Holidays in Wilderswil

The sleepy Bernese village of Wilderswil is a world away from its lively neighbour of Interlaken, but still shares its warm welcome and sense of adventure

The village of Wilderswil perches between the green Bödeli plain to the north and the mountains of the Bernese Oberland behind. The train station marks the start of the famed railway that zigzags through mountain meadows to the Alpine gardens and mountaintop trails of the Schynige Platte, home to one of the highest railway stations in Switzerland. Plus, Interlaken and the turquoise lakes of Brienz and Thun are just a few minutes' train journey away. The wooden chalets and flower-bedecked inns of Wilderswil are a great place to return to after a day’s walking.

The Alpine beauty of the Schynige Platte

See that splash of scarlet against the emerald foothills? That’s the 19th-century cog railway that creeps up to the Schynige Platte mountain ridge in just under an hour, all the while offering some of the best views across the mountains of Jungfrau, Eiger, and Mönch. At Schynige Platte, you can wander rocky paths to the chime of cowbells and meander around the petite plants of the high-altitude botanical garden. There’s also a restaurant, where you can settle down on the suntrap terrace with a strudel or glass of Riesling. If you fancy a longer hike, the route from Schynige Platte to the top of the First gondola in Grindelwald is one of the best - catch the gondola down into Grindelwald and then return by train.  

Chilled Wilderswil

For most people visiting Wilderswil, it’s a case of all eyes on the railway – but stay here, and you’ll realise why this sleepy village makes a great alternative to neighbouring Interlaken. Wooden chalets date back to the 17th century and old stübli restaurants serve mountain fare in cosy surroundings. Walking trails head in all directions from the village, wander to the edge of town to explore the ruins of the once-grand Unspunnun Castle, which peeks out from between the trees or head to the edge of Lake Brienz and follow the water-line to Iseltwald - here you can hop on a ferry back to Bönigen, or in the other direction to Giessbach where there's an impressive waterfall walk.

Interlaken: the city between two lakes

Interlaken lies just north of Wilderswil, between the luminous turquoise lakes of Lakes Thun and Brienz. It spreads itself over two sides of the glacier-cold river, with the old town square of Unterseen on one side and parks, railway stations, and ferry jetties on the other. This is where you can hop on cruises that smooth past vertiginous vineyards, mountains, and shoreline castles. Adrenalin activities like rafting, canyoning, and paragliding are Interlaken’s speciality; it’s a rare day that you don’t see paragliders surfing the air currents above.

Sky-high rail routes

You could spend weeks exploring the rail routes of this region, and luckily, Wilderswil's location makes this really easy. Trains run between remote mountaintops, valleys, lakes and to cities like the riverside university city of Basel. We recommend putting the alpine villages of Grindelwald, Wengen, and Mürren at the top of your to-visit list, which connects you to some of the most scenic railways in the world, including the sky-high Jungfraujoch. The Brienzer Rothorn is a good one too – especially for the chance to try the sausages cooked on the steam engine.

Why book a summer holiday in Wilderswil with Inghams?

At Inghams, we do walking holidays differently. With no fixed itinerary, you have more time at your destination and the freedom to walk as much or as little as you like, discovering some of the Bernese Oberland's best walking routes and activities at your own pace.

With over 85 years of outdoor travel experience, our holiday packages to Wilderswil include flights, transfers, and accommodation, so you can relax and leave the small details to us. Our experts can help you choose the best holiday for you, and our team overseas can give you the inside scoop on how to spend your time away with us.

Added value

Half price rail, bus and boat travel with the Swiss Half Fare Card (worth over £100 per person)

Swiss Family Card Included - free travel for children under 16 on mainline trains/buses/boats in Switzerland when accompanied by a parent

Free 'Interlaken/Wilderswil Guest Card' with unlimited use of local buses and trains

24/7 support & tailored advice in person or over the phone from our local resort team

All holidays include flights or trains from the UK and train transfers

Walking in and around Wilderswil

On an Inghams walking holiday, you have the freedom to explore the area at your own pace. Each day, a new adventure, with as much or as little walking as you like.

Why we love walking holidays in Wilderswil

Located close to Interlaken you have all of the same benefits, but with a quieter atmosphere to come back to after a day of trekking over mountain passes, meandering through valleys or strolling alongside the turquoise lakes nearby. Walking from Wilderswil is brilliant, and there's incredible train links to nearby villages such as Wengen, Grindelwald and Mürren for further exploration. Hikes will take you increadible viewpoints, past old buildings and ruins, through local flora and fauna, as well as discovering the natural wonders Switzerland has to offer including the 72 waterfalls in Lauterbrunnen.

