Are you planning your trip to Grindelwald, Switzerland? You are about to experience the surreal natural beauty and create unforgettable family memories.
Known for its picturesque landscapes and mountains, skiing, hiking, Jungfraujoch excursion, Cliff-Walk, and other incredible places to visit in Grindelwald, it is a dream destination for natural adventure enthusiasts.
Ever since I was a child, it has been my dream to visit Switzerland to see with my own eyes if it was as beautiful as I imagined. It was everything I expected it would be and more.
However, planning your first visit can be somewhat overwhelming. In this Ultimate Grindelwald guide, I wanted to help you break down places to visit and things to do in Grindelwald based on our family itinerary and experiences.
We visited Grindelwald with our 2-year-old son; it was our best trip ever. I want to share every tip to make your planning process more enjoyable.
in this post, I explained what to do in Grindelwald, where to stay, and what day trips you should look into.
Read More: Day Trips from Grindelwald
What is Grindelwald, Switzerland, Known For?
Grindelwald is known for its beautiful scenery and winter sports activities. The village is in the Alps region, specifically the Jungfrau region of the Bernese Oberland.
Additionally, Grindelwald is known for its famous attractions, such as visiting the Jungfraujoch – Top of Europe, the GoldenPass line, and the Schilthorn.
Things To Do In Grindelwald: Visit First Mountain
Visiting First Mountain is one of the top things to do in Grindelwald. There is much to enjoy, from an incredibly scenic Gondola ride to views and activities.
Once you are at the top of the First, there is much to do; your biggest headache will be picking your activity.
You can purchase tickets to the Gondola here. You can also purchase Gondola tickets at the station. The price is CHF 64 per traveler. Tip: make sure to ride it to the top.
First Cliff Walk
First, Cliff Walk is one of Grindelwald’s most popular places. It is very close to the Gondola stop and does not take too much of your time.
Plan about 20-30 minutes for this activity. The “walk” is a walkway on the side of a mountain with breathtaking views.
First Cliff Walk is open year-round, but visiting on a clear day is highly recommended. There are no additional tickets required.
We skipped the First Cliff Walk because we prioritized hiking to Bachalpsee Lake.
Bachalpsee Lake is at the top of my places to visit in Grindelwald. It is billed as an “easy” 50-minute (one-way) hike. I can say that while the hiking trail itself is clean, clear, and “easy,” it was not a walk in the park. But we did manage to complete the hike with a kid. There were other families with children as well. All in all, it is a good and straightforward hike to do.
The hike is beautiful. You are immersed in gorgeous mountains. You will likely run into small herds of cows (maybe even more than once), see beautiful birds, and come across many lookouts where you will stop for a minute or two.
Overall, the hike is more like 65-75 minutes each way. It takes longer than 50 minutes. They must have timed someone who hiked directly to the lake and never stopped to look around. However, it is worth every second of your time.
As a side note, while the path is clear for those with small children, it is not necessarily stroller-friendly unless it’s a stroller with bigger wheels.
While there are plenty of hikers, once you get to the lake, there is much room for everyone to spread out. You will have your privacy. The views are unbelievable. It is hard to describe how beautiful this place truly is. We loved being there so much that we even forgot our toddler’s nap time was way past due (he fell asleep in our arms, which he never does, on the way back. It was not fun to carry him around).
Schynige Platte Hike
If you are an avid hiker and are up for a challenge, you can try the First to Schynige Platte hike. On the website where they give information about First Mountain, they state that everyone should do this hike at least once in their lifetime.
It is one of the best places to visit in Grindelwald. The hike is about 6 hours long, with views you won’t easily forget. More information about this hike is here. You may have guessed we skipped this hike due to traveling with a child but do let us know how much you love it if you end up doing it!
There are other paid activities you can do when you are visiting First. If you have time and a spirit that calls for more adventures, here are some additional options for your trip to First.
- First Glider. Fun activity resembling a zipline, but instead, it is a flying bird. The 800-meter-long flight goes as fast as 83 km/h.
- First Flyer. It is a similar experience to the first Glider but without the bird! Views and trills are still spectacular, however.
- First Mountain Cart. The First Mountain Cart experience in Grindelwald offers an exhilarating downhill ride on a three-wheeled cart along a specially designed track.This activity provides an exciting and unique way to experience the natural beauty of the Swiss Alps while enjoying a thrilling adventure.
- First Mountain Restaurant. Spectacular views, fresh air, and a wide selection of fresh food and drinks.
Jungfraujoch Excursion (Top of Europe) is one of the top places to visit in Grindelwald, not only in Grindelwald. This is the activity that everyone seeing Grindelwald must make time for.
Jungfraujoch is also known as the Top of Europe because, at 3,454 meters / 11332 ft, it is the highest train station in Europe.
Read More: Day trip to Jungfraujoch
Visiting Jungfraujoch Excursion (Top of Europe) is a bit pricey. But it is worth it. This is not where you should try to make room for savings. I highly recommend visiting Jungfraujoch.
For pricing and more information, you can also visit this site.
Please note that booking your tickets weeks or months before your trip here is generally unnecessary. The better option is to wait and pick up tickets a day or two before your visit. This is to ensure that you will have good weather during your stay.
