Guide to Interlaken, Switzerland. The Adventure Capital Of The World!!

We recently took what could be described at the trip of a lifetime to interlaken (and would be if we didn’t plan on making a lifetime of these trips!) We ticked so much off our bucket list in just one week that we lost count, not just every day but every minute of ever hour brought a new thrill, breath taking view or crazy experience. This Swiss town in the heart of the Bernese Alps is one of the most beautiful, exciting and unforgettable places we have ever visited…it might just be our favourite! Here’s the lowdown!
Interlaken, Switzerland, Eiger, Jungfrau, Monch, Canyoning, Paragliding, Via Ferrata, White Water Rafting, Brienz, Thun, Mountains, Alps, bern, Bernese Alps, Swiss Alps, adventure, Chli Schliere, adrenaline, lutschine, Lauterbrunnen, Schilthorn, Harder Kulm, Murren, Trummelbach Falls,

There is literally so much to do in Interlaken that we did something (often more than one thing!) new everyday for a week and still had things we wished we had time for! Never have I been somewhere in the world that was just so stunning, alive with youthful energy and full of so many options that are so easy to come by.

 

Interlaken, Switzerland, Eiger, Jungfrau, Monch, Canyoning, Paragliding, Via Ferrata, White Water Rafting, Brienz, Thun, Mountains, Alps, bern, Bernese Alps, Swiss Alps, adventure, Chli Schliere, adrenaline, lutschine, Lauterbrunnen, Schilthorn, Harder Kulm, Murren, Trummelbach Falls,

 

We walked up to the paragliding hut one night and just booked in for the next morning, adventure is literally around every corner if you want it, and yet it is so serine and beautiful. Surrounded by the Bernese alps and the turquoise lakes of Breinz and Thun it’s almost like being in a dream!

 

Interlaken, Switzerland, Eiger, Jungfrau, Monch, Canyoning, Paragliding, Via Ferrata, White Water Rafting, Brienz, Thun, Mountains, Alps, bern, Bernese Alps, Swiss Alps, adventure, Chli Schliere, adrenaline, lutschine, Lauterbrunnen, Schilthorn, Harder Kulm, Murren, Trummelbach Falls,

For us this week we spent in Interlaken is what life should be all about, full of fun, adventure and simple pleasures! Interlaken is one of those places which will be forever in our hearts, where ever we go we will always have a longing to return as we do with New York or Tokyo…and one day we most certainly will.

Interlaken, Switzerland, Eiger, Jungfrau, Monch, Canyoning, Paragliding, Via Ferrata, White Water Rafting, Brienz, Thun, Mountains, Alps, bern, Bernese Alps, Swiss Alps, adventure, Chli Schliere, adrenaline, lutschine, Lauterbrunnen, Schilthorn, Harder Kulm, Murren, Trummelbach Falls,

 

Here’s a guide to the most amazing little town in the world! A microcosm of activity, a bubble of energy, an island on it’s own away from the rest of the world. A place where the only rules are to live everyday to the fullest, a place for renegades!

 

Interlaken, Switzerland, Eiger, Jungfrau, Monch, Canyoning, Paragliding, Via Ferrata, White Water Rafting, Brienz, Thun, Mountains, Alps, bern, Bernese Alps, Swiss Alps, adventure, Chli Schliere, adrenaline, lutschine, Lauterbrunnen, Schilthorn, Harder Kulm, Murren, Trummelbach Falls,

To Do in Interlaken

Canyoning

Canyoning is where you follow the path of a river as it runs through a canyon, rappelling, jumping, sliding and swimming it’s course. Interlaken is one of the best places in the world to experience this thrilling adventure sport. It even has 3 different canyons which offer different difficulty levels! We chose the extreme “Chli Schliere” and had a day we will never forget in this stunningly beautiful and challenging sculpted canyon.