Getting around Wilderswil

Wilderswil and the surrounding Jungfrau region has a great network of public transport and lifts that make getting around the area really easy.

Trains

Wilderswil train station is only a short five-minute ride away from Interlaken Ost, one of the main train stations which is great for onward journeys. The Wilderswil village station also leads towards Zweilütschinen and into the Lauterbrunnen Valley, providing more hiking possibilities from its stops and bus connections along the way, plus train services to Grindelwald, Wengen and Mürren.

There are also many mountain railways to discover nearby - these include:

  • Harder Kulm Railway from Interlaken
  • Schynige Platte Railway
  • Lauterbrunnen to Mürren railway
  • Wengeneralp Railway
  • Jungfrau Railway

Routes and timetables are available locally. The best way to enjoy the trains is to pre-book a travel pass - see the "Cards & passes" tab for more information (supplements may apply locally for some routes).

Lifts

You can use the regions selection of gondolas and cableways to unlock a new world of hiking routes, creating almost endless possibilities for any keen hiker. Or, if your looking for a gentle walk, these lifts are also perfect for reaching peaceful and traditional areas.

In Wengen:

  • Männlichen

In Mürren:

  • Stechelberg
  • Schilthorn

In Grindelwald:

  • Grindelwald First
  • Männlichen
  • Eiger Express
  • Pfingstegg

Buses

Explore the nearby area on buses within zones one and three with your included Interlaken / Wilderswil Guest Card, provided to you by your hotel on arrival. Take a trip to Interlaken and the two lakes - Thun and Brienz. Journeys outside this area require an additional ticket, in which PostBuses and SBB routes qualify for 50% off when using your included Swiss Half Fare Card.

Routes and timetables are available locally.

Boats

Being close to the two lakes, Brienz and Thun, means you can check out the hiking trails, alpine meadows and many forests that surround them both. There are plenty of piers and ports to stop at around the lakes, meaning you can either walk from one to another along the lake, or complete a more challenging route each day before catching the ferry back. On both lakes there is a total fleet of 14 boats, including two paddle steamers.

Use your included Swiss Half Fare Card to receive up to 50% discount on most rides.

Our favourite walks in and around Wilderswil

Wilderswil to Zweilütschinen

  • Easy walk
  • 6km
  • Expect to take around one to two hours

Take a walk parallel to the Lütschine river, crossing over the bridge just after the starting point by the railway station. You will pass by pretty flowers, traditional huts and historic buildings along the way. Once you reach Zweilütschinen, you can see where the two rivers join, bringing a darker appearance from the Grindelwald Valley, and a lighter flow from the Lauterbrunnen Valley – all from the different riverbeds and sediments they carry. Double your distance and steps by heading back again or use public transport for a point-to-point walk.

Oberberghorn panoramic trail

  • Moderate walk
  • 11.6km
  • Expect to take around four to five hours

This continuous route brings you back to where you started, after admiring the breath-taking scenery above Interlaken and the two lakes – Brienz and Thun. Leading over the Daube and the Oberberghorn you’ll accomplish one of the area's best hiking routes, as well as combining a ride on the nostalgic Schynige Platte Bahn. Surrounded by luscious open fields and flat slopes, the ridge paths may be rocky but are worth the rewarding views.

Unspunnen Ruins

  • Moderate to challenging walk
  • 8.7km
  • Expect to take around three to four hours

Have your walking poles to hand, this route has some steep inclines throughout the forest. This historic hike is not to be missed, starting at the beautiful Unspunnen mountain ruins. You’ll make your way towards the Aabeberg on zigzag paths before heading back – making the ascent and descent a challenge for everyone.

Useful information and guidelines

Recommended equipment

Suitable walking shoes with good grip, appropriate clothing, rain jacket, sun cream, insect repellent, sun glasses, rucksack, at least a litre of water, a re-usable water bottle, a snack and cash. You may find walking poles useful.

Walking maps and apps

For Wilderswil we recommend Kompass Map number 84, which has a scale of 1:40,000. Maps will have a key to help you understand the nature of the walk before you begin.

You can view lots more recommended routes from Interlaken Tourism.

You can see the status of the hiking routes online via the interactive map, which shows you what routes are open.

