Set in Switzerland’s Bernese Oberland, Grindelwald is an alpine fairytale village. In winter it is a skier’s paradise. Come summer, vibrant flower boxes adorn the balconies of the wooden chalets, the melodic clang of cowbells echo through the valley and the green pastures become a summer playground. There are many family friendly day trips to take during a week in Grindelwald.
Grindelwald is an excellent base to explore the surrounding region, with a range of family friendly day trips to make a memorable alpine holiday.
A day at Grindelwald First is a must. A cable car from the centre of town will bring you to the ski resort where a range of fun activities await.
- Take one of the many easy walks and enjoy the alpine scenery. A two hour return walk along paved walkways will bring you to the breathtakingly beautiful Lake Bachalpsee, where the snowcapped Schreckhorn, Wetterhorn and Finsteraarhorn mountains are reflected in the glassy waters.
- A short walk along the First Cliff Walkway, hanging over the abyss gives you unrivalled views across the valley and to the Alps beyond.
- Hire a mountain bike to ride back down to Grindelwald
- For the more adventurous, you can take a tandem paragliding ride, jumping off the cliff and sailing into the valley below.
- Take an 800 metre zipline to the next cable station at Schreckfeld below.
- Enjoy lunch in the First restaurant while you take in the breathakingly beautiful panoramic views
- Return cable car CHF 42 per person in summer 2017. Family passes available.
Bobsled at Pfingstegg
Overlooking Grindelwald, Pfingstegg provides a great morning of family entertainment.
- Take short cable ride from the centre of town to Pfingstegg.
- From here you can take a short hike to the Grindelwald glacier face, enjoying views across the valley below.
- Relax and enjoy the alpine scenery while the children have fun on the bobsled runs which operate during the warmer months.
- Cable Car CHF 12.80 per person. Bobsled rides CHF 20 for 4 rides summer 2017
Glacier Gorge was the site of a thriving ice industry, where the Grindelwald Glacier ended close to the town. Today the Glacier has receded some five kilometres, but you can enjoy an educational and enjoyable afternoon at the Gorge.
- Either take a bus, or drive out to the Glacier Gorge Canyon.
- Here you can enjoy a traditional Swiss meal at the local hotel before exploring the Glacier Gorge canyon.
- A narrow metal walkway takes visitors through the gorge to where the glacier once ended.
- For the more adventurous, there is a “spider web” suspended some 7 metres above the ravine for the more adventurous to experience the sheer magnificence of the gorge.
- Do take a warm jacket, as even on a 38 degree day, the temperature within the Gorge is only 10 degrees.
- Entry to Glacier Gorge CHF 15 per person
James Bond fans and Alpine lovers alike will enjoy a day at Piz Gloria on Schilthorn, setting of the film “On Her Majesty’s Secret Service”
- Starting from Stechelberg, a four gondola ride takes you across bottomless ravines, to Schilthorn at an altitude of 2970 metres. This is not an ideal outing for those with a serious problem with heights, however the gondolas hold 75 people each and are very enclosed.
- Once at the top, high in the permanent snow line, you will enjoy 3600 degree panoramic views of the Monch, Jungfrau and Eiger mountains and surrounding snowfields.
- The Bond-themed complex provides an interactive display on the filming of the movie
- Visit the Piz Gloria revolving restaurant, where you can enjoy lunch at the top of the world.
- On the way back stop at the Birg cable station. Here the adventurous can enjoy the glass bottomed cliff walk with views into the ravine.
- The not so adventurous can enjoy a piping hot chocolate in the cafe.
- Once again, take coats and scarves, as you will be in the permanent snowline where it will be cold even on “warm” days.
- Cable car CHF 105 per person summer 2017
Hike from Mannlichen to Kleine Scheidegg
A 25 minute cable car ride from Grindelwald will bring you to Mannlichen station, where you can enjoy one of the most popular tourist walks in the region.
- Walk from Mannlichen to the cog railway at Kleine Scheidegg, enjoying alpine views, fields full of wildflowers and the occasional snowdrift ripe for building a snowman.
- Enjoy lunch or light refreshments at the alpine restaurant at the end of the walk.
- Continue along the Eiger-Jungfrau trail to the Eiger Glacier station and watch the trains disappear into the tunnel on the famous Jungfrau railway. Once again you will have close up views of the Eiger, Monch and Jungfrau mountains.
- Take the unique cog railway back into Grindelwald.
- Both walks were approximately 10 kilometres combined, taken at a leisurely pace.
- Once again you will need layers of clothing.
- Cable car from Grindelwald CHF 30 per person. Family passes available.
Visit the Schloss on Thunersee
A short drive past Interlaken will bring you to two ancient castles to explore, both with fascinating displays.
- The foundations of Schloss Spiez date back to around AD1000. Here you can visit the medieval knights chambers, see the workings of a medieval castle kitchen and enjoy the magnificent gardens and lakeside views
- Schloss Oberhofen on Thunersee has extensive gardens and is uniquely displayed to show the life of domestic staff who served in the palaces
Both are well worth a day’s drive if you are looking for a less energetic activity for the day.
If you are staying in Grindelwald accommodation, you will receive a free pass for local transport which will also give you a discount on some cable cars. A Swiss Family Pass will give you free travel for children from 6-15 years on most cable cars, including the Schilthorn if accompanied by a paying adult.