Interlaken, Switzerland, Eiger, Jungfrau, Monch, Canyoning, Paragliding, Via Ferrata, White Water Rafting, Brienz, Thun, Mountains, Alps, bern, Bernese Alps, Swiss Alps, adventure, Chli Schliere, adrenaline, lutschine, Lauterbrunnen, Schilthorn, Harder Kulm, Murren, Trummelbach Falls,

Read all about our adventure here:
Canyoning: Chli Schliere

Interlaken, Switzerland, Eiger, Jungfrau, Monch, Canyoning, Paragliding, Via Ferrata, White Water Rafting, Brienz, Thun, Mountains, Alps, bern, Bernese Alps, Swiss Alps, adventure, Chli Schliere, adrenaline, lutschine, Lauterbrunnen, Schilthorn, Harder Kulm, Murren, Trummelbach Falls,

White Water Rafting

Another must do in Interlaken for the adventure sport enthusiast is White Water Rafting. Not only will you experience one of the most thrilling and wild rides in your life but it will be in the glacial melt waters drained directly from the Eiger, Monch and Jungfrau!! Once again all confidence and skill levels are provided for but for us the grade 4 lutschine river was the adrenaline rush we were after!

Interlaken, Switzerland, Eiger, Jungfrau, Monch, Canyoning, Paragliding, Via Ferrata, White Water Rafting, Brienz, Thun, Mountains, Alps, bern, Bernese Alps, Swiss Alps, adventure, Chli Schliere, adrenaline, lutschine, Lauterbrunnen, Schilthorn, Harder Kulm, Murren, Trummelbach Falls,

Read all about our adventure here:
White Water Rafting in Interlaken!

Interlaken, Switzerland, Eiger, Jungfrau, Monch, Canyoning, Paragliding, Via Ferrata, White Water Rafting, Brienz, Thun, Mountains, Alps, bern, Bernese Alps, Swiss Alps, adventure, Chli Schliere, adrenaline, lutschine, Lauterbrunnen, Schilthorn, Harder Kulm, Murren, Trummelbach Falls,

Via Ferrata

Via Ferrata is an extreme hike where you follow a route of precarious staples thousands of feet above the valley below, cross swaying wire bridges and experience a level of exposure not usually available unless you are up an alpine climb! The Via Ferrata which runs along the Lauterbrunnen valley is not only an amazing adrenaline rush but one of the most stunning places in the world to find yourself hanging by your hangs 2000ft up!

Interlaken, Switzerland, Eiger, Jungfrau, Monch, Canyoning, Paragliding, Via Ferrata, White Water Rafting, Brienz, Thun, Mountains, Alps, bern, Bernese Alps, Swiss Alps, adventure, Chli Schliere, adrenaline, lutschine, Lauterbrunnen, Schilthorn, Harder Kulm, Murren, Trummelbach Falls,

Read all about our adventure here:
Via Ferrata Lauterbrunnen!

Interlaken, Switzerland, Eiger, Jungfrau, Monch, Canyoning, Paragliding, Via Ferrata, White Water Rafting, Brienz, Thun, Mountains, Alps, bern, Bernese Alps, Swiss Alps, adventure, Chli Schliere, adrenaline, lutschine, Lauterbrunnen, Schilthorn, Harder Kulm, Murren, Trummelbach Falls,

Schilthorn

Sitting in the middle of the impressive Bernese Alps this mountain of just under 10,000ft offers amazing views of the infamous Eiger, Monch and Jungfrau as well an an exhilarating cable car ride up to it’s rocky peak. Standing up here you feel like you are on the top of the world and the view will stay with you forever. A truly breathtaking experience!

