The village of Lauterbrunnen lies in the heart of the Jungfrau region and is a “must-see” destination in Switzerland.
It is one of the best day trips from Interlaken for lovers of the great outdoors, with the bonus that it is only 20 minutes away by car or train.
With snow-capped mountains, chocolate-box wooden chalets and views that will take your breath away, this traditional Swiss village was one of the most beautiful places in Switzerland that we had visited on our European Road Trip Itinerary.
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Best Things to Do in Lauterbrunnen
Lauterbrunnen is one of Switzerland’s most charming villages, making it a paradise for photographers, hikers and nature enthusiasts.
Swiss flags hang proudly from timbered buildings, and artisan shops sell beautiful Swiss crafts. Lauterbrunnen’s cafes and restaurants will entice you with the aromas of fresh coffee and fondues!
Immerse yourself in your surroundings and admire nature’s beauty in the countryside around the Lauterbrunnen valley.
Best Waterfalls to Visit in Lauterbrunnen
Lauterbrunnen translates in German to “Loud Springs”; once you have visited one of these thunderous waterfalls, you will understand why!
Lauterbrunnen’s magical waterfalls and sensational landscape inspired Rivendell, the home to the elves in the Lord of the Rings and Hobbit novels written by J.R.R. Tolkien.
As film buffs, we are always keen to visit spots featured in movies, like Hobbiton in New Zealand, and locations that have had an inspirational impact.
Lauterbrunnen and Interlaken were the settings for the James Bond film “On Her Majesty’s Secret Service” in 1969.
Trummelbach Falls is unique in Europe as being the only accessible mountain with ten internal glacial waterfalls.
It is easy to navigate as it is illuminated and made accessible by a tunnel lift and a series of walkways and handrails.
Cave areas can get very wet underfoot as the glacial melt from the mighty Eiger, Monch and Jungfrau falls at 20,000 litres of water per second!
Waterproof jackets and footwear should be worn, and prepare yourself to be deafened by the roar of the water as it gushes past the vertical rock faces that are up to 400 hundred meters high.
Depending on weather conditions, the Trummelbach Falls are open daily in April until November from 9 – 5 pm and in July and August from 8.30 – 6 pm.
It is always a good idea to check that the falls are open before setting out, rather than being disappointed when you arrive.
Staubbach Falls is Switzerland’s highest waterfall and the most well-known in Lauterbrunnen’s “Valley of 72 waterfalls.” Explore its cascading waters from behind a purposely-built viewing point built into the rock face.
During the high season, the waterfall is illuminated in the evening.
Best Hikes in Lauterbrunnen
Hiking routes in and around Lauterbrunnen will take you through the beautiful Swiss landscape, offering breathtaking mountain views.
Yellow signs in town mark the different trails you can take, from easy to difficult.
Lauterbrunnen Loop Trail
As this is the great outdoors, it only seems right to embark on at least one of the area’s hiking/walking trails.
The most popular one is a loop hike up to the car-free village of Murran and on to Gimmelwald before descending back to Lauterbrunnen.
You may prefer to take the cable car up and then only hike back down as it is an intense hike. The Restaurant Winteregg lies close to Mürren and offers a stop for refreshment amidst the best alpine landscape of mountain streams, meadows and pine forests.
If you do prefer this idea, then take the cable car from Lauterbrunnen to Grutschalp, which takes 5 minutes and then from there, you can hop aboard the 15-minute rail journey to the start of the hike in Mürren.
The flower trail in Allmendhubel via Blumental (flower valley) is an easier walk for all ages. Spot 150 different mountain flower species on this hour-long walk.
The funicular can reach Allmendhubel from Murren. The funicular operates all year round but may shut for maintenance on scheduled dates. The tourist office should be able to help you with the dates.
Whatever you decide to do, the views are out of this world, and you will feel like you want to burst into a rendition of the Sound of Music! For information on all the best hikes in Lauterbrunnen, head to the Lauterbrunnen tourist office and pick up a leaflet to guide you.
Journey to Jungfraujoch “The Top of Europe”
The most popular thing in Lauterbrunnen is to take a trip on the cogwheel train to Jungfraujoch. The journey takes one and a half hours.
From the moment you step aboard this charming form of transport, the views are incredible as it gently makes its ascent to the top of the mountain. It is advisable to arrive early to take this trip as there are many activities to try out at the top of Jungfraujoch.
Book your ticket online, especially during summer.
On the ascent, keep an ear out for the cowbells ringing as the cows graze on the side of the mountains – the epitome of everything associated with the charm of Switzerland.
A mandatory stop halfway up the mountain at Kleine Scheidegg is a delightful place to take a break for coffee, lunch or maybe apple strudel before boarding another train to take you to the Top of Europe.
Kleine Scheidegg is at the foothills of the Eiger – the most treacherous mountain in the world. The Eiger is perpetually cast in shadow and hosts its own weather system. Its ice and limestone sheer rock face is a challenge for the most experienced mountaineer.
If you want to stay in Kleine Scheidegg for a while before continuing up to Jungfraujoch, then there are walking and hiking trails to discover. We set off on a walking path which took around 45 minutes, and I have to say the views were fantastic.
Jungfraujoch – Arriving at the Summit
Jungfraujoch is Europe’s highest-altitude railway station at 3,454 metres above sea level. You feel like this is a different world when you step off the train.
With snow at the summit, it’s hard to believe that you are above Lauterbrunnen, and the valley below is swathed in sunshine and green pastures!
