Lauterbrunnen is an idyllic Swiss village located in an impossibly beautiful valley in the Alps. Towering snow-capped peaks, high-altitude waterfalls and rough valley sides mean you seldom have to move to take in a truly breathtaking view. It’s surprisingly accessible by train, and there’s a wide range of things to do in Lauterbrunnen.
The unspoilt village is popular throughout the year. But if you head there in the spring or summer, you’ll get the best of both worlds – snowcapped peaks and an endless array of scenic hikes and walks. When winter blows in, the deep green meadows turn snow white and the resorts on the nearby hills open for business.
Take a hike
Lauterbrunnen is a hiker’s dream. There are hundreds of walks and hikes that cater to a wide range of skill levels. A general rule is that the tougher the hike, the better the rewards. But even a gentle walk up the valley floor will yield impressive sights.
Walks to nearby villages will take you past snow-fed lakes, cows, mountain goats, and to remote mountain huts where you can savor a steaming mug of hot chocolate with a dramatic outlook.
Walk behind the waterfall
There are several waterfalls plummeting down Lauterbrunnen’s valley walls, some more accessible than others.
Staubbachfall is just a short walk up the valley, and there’s a marked pathway that takes you behind the water. You’ll find another popular waterfall further up the valley called Trümmelbachfäll which is equally thrilling to explore.
Take a train to the Top of Europe
Lauterbrunnen is famous for its convenient access to one of the summits of the Bernese Alps – the Jungfrau. And for rail travel fans, the good news is that you can get tantalizingly close to the summit by train.
The Jungfraujoch station, at 3,454 meters above sea level, is the highest railway station in Europe. The ride is almost as thrilling as the sights that await you at the top.
Savor a traditional cheese fondue in Mürren
There are few things better than a traditional Swiss cheese fondue eaten in the country of its origin. There are several places to indulge in this iconic dish in and around Lauterbrunnen, but it’s a particularly welcome reward after the steep walk up to the mountainside village of Mürren.
Most restaurants and hotels have fondue on the menu. You can’t really go wrong in any of these in this part of the world.