Switzerland in Summer: High Season Tips and Weather Advice

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As the busiest season of the year, Switzerland in summer welcomes a large number of tourists from around the world. From hiking or cycling to your heart’s content in the scenic Alpine trails to soaking up the sun and the views on the banks of Lake Geneva and enjoying events like the Jazz Festival in Montreux, the summer months in Switzerland, which runs from June to August, are bustling with all kinds of tourist activities. So if you are thinking of taking a trip to Switzerland in the summer, this travel guide is just the thing you are looking for.

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Weather and Temperature in Switzerland during Summer

Sunrays passing through the gap between mountains in Switzerland in summer.
There are lovely hiking conditions in the Matterhorn in summer.

The weather in Switzerland in summer largely depends on where you visit. Even in the heights of July, the temperatures in Zermatt, up high in the Alps, can be as low as 5℃ with up to 25 rainy days. On the flip side, if you happen to be in Geneva, the average temperature in July hovers around 27°C (80°F), and there are only eight rainy days spread across the month. The rule of thumb is the higher you go, the colder and wetter it will get.

Months June July August
Maximum temperature 21℃ (70°F) 24℃ (75°F) 23℃ (73°F)
Minimum temperature 11℃ (52°F) 13℃ (55°F) 13℃ (55°F)
Sunlight hours 16 15 14
Rainy days 14 13 13
Precipitation 110 mm 80 mm 120 mm

For a more seasonal overview, check out our guide on the best time to visit Switzerland.

Other related articles:
Switzerland in June
Switzerland in July
Switzerland in August

Why visit Switzerland in summer?

A hiker walking on a steep path near Interlaken in Switzerland in summer.
It is pleasant to hike in Switzerland due to the bright sun.
A picture of an antique jazz trumpet.
You can participate in the Montreux Jazz Festival from June to July.

Here are some amazing reasons to tour Switzerland during summer:

  • Outdoor adventures: The biggest selling point for Switzerland in summer is the number of hiking trails, mountain biking trips, and trail running routes that are open and ready to be discovered. As the snow has thawed and the sun is shining bright, you can enjoy multi-day outdoor adventures in the Alps. Head to the adventure capital Zermatt to start your expedition and meet like-minded travelers.
  • Festivals: One of the best things to do in Switzerland in the summer is to attend the local events and festivals. Maybe you want to check out the Fete de Geneve (July–August), or you prefer more of a sporty vibe with Europe’s biggest yacht race, the Bol d’Or Mirabaud. Outside of Geneva, you can kick back and relax at the famous Montreux Jazz Festival.
  • Lakeside resorts: Long and sunny days mean that the best summer resorts in Switzerland are officially open for business. Whether you are in Geneva, Lugano, Lucerne, or one of the many popular lakeside areas, you will find many resorts specializing in water sports and family fun.
  • Availability of accommodation: Although Switzerland is a year-round destination, there are two peak seasons: summer and winter ski season. In the springtime, a lot of the mountain resorts, hotels and activities are closed. But they open up for visitors with the start of summer, which means more accommodation options.

Top 3 Destinations in Switzerland during Summer

Switzerland in summer has plenty of attractions and activities that visitors can look forward to. Here are our top picks.

1. Locarno

A view of the port at Locarno with boats and a ferris wheel.
You can do everything from sightseeing to watersports in Locarno.

This gorgeous city in the Ticino region sits on the banks of the majestic Lake Maggiore, offering a mix of old-world charm, water sports, and adventure. No matter what you are into, you are sure to find it in Locarno. Nestled on the border of Italy and Switzerland, Locarno has a unique blend of Italian and Swiss cultures. Here, you get the best of both worlds.

Major attractions: Piazza Grande, Madonna Del Sasso, and Visconteo Castle.


  • The city holds the 10-day-long Locarno Film Festival in August.
  • The summer months mean that all the lakeside resorts are open for business.
  • The cool lake waters and waterfalls offer the perfect reprieve after a long summer hike.


  • As this is the peak season, Locarno is likely to be busy and expensive around this time. Finding a suitable accommodation could be hard, so make your reservation as early as possible.

2. Lucerne

A view of Lucerne city with fortification wall on a sunny day.
You can visit popular art galleries and museums in Lucerne in the summer.

