Get ready for a true Valais tradition! Experience the Reine du Soleil live and witness when the Sun Queen is crowned in Grächen. We have the most important info for you!
Tradition up close at the Reine du Soleil
For culture and tradition enthusiasts, we have a must-attend event: At the historic “Sommerstechfest”, you can watch the Eringer cows indulge in their natural combative spirit and witness as the Sun Queen – the Reine du Soleil – is crowned.
A unique tradition at the Sommerstechfest
At the Stechfest, you’ll marvel at the most beautiful Eringer cows in the Valais, proudly presented by the Valais farmers on an expansive, lush green pasture.
The highlight of the day: the “Stechkampf”, where the cows skillfully use their horns in a kind of wrestling match. The cows are sent into competition against each other in various categories. And the jury really proves its manpower keeping order amid the wild hustle and bustle. At the end, the Sun Queen is crowned to much applause and cheering of the crowd.
The Eringer cows as Grächen “natives”
Grächen offers its visitors cultural diversity – and the “Reine du Soleil” custom represents a part of regional history. The Swiss Eringer Breeders’ Association, which was founded in 1920, is still active today. In the past, agriculture and cattle breeding played a fundamental role in the lives of the people of the Valais. It was rare to find a family that did not own a cow. In order to preserve this impressive and historically relevant Swiss cattle breed, the traditions associated with it are celebrated to this day.
The Eringer cows’ natural combative spirit
Interesting: The Eringer breed regulates the hierarchy within the herd by fighting. This natural combativeness must be preserved at all costs, as it is a very special characteristic of this impressive breed of cattle. For this reason, the wrestling matches are harmless – especially as they are supervised and carried out with the animals’ welfare in mind. Regional and national wrestling matches are regulated by strict guidelines.