Discover Interlaken: Your Ultimate Guide to the Swiss Alps Gem

Interlaken is an excellent location for all mountain activities. During the summer, the picturesque landscape and plenty of pubs make it a favorite backpacker destination.

The lovely town of Interlaken is part of the wider Interlaken region in the breathtaking Swiss Alps. Interlaken is located between two lakes, Lake Thun to the west and Lake Brienz to the east, as its name suggests. It’s a popular skiing destination with postcard-perfect ski resorts where you can ski, snowboard, trek, snowshoe, paraglide, and participate in other amazing winter sports activities.

Interlaken is an excellent location for all mountain activities. During the summer, the picturesque landscape and plenty of pubs make it a favorite backpacker destination. Expect icy roads, ice-capped mountains, and plenty of fondue cafés with outdoor dining that are complete with warm blankets to keep you warm if you visit during the winter.

Even if you aren’t a lover of winter sports, there is much to see and do in Interlaken, such as cycling, caving, taking advantage of the many funiculars throughout the Interlaken region to view some spectacular panoramas, eating rich Swiss food, and simply meandering about the quaint mountain villages.

Interlaken is a great destination for a winter holiday. The UNESCO World Heritage Site of Jungfrau-Aletsch is located in the heart of the Interlaken area, owing to the three main peaks of Eiger, Mönch, and Jungfrau. The Aletsch Glacier, the biggest glacier in the Alps, is also included in the historic site and is home to the spectacular Ice Palace, which was carved into the glacier itself.

Visitors to the city’s surrounding mountains may enjoy a variety of year-round sights and activities. The mountain trains of the Jungfrau area have provided many Interlaken tourists with unforgettable experiences. Since the building of trains such as the Bernese Oberland Railway in 1890, Interlaken’s popularity has grown.

Because of their proximity to Interlaken, the Jungfraujoch, Mt. Schilthorn, and Schynige Platte all provide fantastic mountaintop experiences. Travelers may easily experience the splendor of the Bernese Oberland from Interlaken, whether by water, mountains, or a picturesque rail route. Interlaken is an excellent starting place for a plethora of excursions and amazing experiences.

How To Reach Interlaken, Switzerland

Depending on what’s most convenient to you, you can choose to travel to Interlaken Switzerland either by rail, road or by air.

By air, the closest airport to Interlaken is Bern Airport, 45 minutes away. However, flying into Zurich and then driving to Interlaken is a better option. There are several airlines that fly from India to Zurich on a daily basis. You can also fly into Geneva’s airport. It’s the same two-hour train ride to Interlaken train station from there.

Switzerland’s railway network is highly powerful, and it is one of the finest and most convenient methods to get across the nation. There is a direct train from Zurich Airport to Interlaken that takes around 2 hours and is the best option if you are travelling from another country. Interlaken Ost Station lies in the heart of the city. Interlaken has two train stations: Interlaken West and Interlaken Ost (East). West is slightly closer in townYour travel will be comfortable; Switzerland’s train system is one of the greatest in the world.

Further, Switzerland’s roadways are smooth and simple to traverse. You may hire a car and drive down to Interlaken whenever it is convenient for you; but, parking in Interlaken is pricey, so keep that in mind. There are also public buses from all of Switzerland’s major cities, which is a handy form of transportation. Some bus companies provide direct buses to Interlaken from neighbouring countries such as Italy, Germany, and France.

The roads offer an easy and comfortable trip and give you the opportunity to take detours and explore tourist-hidden sites along the route. However, It is not required to have a car when visiting the Jungfrau region because most sites are only accessible by cable car, bus, or rail. Check out the Jungfrau tourist website before you go so you can figure out which travel passes are ideal for your vacation.

Moreover, Because the city is tiny, walking is the ideal way to experience it. You can, however, use the rail service to visit the alpine regions and nearby places. The stations are ideally located near popular tourist attractions. Buses are also an option that is both handy and affordable. You may either take a cab or rent a private automobile for the day.

Also read: Why Should Switzerland’s Geneva Be On Your Travel Bucket List

Best time to visit Interlaken, Switzerland

Summer is the ideal season to visit Interlaken, from June to September. The weather remains comfortable at 18°C to 20°C. It’s the ideal season for aimless hikes, trekking, mountaineering, and other adventurous pursuits.

This season is popular mostly because of the lovely weather. The temperature fluctuates between 24°C to 14°C, making it ideal for outdoor activities. Summers are all about swimming, boating, adventure sports, breathtaking scenery, and outdoor music festivals. Popular events during this time period include the Greenfield Festival, Lake Brienz Rock, Thunfest, and others.

