Thinking about a trip to Interlaken, Switzerland? Interlaken is known as the ‘adventure capital of Switzerland’, and it’s the perfect destination for anyone looking to visit charming mountain villages, hike to beautiful alpine lakes, and eat lots of cheese and chocolate!
This travel guide will help you plan a 3-day trip around Interlaken, Switzerland and the Jungfrau region. Learn the best things to see and do in Interlaken, where to stay, and tips from my personal experience!
My photos around Interlaken were taken at the beginning of October.
- Interlaken to Jungfraujoch Area Map
- How to get to Interlaken, Switzerland from the UK
- My Interlaken Switzerland Itinerary
- DAY 1: Interlaken
- DAY 2: Grindelwald First and Lake Bachalp
- DAY 3: Jungfraujoch and Lauterbrunnen
- Tips For Traveling in Switzerland
- Winter in Interlaken
Interlaken to Jungfraujoch Area Map
How to get to Interlaken, Switzerland from the UK
Where to Fly From
Since we’re in the UK, we flew from Bristol Airport to Geneva, Switzerland with EasyJet. The flight is only 1.5 hours!
Taking the Train
After arriving in Geneva, we took a 2 hour and 48 minute intercity train to Interlaken. We arrived at the Interlaken West terminal as this was the closest one to our apartment rental. It was a 7-minute walk.
My Interlaken Switzerland Itinerary
DAY 1: Interlaken
On your first day in Interlaken, I recommend exploring the town. In the center of Interlaken, you can walk down Hoheweg Boulevard, which is a street full of shops and restaurants.
Interlaken sits between two lakes, Lake Thun and Lake Brienz, which are connected by the Aare River, a glacial-fed river. There are paths on both sides of the river and it’s a beautiful area to walk or ride a bike.
Another stop I recommend is Schlosspark to watch the paragliders land!
Harder Kulm – Top of Interlaken
Harder Kulm is a mountain peak that overlooks the towns of Interlaken and Unterseen. At 1,332m high, this is the best viewpoint you’ll get of Interlaken and the nearby lakes.
To reach the top of Harder Kulm, you can either hike up, which will take about 2 hours or you can pay to ride the funicular to the top. The funicular starts running from 9:20 a.m. until 9:10 p.m. (depending on the season). It costs 30 CHF for a roundtrip ticket with an Interlaken Guest Card.
There is a restaurant at the top if you want coffee or some food.
PRO TIP – Check the Harder Kulm webcam to see what the current weather conditions are like before you head up!
Where to Eat in Interlaken
- Velo Cafe – Vegan, breakfast, sandwiches, and drinks. I loved the falafel wrap.
- Spatz – Great coffee!
- Restaurant Café Gleis 3 – Swiss cuisine.
- La Terrasse Brasserie – If you’re looking for a fancy meal. Amazing food!
- Funky Chocolate Club – You must try the chocolate covered strawberries!
Where to Stay in Interlaken
Bed & Bar No. 8 – We rented an apartment, which had a full kitchen so we could cook some of our own meals. There is a Co-op grocery store within walking distance. It cost 740 CHF for 3 nights.
DAY 2: Grindelwald First and Lake Bachalp
Grindelwald is a mountain village in the Swiss Bernese Alps and it’s a popular stop for anyone wanting to visit the Jungfrau Region. There is so much to do in this area. You can hike to alpine hikes or visit the Gletscherschlucht glacier gorge.
To get to Grindelwald from Interlaken, you’ll want to take the train from Interlaken Ost and get off at the Grindelwald Village stop. The train ride takes less than 35 minutes and costs 19.60 CHF roundtrip with an Interlaken Guest Card.
Walk around town and grab a coffee at the local snack bar before heading up the mountain.
Grindelwald First – Top of Adventure (2168m)
Grindelwald First is a mountain summit as well as a popular destination for hiking and mountain adventures. To reach Grindelwald First from Grindelwald, you will have to ride the 25-minute Firstbahn gondola. It costs 64 CHF before any discounts.
Check out some of the activities available here including, First Flyer, First Glider, First Mountain Cart, and First Trottibike Scooter.
Hike to Lake Bachalp (Bachalpsee)
After arriving at Grindelwald First, you can follow a well-maintained trail for 3km to reach Lake Bachalp or Bachalpsee. It will take you about an hour to reach this beautiful alpine lake. If you hike on a clear day, you will be rewarded with a lovely mirror reflection on the lake with the incredible mountains in the distance. Unfortuantely, the weather was wet, snowy, and cloudy for us! But, it was still stunning.
Grindelwald First Tissot Cliffwalk
On your way back from hiking to the lake, walk along the First Tissot Cliffwalk. It’s a metal walkway that’s been suspended from the side of the mountain, which provides a thrilling walk along the cliffside. You’ll get some amazing views of the valley floor and the surrounding mountains.