The Jungfrau app is great for weather updates and walking ideas and is available on the App Store and Google Play.

Hiking guidelines

The mountains are a natural paradise, with lots to explore and discover. To help it stay that way, and remain an enjoyable and safe place for everyone, we recommend following our little list of do's and don'ts:

  • Plan your route well and don't overestimate yourself
  • Check the weather forecast
  • Tell someone where you're planning to walk and what time you're expecting to be back
  • Take all the recommended equipment
  • Make a note of emergency numbers:
    • Swiss Emergency Services: 144
  • Don't leave the marked trails or go onto a glacier without a guide
  • Let nature stay wild by not picking alpine flowers (it's illegal in some places) or getting close to/making contact with wild animals
  • Always leave gates as you found them
  • Leave no trace

Check out our Responsible Walking insider guide if you want more tips for your summer walking holiday.

Hotels in Wilderswil

  • from£809pp
  • @accommodation.PropertyRating

    3 Rating

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  • 46 rooms
Hotel Bären Exterior Bernese Oberland Switzerland Wilderswill

Hotel Bären is the epitome of 'Swissness' - you'll enjoy Swiss wine, Swiss cooking, Swiss cheese, and Swiss hospitality. A traditional Bernese Inn in a great location for exploring. It's 10 minutes to the train station and there's a bus stop 100 metres away.

  • from£839pp
  • @accommodation.PropertyRating

    3 Rating

    We rate all of our accommodation based on their facilities, service level, character and customer feedback. Our ratings may vary from the official star rating.

  • 31 rooms
exterior summer.jpg

On the edge of Wilderswil, the traditional Hotel Alpenblick offers a quiet escape and Michelin-starred cuisine. Surrounded by rolling alpine meadows, there are gentle walking trails on your doorstep and the ruins of Unspunnen Castle nearby.

Travel information

All our holidays include return travel either by flight or train, and then a transfer between the airport or railway station and Wilderswil. For Wilderswil your transfer will be by train until Interlaken Ost, where you will change into a taxi to your hotel.

All departures are on Saturdays, Wednesdays or Fridays with stays from three - 14 nights.

On arrival into Interlaken Ost station, there will be a taxi to take you to your hotel.

Travel by air

Flights to Geneva or Zurich airports are available from eight UK airports.

Flights to Zurich:

Fly from

Days

Durations

Gatwick

Wed, Fri, Sat

3 - 14

Heathrow

Wed, Fri, Sat

3 - 14

London City

Wed, Fri

5, 7, 9, 12, 14

Birmingham

Fri

7, 14

Manchester

Wed, Fri

5, 7, 9, 12, 14

Transfer time from Zurich airport: approx. two hours 45 minutes by rail. Your journey involves two changes of trains.

Flights to Geneva:

Fly from

Days

Durations

Gatwick

Wed, Fri, Sat

3 - 14

Heathrow

Wed, Fri, Sat

3 - 14

Luton

Wed, Fri, Sat

3 - 14

Bristol

Fri, Sat

6, 7, 13, 14

Manchester

Wed, Fri, Sat

3 - 14

Edinburgh

Wed, Fri, Sat

3 - 14

Transfer time from Geneva airport: approx. three hours by rail. Your journey involves two changes of trains.

For Wilderswil your transfer will be by train until Interlaken Ost, where you will change into a taxi to your hotel.

Flight supplements may apply and are based on seven nights of midweek/weekend departures. 

Travel by train

We offer holidays by train to Wilderswil, which depart on Saturdays for seven or 14 days. The journey takes around 14 hours from London St. Pancras and you'll be able to enjoy the change of scenery out of the train window as you journey through France and into the Alps of Switzerland.

The provisional outbound timings are:

Saturdays

Arrive

Depart

London St Pancras

-

07:01

Change at Paris

10:20 (Gare du Nord)

14:22 (from Paris Gare du Lyon)

Change at Basel

17:26

onward travel by train

Onward travel from Basel: the transfer from Basel to Wilderswil will be by train until Interlaken Ost where you will change into a taxi to your hotel. The journey will take around two hours 15 minutes. There are some direct trains from Basel to Interlaken. If you're not on a direct train your journey will have one change of trains.

For your return journey, you will travel back to Basel on Saturday morning by train. The journey takes around two hours 15 minutes and will require one change of train.