However, Since it is the blooming season, spring, between the months of March and May is also a colourful time to visit Interlaken. It is also a particularly busy season due to tourists who wish to participate in winter sports in the surrounding Jungfrau and alpine areas. The temperature ranges between 14°C to 4°C during the day. The Swatch Rocket Air event and the Interlaken Classics festival both take place around this period.

In the fall season, which lasts from October through November, Crowds begin to diminish as temperatures begin to fall. The winds make the temperature frigid, but it’s also a beautiful time to explore the countryside and go riding or trekking. Some tourist attractions may begin to close for the winter, so it’s best to plan your trip and look up the dates ahead of time.

The temperature in the city ranges from 14°C to 6°C. The Läset-Sunntig Spiez, Suldtal cattle drive, and the International Jungfrau Marathon all take place during this season.

Lastly, winters from December to February are pretty magical here, but they are also very cold! Make sure you bring lots of warm clothing. The temperature fluctuates from 3° C to -3° C. During this period, ice skating, skiing, and other winter sports are popular. The Christmas markets that open in December are the season’s highlight. Other events include the Giessbach Sessions and Harder-Potschete.

Things to do in Interlaken, Switzerland 

 Interlaken, Switzerland, has something for everyone. Throughout the year, it is one of the most popular tourist destinations. During the winter, Interlaken is a wonderful location if you want to do some winter sports because there are several ski resorts and slopes nearby. The rest of the year, the surroundings around Interlaken enchant you with turquoise lakes, lush valleys, and snow-capped mountains.

Interlaken offers a variety of sports, including paragliding, flying fox, hiking, mountain biking, kayaking, and more. If adventure isn’t your thing, you may go for endless walks, go boating on the lake, and explore the many gorgeous villages, mediaeval town centres and castles, and lush waterfalls. Besides that, here’s a list of some of the best things to do in the town.

  • Ride Up To Schynige Platte
  • Get Adventurous At Niederhorn
  • Visit Giessbach Falls
  • Explore Lake Brienz
  • Go On The DDLJ Tour
  • Experience The Magic Of Ice
  • Stop By The Museum of Tourism
  • Chocolate Tasting
  • Try Flying Fox At Grindelwald
  • Experience The Brienz Rothorn Railway
  • Visit Jungfraujoch Sphinx Observatory
  • Climb Harder Kulm
  • Visit Lake Thun
  • Explore St Beatus Caves
  • Go kayaking at Lake Thun or Brienz
  • Visit the Weissenau Nature Reserve
  • Go for the Panoramaweg Hike and the many other hikes that the town has to offer.

One can also take part in the summer and winter activities that are available in the city according to the weather in which one takes a trip to Interlaken, Switzerland.

Also read: Your Ultimate Guide to Planning the Perfect Staycation Close to Home

Places to visit in Interlaken, Switzerland

Because of its stunning beauty and convenient location, this historic resort town is teeming with tourists. Interlaken has a plethora of tourist attractions, and it is a center for all adventurous activities, breathtaking scenery, beautiful castles, and medieval villages.

It’s also a fantastic place to start exploring the Jungfrau, Eiger, and Mönch mountain ranges. Here is a list of some of the places that one must visit while on a trip to Interlaken, Switzerland.

  • Harder Kulm

The Harder-Kulm funicular takes you up the Harder. The view from the top, at a height of nearly 1000 metres, is breathtaking. The panoramic view of the lakes, mountains, and surrounding flora provides for some fantastic photographs and memories.

The lookout pavilions are at different heights. The Harder Alpine Wildlife Park is also close, where one can find  marmots and ibexes.

  • Jungfraujoch

The Jungfrau is Europe’s tallest mountain peak and is also known as the “Roof of Europe” for the same reason. This is one of the most popular spots to visit in Interlaken, located at a height of 3,466 metres above sea level. A trip to Jungfraujoch is the ultimate visitor experience in Interlaken.

A train trip up the mountain at 11,000 feet provides a once-in-a-lifetime excitement. The railroad line is almost a century old. The scenery is breathtaking on this journey, which takes you via a 7-kilometre tunnel into the mountains. This region has been designated as a UNESCO Natural World Heritage Site. Aside from consuming hot Indian food at the Bollywood restaurant atop the mountain, one may encounter Hindi signboards along the way.

Visitors go to the Ice Palace, which is located in the heart of the mountain and shows an intriguing collection of ice sculptures. The Jungfraujoch Music Festival brings together orchestras and performers from all over the world in July and early August.

  • Unspunnen Castle

Unspunnen Castle is located 3 kilometres from the centre and is easily accessible by public transportation. The castle was built in the 1200s and was a major centre of authority in the 13th and 14th centuries. The castle is presently in ruins and yet it is significant. You may also hike up to

Rothenfluh Castle, albeit the route can be difficult due to its location on the edge of a cliff. The route takes roughly an hour to complete, and it is not recommended to walk it after dark or with children.

