WHAT TO DO IN INTERLAKEN
- 1 WHAT TO DO IN INTERLAKEN
- 1.1 FUN THINGS TO DO IN INTERLAKEN
- 1.1.1 Harder Kulm
- 1.1.2 Picnic
- 1.1.3 Höhenmatte
- 1.1.4 Chocolate Workshop
- 1.1.5 Lake Thun
- 1.1.6 Lake Brienz
- 1.1.7 Para – and Hanggliding
- 1.1.8 Coffee with a View
- 1.1.9 Jungfraujoch
- 1.1.10 Kleine Scheidegg
- 1.1.11 Oeschinensee
- 1.1.12 Blausee
- 1.1.13 Grindelwald and Grindelwald-First
- 1.1.14 Bachalpsee
- 1.1.15 Niederhorn Mountain
- 1.1.16 Niesen
- 1.1.17 Männlichen Mountain
- 1.1.18 Brienzer Rothorn
- 1.1.19 Schilthorn
- 1.1.20 Mürren
- 1.1.21 Stockhorn
- 1.1.22 Lauterbrunnen
- 1.1.23 Trümmelbachfälle
- 1.1.24 Thun
- 1.1.25 Segway Tour
- 1.1.26 Go Swimming
- 1.1.27 Schloss Schadau
- 1.1.28 Bungee Jumping
- 1.1.29 Ski or Snowboard Lesson
- 1.1.30 Spiez
- 1.1.31 Giessbachwasserfall and Grand Giessbach Hotel
- 1.1.32 Wengen
- 1.1.33 St. Beatus Caves
- 1.1.34 Sigriswil
- 1.1.35 Grabenmühle
- 1.1.36 Schynige Platte
- 1.1.37 Kayak Day Tour
- 1.1.38 Jetboat Ride
- 1.1.39 Hiking
- 1.1.40 Ice Climbing
- 1.1.41 Helicopter Skydive
- 1.1.42 High Ropes Adventure Park
- 1.1.43 Night Sled Ride
- 1.1.44 E-Bike Tour
- 1.1.45 Rosenlaui Glacier Gorge
- 1.1.46 Grindelwald Glacier Canyon
- 1.1.47 Lucerne -Interlaken Express
- 1.1.48 Bike Tour
- 1.1.49 Road Trip
- 1.1.50 Sunset
- 1.2 General Travel Tips for Interlaken
- 1.1 FUN THINGS TO DO IN INTERLAKEN
Find out about the best things to do in Interlaken – one of the most beautiful places in the world. Read on to find out what to do, where to go and what to see plus many more travel tips.
If you know my Instagram or check out my blog regularly, you know how obsessed I am with Switzerland – and in particular with the region of Interlaken/Jungfrau.
I personally think it is one of the most beautiful regions of the world: gorgeous lakes, perfect mountains, stunning sceneries, and cute towns all around.
Though Interlaken is not geographically big, there are tons of fun things to do in Interlaken. I should add that there are two different regions actually, Interlaken and Jungfrau.
However, sometimes it is a bit hard to differentiate between the two regions, so this post is mostly about activities in both regions but also include a couple of tips for the Bernese Oberland in general.
Though many people argue that Switzerland is too expensive to travel to I partly agree and thus have listed my top tips for saving money in Switzerland here but also argue that there are enough things you can do that does not cost much at all or that are even free in Interlaken.
Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links which means I might earn a small commission when you buy a product (at no extra cost to you) after clicking on my link. More about it here.
FUN THINGS TO DO IN INTERLAKEN
Okay, now we can get started and talk about the most fun things to do in Interlaken.
In most countries, towns and cities have their own cinema or their own shopping street – in Switzerland, each city has its own “house mountain”.
Interlaken´s house mountain is Harder Kulm which gives you great views of …Interlaken and the scenery in more than 1,300 meters above sea level.
Either hike up – a fun and free activity which is. compared to other hikes in the region this is considered, an easy hike) or take a cable car and enjoy views like this from Harder Kulm.
The cable car does not operate in the winter months (closed in December until the beginning of April)
Tip: With a Swiss Travel Pass you get a 50% discount and it is free with the Jungfrau Pass. So, when you check out prices for the Harder Kulm cable car you have to choose the correct ticket. Check out ticket prices here.