Get accustomed to the high-level altitude – it affected us for about the first 10 minutes we arrived. I felt quite dizzy and nauseous and had to sit down for a while.
Jungfraujoch is open all year round, and there is plenty to do and see on the top of Europe. Allow yourself at least 1 -2 hours and keep hold of your belongings.
We put our camera down, forgot it, and then had a mad dash to retrace our steps, trying to find it. Everything turned out fine in the end, as someone had handed it in, but at high altitude, the last thing you want to be doing is rushing around and stressing out!
Top Things to do at Jungfraujoch
Sphinx Observation Deck – Views across the Aletsch Glacier.
Ice Sculpture Exhibition – Discover statues carved from the glacial ice.
Alpine Sensation Multi-Sensory Show – History of the miners who built the railway.
Lindt Chocolate Factory – The famous swiss chocolate brand.
Snow Park – Sledging, skiing, snowboarding, snow-tubing, and a zipline across the glacier.
Glacier Plateau – Views from here stretch across the Jungfrau and Silberhorn mountain peaks.
Restaurants and Shops
Best Restaurants in Lauterbrunnen
A great place to stop for lunch, freshly-brewed coffee and desserts, this is Lauterbrunnen’s best cafe.
Swiss Restaurant Weidstuebli
One of the best Lauterbrunnen restaurants offering a traditional Swiss feel and close to Staubbach Falls. A great place to enjoy a hearty meal after walking or hiking in the area.
Reviews for Swiss Restaurant Weidstuebli
The best restaurant in Lauterbrunnen for vegetarian and vegan dishes and serving Swiss and European cuisine in a cosy setting.
Hotel Oberland Restaurant
With an outdoor garden space for dining during the warmer months and an extensive menu. Soups, salads, pizzas, pasta, meat and fish dishes and traditional Swiss dishes of fondues and röstis are all available.
Reviews for Hotel Oberland Restaurant
Set in Wengen village, this is one of the best restaurants in the area. It offers Swiss cuisine with a setting of the beautiful Swiss Alps as a backdrop.
Reviews for Silberhorn Restaurant
Best Hotels in Lauterbrunnen
Availability and Rates for Accommodation in Lauterbrunnen
The Best Way to Get to Lauterbrunnen from Interlaken
By Car or Taxi: We had our car with us for the 15-minute drive from Interlaken to Lauterbrunnen. Plenty of parking is all around town. Once you are in Lauterbrunnen, you will travel around on foot, by train or by cable car.
By Rail: From Interlaken, hourly trains depart from Interlaken East Train Station to Lauterbrunnen and take 20 minutes. Information can be found here for train stations in the Jungfrau Region
By Bus: From Interlaken, the bus will take approximately 20 minutes.
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Want to Discover Other Places to Visit in the Jungfrau Region?
Saturday 21st of January 2023
Hello! We will be staying in Interlaken for one night March 14. We plan to arrive early via train (from Lucerne) I really want to see the village of Lauterbrunnen and maybe do short hike. Is this reasonable, or should we stick around Interlaken? Also, interested in kayaking on lake (weather permitting) and/or Harder Kulm? I think we have to leave early next day to catch the Golden pass express to Montreux due to shortened schedule. :( Basically, looking for suggestion of best use of our time for views/beauty/ etc.
Monday 23rd of January 2023
Hi there Schannon
So firstly Interlaken train station is around 20 minutes from Harder Klum so I would take the funicular up there first and enjoy the stunning views and grab a coffee. Once back down you can make you way to Lauterbrunnen which is around 30 mins by taxi or take the train there. You will have time to do both of these places but if you want to do a hike and perhaps see the waterfalls and a spot of lunch then you might not have time to do the lake kayaking. Lauterbrunnen is a must see and you will love it. Have a great time Angie
Saturday 29th of January 2022
Hey Angie, a lovely post of Lauterbrunnen - thanks for sharing. Which month was it that you visited Interlaken, as I'm just seeing sunshine and blue skies in your photos which are gorgeous. From most of the websites, it seems that May-Aug would be the best months to go since they will be the warmer months I'm reading that they are the wettest months too. What was your experience with the weather and any tips to share?
Saturday 29th of January 2022
Hi Allison, Im glad you found this post informative. I travelled to Lauterbrunnen in July and there was no rain, just blue skies and sunshine. It is so easy to do as a day trip either in a car or by train from Interlaken. I would recommend Airtime cafe for light bites in town and maybe if you want to do some hikes stay overnight in Lauterbrunnen so that you are not rushed. The Top of Europe is worth booking. When you get to the top and see the thick snow it is quite unbelievable that below you are grassy hills and wildflowers! I hope that you get there in the future, it really is a beautiful Swiss village.
Friday 10th of July 2020
I went to Switzerland for my honeymoon and stayed at Interlaken. I must say all Swiss villages are very charming and I too loved Lauterbrunnen village a lot. Even visiting Jungfraou is great here. All destinations in Switzerland are very beautiful.
Saturday 11th of July 2020
We based ourselves in Interlaken and travelled out from there each day. Every part of Switzerland is so stunning.
Friday 10th of July 2020
Such a dramatic landscape with with rolling hills and steep cliffs, you can understand why it's the inspiration for many a film setting, and with all that lush landscape and fresh water, I'm sure the local cheese is to die for.
Friday 10th of July 2020
Well, I can vouch for the cheese fondues! Probably ate one too many.
Thursday 9th of July 2020
At first I imagined this to be in Sweden, not Switzerland! This looks incredible!