This post was last updated on October 15th, 2021 at 09:16 pm
If you are planning to visit Grindelwald, Switzerland, and are looking for some information about things to do and places to visit in Grindelwald, you have come to the right place. Below you will find all the information you will need while in Grindelwald. As a note, we visited the majority of these places with a 2-year-old so this guide is totally family-friendly.
In this post, you can learn about what to do in Grindelwald and how to do it, but also where to stay, and what day trips you should look into.
I hope you find this information helpful and enjoy your visit to Grindelwald as much as we enjoyed ours.
What is Grindelwald, Switzerland Known For?
It is one of the most popular Winter and Summer destinations in Switzerland. Here you will find all Winter sports and activities. In Summer, you can enjoy its beautiful nature, incredibly scenic hikes, and magnificent views. No matter the season, it is always the right time to visit Grindelwald.
Visiting First Mountain is one of the top places to visit in Grindelwald. From an incredibly scenic Gondola ride, to views and activities, there is a lot to enjoy here.
Once you are at the top of the First, there is so much to do, your biggest headache will be picking your activity. I do hope that you will have your decision made by the time you are there. Hopefully, this article makes it easier for you to make these tough choices.
You can purchase tickets to the Gondola here. You can also purchase Gondola tickets at the station. The price is $64 CHF per traveler. Tip: make sure to ride it all the way to the top.
1. First Cliff Walk
First Cliff Walk is one of the most popular places to visit in Grindelwald. 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. Because we were traveling with a small toddler, we skipped the cliff walk but we posed a photo right below that so you can have an idea. If time is on your side I would recommend doing it.
The reason we skipped the First Cliff Walk is that we prioritized hiking to the Bachalpsee lake.
Bachalpsee lake is on the top of my places to visit in Grindelwald. It is billed as an “easy” 50 minute (one way) hike. What I can say about it is 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 simple hike to do.
The hike is beautiful. 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, I would say the hike is more like 65-75 minutes each way. it definitely 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, for those with small children, while the path is clear, 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 a lot of room for everyone to spread out. You will have your privacy. 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 ended up falling asleep in our arms, which he never does, on the way back. It was not fun to carry him back).
3.Schynige Platte Hike
If you are an avid hiker and you 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 definitely one of the best places to visit in Grindelwald. The hike is about 6 hours long with views that 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 on your hands and a spirit that calls for more adventures, here are some additional options you will have on your trip to First.
- First Glider. Fun activity resembling a zipline but instead it is a flying bird. 800 meter long flight goes as fast as 83 km/h.
- First Flyer. Similar experience as the first Glider, but without the bird! Views and trills are still spectacular, however.
- First Mountain Cart. This cart allows you to travel down the mountain while having great fun.
- First Mountain Restaurant. Spectacular views, fresh air, wide selection of fresh food and drinks.
Jungfraujoch Excursion / Top of Europe
Jungfraujoch Excursion (Top of Europe) is one of the top places to visit in Grindelwald, and not only in Grindelwald. This is the activity that everyone visiting Grindelwald must make time for if you ask me.
Jungfraujoch is also known as Top of Europe because at 3,454 meters / 11332 ft, it is the highest train station in Europe.
Visiting Jungfraujoch Excursion (Top of Europe) is a bit pricey. But it is totally 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 do note that it is generally not necessary to book your tickets weeks or months in advance for your trip here. 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 visit.
When you visit, dress 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 make sure to visit on a clear day.
If you want to learn more about visiting Jungfraujoch, check back on my blog soon for the ultimate guide to the Top of Europe
Beyond incredible train (and/or Gondola) rides and beautiful snowy mountains, here are some other things you can do here:
- Alpine Sensation. 250 meter long corridor that 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 different 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 a lot of people on its path. However, if you are not up for a hike, make sure to still get out in snow and outside of the building. Even at the base of the trail, snow is fresh, views are spectacular and air is super 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 anywhere between half to a full day on your visits to First or Top of Europe, visiting the Glacier Canyon Walk does not have to be a huge time commitment. It is a short, but impressive activity.
It is located near the center of Grindelwald (about a 35-minute walk, or 5 min drive. There is also a bus that you can take here). You get to 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) that is constructed several meters above the Lutschine river. For more information and tickets, you can visit this website.
It is certainly easy to get distracted with so many places to visit in Grindelwald, but taking some time to explore the village itself is not at all a bad idea. The village 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 was so relaxing!
If you take my recommendation about places to visit in Grindelwald that I discussed above, you will be able to cross off this activity from your list. However, for whatever reason, if you are not able to dedicate a half-day or full-day to visiting First or Top of Europe, I would still recommend that you jump on a Gondola in Grindelwald. The views are stunning.
What makes Grindelwald so beautiful is how snow mountain picks, green mountain valleys, and an incredibly cozy village all come to merge together 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 hike to Bachalapsee lake.
- First to Schynige Platt – ~ 6 hour hike from First to Schynige Platt.
Day Trips to Consider from Grindelwald
The one seemingly irrelevant cool thing about Grindelwald is its location. When we were planning our visit to Switzerland, we wanted to spend about 5 days in/around the alps, and then a few more days closer to the cities. However, we did not want to change hotels every day. While doing our research we discovered that staying in Grindelwald would allow us to have a base location in the mountains and still get to visit destinations on our list for day trips. And that is exactly what we did. After we finished with our places to visit in Grindelwald, we did a few day trips.