A free thing to do in Interlaken is to enjoy a picnic at one of the great lakes (okay, you have to buy your own food) but why not enjoy lunch with a view in Interlaken? So take some snacks and a blanket and admire the great scenery. Whether you picnic by one of the lakes, or the beautiful Aare River – so the choices of places to picnic is great.
The Höhenmatte is located right in the heart of Interlaken. This lush and lovely park, with a view of Jungfraujoch, is a must when strolling Interlaken.
From there, you can also watch all the paragliders which are numerous on clear days. It is free to visit and great to relax.
While Interlaken is best known as the adventure-capital you can also do some quite unique things. I had not expected to do a chocolate workshop in Interlaken and yet I did one – right in the center of Interlaken.
Making your own chocolate – at Funky Chocolate e.g. – is not only a good thing to do in Interlaken on a rainy day – it is a unique activity and we all know how delicious Swiss chocolate is, right? You can even do your own vegan (and healthier) dark chocolate, too.
If you are in Interlaken you will be surrounded by some of the prettiest, most stunning lakes in Switzerland. One of them is Lake Thun.
This extremely beautiful lake is impressive – you can do a boat cruise, do water activities and more. Click here to find my tips on what to do around and on Lake Thun. Check out prices for a Lake Thun boat cruise.
I admit, that there is much more to do around Lake Thun – however, Lake Brienz is probably my favorite. Its unique turquoise color is one of a kind.
Hop on a boat and enjoy a boat cruise on this pretty lake.
Here are more tips on why to visit Lake Brienz and what to do around the lake.
Para – and Hanggliding
Same same but different: Paragliding and hang gliding are fun – both in such a fantastic scenery are amazing and if you have ever wanted to do it: Interlaken is the place to paraglide or for hang gliding, and a great opportunity to see Interlaken from a birds-eye perspective.
Anyone volunteers to watch my dog when I am in Interlaken so I can do that this popular Interlaken activity as well, please? Click here for your para- and hanggliding experience
Coffee with a View
If you stroll Interlaken you will probably observe an ugly high building – Hotel Metropol It is a hotel with a rooftop restaurant. A good start to see Interlaken from above. The staff is not the fastest and friendliest but the view is so worth it!
Enjoy views from the highest train station in Europe – “At the top of Europe – Jungfraujoch” – and see snow throughout the year. The top of the Jungfraujoch has become one of the most popular attractions in the region and after I visited myself I see why it is so popular.
It is not only about snow, but there is also an Ice Palace and more to see and do and is a fun day trip from Interlaken.
It is not in the region of Interlaken, but in the region of Jungfraujoch – for us visitors it does not really matter though. It is quite expensive and if you are on a budget you can skip it and explore one of the many other gorgeous places in the region. However, with your Swiss Travel Pass, you get a 25% discount. Click here to book your trip to Jungfraujoch from Interlaken.
Before heading to the top of Europe (Jungfraujoch) do not forget to soak in the views at Kleine Scheidegg along the way.
The Kleine Scheidegg is a mountain pass at about 2000 meters height and it makes a great stop when getting up the Jungfraujoch – it does not surprise this is one of the places to visit in Interlaken.
Is not Lake Oeschinensee beyond amazing? It is so perfect that Oeschinensee should be on everybody´s bucket list and though it is not officially in the region of Interlaken or Jungfrau it is close by and thus a perfect place to visit in Interlaken.
When I finally visit it was terrible weather and I could not hike around the lake but if you get the chance definitely take your time for some hiking.
How to get to Oeschinensee: Take a train to Kandersteg station, walk for about 10 minutes before arriving at the gondola station which takes you me up (return ticket about 25€, discount with a Swiss Travel Pass) and then another 20-30 minute walk needed. For the ones that do not wanna hike at all, take the little shuttle bus which brings you directly to the lake for a few €.
Okay, this is probably not really in the region of Interlaken or Jungfrau, but pretty close to Interlaken and too pretty to be ignored – this lake is tiny but gorgeous. Do a trip to Blausee Nature Park and admire the color of the Blausee (though the lake looks green to me, the name translated means Blue Lake”).
Grindelwald and Grindelwald-First
Grindelwald is one of the cutest villages, and a must-see place in the region of Interlaken, of Switzerland and should be on your list – and while you are in Grindelwald, visit Grindelwald First as well.
