3 Days Hiking in Switzerland's Berner Oberland
Lush green hills, snow capped peaks, and a gorgeous valley with waterfalls on either side. This landscape feels like a dream!
Back in May, we spent 3 days in the Berner Oberland/Jungfrau Region, right in the heart of Switzerland. This is a great region to visit if you only have a few days to see the highlights of the beautiful swiss alps!
We chose Interlaken as our home base, and we loved it! We stayed at the Hotel Beausite, on the edge of the town. We liked this as our home base, because it felt quaint where we stayed, but there were still plenty of restaurant options nearby and the train station was a 10 minute walk from our hotel.
I highly recommend purchasing a Swiss Travel Pass for the trains! This made it so easy to hop on and off the trains without buying a ticket everytime. There are just a few trams and trolleys higher up the mountain where you have to pay an extra fee. More info and purchasing the Swiss Travel Pass here.
Overall the hiking was pretty moderate. Very different from Cinque Terre. The trails were mostly paved and just a gentle climb or descent. We were here in late May, there may be more trails open in the peak summer months so I can't say I know the terrain or intensity of those. But the easy hiking allowed us to really soak in those stunning views!
What to pack: If you are heading there in late spring(and hiking):
Hiking pants, down jacket and gloves. It gets cool in the evening, so layers are really important. Generally we would shed these layers during the middle of the day.
The hikes were mostly very easy/moderate terrain, and some on paved paths, however on our last hike, we definitely could have used trekking poles! If you have light trekking poles (carbon and foldable) they don't add much weight to your pack and just bring them just in case!
If you are coming in the summertime, you might not need as many layers, but I would research a little more.
Lauterbrunnen to Wengen- Train from Interlaken to Lauterbrunnen (15 min ride). There are plenty of signs to follow so you'll head in the right direction! This was great introduction to stunning beauty of the region with view of the gorgeous Lauterbrunnen valley below as well climbed up the path. I loved hearing the cow bells ringing. This was a moderately tough climb, but we were coming straight off our flight and train ride without much sleep, so my perspective was slightly skewed. :) Wengen is a quaint town with epic views! From here you can take the train up to several other towns. If you want to skip the climb up and start from Wengen, you simply take the train from Lauterbrunnen, about another 15 minute ride!
Murren to Gimmelwald--> Murren: We took the train up to Murren and then hiked from there to Gimmelwald. We had heard Gimmelwald was a such a cool place! The town itself was a little bit of a let down (very small), but the actual hike the was amazing! You're winding along through the peaks and it's hard to believe your eyes. We saw a few paragliders, (which I hope to do at some point)! We stopped for a little lunch in Murren at a little cafe.
Wengen to Burglauenen- We lost the trail about halfway through and ended up on a sketchy trail that wasn't really meant to be hiked, I think it was still a little early in the season(i.e. snow, ice, waterfalls etc.) I would check with a guide in Lauterbrunnen because was assumed we knew where we were going and got totally lost!
Wilderswil to Lauterbrunnen- This was a very gentle hike from a couple of towns just past Interlaken to Lauterbrunnen. A pleasant hike by the river, it's a very easy hike. We were exhausted from the previous day!
Trip to Thun- A half day trip to Thun! More to come on this trip!
So in 3 days we covered a lot of ground seeing the Berner Oberland and even got in a quick trip to Thun!
If you're considering a trip to Switzerland (and this region specifically) I highly recommend it! Feel free to ask any questions you may have!
More details about the hiking trails here.
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