The provisional inbound timings from Basel are:

Saturdays

Arrive

Depart

Basel

travel to Basel by train

14:34

Change at Paris

17:38 (Gare du Lyon)

19:12 (Gare du Nord)

London St. Pancras

20:30

-

Swiss Half Fare Card & Wilderswill Guest Card - included

The Swiss transport network is an excellent combination of trains, mountain railways, cable cars, boats, and buses that make it a pleasure to get around and explore at your own pace. 

Swiss Half Fare Card included for all Inghams guests

The Swiss Half Fare Card is included in the price of your holiday and is sent to you as part of your rail transfer tickets. This card can be used around Switzerland for up to 50% discount on various modes of transport - so make sure you keep it with you. It also gives free travel to children from 6 to under 16 years old, accompanied by a parent with the Family Card.

Free Guest Card

The free 'Wilderswil/Interlaken Guest Card' is provided by your hotel on arrival and gives you:

  • Free use of local buses in Wilderswil, Interlaken, and surrounding villages such as Iseltwald and Beatenbucht
  • Free entrance to the casino in Interlaken
  • Free travel on some nearby trains. See the map for valid routes
  • Free entrance to village museum and guided weekly walks in Bönigen

Switzerland's excellent public transport network of mountain railways, cable cars, steamboats, and buses makes it a pleasure to explore the sights, at your own pace.

Travel passes - prebookable

In addition to the Half Fare Card, you may wish to purchase other travel passes depending on your holiday plans, such as the Jungfrau Travel Pass or the Bernese Oberland Pass - you can add this to your holiday at the time of booking.

Jungfrau Travel Pass - prebookable

Enjoy three to eight consecutive days of travel on trains, cable cars, gondolas, and boats within the Jungfrau region including:

  • Männlichen gondola (Wengen to Männlichen and Männlichen to Grindelwald Terminus)
  • Wengeneralp Railway (Wengen to Kleine Scheidegg and Kleine Scheidegg to Grindelwald)
  • Jungfrau Railway (Kleine Scheidegg to Eigergletscher)
  • Wengeneralp Railway (Grindelwald to Kleine Scheidegg and Kleine Scheidegg to Wengen)
  • Lauterbrunnen to Mürren railway (Lauterbrunnen to Grütschalp and Grütschalp to Winteregg and Mürren)
  • Grindelwald First gondola
  • Schynige Platte Railway (Wilderswil to Schnige Platte)
  • Harder Kulm Railway (Interlaken to Harder Kulm)
  • Trains between Grindelwald, Lauterbrunnen and Interlaken Ost
  • Passes from 5 days validity onward include boats on Lakes Thun & Lake Brienz and trains between Interlaken Ost, Interlaken West, and Brienz allowing for round trips by boat and train on Lake Brienz.

A supplement applies for going up to the Jungfraujoch - Top of Europe and the Schilthorn. The Jungfrau Travel Pass will get you a discount on the Jungfraujoch fee.

Please note that Family Cards are not valid with the Jungfrau Travel Pass and children must have the Jungfrau Junior Travel Card. 

Bernese Oberland Pass - pre-bookable

The Bernese Oberland Pass is a great option if you're staying longer than seven days and/or are wanting to travel a bit further afield than the routes on the Jungfrau Travel Pass. It includes:

  • Travel by train, bus, and boat throughout the Bernese Oberland
  • Travel on over 25 mountain cable cars
  • Boat trips on Lake Thun and Lake Brienz
  • Discounts at various partner locations

Supplements apply to get to the top of the Schilthorn and Jungfraujoch - the Top of Europe. 

Things to do in Wilderswill

Things to do in Wilderswil

Excellent transport links

You will be perfectly placed for an amazing choice of excursions using local trains, boats, and cable cars. Take the train into the mountains to visit Grindelwald, Wengen, and Mürren, with connections by lift or train to the Jungfraujoch or the Schilthorn, or the little mountain cog railway to Schynige Platte to explore the fabulous alpine garden. The neighbouring town of Interlaken is just a short bus or train journey away, or a leisurely half-hour stroll. Or, spend a day spotting the 72 waterfalls in the Lauterbrunnen Valley.

Hiking and cycling

Take in the stunning views over Thundersee as you trek your way to the Morgenberghorn and over the Rengglipass to Aeschi near Spiez. Or, head in the other direction to explore the Faulhorn, Schwarzhorn or the Hinterburgseeli with views of Brienzersee along the way. You can even explore certain parts of the Bernese Oberland effortlessly via e-bike.

