Gimmelwald – A hidden gem in the Swiss mountains

Gimmelwald – A hidden gem in the Swiss mountains

Our original plan was to spend a couple days in Interlaken and then take a day trip up to Grindelwald to experience the mountains. This plan quickly changed when we met two girls at a bus stop in Venice who had just come from a place called Gimmelwald and couldn’t stop talking about it

As planned we spent two nights in the tent village in Interlaken but then made our way up the Lauterbrunnen valley to Gimmelwald. This in itself wasn’t a simple feat of catching yet another train. Okay firstly we did take the train to Lauterbrunnen but from there we had to change to a bus to get us to Stechelberg and finally a cable car up to Gimmelwald.

The train from Interlaken to Lauterbrunnen
The train from Interlaken to Lauterbrunnen

As we had ascended up into the mountains on the cable car late at night most of the view was obscured by the darkness however the next morning the sun was out and we saw why the girls had raved about this place so much. We were now truly up in the mountains!

Our day excursion up in the mountains ended up becoming nearly a week as we couldn’t bear to leave. The only reason we ended up leaving when we did was because our interail tickets were expiring that day and we were currently still 500 miles away from home!

A bench overlooking the mountains and green grass
Not a bad place for a bench

Gimmelwald is truly a hidden gem in the heart of the Swiss mountains. Both the Mountain Hostel and the Pension, where we spent one night of our stay, had amazing staff who would answer any questions you had about the local hikes or the best place in Murren to grab a beer. The Pension even did a backpackers special dinner which was the cheapest food available and tasted incredible too.

The Mountain Hostel
The Mountain Hostel
Five minute walk from the hostel you understand why people don't want to leave
Five minute walk from the hostel you understand why people don’t want to leave

Using the hostel as a base we spent most of our days out on the many available hiking trails. They’re were so many different routes to chose from varying from a couple hours up to full 10hr days. Even just getting food from the supermarket for dinner involved an hour and half round trip if you decided to walk.

The cable car to take visitors further up the mountains overlooking Murren
The cable car to take visitors further up the mountains overlooking Murren
A Swiss flag blowing the in the cool breeze
A Swiss flag blowing the in the cool breeze

The Via Ferrata was probably one of the highlights of the area. You hire a harness from a local shop in Murren and then proceed skirt your way along the edge of the cliff all the way back to Gimmelwald. Even though you are attached to a steel cable running the length of the route with the valley floor nearly 600m below you tread carefully and hold on tight.

Walking along the via ferrata with Stechelberg in the valley below
Walking along the via ferrata with Stechelberg in the valley below
A bridge near the end of the via ferrata
A bridge near the end of the via ferrata

 

What?

Gimmelwald is a beautiful mountain village located in the Bernese Oberland in Switzerland. With no road access the only way up to the picturesque spot is via a cable car or a steep walk from Stechelberg at the bottom of the valley.

How to get there?

From Interlaken you take a train to Lauterbrunnen and then change to a bus to take you to Stechelberg which lies at the bottom of the valley below Murren and Gimmelwald. From the bottom their are two options, a cable car straight up  or a steep walk up the hill.

Where to stay?

There are a couple options but I’d mainly recommend the Mountain hostel. With it’s perfect location, fantastic staff and not so ridiculous price you can’t really go wrong.

The Mountain Hostel

 

2 thoughts on “Gimmelwald – A hidden gem in the Swiss mountains

  1. halo, may I know from cable car to mountain hostel, how far is it ? by walking ?
    If I go with a big luggage, would it be troublesome ?would like to stay at mountain hostel for 3 days in this summer.

    1. Big luggage is never ideal but luckily the cable car exit is only about 50m from the Mountain Hostel so very easy.
      Enjoy!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

*