One of the most beautiful lakes in Switzerland (and thus in the world) is the Bachalpsee (Bachalp Lake). Hiking or strolling around the Bachalpsee and should be on your list, so another reason to visit Grindelwald and do some hiking.
When I visited Niederhorn Mountain it was quite cloudy but once the cloud disappeared the view was amazing and that view confirmed what I had known before – Lake Thun is just amazing and the only thing better than being on it (boat), being in it (swim) or being next to it (drive, stroll) is to look at it from above.
Another cool thing about is: You do not even have to hike up – a funicular takes you up. But of course, you could also hike up if you REALLY want to.
One of the most distinctive mountains at the shores of Lake Thun is the Niesen Mountain.
The pyramid-shaped mountain is actually one of my favorites – however, it took me a while to realize that you can get on top of the mountain. Well, there is tons to do and see from above (I even hiked down to some extent). So, my tip – don’t just look at it, get up via cable car or hike up all the way.
Visit Männlichen Mountain and see the famous Swiss Skyline (the Swiss mountains Eiger, Mönch, and Jungfrau) from Männlichen Mountain. On a clear day, the Swiss Skyline is visible from many places but this view is quite amazing.
Probably one of my favorite mountain rides – ever.
If you are a hiker you´ll enjoy the hike. But I definitely recommend– even just for a stop – hopping in one of the old is such a unique experience and one of the things you should do in Interlaken.
Visiting the Brienzer Rothorn (on a clear) day has been one of the most amazing experiences I have made in Switzerland and it is my favorite mountain ride and it is one of the most beautiful places in Interlaken – or probably in the world!
One of my favorite Interlaken sightseeing attractions (find out more about the most beautiful places to visit in Switzerland)
Visit Schilthorn and see the Swiss Skyline from there. When visiting Shilthorn date James Bond at the Here are more tips (and visit the “007 “museum) and eat at the revolving restaurant of Piz Gloria – the movie location of the James Bond movie where everything is about James Bond.
This is actually a fun thing to do in winter as well.
On the way up to Schilthorn do the Thrill Walk and stop at Allmendhubel.
How to get to Schilthorn: You can take a cable car from Lauterbrunnen or get up via Stechelberg (you can also decide to hike some stations).
Before you get to Schilthorn (to see Piz Gloria and follow James Bond) make sure to plan some time for exploring the cute car-free village of Mürren which will be on your way up. It is another great place to see in Interlaken.
Stockhorn is another great mountain that you can visit. The ride up in the cable car is lovely (you pass several lakes along the way), and the view from there is great. Ah, and of course you will find them again…the paragliders that are like everywhere in the area of Interlaken.
Lauterbrunnen is THE place according to outdoor lovers who are into extreme activities. Even if you are not into outdoor sports you´ll love Lauterbrunnen as it is such a pretty village within the most beautiful scenery.
The word famous Staubach Waterfall makes it picture perfect and one of the highlights in Interlaken but actually, Lauterbrunnen is full of waterfalls, so it definitely is a great place for nice walks or longer hikes.
Experience the powerful waterfalls in Interlaken and very close to Lauterbrunnen: the Trümmelbachfälle: be prepared for a loud, wet and cool experience.
Luckily I did not take my DSL with me (I went after some very heavy rain) but if you have a GoPro or waterproof camera you are good to go and might be able to take good pictures.
How to get there: I got there by car, but, luckily Switzerland has an amazing public transportation system, so you can get there by bus (station is Stechelberg, btw this is also a station to another top place to visit in Interlaken (to find out which Interlaken attraction I mean keep reading). Entry fee about 10€ ($12).
Located at Lake Thun, Thun is one of the bigger towns in that area – don’t forget to stop by at the Oberhofen Castle in Thun but this is not the only great place to see in Thun.
I was absolutely surprised to see how pretty the town center actually is and was smitten by the beautiful castle Schadau. Thun is definitely a place in Interlaken to add on your itinerary.
Explore the region with a Segway tour and admire the stunning scenery while having a fun ride.
Dip in one of the lakes – many are very clean and swimming is allowed in many lakes in that region (few exceptions, e.g. Blausee). Tip: Lake Thun is warmer than Lake Brienz and probably the best choice on a hot day.
Castles are probably not the first thing that comes to most people´s mind when hearing about Switzerland – but there are some beautiful ones, like Unspunnen Castle or Schloss Schadau which are beautiful things to see in Interlaken.