Village museum with crafts

Learn about the history and local background of Wilderswil at the “Old Mill” village museum, which will have you delving deep into the exhibits, with an impressive Alpine diorama inside too. The operational mill is next to the Saxetbach stream, so it definitely creates an admirable view. During opening hours admission is completely free, however there is a donation box which helps keep the attraction open.

See the historic buildings

Take a visit to the ruins of the Unspunnen castle in Wilderswil, where there's a magnificent observation point with incredible Jungfrau views. You can easily access this as part of a village walk, or explore beyond with the castle path that connects to the ruins of Rothenfluh too.

Heimwehfluh vintage funicular

Make your way up to the sun terrace for some al-fresco dining at the open-air café before zooming down on a 650-metre long toboggan ride through the Rugen forest. At the top you can explore the model railway exhibition as well as enjoy the views. Perfect for all ages from six and above, the total experience lasts around two hours, that's without a stop for lunch of course.

Performances

Watch the ‘William Tell’ open-air play, with a cast of 250 actors and live animals, that takes place Jun - Aug. Stay in Wilderswil, or head to Interlaken, Matten or Unterseen for traditional music and folk song performances that regularly take place. Make sure to keep an eye out for the famous Alphorn too – a gigantic instrument longer than the players themselves.

Mountain railway adventures

Take in the stunning views along the 7.2-kilometre scenic journey on the cog railway up to Schynige Platte alpine garden, where you'll find around 500 different plant species (mountain railway starts from 15 Jun). From here you will unlock a world of wonderful walks, such as over the Faulhorn to the First Gondola in Grindelwald - quite a long walk, but you'll enjoy rewarding views the whole way.

Lake cruises

Make your way to Interlaken where the charming boat cruise experiences begin. Maybe you fancy a hop-on-hop-off day, seeing different parts of the lake. Or, perhaps you are wanting an on-board fine dining experience as you glide across the lake to the town of Thun – where you can get a quick train back after a day of sightseeing. Thunersee has a fleet of eight boats, with two being beautiful steamboats.

Excursions

Pre-book your excursions online or give us a call

Jungfraujoch - ‘Top of Europe’ - from £107

A ‘must-see’ for all visitors is the ultimate rail journey through the Eiger, and up to Europe’s highest railway station at 3,454 metres, for breathtaking views including the 14 kilometre-long Aletsch glacier and the ‘Ice Palace’.

Schynige Platte, plus alpine garden (railway starts on 15 Jun) - from £29

Take the charming cogwheel railway up to Schynige Platte at 2000 metres, and visit the wonderful Alpine garden with some 600 different Swiss alpine plants including Edelweiss and Enzian.

Day on Lake Thun or Lake Brienz - from £33 (2nd class) or £48 (1st class)

Spend a day cruising with this ticket, valid for one day on your choice of either of the lakes, Thun, or Brienz. Upgrade to 1st class for seats on the top deck!

Harder Kulm funicular - from £15

A 15-minute funicular to the spectacular viewing platform - a sight not to be missed - look down on Interlaken, Lake Thun, and Lake Brienz.

Bookable locally

Many more options are available locally through your Representative including:

Fun Package: First Flyer / Glider & Trottibike / Mountain Cart 

Swiss Food and Culture Tour - from only CHF20 per person - Exclusive to Inghams

Prices shown include a Swiss Half Fare Card discount.

Please note that the price of excursions will vary depending on the resort you are staying in. We act at all times as a selling agent for the suppliers. All excursions require minimum numbers to run and are subject to change. Some excursions may not be available to pre-book in low season but may be available to book locally subject to numbers. Prices will be confirmed at the time of booking. Please see our terms & conditions.

Good to know

Walking trails: Over 500km of walking trails and easy access to neighbouring villages and lifts

Terrain: Diverse terrain from flat valley floors and lakeside walks to towering 4000m peaks of the Jungfrau

Best time to go: end of May to mid October. It can get hot in July and August but heading up the lifts is a great way to cool off

Recommended for: Walkers of all abilities, nature, sightseeing, activities

Arrive into: Geneva or Zurich airports (approx. 2 hours), or Interlaken Ost station (approx. 14 hours from London St. Pancras)

Transfer time: approx. 2 hours 45 mins (from Zurich) or 3 hour (from Geneva) by train (journey will require changes of train)

24/7 Support and advice: In person or over the phone from our local resort team

Resort card: Swiss Half Fare Card and the free 'Wilderswil/Interlaken resort guest card are included for all guests

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