Zurich to Grindelwald
Grindelwald is one of the most popular destinations in the area that has been attracting visitors since the end of the 18th century. Alpinism developed in the region in the mid-19th century when local mountain guides climbed the peaks with mostly English tourists. Walking trails, ski resorts, mountain climbing, and lookout points are all easily accessible thanks to the extensive rail and cable car system.
Today you will enjoy a day of exploration in the Jungfrau region. Head to the train station to begin your journey.
The “Top of Europe” can be accessed from Grindelwald via the Bernese Oberland Railway. The panoramic ride will take you to Europe’s highest train station, located at 11,300 feet. Here visitors can access the observation deck to admire the surrounding mountains – Jungfrau and Mönch, and the glaciers; visit the Ice Palace, the Alpine Sensation moving walkway, and even the highest chocolate store in Europe!
Your destination today will be the Glacier Canyon – a natural masterpiece formed by the lower Grindelwald glacier. You will walk through the exposed rock tunnels and galleries and see the numerous water cascades from the mountains. There is also a comprehensive exhibition to learn about this phenomenon and the history of the area.
Enjoy lunch in a local restaurant and continue with a 1-hour long hike around the glacier.
If you are interested, you may take the train independently and head to Lauterbrunnen. Ideally located in one of the most picturesque valleys, between mountain peaks and rock faces, this town boasts over 70 waterfalls and it’s surrounded by smaller valleys and meadows. Lauterbrunnen is actually one of the largest nature conservation areas in the country. The Staubbach Falls, one of the highest free-falling waterfalls in Europe, plunges from almost 1,000 feet high.
Grindelwald to Gstaad
Gstaad is the epitome of a luxury retreat. With its picturesque wooden chalets with flowers cascading over the balconies, it looks incredibly charming, and the resorts exude luxury. Spend a few days relaxing here and enjoy the beautiful scenery. Gstaad is also a good base to explore the Lake Leman towns, such as Lausanne and Montreux, or to visit Glacier 3000, where exciting activities are offered year-round.
After two exciting cable car rides, you will have ascended to 3000 meters, or nearly 10,000 feet. Many activities are offered at Glacier 3000. The Peak Walk by Tissot is a 350-foot-long suspension bridge that connects the two peaks. You are sure to enjoy spectacular views of the Alps on a clear day. For the more adventurous guests, toboggan down the exhilarating Alpine Coaster! The Ice Express Chairlift leisurely transports you down to the glacier, where you can engage in a range of other activities, such as a ride on the Snow Bus, sledding down a hill in the Fun Park, doing the Glacier Walk, or going on a thrilling dogsled ride through the snow.
In the afternoon, head back towards Gstaad where you will visit a local Alpenhorn artist. This tool has historically been used for communication in the isolated mountain regions of the Alps, especially by shepherds calling the cows from the pastures. They are now considered musical instruments and are made of a several-meter-long horn made of wood. You will learn about the production process and if you want, you can also try to play it!
Gruyeres & Lavaux Vineyards
Today, explore the region close to Lake Geneva. You will first be transferred to the medieval town of Gruyères to get a taste of the beautiful countryside and its traditions.
Later, enjoy some free time for lunch and to walk through the charming cobblestoned streets of Gruyères. You will see the imposing castle, which has stood upon its hill since the 13th century offering unparalleled views over the valley and nearby mountains.
After lunch, head to the beautiful Lavaux wine region, which has been UNESCO protected since 2007 and it is the largest contiguous vineyard region in Switzerland. The lake’s sunny and warm shores produce small and artisanal batches of fantastic white wines, which are consumed entirely within the country. The hillside terraces offer breathtaking panoramic views of the Lake Leman, and today you will be enjoying a tasting at one of the local producers.
Next, you will transfer to Montreux and board the Golden Pass Panoramic Train that will take you up the mountains and through the beautiful scenery, ending in Gstaad.