Interlaken, Switzerland, Eiger, Jungfrau, Monch, Canyoning, Paragliding, Via Ferrata, White Water Rafting, Brienz, Thun, Mountains, Alps, bern, Bernese Alps, Swiss Alps, adventure, Chli Schliere, adrenaline, lutschine, Lauterbrunnen, Schilthorn, Harder Kulm, Murren, Trummelbach Falls,

Read all about our adventure here:

Interlaken, Switzerland, Eiger, Jungfrau, Monch, Canyoning, Paragliding, Via Ferrata, White Water Rafting, Brienz, Thun, Mountains, Alps, bern, Bernese Alps, Swiss Alps, adventure, Chli Schliere, adrenaline, lutschine, Lauterbrunnen, Schilthorn, Harder Kulm, Murren, Trummelbach Falls,

Paragliding

Another bucket list item to be ticked off, and what better place to do it! Running off a steep hill and flying right over Interlaken itself this is the ultimate rush. With stunning views of the twin lakes of the town, the alpine mountains, traditional houses and the turquoise river meandering through Interlaken you will be left speechless!

 

Interlaken, Switzerland, Eiger, Jungfrau, Monch, Canyoning, Paragliding, Via Ferrata, White Water Rafting, Brienz, Thun, Mountains, Alps, bern, Bernese Alps, Swiss Alps, adventure, Chli Schliere, adrenaline, lutschine, Lauterbrunnen, Schilthorn, Harder Kulm, Murren, Trummelbach Falls,

Read all about our adventure here:

Interlaken, Switzerland, Eiger, Jungfrau, Monch, Canyoning, Paragliding, Via Ferrata, White Water Rafting, Brienz, Thun, Mountains, Alps, bern, Bernese Alps, Swiss Alps, adventure, Chli Schliere, adrenaline, lutschine, Lauterbrunnen, Schilthorn, Harder Kulm, Murren, Trummelbach Falls,

Other Adventure sports

Interlaken is the adventure sport capital of the world, not only can you go canyoning, rafting, paragliding and on the Via Ferrata but there are countless other activities to try. Skydiving, Bungee jumping, canyon swings, high ropes, kayaking, surfing on the lakes, helicopter rides, skiing and Snowboarding in the winter…the only limit is your bravery!! We could return to Interlaken every year and still have a new activity to try, after you visit your bucket list is going to need some new additions!

Interlaken, Switzerland, Eiger, Jungfrau, Monch, Canyoning, Paragliding, Via Ferrata, White Water Rafting, Brienz, Thun, Mountains, Alps, bern, Bernese Alps, Swiss Alps, adventure, Chli Schliere, adrenaline, lutschine, Lauterbrunnen, Schilthorn, Harder Kulm, Murren, Trummelbach Falls,

Check out Outdoor Interlaken to read about and book these amazing activities!

Harder Kulm

The house mountain of Interlaken and walkable from the town centre, you can either choose to hike up this challenging but doable mountain or take the funicular! Which ever way you get up there the journey is an adventure rewarded by an amazing view of Interlaken and the surrounding mountains and valleys. From up here you will really be able to appreciate the beauty and vastness of the area you find yourself in!

Interlaken, Switzerland, Eiger, Jungfrau, Monch, Canyoning, Paragliding, Via Ferrata, White Water Rafting, Brienz, Thun, Mountains, Alps, bern, Bernese Alps, Swiss Alps, adventure, Chli Schliere, adrenaline, lutschine, Lauterbrunnen, Schilthorn, Harder Kulm, Murren, Trummelbach Falls,

 

Read all about our adventure here:
Harder Kulm

 

Interlaken, Switzerland, Eiger, Jungfrau, Monch, Canyoning, Paragliding, Via Ferrata, White Water Rafting, Brienz, Thun, Mountains, Alps, bern, Bernese Alps, Swiss Alps, adventure, Chli Schliere, adrenaline, lutschine, Lauterbrunnen, Schilthorn, Harder Kulm, Murren, Trummelbach Falls,

Hiking

Of course, in the mountains there is always great hiking to be had. Whether you are an experienced alpine mountaineer or a casual walker there are routes for all fitness and ability levels. From the gentle slopes of “First” to the challenging hike up the amazing Schilthorn or even tackling the Eiger, there is something for everyone! Walking through fields of wild flowers with the sound of cow bells and trickling streams, the warm sun and deep blue lakes. Wonderful!

