

  • Offsetting carbon emissions

For every trip taken, we'll plant a Maya nut tree in Peru to support reforestation, local communities & biodiversity. Plus, we'll offset an additional tonne of CO2 to guarantee carbon emission reductions. 

 

Looking for protection on your next school trip? 

Booking with a school travel company is the best way for you to protect parents’ money and give yourself peace of mind.  

 

Don’t forget – if your school arranges transport, accommodation and other services directly, you’ll be liable under the Package Travel Regulations – meaning you’ll have all the responsibilities of a travel company, both legal and financial. 

 

Financial protection from the moment you book

NST are fully bonded:

  • ABTA
  • ATOL
  • IATA

Managing safety on school trips

For your protection, NST's independently audited Safety Management System covers:

  • 24-hour emergency cover
  • Audited accommodation & transport
  • Excursions & school visit assessment
  • Group leader preview visits to assist with risk assessment planning

We're LOtC Council’s Quality Badge assured

The Department for Education advises schools to always look for the LOtC Quality Badge when choosing a school travel provider.