Okay, I would not do that (not for a million dollars): But if you wanna have a more exciting experience you could bungee jump you can do that from Stockhorn Cable Car in Interlaken. The view is probably one of the best you will ever have – when bungee jumping.
Ski or Snowboard Lesson
I have never been skiing or snowboarding but Switzerland would be the first choice if I did one day. There is a reason why Switzerland is one of the most popular places for wintersports – and the region of Interlaken and Jungfrau are one of the best spots to hit the slopes.
Oh, Spiez <3 One of my most favorite places in Interlaken – I loved the village and the castle at the water – and my little Puppygak was also so in love. It is one of the most beautiful places in Interlaken. It has a Mediterranean flair and its waterfront is lovely though small (and it comes with great views of the Niesen Mountain).
Giessbachwasserfall and Grand Giessbach Hotel
While doing a boat tour on Lake Brienz get out at the Giessbachwasserfall stop and explore the region. You can take a funicular to get up to the amazing Grand Giessbach Hotel (a full hotel review is here) or do the easy 10-minute hike u and then hike even further and see more of this really stunning waterfall with great views of Lake Brienz.
The hotel has a unique atmosphere and the best vies of my favorite Lake Brienz
Wengen is another beautiful and car-free village that should be on your list when visiting this region. It is small and tiny so you might not spend a lot of time there but it is a popular place to visit in Interlaken.
St. Beatus Caves
St. Beatus Caves is known for the caves but in addition, I was blown away by the views from up there. Definitely worth a visit and something you should experience and one of the top things to see in Interlaken (seriously).
Updated after my second trip to St. Beatus Caves: If you are at beautiful St. Beatus Caves walk down the other way for 10-15 minutes to enjoy the view from the famous Instagram spot (see the second picture).
Sigriswil is a hidden gem and getting up there (by car) was not always easy as the streets became quite tight on some parts but it was worth it – the view from the Sigriswil Suspension Bridge was stunning (you can also take a bus to get up there).
The ticket for passing the above mentioned-bridge is about $6 but with that ticket, you also have entry to the most stunning Grabenmühle- probably the cutest place I have seen in Switzerland and totally unknown amongst tourists.
Grabenmühle is just a few meters behind Sigriswil Suspension Bridge and I do not wanna say too much – just go there during the day and feel amazed as you have a cuteness overdose.
One of the best views in Interlaken is from Schynige Platte – so it doesn’t surprise it is one of the best places to visit in Interlaken (yes, another bucket list item for your Interlaken itinerary).
The great things about Schynige Platte is the fact that you have amazing views of the Swiss Skyline (seeing the three top mountains, Eiger, Mönch, and Jungfrau) on the one side (if you take the funicular you do not even have to hike up) and after a 20-minute hike from the funicular station you get to see Lake Brienz and Lake Thun, two of the most beautiful lakes in Switzerland, at the same time.
Kayak Day Tour
The best Interlaken activities include a lot of outdoor activities: With all the beautiful lakes a kayak tour seems to be a perfect choice for the sporty ones among you (disclaimer: I do not consider myself as a sporty person so I skipped that one 🙂
This is definitely on my own bucket list: A jet boat ride in Interlaken.
It took me a while but I have finally gotten what the fuss is about hiking. Hiking from Grütschalp to Mürren was one of the most rewarding and amazing things I have done – on a clear day, the scenery is just one of a kind. After that, I started hiking each day and if you are in Interlaken you might never get enough of it.
This is probably the better version of rock climbing: Ice climbing in Switzerland.
Are you looking for more ideas on things to do in Interlaken and asking yourself what to see in Interlaken?
I know, I have mentioned it before, but Interlaken is known as the best place for adrenaline junkies. So a helicopter skydive is a great opportunity to experience this on your own – there are not many sceneries that beautiful when you are jumping out of a helicopter (p.s. you can justify the high price with the fact that you are actually doing two great things, a helicopter ride and a skydive at once).
High Ropes Adventure Park
There are more fun things to do in Interlaken as e.g. jumping from platforms and soar through the air High Ropes Adventure Park in Interlaken
Night Sled Ride
Do a night sled ride and enjoy the fondue afterward. This night sled ride, which takes four hours in total, includes an hour sled ride in the Switzerland Alps. Check out Prices for a Night Slide Tour
Interlaken and the Jungfrau region are hilly – so an e-bike tour is a great solution to cycle your way around. It gives you more freedom when it comes to getting around. Unless you are an experienced hiker, this is a fun and great way to get around in Interlaken.
