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Our proposed Berner Oberland itinerary, comments welcomed!

I would like to sketch out a possible plan for four full days in the Berner Oberland in mid-September this year. We are a group of 10 friends, staying 5 nights in a rental home in Murren. Our ages are young-to-mid 60’s, and all of us are in reasonably good condition, though some are more fit and more adventurous than others.

Would anyone care to comment on this proposed itinerary?

Day 1:
Morning: Train to Grindelwald, gondola to First, hike to Bachalpsee. It’s possible part of our group would continue on to Faulhorn Peak, or hike even further to Schynige Platte, then take the train down from there.

Afternoon (for all except those who might have hiked all the way to Schynige Platte): Lunch in Grindlewald, then to Mannlichen, hike from Mannlichen to Kleine Scheidegg

Day 2 (or if we know that a different day is going to have rainy weather, this will be the itinerary for that rainy day):
Morning: Hike in Lauterbrunnen Valley, visit Trummelbach Falls
Afternoon: Day trip to Bern

Day 3:
Morning: Schilthorn first thing. A stop in Birg on the way down for the cliff walk
Afternoon: Allmendhubel funicular up from Murren to hike the North Face trail

Day 4:
Morning: Train to Interlaken Ost, boat ride across Lake Brienz to town of Brienz, getting off the boat at the Geissbach See stop to take the funicular up and see the waterfalls, back on the boat to complete the ride across the lake, maybe some time in Brienz or just right away get on the train back to Interlaken Ost.
Afternoon: Spend some time in Wengen, perhaps? If some of us missed the Mannlichen to Kleine Scheidegg hike on day 1 because they hiked all the way to Schynige Plattte from First, they could do the missed hike on this afternoon. Or, since this would be the “more adventurous” members of our group, is there another hike that might suit them better?

Are any of those days just too crammed full to be comfortable? How might I swap things around to still do all this but perhaps not in the morning/afternoon combinations I’ve listed? Any must-do activities that I've missed, and what should be skipped to work those in?

If we want to make some of our own meals in our rental home in Murren (not just put together picnic lunches, but enjoy some dinners in), will we be able to get sufficient groceries at the coop in Murren, or is that a small shop with limited food, and we should figure out how to shop elsewhere? (Where?)

Thank you for any help!

Posted by
1595 posts

Looks really great. Be mindful of the boat schedule on Lake Brienz so you know when to return to the dock. And have cash for the funicular. I believe it’s 10CHF roundtrip. There’s a nice little area to walk around Lake Brienz right near the dock in Brienz.

The quick 25-30 minute walk from Murren to Gimmelwald is a favorite of mine for the fabulous views. I’d squeeze that in somewhere if you can.

The coop grocery store in Murren is tiny. I can’t remember if the one in Lauterbrunnen is slightly larger or not. There’s a large Coop and Migros in Interlaken if needed.

Posted by
8650 posts

In my opinion, you can get what you need to make a nice dinner at the Murren Coop. I would not schlep groceries from Interlakken.

Posted by
6026 posts

If this itinerary meets your goals and your group is in agreement (getting 10 people to agree is huge!) then go for it. The nice thing here is that it is hard to go too far wrong. You are in a beautiful setting with far more options than it is possible to do. Almost anything you choose will be wonderful.

Posted by
763 posts

I think it's a pretty good plan but I'll add some comments anyway.
Day 1: If you're taking the train (from Lauterbrunnen, actually) to Grindelwald, you'll have to change trains in Zweilutschinen. The next train coming has two sections, one going to Grindelwald, the other to Lauterbrunnen. It can be a bit confusing first time, but the conductors are used to giving instructions in English, so no harm in asking.
When you say it's "possible" part of your group might go on to Schynige Platte, it sounds like they will decide on the spot? I'd recommend PLANNING on it or not, as they will need extra water (high altitudes out in the sun), and be aware of the last trains out of Schynige P. and Wilderswil. Further, for those that really want to do that 6 hr hike, the viewing is MUCH better going from SP to First, as you are looking at the mountains as you hike. I've done that hike twice and 99% of the people were going in the SP to First direction.
Also if some do that 6 hr SP hike (they should be in shape!), they would miss out on the Mannlichen to KS hike if it rains later), which I consider the absolute best trail in the area for views.

Day 2/rainy day: Lauterbrunnen valley and Trummelbach Falls is a good idea.

Day 4: There are LOTS of great hikes in the area

More: a few years ago 9 of us shared an apt. in Lauterbrunnen and cooked our own meals. No problem with local grocery stores unless you are a gourmet eater. Spaghetti, eggs, burgers, chicken, schnitzel, fondue, sliced lunch meats, etc all available.