When you visit, dress in layers. Even during summer days, it can get pretty cold here.
At the top, there are shops, restaurants, snow activities, and a lot more to do. The experience is one to remember. The Jungfraujoch is open year-round, but visit on a clear day.
Beyond incredible trains, Gondola rides, and beautiful snowy mountains, here are some other things you can do on top of the Jungfrau:
- Alpine Sensation. The 250-meter-long corridor connects Sphinx Hall and Ice Palace with frosty temperatures, 30 memorial tablets, music, and one giant snow globe.
- Ice Palace. You can observe different ice sculptures created by other artists here.
- Sphinx Observatory Deck. Incredible views of mountains covered in snow.
- Snow Fun Park. You can enjoy snow activities here, even during the summer months.
- Hike to the Monchsjoch Hut. This is a 45-minute-long hike, and you will see many people on its path. However, if you are not up for a walk, ensure you still get out in the snow and outside the building. Even at the base of the trail, the snow is fresh, the views are spectacular, and the air is fresh and crispy. We had a lot of fun.
Gletscherschlucht (Glacier Canyon Walk)
Glacier Canyon Walk is another one of the top places to visit in Grindelwald. While you may spend half a day visiting First or Top of Europe, visiting the Glacier Canyon Walk does not have to be a considerable time commitment. It is a short but impressive activity.
It is located near the center of Grindelwald (about a 35-minute walk or 5-minute drive. There is also a bus you can take here). You walk on a walkway curved in the middle of a glacier, surrounded by rock walls from each side and a river below. There is also a very cool “spider web” that you can walk on (or jump on) constructed several meters above the Lutschine River. For more information and tickets, you can visit this website.
It is easy to get distracted by so many places to visit in Grindelwald, but exploring the village is a good idea. The town of Grindelwald is beautiful and very picturesque.
There are a lot of restaurants and some shops for you to explore as well. Time permitting, I would highly recommend spending some time in the village.
Evening strolls in cozy village streets with some hot cocoa were so relaxing!
If you take my recommendation about places to visit in Grindelwald I discussed above, you can cross off this activity from your list. However, for whatever reason, if you cannot dedicate a half-day or full-day to visiting First or Top of Europe, I would still recommend jumping on a Gondola in Grindelwald. The views are stunning.
Grindelwald, Switzerland, is an excellent base for exploring the surrounding region. Here are some of the best day trips from Grindelwald:
- Jungfraujoch: a popular day trip destination with stunning views of the surrounding mountains and glaciers
- Lake Brienz: a beautiful lake with clear blue waters and opportunities for boating and swimming.
- Schilthorn: a mountain peak accessible by cable car with panoramic views and a revolving restaurant.
- Interlaken: a nearby town with a charming Old Town center and many outdoor activities such as hiking and paragliding.
- Gstaad: a luxury resort town with high-end shopping and dining options.
- Lauterbrunnen is the most picturesque little town with the famous Staubbach and Trummelbach waterfalls.
- Bern, Wanger, and Murren.
What makes Grindelwald so beautiful is how snow mountain peaks, green mountain valleys, and an incredibly cozy village merge to create this beautiful place. Therefore, it should not be a surprise that hiking in Grindelwald is a worthwhile experience. Here are some hikes you can look into:
- Männlichen to Kleine Scheidegg trail – is an easy, family-friendly hike.
- Eiger Trail – another family-friendly hike at the bottom of Eiger Mountain.
- First to Bachalapsee – easy, family-friendly walk to Bachalapsee Lake.
- First to Schynige Platt – ~ 6-hour hike from First to Schynige Platt.
What is the Best Time to visit Grindelwald?
You can visit Grindelwald any season. It is guaranteed to offer you the best nature and adventures each season. However, if you are not into winter sports or are not willing to travel there for just views, go for spring-summer months but remember, July-August is the peak season, so expect higher rates and more crowd.
Where to stay in Grindelwald?
You can easily find accommodations in Grindelwald, Switzerland, in a traditional chalet or a Boutique hotel.
We wanted to stay at the boutique, a quiet place overlooking the Grindelwald Village and a family-friendly Hotel. Hotel Belvedere Grindelwald was a perfect combination of both. It offered various services and activities to adults as well as kids. If we are back in Grindelwald in the future, we would certainly consider staying here again, with or without the kids.
You can find out more about the hotel in my Hotel Review.
How many days do you need in Grindelwald?
Make sure you plan to stay at least three days in Grindelwald. If you want to do some activities mentioned above, such as Jungfraujoch and Bachalpsee, you may have to count them as one-day activities because the entire experience takes time. Plus, if you make some day trips from Grindelwald, you can certainly stay here more than that. We chose to wait five days in Grindelwald and four days in other cities because we made significant day trips directly from Grindelwald.
How to get to Grindelwald?
You can get to Grindelwald by car or train. The nearest international airport is Zurich. From Zurich, the drive is about 2.5 hours. You can also take a train which is about 3 hours long.
Whether renting a car or relying on trains is a personal choice. Traveling with a child, we opted for a car, and we had no trouble getting around or finding parking.
Are you planning to visit any of these places when in Grindelwald? Would you add anything? Let me know in the comments, and check out Grindelwald’s highlights on Instagram!