I will be traveling to Murren, Switzerland during the last week of May and wonder about the weather. I cannot find temps for this specific area. Can anyone say from experience what kind of clothing we should pack? We will bring hat and gloves and layers for visiting the peaks, but for hiking around Murren, Gimmelwald, and bike riding, will we be needing sweaters or more likely shorts and t-shirts?
The weather in May can vary considerably from year to year and even day to day (watch the movie "Nordwand" to see how much the weather can change even in the summer). At Murren's altitude, it could be sunny and warm, foggy cold and rainy, or even snowing (although that last one isn't likely) and the weather can change by the hour. You should probably arrive expecting anything from moderately cold and rainy to hot and dry.
We haven't been there in May, but we have been several times in June, July, and august. Each time we expereinced temperatures ranging from low 40's to 75 or so, with or without rain. Layering is the way to go. As for dinner, casual is fine, but not your hiking clothes. I like to wear long pants, a dressy shirt, and sandals (Not hiking shoes) to dinner. The Asian restaurant on the main street is VERY casual and the food is quite good, especially if you are looking for a change from Swiss meals. We generally like to eat at the hotel dining rooms if we want a nice dinner. Our favorite is Hotel Bellevue, on the upper streeet. Their Stübli is warm and cozy on a cold blustery evening, and has the same great food as the dining room.
I was there in end of May once, and weather was fairly comparable to what I'd experience here (live in New York City here) at same time of year. Not shorts//t-shirts, but say, jeans or chinos, short sleave shirt (say, a golf shirt), long sleeve t-shirts, and sneakers/hiking shoes. I did pack ONE pair of shorts in case it got very warm, but don't recall ever putting them on. Throwing ONE pair in, as a back-up, shouldn'd take up much space in your bag. It can get cool at night, so if you had, say, light cotton sweather, hoody, fleece, etc. to throw on, you'd be fine. In general, big fan of Nike Dry-Fit tops (short and long sleave) for traveling (although tons of sports clothes brands make them). They wick away moisture/sweat and "breathe" better than pure cotton, so really comfortable for traveling, and great for hiking and sight-seeing For the peaks, you are absolutely right to bring cold weather clothes; I pretty much kept a fleece/gloves, etc. in my day pack every day, so that I could layer up as needed. Dressing this way, I recall being fine at the end of May in the Bernese Overland. Have an awesome time; Gimmelwald's 1 of my favotite places on this planet!
Thank you, Lawrence, for being specific ... Exactly the type of response I had hoped for. I feel we'll be better equipped with your experience. Also, I am assuming that dinners are relatively casual wherever we go in Murren? Is this what you -or others - have experienced?
I agree w/ Lola; most were "casual," although I would not necessarily go in my hiking clothes. In Europe, in general, I always have one pair of super dark blue, or black denim (I even wear this to some high-end restaurants here in NYC. As you prob know, we New Yorkers; I live in Manhattan; eat out a lot!), and it's fine. As a guy, I throw them on with, say, a pair of driving loafers, or black "sneakers" (maybe something like Cole Haan "sneakers") and a short sleave collar shirt in summer, and I'm good to go. In Europe, this way I'm comfortable, but don't look like I'm in "jeans and a t" and my gym sneakers. In general, we ate in some pretty casual places in the Bernese Oberland, and in the 1 or 2 nicer ones we ate in, this was pretty much even how the locals dressed. Hope this helps, Doreen. Good luck w/ the travel planning!
I was in Murren last May (middle of the month). High was in the mid-50s most days, and it even snowed our last day there. Not the best weather, but maybe you'll get luckier going a couple weeks later.