Rosenlaui Glacier Gorge
Okay, Rosenlaui Glacier Gorge is not in Interlaken but close and should be on your bucket list as well.
Grindelwald Glacier Canyon
The Grindelwald Glacier Canyon is in the region of Jungfrau – add it to your list and walk towards the glacier while getting information about the canyon along the way as it is another stunning Interlaken point of interest.
Here are more tips for Interlaken what to do.
Lucerne -Interlaken Express
Train riding in Switzerland is not comparable with train riding in many other places – it is an experience in itself and something I sincerely recommend. One of the most beautiful rides in the ride from Lucerne to Interlaken. Check Out Prices for Train Rides in Switzerland
Though I mentioned that an e-bike is a good idea for Interlaken a normal bike tour is also a great way to explore the region. Be prepared to exercise a lot since – after all- it is quite a hilly region but this is also a super way to discover Interlaken.
Take your time and plan in many stops – Interlaken is one of the best places in Switzerland for a beautiful road trip (though there are some villages that are car-free). I am not the biggest fan of driving but, despite the mountains and sometimes narrow streets, I probably will never get enough of driving in Switzerland.
Just be careful as there are many speed cams but other than that driving in Switzerland is fun. Here are more tips for road tripping the country.
Many things I have mentioned are great to do in Interlaken in summer – but probably also in winter. If you drive in the winter just make sure to drive extra carefully.
If you enjoy watching sunsets plan in some time at Lake Thun – it is by far the best way to end the day. There is even a sunset boat cruise on Lake Thun – but I haven’t ever seen a boring sunset around Lake Thun.
Harder Kulm is also a popular place to watch the sunset – I still prefer the sunsets at Lake Thun though. Check out boat tours for Lake Thun here.
Unfortunately, not every place is as pretty as the region of Interlaken and Jungfrau, so enjoy each second <3
General Travel Tips for Interlaken
Here are some travel tips for Interlaken so you are well prepared for your trip!
Though Germany is the main language most people speak English. There are many Arabic, Chinese and Indian restaurants as Interlaken is extremely popular amongst tourists from those places. However, you can also find all other kinds of cuisines and fast-food restaurants.
How to Get Around
Driving in Interlaken is very safe and easy (the streets are well paved, driving in the mountains might be a bit tricky though). Public transportation in Interlaken is extremely easy as buses/trains go often, are punctual and reliable, so I recommend getting around by public transportation.
If you stay in an official accommodation in Interlaken, you will get the Interlaken Guest Card – giving you free bus rides within Interlaken. If you stay in the region of Thun, you can even use your Thun Guest Card to get to Interlaken.
Where to Stay / Best Hotels
Interlaken is home to some amazing hotels – amazing and expensive. I have a detailed accommodation guide for Interlaken but find some tips below.
The most luxurious hotel in Interlaken is Victoria Jungfrau and since I have not started there myself I can just repeat what I heard: This hotel is supposed to be amazing, so if you are looking for a fancy place this is probably the best pick.
One of my favorite hotels – ever – is the beautiful 4* hotel Grandhotel Giessbach. The hotel has the best location ever (sitting at the foot of the Giessbach Waterfalls) and is very unique. Not a cheap 4* but a very great one since it is located to one of the best Interlaken attractions (the waterfalls).
I recently stayed in the newly renovated Hotel du Nord and I actually was very positively surprised (the reviews were not great but since all rooms were renovated lately, it is a great place to stay). The breakfast was also better than in the Hotel Interlaken. Click here to get the best deals.
If you are on a budget I recommend staying outside of Interlaken, some cute towns close by that offer good value for money.
Airbnb is also big in Interlaken and though you will not find a bargain where you might get a better deal if you like to prepare your own meal or if you are in a bigger group. If you are an Airbnb first-time user you can save $$ by using my link.
Security in Interlaken
Interlaken – and the region – is very safe and secure. With common sense you should be fine. I have always traveled solo to Interlaken (sometimes accompanied by my little dog) and never, ever felt unsafe. Keep valuables close to you and you should be fine!
I hope you enjoyed my post “Things to do in Interlaken in 2020” – whether you visit in Interlaken in winter or summer – and got some inspiration- in one of the most beautiful regions in the world.