Escape Typical Tourist Spots On Your Switzerland Trip At This Outdoorsy Paradise

You've probably seen pictures of Wengen's small timber chalets, white-washed church buildings, and snow-capped mountains that give this alpine village its picturesque charm. Yet, this stunning slice of heaven is even more beautiful in person. Emerald glades dotted with pines and the slanted rooftops of rustic mountain chic resorts peaking through the snow-drenched valleys are what await travelers in Wengen. This mountaintop village is located in the Jungfrau region of the Alps in the Bernese Oberland. Wengen perfectly encapsulates the heart of Switzerland and the magnificent scenery it's known for.

Fewer crowds take the stress out of traveling while delivering a personable, local perspective of this charming European destination. While it may be smaller, Wengen boasts a near-perfect location, just a snowball's throw away from several major urban cities. Both Zurich and Lucerne are easily accessible by car in under two hours. As the highest peak in the Bernese mountains, its stunning topography flourishes in both summer and winter. 

Wengen is best known for skiing, snowboarding, snowshoeing, and sledding, while summertime transforms this alpine region into an outdoor gem for hiking and swimming. It's also completely car-free, making it an extremely pedestrian-friendly village. To reach the top of this alpine town, travelers must take the Wengernalp Railway up the peak, with walking paths and cable cars as the primary source of transportation in Wengen. If you plan on doing a lot of exploring, it may be worth investing in a Swiss Travel Pass, which gives you unlimited access to the rail network for the duration of your trip.

Summer in Wengen

The Leiterhorn hike is one of the best in this Swiss region! This route begins in the center of Wengen and loops around flowering meadows, down to the valley floor, and through the mountain tops to the neighboring village of Leiterhorn. A 3-mile loop, hikers are met with breathtaking views of the Eiger, Mönch, and Jungfrau mountain peaks. This trail is beautiful in every way, with much less traffic than some of Switzerland's more popular mountain trails. Majestic mountains, lush greenery, and rocky rooted trails are the highlights of this trek.

For an alternative route equally as stunning, consider taking the cable cars to Männlichen Peak. A short walk from the top of the peak to the summit, the Männlichen Royal Walk offers hikers some of the most stunning views in the Bernese Oberland. The beginning of the route even houses a golden crown that doubles as a lookout point!

Situated between the alpine towns Thun and Interlaken, Lake Thun is a popular summertime treasure in the Bernese Oberland region. Travelers can reach Lake Thun directly from Wengen by train, an easily accessible route that takes just over an hour. Whether you're hoping to paddle the perimeter or cruise from one shoreline to the next by way of the Blümlisalp paddlewheel steamship ferry, this mountain gem is truly a patch of paradise. The compelling vistas of Stockhorn and Niederhorn add a fairytale-like ambiance to this lakeside retreat.

Winter in Wengen

Window sills lined with fairy lights, cozy coffee houses where you can watch the snowflakes cascading to the ground, and an endless selection of ski slopes make Wengen the quintessential Swiss town for a wintery getaway. With three mountain ranges for winter sports, Wengen's slopes are suited for all skill levels. This mountainous region is also home to the famous Lauberhorn downhill ski race that takes place every year in January. Following the race, visitors are invited to try the slopes themselves.

Think race car driving in the snow! Wengen's Fox Run, a nearly 3-mile sledding run, is a popular favorite in Wengen, requiring quick wits and precise maneuvering. Located right next to the Lauberhorn Descent, you can squeeze in both for a snow-filled day of outdoor fun. Skate to your heart's content in Wengen's open-air ice rink, nestled in the center of town. While this rink may be artificial, Christmas and the New Year call for a special celebration in the form of a natural ice rink that's a coveted attraction among both locals and tourists. 

Did someone say cheese fondue?! You haven't truly tasted Wengen until you've indulged in this nation's bread and butter: authentic Swiss cheese! There's no better place to feast on this local delicacy than Sunstar Grillkota, a cozy grill hut serving Wengen's best barbecue and cheese raclette.