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which is the right time to travel to Bernese oberland?

Hi,

Me and my husband are planning to travel to Bernese Oberland region of switzerland, Austria and Balck Forest region of Germay. We were planning for mid April but then we read in many forums that April is not the good time. Can you suggest which will be the best time to travel? Mid April, Late May or june?. We want to avoid crowd as well :).

Thanks

Posted by
12040 posts

Crowds really aren't really an issue in the mountains except on some very busy periods during the ski season. The hiking season generally sees a fraction of the number of winter visitors.

The best time to visit for hiking is September. Although there is no dry season in the Alps, September historically sees the least amount of precipitation. And heat waves are extremely rare that late.

May is usually too early, unless you have the benefit of a short-term weather forecast. June can still be a roll of the dice, depending on the severity of the previous winter, but usually a safe bet. In July, you risk a heat wave, although the mountains are usually one of the best places to escape hot weather. Same with August. Early October is like September, but moves into shoulder season weather by mid month. April and November are the worst months. Not enough snow to ski, too much for hiking. And usually wet and overcast.

Posted by
6 posts

We were thinking about late may like around 28th or so or June beginning. We want to visit jungfrau, gimmlewald,murren etc..basically all around Bernese Oberland....are these dates OK or u still suggest pushing it to mid June or July?

Posted by
6 posts

We were thinking about late may like around 28th or so or June beginning. We want to visit jungfrau, gimmlewald,murren etc..basically all around Bernese Oberland....are these dates OK or u still suggest pushing it to mid June or July?

Posted by
12040 posts

It all depends on the winter and spring weather. I don't live in Europe anymore, so I haven't been following the weather this year, and I don't know what kind of winter they've experienced so far

. Let me give some examples. Last year, the winter was unusually warm. The ski season barely made it into March in some mountain areas, and the trails were mostly clear by mid May. Two years ago, the winter was about average, but it was an abnormally cold spring. I wore a winter coat as late as early June. It was almost late July before many of the high altitude trails were completely clear of snow in Austria (I'm not sure about the Swiss Alps, because I didn't visit them that year). So in a nutshell... if you're determined to visit early, you just have to roll the dice and hope for the best.

Or an alternative- get you Alpine kicks in Bavaria or Tyrol. Some of the well-known resorts here have larger year-round populations, so they never go into hibernation quite like the Berner Oberland. Also, the mountains are not as high (but still impressive), so the snow pack usually retreats earlier. The Berner Oberland is kind of an outlier for what you have planned anyway.

Posted by
31435 posts

aparna,

It's difficult to predict the weather that far in the future, but late May / early June should be reasonably good. I always prefer September and have had good weather there as late as mid-October (albeit chilly in the evenings in October).