Grindelwald, Switzerland is one of several towns in the Bernese Alps all vying to host you on your Swiss summer adventure. We picked it as our base for three nights based on one specific trait; Grindelwald is one of the few towns in the Jungfrau region where cars can access. It may have been a been a logistical decision that forced our hand, but it was not one we would regret. Grindelwald impressed us in many regards; it’s accommodation, its alpine beauty, things to do, adventure, and atmosphere were as wonderful as anywhere that had come before on this trip.
We approached from Lauterbrunnen, and for anyone who has read my previous blog, or is simply familiar with the valley, this left Grindelwald with a lot to live up with. Strangely photos of Grindelwald hadn’t overawed me, but again the internet is awash with uncomplimentary photos. Plenty of me on there too.
As soon as we left Lauterbrunnen behind and started to make our way through the adjacent valley which houses Grindelwald we were kept in our state of awe. Waterfalls large and small fell from the cliff side, before they gave way to the sprawling town. The whole place is surrounded by large peaks, none more impressive than the brooding Eiger, its north face snow packed.
Why we chose Grindelwald as our Swiss summer base
Grindelwald‘s Stunning Views
Grindelwald has an appearance of constant greenery and many efforts are made to maintain this. Its a series of rolling hills all covered in bright green grass, with footpaths strewn among them. Walking on the long grass isn’t permitted and from a distance it appears the houses are just littered in fields. Its beautiful.
But Grindelwald isn’t all just green grass and houses. It is of course in the shadow of many mountains, and they are a playground of great activities. There are no fewer than twelve distinct mountain peaks, among them the Mittelhorn, Shreckhorn, and Wetterhorn. We didn’t manage any of these, but we did make it up to First Mountain, one of the minor ones at only 2168 metres high.
The sound of crickets and birds resonates around the valley and the views are some of the most stunning I have beheld.
Our Grindelwald Hotel
Our Grindelwald Hotel for out three night stay was the Hotel Glitscherblick, a Swiss Chalet style hotel, with a wooden and floral appearance. As a three star we weren’t looking for opulence, and its location, set upon one of those rolling hillsides meant it was a ten minute walk from the town. It was easy downhill, but a struggle back up at the end of the day.
Despite its no frills approach the hotel endeared itself to us. Our host Rafaela, while not of the region, was extremely knowledgeable and beyond helpful. The friendliness of the Swiss is another positive attribute of a sensational country. We were given a pass which gave us a discount on some local attractions, and free usage of the towns public bus, which we never used. Rafaela was more than happy to offer in depth advice on anything local, and her ability to predict the weather was uncanny.
The hotel came with a kitchen area to cook your own food. There was always juices, water and coffee lying around for guests to help themselves to. Breakfast was served from here for the three days and had just enough variety to keep us interested. Our room again was comfortable and clean, while certainly not over the top in extravagance.
The Eiger North Face Views
While all of that was perfectly adequate and amounted to a nice stay, the location of the hotel is where plaudits must come. The patio and more importantly, our balcony, faced the Eiger north face. What a sublime view we were treated too. Sitting between two other mountains, the Eiger’s north face stands defiantly. It is 1200 meters of sheer snow and rock even in summer, and a stunning backdrop to any view. Better still when you can sit and have a glass of wine and appreciate it.