South of Zurich and northeast of Zermatt, the Saas Valley (Saastal) has 70km of marked mountain biking trails centered around the car-free village of Saas-Fee, which is situated in a deep box-valley at an altitude of 1,800m. The valley surrounded by snow-covered peaks which soar over 4,000m. In this section of the Mischabel mountain range, there are thirteen glacial shrouded peaks, include some of the highest in Switzerland such as the Dom (4,545m). The town of Saas Fee has the quaint Swiss feel with narrow, winding streets, wooden chalets and mostly small hotels. This town still retains its authentic charm and thankfully lacks tourist souvenir shops.
Note: As of February 2009, mountain bikes are not permitted on any of the lifts, gondolas or trams throughout the Saastal due to past trail users conflicts.
To reach this area by train, plan to take one of the many international connections to Birg or Visp, which is south of Zurich or southeast of Bern. From Birg or Visp, transfer to the Post Bus heading to Saas-Fee. This bus will make numerous stops along the way in Saas-Grund and in Saas-Fee. If you are bringing your own bike, make sure to check schedules for trains and buses that permit bikes on board.
Overall, Saastal is the 18th most popular mountain bike trail of all 31 mountain biking rides in Switzerland.