Interlaken, Switzerland, Eiger, Jungfrau, Monch, Canyoning, Paragliding, Via Ferrata, White Water Rafting, Brienz, Thun, Mountains, Alps, bern, Bernese Alps, Swiss Alps, adventure, Chli Schliere, adrenaline, lutschine, Lauterbrunnen, Schilthorn, Harder Kulm, Murren, Trummelbach Falls,

Lakes/ Swim/ Kayak

Interlaken is given it’s name due to the twin lakes of Thun and Breinz that flank it. Both drain from the huge mountains and glaciers that surround the town. The deep and bright turquoise colour of each lake is like nothing I have ever seen in my life before, the shades of blue almost unreal. Both lakes are not only wonderful to walk around but also in the summer make for a lovely swim, kayak or boat trip.

 

Read more:
Beautiful lakes of Interlaken

Interlaken, Switzerland, Eiger, Jungfrau, Monch, Canyoning, Paragliding, Via Ferrata, White Water Rafting, Brienz, Thun, Mountains, Alps, bern, Bernese Alps, Swiss Alps, adventure, Chli Schliere, adrenaline, lutschine, Lauterbrunnen, Schilthorn, Harder Kulm, Murren, Trummelbach Falls,

Cable Cars

Being in the mountains the whole region is covered in cable cars, some places only accessible by this mode of transport. Not only do these gondolas take you to come amazing locations high up into the Swiss Alps but the ride itself is often unforgettable. Some of the cable routes are steep and thrilling in their own right!

Interlaken, Switzerland, Eiger, Jungfrau, Monch, Canyoning, Paragliding, Via Ferrata, White Water Rafting, Brienz, Thun, Mountains, Alps, bern, Bernese Alps, Swiss Alps, adventure, Chli Schliere, adrenaline, lutschine, Lauterbrunnen, Schilthorn, Harder Kulm, Murren, Trummelbach Falls,

Lauterbrunnen, Murren, Breinz

Surrounding Interlaken are numerous little towns and villages which offer a quaint and traditional view of the Swiss Alps. Places such as Murren are totally traffic free and the picturesque streets a joy to explore. Wooden houses lined with colourful flowers, flags and carvings with unforgettable mountainous views as a backdrop. These makes for refreshing change of pace and a glimpse into Bernese culture.

Interlaken, Switzerland, Eiger, Jungfrau, Monch, Canyoning, Paragliding, Via Ferrata, White Water Rafting, Brienz, Thun, Mountains, Alps, bern, Bernese Alps, Swiss Alps, adventure, Chli Schliere, adrenaline, lutschine, Lauterbrunnen, Schilthorn, Harder Kulm, Murren, Trummelbach Falls,

Brienz was also a firm favourite of ours and it only 13miles away from Interlaken, right at the other end of Lake Brienz! This wonderful little village is much more sedate than Interlaken and offers tranquil and beautiful surroundings as well as ornately decorated wooden houses right by the lake.

Interlaken, Switzerland, Eiger, Jungfrau, Monch, Canyoning, Paragliding, Via Ferrata, White Water Rafting, Brienz, Thun, Mountains, Alps, bern, Bernese Alps, Swiss Alps, adventure, Chli Schliere, adrenaline, lutschine, Lauterbrunnen, Schilthorn, Harder Kulm, Murren, Trummelbach Falls,

Wander the town

Interlaken town itself is also a wonderful place to explore, it is filled with traditional wooden Swiss architecture, lakes, rivers, parks and surrounded by breathtaking mountains. Walking around the town you really get a feel for the energy and culture here, you can call for a cheese Fondue, make your own chocolate or hang with the crowds of adrenaline junkies who venture here year round…all this whilst in a town which looks like a real life christmas market! Interlaken really does fulfil all those dreams you had of Swiss Alpine towns!

