Surprisingly, Saas Fee is centuries old – surprising, because until the mid-20th century, you could only reach it by donkey. Because of those burro-riding travelers, Saas Fee celebrates 140 years of tourism in 2021. Encircled by mountains, this Christmas-card village metaphorically sits at the bottom of a bowl. At nearly 6,000 feet Nature’s strength is omnipresent with surrounding, snow covered peaks and massive glaciers. All reasons the first road up from the valley only opened in the 1950’s. The encroaching Fee Glacier is so overwhelming, seemingly one can almost touch it from a hotel balcony. The village still peers over the edge of the Saaser Valley, Sunday mornings the women still attend church in native dress and their men still tend sheep in centuries-old stilted barns.
Saas Fee with no cars is perfect for families. By European standards, its surrounding mountains form a more compact ski area than many other European resorts. Last year they put in the new Spielboden and Felskinn cable cars with wifi. It has three freestyle parks so is reputed to have Switzerland’s best snowboarding. A dozen mountain restaurants will surely please anyone’s culinary palette. Like Zermatt, children under nine years, ski for free. Ski passes include the whole Saastal region with 36 lifts and 95 miles of marked runs. Even though Saas Fee may be smaller than many other European resorts, they’ve a history of creating champions, a recent one was Pirmin Zurbriggen.