During the Unspunnenfest, the area beneath the castle becomes very busy. It may be defined as a celebration put on by the locals where people gather to compete in traditional Swiss competitions. The festival occurs every 12 years, with the most recent one taking place in 2017.

  • Beatus Cave and Waterfalls

St. Beatus Cave and Waterfalls is a pleasant place to spend a few hours. Tour the stunning underground cave chambers, which are packed with stalactites and stalagmites, mirror lakes, and waterfalls! The Caves, which stretch 14 kilometres below, are well-lit and safe for individuals and families to explore for hours.

The walkway inside the caverns is approximately one kilometre long. Don’t forget to stop by the Cave Museum to learn more about the area. The cave may be reached by road, rail, or boat; however, if you arrive by boat, there is a difficult climb up to the cave.

The trek to the Caves, via lush woods and stunning waterfalls, is an experience in and of itself. The Caves lie over a kilometre below and are fed by the clean waters of Lake Thun. A tour through the paths will never be dull, with tunnels and caverns and unexpected protrusions and grottos, and will surprise you every few feet.

This is also an excellent site for individuals interested in environmental preservation, ecology, and sustainable tourism. Thousands of students from local schools and educational institutions have visited the Caves over the years to obtain a better grasp of natural history and a greater appreciation for the environment.

  • Spiez

Spiez, located in the heart of Switzerland beside Lake Thun, is a lavish area unspoiled by civilization. This charming hamlet is at an elevation of 628 metres above sea level and is surrounded by natural beauty. The official language spoken here is German, although the locals are equally fluent in English, French, and other languages.

Spiez is a lovely town with breathtaking views that is easily accessible by road, train, and boat. The village is glorified by its 13th-century castle and 1000-year-old church. Spiez is well-known for its vineyards, and visitors frequently stop by to unwind with a glass of wine and take in all of the traditional and local flavours that this little town has to offer.

Spiez is home to various tourist spots, which draws a large number of visitors each year. From adventure activities like hiking, sailing, and skiing to historical landmarks like the Spiez castle and museum, this area should be on your bucket list.

Many diverse places in the neighbourhood of this town, such as Faulenese, Mount Niesen, and others, will pique your interest in exploring Spiez. The weather is best suitable throughout the summer months of June to August. Because these are the hottest days of the year here, this is the peak tourist season.

  • Interlaken Monastery and Castle

The Interlaken Monastery and Castle is a popular tourist attraction in Interlaken, as well as a Swiss heritage monument of national significance.

The extensive lawns and open areas, as well as the attractive building complex, make it worth a visit. The ancient Augustinian Monastery in Interlaken has a colourful history dating back to the 12th century. It has been through a lot, from being created as a monastery to being turned into a hospital following the Reformation to now being an administrative office.

Look for the amazing architectural work as you go through the grounds of the castle and monastery. The church’s 14th-century spire and the gothic cloister gallery are notable features. You should visit because of the spectacular steeple, Gothic cloister gallery, and overall architecture.

Accommodation in Interlaken, Switzerland

Boating, swimming, hiking, skiing, and a plethora of other outdoor activities are all available right on your doorstep in the Interlaken region. There are so many great Interlaken hotels and resorts that deciding where to stay in Interlaken Switzerland might be difficult.

If you wish to stay  close to the majority of tourist spots like historic buildings, restaurants and pubs then staying in the centre of the Interlaken City is the best option. This is the greatest place for travellers interested in nightlife during their vacation to Interlaken with everything available in the heart of the city itself.

Many hotels in Interlaken are located in or around the town centre, with options ranging from cheap hostels to luxury hotels with views of the Aare River. Interlaken City is located between the two main parts of town, Interlaken Ost and Interlaken West, and is relatively walkable.

If you want to get into the city centre by train, the major railway station of Interlaken is at Interlaken Ost, just east of the city centre. Numerous of Interlaken’s nicest hotels are in this region, and it’s near to many restaurants and sights, including the local castle, Schloss Interlaken. Interlaken Ost is the finest place to explore if you are a first-time visitor to Interlaken.

If you’re looking for a cheap place to stay in Interlaken, go no further than Interlaken Ost.Here’s a list of some of the best hostels and hotels available both in the centre of the city as well as Interlaken OST that can be considered budget friendly. It also includes some of the affordable luxury hotels and family friendly hotels in Interlaken City.

  • Adventure Hostel Interlaken
  • Bed & Bar No.8
  • Downtown Hostel Interlaken
  • Alp Lodge
  • Backpackers Villa Sonnenhof
  • Happy Inn Lodge
  • Balmers Hostel
  • Funny Farm
  • lake Lodge Iseltwald
  • Hotel Chalet Swiss
  • Hotel Central Continental
  • Happy Inn Lodge

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