Interlaken is a beautiful city located between two lakes (Thun and Brienz). It is about a 25-minute drive / 45-minute train ride away from Grindelwald. There are many shops and restaurants. Of course, beautiful views and picturesque spots all around. We were initially planning to stay in Interlaken instead of Grindelwald. If you are staying near this area, you should find time to visit Interlaken. Here are a few noteworthy locations you can visit while in Interlaken:
- Funky Chocolate Club – Getting a taste of Swiss chocolate is good. Getting a taste of Swiss chocolate you make yourself is even better. Check out this famous chocolate club if you are a chocolate enthusiast.
- St Beatus Caves – These extraordinary caves are located near the lakes of Interlaken. You can explore over a kilometer deep into the mountain.
- Oberhofen Castle – If you are up for a visit to a magnificent park near a lake with a pretty cool castle, this is the place for you.
- Harder Kulm – There is a stunning viewing deck with a glass floor at the end of this trip. There is also a restaurant you can visit.
- Unterseen – a small picturesque and historic town in Interlaken that you should stroll around.’
- Cruise on Lake Brienz – as mentioned, Interlaken is situated between two beautiful lakes. You can take a cruise on these lakes.
- Brienz-Walk – if you are looking for a spot by the lake where you can walk and get rest, you should visit this spot.
Lauterbrunnen and Wengen or Murren
Lauterbrunnen is another picturesque town that you should definitely visit from Grindelwald. It is also about a 25-minute drive away from Grindelwald. The town is small and beautiful with plenty of restaurants. There are two main attractions here. Staubbach Falls, which is visible from the village, and Schilhorn, also known as Piz Gloria, which is a mountain top where James Bond 007 was filmed.
However, because Lauterbrunnen itself is somewhat a small town, you can combine your day trip to Lauterbrunnen with a trip to Wengen or Murren.
Wengen and Murren are two small car-free villages located near Lauterbrunnen. You can visit them by taking a train ride from Lauterbrunnen train station. We visited Wengen. It was a 10-15 minute train ride with spectacular views over Lauterbrunnen. Wengen itself is also very pretty. We spent a couple of hours here before returning back to Lauterbrunnen.
Bern is the capital city of Switzerland. It is a little over an hour’s drive from Grindelwald, but it was definitely worth the drive. The old town is very charming. Bern is also known as the city of fountains because of how many beautiful fountains you can find here.
It also makes a pretty good trip on a rainy day. There are about 6 miles of arcades connecting different shops and restaurants. You can go all day walking around, covered in rain and enjoying your day. Here are some top destinations in Bern for you to consider.
Zytglogge – is a lendmark town located in the old town of bern. While you are here, make sure to explore the old town.
The Cathedral of Bern & Münsterplattform – the cathedral is another beautiful architectural work. Munsterplattform is a park located right next to it. If you are looking for a place to relax for a few minutes, you can stop by here.
BarenPark – is a park in the middle of Bern, located on Aare river, where you can see 3 very big and very healthy bears going about their business. Unlike typical zoos you may be used to, these bears have plenty of space to roam around.
Rose garden – there is a beautiful rose garden in Bern located near the BarenPark. Not only do you get to see pretty flowers here, but you can also get a spectacular view of the city of Bern from above. There is also a restaurant where you can grab your lunch here. As a side note, if you start from Zytglogge or the Rose Garden and walk toward the other destination, you will see many top landmarks, beautiful buildings, river, fountains and shops. It is an easy way to see a lot of what the old city has to offer without feeling like you are lost.
About Grindelwald, Switzerland
Grindelwald is a quinte village in Swiss Bernese Alps. There is a lot to do and many places to visit in Grindelwald. It is a popular tourist destination that offers plenty of winter and summer activities for visitors all year round. It also happens to be the only other large village in the Jungfrau region you can reach by car (the other is Interlaken). By car, it is about 2.5h away from Zurich. It is situated at the base of two famous mountains (Eiger and Wetterhorn). In sum, Grindelwald is a stunning village that also happens to be a very convenient one.
Best time to visit Grindelwald
You can visit Grindelwald any season at is guaranteed to offer you the best of the nature and adventures each season. However, if you are not into winter sports or you are not willing to travel there for just views, go for spring-summer months but remember July-August are the peak season so expect higher rates and more crowd.
Where to stay in Grindelwald
You can easily find accommodations in Grindalwald, Switzerland weather it is a traditional chalet or a Boutique hotel.
We wanted to stay at the boutique, quiet place overlooking the Grindelwald Village but at the same time 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 Grindelwals 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 3 days in Grindelwald. If you want to do some above-mentioned activities such as Jungfraujoch and Bachalpsee, you may have to count them as a one-day activity because the entire experience takes time. Plus, if you do some day trips from Grindelwald, you can certainly stay here more than that. We chose to stay 5 days in Grindelwald and 4 days in other cities because we did major day trips directly from Grindelwald.
How to get to Grindelwald
You can get to Grindelwald by car or train. The nearest international airport is in Zurich. From Zurich, the drive is about 2.5 hours. You can also take a train which is about 3 hours long.
Whether you should rent a car or rely on trains is a personal choice. Traveling with a child, we opted for a car and I can say that we had no trouble getting around or finding parking.
Are you planing to visit any of these places in when in Grindelwald? Would you add anything? Let me know in comments!