Crans-Montana is a well-known winter sports destination, but this wonderful resort area is worth visiting any time of the year. Nestled in the canton of Valais, the destination is famous for beautiful views of the Alps, high-end shopping and a charming village that includes streets lined with flowers.
With over 180 stores — everything from boutiques to craft shops — shoppers will encounter a scene that rivals Paris, Milan or even Dubai.
Whether at a restaurant or bar, expect to find locally produced wine from nearby vineyards and world-class food, including raclette, fondue and local specialties such as air-dried meat and polenta.
Nightlife opportunities are plentiful. Relax at a jazz café or piano bar. Most clubs are open late so visitors can enjoy a cabaret show or dance until dawn.
The Crans-Montana resort area has a full calendar of events. The Désalpe parade celebrates the return of people and animals from Alpine pastures. The parade also honors centuries of Swiss tradition and includes cows decorated with flowers, cheese for sale and folk entertainment. The event is Sept. 19 and is not to be missed.
Motorsports fans have several events to watch. The “Rallye des Caprices” is Switzerland’s first classic car rally exclusively for women. It occurs from Sept. 23–25.
Since, 1997, owners of different Jeep models — Willys, CJ5s, CJ7s, Cherokees, Wranglers — gather at Crans-Montana to show their vehicles. This year’s “Jeep-Heep-Heep” event takes place from Sept. 26-27.
“Rallye International du Valais” is an important asphalt race that counts as the final round of the 2015 FIA European Rally Championship. Race festivities last from Oct. 28-30. The event is based in the towns of Martigny and Sion, which are popular with drivers and teams due to spectacular scenery.