The idyllic village of Chateau-d’Oex Switzerland in the Alps Pays-d’Enhaut region is home to a variety of things to do and see for tourists for a trip. Chateau-d’Oex offers something for everyone, whether you want to hit the slopes for some local skiing and snowboarding, wanting to take in the breathtaking alpine landscape, or learn more about the town’s fascinating past and present.
About Chateau-d’Oex Switzerland
Chateau-d’Oex has a population of around 3,800 people, located in the Pays-d’Enhaut region of the Swiss Alps. This is part of the Vaud canton in Switzerland, not far from the bigger city of Montreux.
It’s possible to reach the village by train, car and local bus. The most enjoyable is by GoldenPass Panoramic train in our opinion, as its a beautiful route through the valley. This train type from Montreux to Chateau-d’Oex has panoramic windows and comfortable seats.
The village has a lot of interesting history, dating all the way back to 9500 BC with evidence of local caves, settlements and useful items found like knives.
During World War One, Switzerland helped with 68,000 sick or injured prisoners of war, with the first arriving in Chateau-d’Oex. Chateau-d’Oex was actually the very first community to host the injured prisoners of the war, because its letter offering to help during this time was the first one received by the Swiss government.
The village and surrounding location these days is popular for visiting during Winter, due to the winter sport activities. But also during summer for outdoor activities.
Chateau-d’Oex Switzerland Things To Do
The pretty location of Chateau-d’Oex is not such a big place to visit, but does have a few things to do depending on your interests.
Chateau-d’Oex Boutique Shopping
Chateau-d’Oex is known for its traditional Swiss cheese-making, and you can choose to can take a tour of local cheese-making facilities to learn about the process and sample the delicious products. The location is also home to traditional crafting hobbies such as embroidery and woodcarving, which is what you can purchase as a local gift for yourself.
Cascade du Ramaclé Waterfall
A pretty hike in the area leads to the Cascade du Ramacle, which is the local waterfall. You can reach it via a fun suspension bridge and along the pathways. Keep in mind that during the winter it may be a little icy and snowy, as well as the waterfall being frozen.
Espace Ballon Foundation Museum
This is a local museum dedicated to the history of hot air ballooning, which aligns perfectly with the hot air balloon festival held here. A special highlight includes an expo on the round-the-world flight by Bertrand Piccard and Brian Jones with original objects. A a must-visit for aviation enthusiasts!
In such a picture perfect area, there are numerous hiking routes to enjoy in the area. Of course during Winter make sure when choosing a local hike that you are prepared. Make sure to dress up warm and have suitable shoes for the landscape. It’s also best to always have a water and snacks with you. Don’t forget your camera for those gorgeous photos along the way!
International Balloon Festival
One of the biggest events that happens in Chateau-d’Oex is the annual Festival International de Ballons. It is an event that takes place every January for around 10 days long. This event has hot air balloons of all shapes, colours and sizes, which is pretty cool to see in person. You can even book a flight in a hot air balloon for yourself.
We were excited to visit this event ourselves in 2023. Our full blogpost shares all about it in more details.
Hotels In Chateau-d’oex
During our day trip, we actually ended up staying in Montreau which is one hour away with a direct train. However we did ask a few travellers who have been to the village before, who recommend the following locations:
Summary Chateau-d’Oex Switzerland
We feel that Chateau-d’Oex is definitely small but pretty village worth visiting during Winter. We would recommend it as an easy day trip from Montreux with the special panoramic train. Alternatively to definitely stay at least for 1 night to enjoy a full day and evening. Even with the busy international hot air balloon festival, the village is still peaceful and picture perfect.
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