Filled with stunning medieval architecture, the spectacular northern city of Lucerne is a popular summer vacation spot in Switzerland. This city has everything from art galleries and museums to top-tier hotels and restaurants to spectacular natural beauty. Lucerne also enjoys a balmy temperature with a high of 25°C in the summer, perfect for hiking around Lake Lucerne, heading into the nearby mountains, and exploring the city’s attractions. Check out our tours to Lucerne for more ideas.

Major attractions: Chapel Bridge, Lion Monument and Inseli Park


  • The weather is ideal for sunbathing and swimming in the lake.
  • The pleasure cruises across Lake Lucerne are fully operational during the peak season. Taking the cruise, especially at sunset, is one of the top attractions in the city.
  • Longer days mean you can enjoy outdoor activities like hiking in the nearby Mount Pilatus or the Swiss Alps in the summer.


  • Much like many lakeside resorts in Switzerland, Lucerne gets busy during the summer months.
  • It may be difficult to join popular excursions and activities unless you have booked your place in advance.

3. Interlaken

A view of Interlaken with a train and mountains in the background.
Interlaken is a destination for great outdoor activities as well as calm and leisurely activities around the town.

If you are looking for an adventure in Switzerland during the summer months, you will want to visit Interlaken. It is a few degrees cooler in the mountains than in most of the country. Here, the temperature rarely exceeds the 20°C mark. This, combined with the longer daylight hours, makes it the perfect condition to hike, kayak, climb, and mountain bike.

Major attractions: Harder Kulm, Lake Brienz and Hohematte.


  • Lower temperatures mean a lot of the sun-seeking crowds avoid mountain cities like Interlaken.
  • You will have the perfect weather for outdoor sports.
  • Clear, sunny days provide the best mountaintop views from the top of Harder Kulm.


  • With the higher altitude, you might experience more rain in Interlaken than in other regions.
  • A lot of the popular trails will be busy during the summer months.

Switzerland has fantastic summer vacation sports where you can experience outdoor activities, natural beauty, and cultural attractions.


From mountain biking to lake cruises, Switzerland offers plenty of things to do in the summer.

  • Hiking tours in Switzerland: There is no doubt that hiking is the most popular activity to do in Switzerland in summer. Whether you are taking your time walking around Lake Geneva or getting more adventurous by embarking on a multi-day hike around the Matterhorn, you could choose from plenty of exciting options.
  • Lake cruise tours in Switzerland: There are so many lakes all over Switzerland that you can enjoy. The best way to do so is on a lake cruise. Spend a couple of hours on a tour, or have a full day out on the water in a stylish catamaran—the choice is yours. Lake Lugano and Lake Constance are great options, if you want to avoid large crowds.
  • Mountain biking tours in Switzerland: If you need to move at a bit of a faster pace, Switzerland is home to some world-class mountain biking trails that all open up during the summer season. Zermatt is a popular spot for bikers of all abilities, but if you are more advanced, you might want to consider the legendary trails around The Eiger. You will get unparalleled views of the Bernese Alps on this trail.

Whether you prefer tranquility at the lakes or adventure on hiking trips, Switzerland is a summer destination for any traveler.


A view of a dam and reservoir lake in the Swiss Alps.
The landscape in Switzerland is glowing in the summer.
  • Although some big cities accept Euros, the official currency is the Swiss Franc, and many summer resorts will not accept Euros.
  • If you are heading out for a hike or a mountain bike tour, be sure to bring a paper map with you. Although most trails are well-signposted, staying prepared is always a good idea.
  • The Swiss are really hot on recycling, so make sure that you get properly rid of your trash, especially on the trails, campgrounds, and national parks.

If you are thinking about spending your summer vacation in Switzerland, there are a ton of things to see and do in the country. From hiking in the Alps to exploring beautiful old cities to enjoying the views of stunning lakes, you will have plenty of options available in summer. Despite the high season crowds, summer remains the best time to visit Switzerland. Just plan your trip and make your bookings in advance, and you are set to have an unforgettable vacation.

Need a hand planning a customized trip to Switzerland? Our local travel experts can help you create a bespoke itinerary to suit your needs.

Published by Tim Green, updated on April 17, 2023

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