The cliffwalk is free and takes less than 10 minutes. Afterwards, stop inside First Restaurant for a meal and a hot or cold drink! The hot chocolate was delicious and warmed us up. If you want to eat at the restaurant, there is a self-service side and a table service side.
DAY 3: Jungfraujoch and Lauterbrunnen
Jungfraujoch – Top of Europe (3454m)
On your last day, you’ll head up to Jungfraujoch, which is known as the The Top of Europe. This is a UNESCO World Heritage site with the longest glacier in the Alps, the Aletsch Glacier.
From Interlaken, the fastest way to get up to Jungfraujoch is via Grindelwald. However, I recommend traveling through Lauterbrunnen on your way back down to Interlaken so you can see more villages in the area. You may also choose to stay overnight in Grindelwald the night before.
You can purchase your train and gondola tickets you’ll need for the day from the Interlaken Ost terminal. From Interlaken Ost, you will travel to the Grindelwald terminal before catching the Eiger Express gondola up to Eigergletscher or Eiger Glacier train station. The gondola takes 15 minutes and provides stunning views of the Eiger Wall and surrounding mountain landscapes!
Once you reach Eigergletscher, you will have to transfer to the Jungfraubahn cogwheel railway to reach Jungfraujoch. The Jungfrau Railway is Europe’s highest altitude railway and it opened in 1912. Over 35 minutes, the train climbs 1,121m as it winds through a tunnel inside of Eiger and Mönch Mountain.
There is only one stop along the way, which is a five-minute scenic stop at a window view of the Aletsch Glacier. I recommend getting out to look at the view!
Sphinx Observation Deck
Once you reach Junfraujoch station hall, you will follow in the direction of the “Tour” symbols. Follow the symbols as it takes you through the Panorama Experience until you reach an elevator. A quick elevator ride will take you up 117m to the Sphinx Observation Deck.
Behold the incredible Aletsch Glacier, a sheet of ice approximately is 80 square km! The view from an altitude of 3571m here is insane and so is the cold wind.
Take the elevator down and head to the next section, Alpine Sensation. It’s an area with interactive displays depicting the past and present of tourism in the region. You’ll also find historical photographs and a snow globe.
After leaving the Alpine Sensation section through the long hallway, you’ll enter the Ice Palace! This cavern was created in the 1930s and covers 1,000 square meters! Since so many people pass through, ice has to be cooled to minus three degrees!
After you leave the Ice Palace, you’ll get to walk on the Glacier Plateau. Here there’s amazing views of the glacier and on clear days you can see all the way to Italy, France, and Germany! Don’t forget to take a picture with the Swiss flag.
It’s recommended to have two hours to spend at Jungfraujoch. If you want to enjoy some of the snow activities, walk to the Mönchsjoch Hut, or eat at one of the restaurants then plan to spend even longer here.
You’ll leave Jungfraujoch on the Jungfraubahn train. Take the train to Kleine Scheidegg to make your way back to Interlaken via Lauterbrunnen.
Once you’re in Kleine Scheidegg, you will have to change trains. During the time between your transfer, take some photos of the incredible landscapes and the mountains and glacier hanging in front of you!
You will have to change trains again in Lauterbrunnen. Before hopping onto the next train, walk around this picturesque mountain village. It’s about a 10 minute walk to get a lovely view of Staubbach Falls, a waterfall that drops 297m down the cliffside. For a coffee, stop by Airtime Cafe.
The last train ride only takes 20 minutes to get back to Interlaken Ost.
If you have the time, add Wengen, Murren, and Schynige Platte to your itinerary! There are plenty of hikes, scenic viewpoints, waterfalls, and more to explore in these areas.
Tips For Traveling in Switzerland
You can purchase a Top of Europe Pass to be able to hop on and off the buses, trains, and gondolas. You can also save money with a Guest Card or a Swiss Travel Pass. Each one has their own benefits to make sure to look into which one suits you best depending on your travel plans.
A lot of the trains and gondolas stop running at a certain time of the day. Make sure to review the timetables so that you don’t get stuck in one of the villages!
Best Time to Visit Interlaken
Summertime brings the warmest weather in Interlaken and most people visit during June, July and August. If you travel in the wintertime, you will get to enjoy some of the fun winter activities.
Winter in Interlaken
Is Interlaken Worth Visiting in Winter?
Absolutely! Interlaken is a great place to visit all year-round. Visiting Interlaken in the winter means that you can enjoy winter activities like skiing, sledding, and magical winter hikes. Interlaken also a Christmas market.
How Cold Does it Get in Interlaken?
January to February are the coldest months in Interlaken with temperatures ranging from a low of -9.8°C (14.4°F) and a high of -1.8°C (28.8°F).
Does it Snow in Interlaken?
On average, it snows 53 days per year in Interlaken, Switzerland. You can expect snow from October until May. As long as you are prepared and bring the right clothing for all kinds of weather, you will have an enjoyable trip.
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Do you have any questions about my Interlaken Switzerland itinerary? Leave them in the comments section!