A beautiful weekend in Thun, Lauterbrunnen, Interlaken and Grindelwald, Switzerland, brought us many adventures and gorgeous mountain views!
How many trips can one person take to Switzerland before starting to get bored? The limit does not exist. Switzerland is amazing!
Our good friends made the best decision to elope in Switzerland, so a group of us went down for the ceremony and celebration. We stayed in the most beautiful, spacious chalet in Oberhofen am Thunersee, with a breathtaking view of Lake Thun.
The area around Lake Thun is a quiet, central place to stay with easy access to Lauterbrunnen, Interlaken and Grindelwald, all a short drive away. Driving around the lake to get places is beautiful in and of itself, as you follow winding roads along cliff sides and through tunnels carved into the mountains. We traveled into the mountains near Grindelwald for the elopement ceremony photos and it was a stunning setting.
A Day in Lauterbrunnen
Get your camera ready — Lauterbrunnen Valley has steep, dramatic cliff sides and an array of waterfalls in every direction you look. There are said to be a total of 72 waterfalls pouring over the cliff sides into this lush, green valley!
Staubbach Falls is an easy stop once you enter Lauterbrunnen. No hike or payment is required to see the spectacle; simply park in the large, open parking lot, get out of your car and feast your eyes on the beautiful view in front of you.
Just slightly further down the road are the Trümmelbach Falls, a series of 10 waterfalls gushing powerfully through a steep mountain carrying glacier water to the ground below. For a small entrance fee, you can walk through staircases and tunnels carved into the mountain for different vantage points of the falls. This was a fun and unique opportunity; I highly recommend it!
After exploring the falls, we decided to head into nearby Interlaken for lunch and a quick stroll through the city. Perhaps the most notable thing about Interlaken was the emerald water surrounding it, coming from Lake Thun on one side and Lake Brienz on the other.
A Day in Grindelwald
We planned for a day of adventure in Grindelwald, which offers myriad activities for thrill-seekers.
The village itself is a postcard, much like Zermatt with its wooden Swiss chalets and mountainous background.
From the village, you may ride a lift up to First Mountain, where activities such as the First Cliff Walk suspension bridge, the First Flyer zip line, mountain carts, bikes and hikes await. The mountain summit is aptly named the “Top of Adventure.”
It was the first weekend of May, and we were enjoying beautiful weather on the ground. However, as our lift ascended to the top of First mountain, we were greeted with snow – a lot of it!
Due to the snow storm, conditions weren’t great at First. Most activities were closed, and the fog and clouds took away what would have certainly been a spectacular view. Nevertheless, we had an absolute blast up there.
The First Cliff Walk took us along a steep cliff, thousands of feet above ground level. I can’t imagine how scary, but simultaneously stunning, the views must be from this suspension bridge on a clear day.
At the end of the cliff walk is a buffet-style restaurant where we enjoyed food and drinks while the snow was coming down pretty hard. After lunch, we headed back out into the snow.
At one point, it became a total white-out where we couldn’t see 10 feet in front of us. This was terrifying and also hilarious as we all huddled together waiting to be able to see again, so we could avoid slipping off the 7,106-foot mountain summit.
Because of the snow and lack of visibility, we couldn’t do the hiking or zip lining we had planned to do. However, we were able to do the First Glider, a ride that pulls you backward at a steep 800-meter (2,624-foot) ascent at 45 mph, then lets you glide back down at 50 mph. Of course, the panoramic views were hidden behind the shield of fog, but I’m not entirely sure I would have been able to open my eyes on this ride anyway!
Eventually, after several snowball fights, we went back down to the village of Grindelwald and walked around taking in the views before we stopped for fondue and hot drinks.
Overall, it was a really wonderful trip! There are so many more activities and adventures waiting to be had at each of these destinations. We were limited to just a few days, so we only got a taste. Guess we’ll have to return for more!