Family Vacation in Bad Ragaz Switzerland Travel Review
Bad Ragaz, Switzerland is the perfect spot to start a family European vacation. One thing we have found traveling with kids in Europe, is planning to stay in a low key location for the first few days is important. It’s a great way to just to get relaxed into vacation mode, adjust to the local time zone, and get over the jet lag. Especially if you had a long journey from another continent. Family travel can be challenging if there is someone that is battling jet lag (kids), or if someone is still too wound up from normal day to day pressures from back home (parents). Taking the first few days of your family travels to just chill and decompress will make the rest of your journey so much more enjoyable and meaningful.
On a recent family European vacation we choose to first stay in the small town of Bad Ragaz, just outside of Zurich Switzerland. Because we flew on Swiss Air into Zurich we decided to start our journey somewhere close by to stay our first few days. My wife found Bad Ragaz, also known as Heidiland after the vintage movie “Heidi” with Shirley Temple. Bad Ragaz is about an hour east of Zurich and easy to get to by car or train. We decided to rent a car and drive so we could enjoy short day trips exploring the Alp region around the area. We completely lucked out on our timing for our stay in Bad Ragaz because it just so happened to be the time for “Bad Ragartz” where every three years the town if blanketed with sculptures or art from artist around the world. It’s like a giant art show all over town. It was a blast walking around, especially through the parks, seeing all sorts of creative art. Definitely a unique cultural experience.
Bad Ragaz is a picturesque Swiss village and also known for being a spa retreat town. There are some great hotels that have there own spas. The main attraction is the thermal pools and spa called Tamina Therme, located next to the Grand Resort Bad Ragaz. There are multiple natural mineral pools ranging from hot to cold to soak and swim in. This is the place to have a spa treatment to help you leave the stress behind. We stayed at the Hotel Sorell, which is right in the heart of the town and an easy 10 minute walk to the pools. Right across the street from Tamina Therme is a really nice golf course and a beautiful little lake and park that you can take a 30 minute walk around and see all the nature.
There are a lot of good choices to stay. We really enjoyed the Hotel Sorell. It is right in the center of the town and makes it easy to walk just a short distance to all the restaurants, bars, shops, and grocery stores. The hotel also has underground parking which is very convenient. If you take the train it is a short ½ mile walk from the train station to the hotel. The hotel offers some great views of the mountains that surround Bad Ragaz. The hotel does have a really nice restaurant, called “IM Park.” It’s not cheap but it is good. If you are more budget minded be sure to try “Restaurant Central” which is right across the street and has amazing salads, spaetzle, and schnitzel. There is also a grocery store just a block away to grab a bottle of wine or some food for the room.
Bad Ragaz is definitely family friendly, although it definitely is a great spa retreat for adults. We did see other families with young kids, especially at the Tamina Therma pools. As with any Swiss towns, the location is on the pricy side so we would recommend it for coupes and small families wanting to spend a few days relaxing, getting spa treatments, and take in the gorgeous surroundings.