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Heidnisch Tossu

Hikes · Valais
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Valais Verified partner  Explorers Choice 
  • View from Hannigalp with Matterhorn
    / View from Hannigalp with Matterhorn
    Photo: Grächen-St. Niklaus Tourismus
  • / Heidnisch Tossu
    Photo: Grächen-St. Niklaus Tourismus
  • / Lake of Grächen
    Photo: Grächen-St. Niklaus Tourismus
m 2800 2600 2400 2200 2000 1800 1600 1400 7 6 5 4 3 2 1 km Grächnersee
From the top of the Grächen gondola, at Hannigalp, set off for the mountain refuge of Heidnisch Tossu, then descend through the forest along a relatively steep path to the idyllic lake of «Z Seew», above Grächen.
Distance 7.6 km
2:50 h
381 m
884 m
2,512 m
1,619 m

To reach the start of the route, you have the choice between an uphill walk of about an hour from Grächen to Hannigalp or a ride on the fairy-tale gondola. At the summit, you will find an ultra-modern and family-friendly mountain restaurant with a large sun terrace whose sweeping views take in the iconic Matterhorn. Enjoy refreshments in the sunshine while the children have fun at the indoor «SiSu Wolkenland» play area.

The walk begins with a gentle climb to Heidnisch Tossu and its mountain refuge, where you can stop for a meal or snack and enjoy magnificent panoramic views of 14 peaks higher than 4,000 metres. You then follow a relatively demanding rocky trail that descends through the forest to the idyllic lake of «Z Seew», above the village of Grächen. Here, you can dip your feet in the refreshing waters of the Kneipp hydrotherapy pools or relax at the Hotel/Restaurant «Zum See», beside the lake.

Author’s recommendation

Enjoy the magical atmosphere along the «Suonen» (historical irrigation channels) of Chilcheri and Eggeri, where children can embark on a thrilling treasure hunt.
Highest point
Heidnisch Tossu, 2,512 m
Lowest point
Village Grächen, 1,619 m
Best time of year

Rest Stop

Restaurant Zum See
Bergrestaurant Hannighüsli

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.

Tips and hints

More information about the destination: 


Hannigalp (2,121 m)
2'633'130E 1'117'349N
46.206779, 7.867895
46°12'24.4"N 7°52'04.4"E
32T 412665 5117645



Turn-by-turn directions

From the village square in Grächen, walk in the direction of the gondola base station, and then either ride up in a gondola or follow the signs for the steep path up to Hannigalp. At the summit, take the path towards Heidnisch Tossu/Seetal. When you reach the mountain hut of Heidnisch Tossu, follow the signs for Lowizig/z Seew/Grächen. Down at the lakeshore, follow the lane to the village of Grächen.


all notes on protected areas

Public transport


Regular train services link the whole of Switzerland to Visp; here, change onto one of the narrow-gauge cog trains of the Matterhorn Gotthard Bahn. These run every half-hour from Visp to St. Niklaus through Switzerland’s deepest valley. In St. Niklaus, change onto a bus for Grächen. At weekends and on public holidays, a direct bus can take you direct from Visp to Grächen. For the return journey, once again take a PostBus and a train of the Matterhorn Gotthard Bahn down to Visp.

Getting there

Drive to Visp, and then follow the signs for Zermatt as far as St. Niklaus. Here, after the first roundabout, turn left towards Grächen. The resort of Grächen is partially car-free; access for private cars is permitted only as far as the village centre. Hoteliers, holiday home providers, taxis and transport companies provide transport services to guests staying in the car-free part of Grächen.


Parking is available at two car parks: Millegga and Autosilo.  


2'633'130E 1'117'349N
46.206779, 7.867895
46°12'24.4"N 7°52'04.4"E
32T 412665 5117645
Arrival by train, car, foot or bike

Book recommendation by the author

The tourist office in Grächen / St. Niklaus will provide information regarding trail running in the region.

Author’s map recommendations

SwissTopoMaps 1:25'000: 1308 St. Niklaus


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

Basic Equipment for Hiking

  • Sturdy, comfortable and waterproof hiking boots or approach shoes
  • Layered, moisture wicking clothing
  • Hiking socks  
  • Rucksack (with rain cover)
  • Protection against sun, rain and wind (hat, sunscreen, water- and windproof jacket and suitable legwear)
  • Sunglasses
  • Hiking poles
  • Ample supply of drinking water and snacks
  • First aid kit
  • Kit para bolhas
  • Bivy / survival bag  
  • Survival blanket
  • Headlamp
  • Pocket knife
  • Whistle
  • Cell phone
  • Cash
  • Navigation equipment / map and compass
  • Emergency contact details
  • ID
  • The 'basic' and 'technical' equipment lists are generated based on the selected activity. They are not exhaustive and only serve as suggestions for what you should consider packing.
  • For your safety, you should carefully read all instructions on how to properly use and maintain your equipment.
  • Please ensure that the equipment you bring complies with local laws and does not include restricted items.

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Photos from others

7.6 km
2:50 h
381 m
884 m
Highest point
2,512 m
Lowest point
1,619 m
Public-transport-friendly Scenic Refreshment stops available Geological highlights Flora and fauna Linear route Healthy climate


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