Interlaken, Switzerland, Eiger, Jungfrau, Monch, Canyoning, Paragliding, Via Ferrata, White Water Rafting, Brienz, Thun, Mountains, Alps, bern, Bernese Alps, Swiss Alps, adventure, Chli Schliere, adrenaline, lutschine, Lauterbrunnen, Schilthorn, Harder Kulm, Murren, Trummelbach Falls,

Trummelbach Falls

The amazing power of the Trummelbach Falls will both scare you and leave you in awe. The glacial waterfall has carved deep caverns down the side of the valley in which it drains. Over 20,000 litres of water a second roar through here and the noise is deafening! Exploring these falls is a pretty amazing experience and also hardly costs a thing!

Interlaken, Switzerland, Eiger, Jungfrau, Monch, Canyoning, Paragliding, Via Ferrata, White Water Rafting, Brienz, Thun, Mountains, Alps, bern, Bernese Alps, Swiss Alps, adventure, Chli Schliere, adrenaline, lutschine, Lauterbrunnen, Schilthorn, Harder Kulm, Murren, Trummelbach Falls,

Read all about our adventure here:

Interlaken, Switzerland, Eiger, Jungfrau, Monch, Canyoning, Paragliding, Via Ferrata, White Water Rafting, Brienz, Thun, Mountains, Alps, bern, Bernese Alps, Swiss Alps, adventure, Chli Schliere, adrenaline, lutschine, Lauterbrunnen, Schilthorn, Harder Kulm, Murren, Trummelbach Falls,

Jungfrau

Although we chose on this occasion to skip a trip up Jungfrau as it was too expensive for us (and we preferred the mountain top experience of Schilthorn) this is undeniably one of the main attractions of the region. Many thousands of people flock over to Interlaken to take the Jungfrau railway up to this glacial landscape high in the mountains.

Interlaken, Switzerland, Eiger, Jungfrau, Monch, Canyoning, Paragliding, Via Ferrata, White Water Rafting, Brienz, Thun, Mountains, Alps, bern, Bernese Alps, Swiss Alps, adventure, Chli Schliere, adrenaline, lutschine, Lauterbrunnen, Schilthorn, Harder Kulm, Murren, Trummelbach Falls,

Nightlife and Atmosphere

One of the things we loved about Interlaken was the fact that is was full of so many like minded people, from backpackers to adrenaline seekers inspiring people are everywhere to be found. We ended up speaking to some awesome people, some travelling the world, some backpacking around Europe, others who live in Interlaken in the summer and travel for the winter. Guides, adventurers, travellers and fellow “normal life” escapees make the atmosphere one of youthful exuberance and energy!

 

Interlaken, Switzerland, Eiger, Jungfrau, Monch, Canyoning, Paragliding, Via Ferrata, White Water Rafting, Brienz, Thun, Mountains, Alps, bern, Bernese Alps, Swiss Alps, adventure, Chli Schliere, adrenaline, lutschine, Lauterbrunnen, Schilthorn, Harder Kulm, Murren, Trummelbach Falls,

Where to stay

There are many hotels, hostels and guest houses in Interlaken. Some, especially along the main stretch, will set you back a small fortune. The most expensive areas of Interlaken are generally inhabited by rich Arabs or groups of Chinese tourists. But if you move slightly further out, the town itself isn’t all that big, you enter the backpackers district. This area has a range of awesome hostels filled with those travellers and adventurers mentioned above, the huts for the outdoor activities are all also located up here and many of the guides hang around in the bars and clubs up here too.

Interlaken, Switzerland, Eiger, Jungfrau, Monch, Canyoning, Paragliding, Via Ferrata, White Water Rafting, Brienz, Thun, Mountains, Alps, bern, Bernese Alps, Swiss Alps, adventure, Chli Schliere, adrenaline, lutschine, Lauterbrunnen, Schilthorn, Harder Kulm, Murren, Trummelbach Falls,

The two best hostels are:

Funny Farm:
Large old hotel converted into a hostel, includes cheap breakfast and swimming pool!

Balmers:
Right next to the Outdoor Interlaken hut and had it’s own, and possibly the most famous in Interlaken, amazing nightclub!

