Things to Do in
Due to the worldwide pandemic, please check for destination travel restrictions prior to visiting/booking
Wengen, Lauterbrunnen, and Murren Switzerland make up an enchanting trio of small towns (less than 5,000 permanent residents collectively) in a region of the Swiss Alps that is best described as Glacier and Yosemite National Parks rolled into one. Steep walled glacier carved valleys, soaring majestic mountain peaks, abundant waterfalls, lakes, alpine meadows, and forests all set in three towns with old world Swiss charm. Wooden chalets, family run ski hotels, and small hillside farms with cows clanging their bells as they amble around, this is what you will find here. Our family was instantly at peace and conversely energized to explore. Cable cars and trains connect the towns and the outdoor rec in these largely car free towns. The Views of Jungfrau, Eiger, and Monch were front and center throughout and the region was by far and away the most scenic of our trip. None of us wanted to leave.
Other than transportation costs - cable cars/trains, these are our favorite free activities
Mannlichen Royal Walk - Short, but steep hike up to incredible 360 degree views of the valley, Interlaken, multiple towns, and the Alps featuring the big three of Eiger, Monch, and Jungfrau. There is also a fantastic playground for the kiddos up there. To access take the short gondola ride from Wengen to Mannlichen.
Hike from Mannlichen to Kleine Scheidegg to WengenAlp. Otherworldly views of Eiger, Monch and Jungfrau and then a ridge walk along the glacier drift zone with waterfalls and glaciers in large numbers along a cataclysmically large rock face.
Hike the Mountain View Trail in Murren. This took the prize for best views in the area. We took the kids adventure trail from Murren to the Allmendhubelwhich provided the the kids with various playgrounds and a great zip line along the way. We descended from there along the Mountain View Trail to Winteregg across a beautiful alpine meadow. The top of the trail provided unobstructed panoramic views of the whole of the Swiss Alps. Speechless.
Visit the First by gondola from Grindenwald. There are beautiful views, a nice playground and a few fee activities worth trying. We did the First Flyer, a zip line-type thrill ride that pulls you backwards up the mountain at 74km/hr while you are lying on your abdomen and connected by a harness on our back. Then at the top it releases and you fly down the hill at 84 km/hr.
Worth the Money
Paragliding - We had the experience of a lifetime with Airtime paragliding. All four of us soared over 4,000’ feet over the valley floor (about 8,000’ above sea level) in tandem setups with fantastic pilots. Definitely opt for the longer ride if the thermals are available and buy the photo/video package, you won't regret it!
Jungfraujoch - A Cog railway took us up through Eiger to the highest train station in Europe. It’s a bit of a tourist to do up there, but well worth it. We enjoyed the ice palace (and scrambling to put all our winter gear on upon arrival), and the magnificent views of the alps and the Aletsch Glacier on which we did a short, but tough (at 12,000’) hike. Try to be on the first train up in the morning to beat the crowds.
Visit Trummelbach falls, the largest subterranean waterfall in Europe. It drains 3 glaciers - Mönch, Eiger and Jungfrau. It flows at up to 20,000 liters of water per second as demonstrated by the deafening roar and water spray. We stopped on our walk back paragliding to the train station.
Eat Fondue. Our family is not a fan of swiss cheese so the cheese fondue wasn't our favorite, but the chocolate fondue at Silberhorn Hotel in Wengen
Tips for Visiting
Use either a Swiss Travel Pass or Jungfrau Travel Pass to travel on trains, buses and cable cars in the region.
Bring extra layers. We were wearing sweatshirts in Mannlichen watching people swimming below us in Wengen. The coats, hats and gloves came out for the Jungfrau experience.
You can probably get by without using Swiss francs. The ticket counters, paragliding company, grocery stores and restaurants all used credit card.
It was great to be in a country with free bathrooms again. They can be found at all of the stations (train, cable car, funicular, etc.)
The views are also free (if you hike to them), but everything else is way more expensive than anywhere else we had been outside of Switzerland.