Interesting facts 

How inhabitants from Bellwald lived before the tourism boom

The municipality of Bellwald high above the Goms and the Fiescher valley, comprise the village Bellwald and the hamlets Ried, Egga, Bodmen and Fürgangen is a typical perched municipality. At an altitude of 1560 m, the village Bellwald, which gave its name to the municipality, is the highest in Goms. Until the end of the Second World War Bellwald's population lived almost exclusively from the mountain agriculture: cattle breeding and arable farming. 

This multipurpose farming signifies a self-sufficiency economy which was orientated to the own consumption. Bellwald is a small municipality considering its population; between 1850 and 1970 only 250 to 300 inhabitants lived here. The agriculture on the limited land resources could not feed all people. Part of the population was forced to emigrate: as mercenaries in foreign armies in the 19th century, as settlers to South America after the 1859 proclaimed ban on the mercenary services and as milking men to Prussia and California. After the First World War a migration to the main valley or to other cantons took place. A great change occurred during the 20th century, at the end of the 1950's. As of 1956, a cable car linked Bellwald to the valley. The tourism office was created two years later and the first hotel opened in 1962. The road to the valley, inaugurated in 1971, accelerated the tourism development. Bellwald turned from a rural village into a tourism resort.