Interlaken, Switzerland, Eiger, Jungfrau, Monch, Canyoning, Paragliding, Via Ferrata, White Water Rafting, Brienz, Thun, Mountains, Alps, bern, Bernese Alps, Swiss Alps, adventure, Chli Schliere, adrenaline, lutschine, Lauterbrunnen, Schilthorn, Harder Kulm, Murren, Trummelbach Falls,

Getting there/ Transport

Interlaken isn’t served by any airports as it is in the middle of the mountains.
The town however has a train station which is well connected to all major cities in Switzerland.
Interlaken, Switzerland, Eiger, Jungfrau, Monch, Canyoning, Paragliding, Via Ferrata, White Water Rafting, Brienz, Thun, Mountains, Alps, bern, Bernese Alps, Swiss Alps, adventure, Chli Schliere, adrenaline, lutschine, Lauterbrunnen, Schilthorn, Harder Kulm, Murren, Trummelbach Falls,

The nearest major city is the capital, Bern. However as a city and an airport it is not the best connected, but is only an hour away.

Zurich is probably the closest well connected airport to Interlaken. It takes around 2hours by train or 1.5hrs driving.

We actually flew into Geneva and drove to Interlaken. It is a little further out but the airport is connected to Manchester by the budget airline EasyJet and so worked out cheaper for us (we planned on renting a car for the trip anyway!)
The journey from Geneva is 2hr 20mins by car
and 3hrs by train (connecting in Bern)

Interlaken, Switzerland, Eiger, Jungfrau, Monch, Canyoning, Paragliding, Via Ferrata, White Water Rafting, Brienz, Thun, Mountains, Alps, bern, Bernese Alps, Swiss Alps, adventure, Chli Schliere, adrenaline, lutschine, Lauterbrunnen, Schilthorn, Harder Kulm, Murren, Trummelbach Falls,

Interlaken is very doable without a car as the public transport systems is well connected and included trains, buses and cable cars.

However due to the amount of things we wanted to get done in our time here as well as our flights from Geneva and planned trip over to Liechtenstein we decided to rent a car. One of the things we loved was driving through the Swiss countryside and stopping whenever we wanted to take it all in!

Interlaken, Switzerland, Eiger, Jungfrau, Monch, Canyoning, Paragliding, Via Ferrata, White Water Rafting, Brienz, Thun, Mountains, Alps, bern, Bernese Alps, Swiss Alps, adventure, Chli Schliere, adrenaline, lutschine, Lauterbrunnen, Schilthorn, Harder Kulm, Murren, Trummelbach Falls,

Interlaken itself is small enough to walk around, you also get a free transport card for the town (as you do in other Swiss towns and cities) to use on the buses and get a discount on the funicular. Bike hire is also available from many places for reasonable prices.

Interlaken, Switzerland, Eiger, Jungfrau, Monch, Canyoning, Paragliding, Via Ferrata, White Water Rafting, Brienz, Thun, Mountains, Alps, bern, Bernese Alps, Swiss Alps, adventure, Chli Schliere, adrenaline, lutschine, Lauterbrunnen, Schilthorn, Harder Kulm, Murren, Trummelbach Falls,

Other awesome place to visit in Switzerland!

 

So there you have it, Interlaken, a picture perfect alpine town which fulfilled not only all out dreams we had of Switzerland and the Alps, but many of our lifetime ambitions too. The turquoise lakes, snow capped mountains and endless adventures make this a place we truly fell in love with.

 

Interlaken, Switzerland, Eiger, Jungfrau, Monch, Canyoning, Paragliding, Via Ferrata, White Water Rafting, Brienz, Thun, Mountains, Alps, bern, Bernese Alps, Swiss Alps, adventure, Chli Schliere, adrenaline, lutschine, Lauterbrunnen, Schilthorn, Harder Kulm, Murren, Trummelbach Falls,

Have you ever been to Interlaken?

See more photos on our facebook here:

See more from this country:

 

Nicola Hilditch-Short

Nic is one half of the Roaming Renegades, a passionate traveller, climber, adventurer, photographer and artist who has a B.A in Fine Art and M.A in Design & Art Direction.