Language: English
Zermatt. No matter what

*Zermatt / Matterhorn

Signalkuppe/Punta Gnifetti - Monte Rosa massif (4,554 m.a.s.l.)

Climbers tackling the Monte Rosa massif today do it primarily with a high-Alpine tour on the Signalkuppe and to the Capanna Regina Margerita Hut, the highest-altitude building in Europe. The Signalkuppe is Switzerland’s fourth-highest peak and forms a very prominent corner in topographical terms as the long, 4000-metre-high mountain chain here branches to the north over the Nordend and Strahlhorn to the Mischabel group. From the south and south-east, the Signalkuppe appears the principal rise as it falls away in walls and sheer glaciers. The mountain is on the Swiss-Italian border, which was relocated in 1941 in favour of Italy.

Origin of name
Ludwig Freiherr von Welden named the mountain the Signalkuppe in 1825 after a prominent gendarme (rock spike) on the summit. This spike was removed during the building of the Margherita Hut. The Italian name Punta Gnifetti dates back to the first person to climb the peak, Don Giovanni Gnifetti, parish priest of Alagna. His eight-man rope team made the first ascent on 9 August 1842. Gnifetti had already made unsuccessful attempts to conquer the mountain in 1834, 1836 and 1839. Gnifettii’s mortal remains were buried on the Signalkuppe in 1867

History /legends
The Capanna Margherita on the Signalkuppe is Europe’s highest-altitude building and was officially opened in 1893. It was named after the extremely popular Margherita of Savoy. The Italian queen had a passion for the mountains and did not miss the opportunity to visit the building in the year it was built. The refuge is owned by the Varallo Section of the Club Alpino Italiano (CAI), has a warden service from mid-June to mid-September and during this period can sleep up to 70 mountaineers. The winter room with 12 beds is open during the rest of the year. The hut also houses the International Centre for High-Altitude Physiological Research and has the highest-altitude telephone connection in Europe.


4,554 m.a.s.l.

First ascent

9 August 1842

First climbers

The first ascent of the Signalkuppe was made on 9.8.1842 by the parish priest of Alagna, Giovanni Gnifetti, together with Guiseppe Farinetti, Cristoforo Ferraris, Cristoforo Grober, Giacomo Giordiano, Giovanni Giordiano and two porters.

Information for hikers

Various hiking tips with views of the mountain

Hike from Gornergrat to new Monte Rosa Hut

Huts en route/picnic

Rotenboden, new Monte Rosa Hut

Mountain railway offers

With the Gornergrat-Bahn Zermatt-Rotenboden-Zermatt

Information for 1-day excursions

Info on the various peaks

The Gornergrat offers the most spectacular views of the Signalkuppe
With the Gornergrat-Bahn Zermatt-Gornergrat-Zermatt

Short, easy walks or hikes



Information for mountaineers/alpinists

Valley village

Alagna Valsesia (1,190 m.a.s.l.)

Departure points

Capanna Gnifetti (3,611 m.a.s.l.)
Rifugio Città di Mantova (3,498 m.a.s.l.)

Various routes

From Colle des Lys/Ostsattel over the Grenz Glacier to Colle Gnifetti (L)
From the Capanna Resegotti over the Signalgrat ridge (S/4a)

Refreshment points/
mountain huts

Capanna Gnifetti (3,611 m.a.s.l.)
Rifugio Città di Mantova (3,498 m.a.s.l.)
Capanna Regina Margherita (4,556 m.a.s.l.) named after Margherita of Italy

Zermatt Tourismus | Tel +41 27 966 81 00 |