South of the Swiss capital, Bern, in the west of Switzerland are these ski resorts in the Bernese Oberland. Between the snow-drenched peaks of the Eiger (Ogre), Mönch (Monk) and Jungfrau (Virgin) mountains are charming chocolate box villages with wooden chalets. Easily accessible from Zürich, Basel and Geneva, you can take a private transfer or the efficient Swiss railways to resort. Mürren and Wengen are both car-free, so your journey to resort will feature a scenic cog-wheel train around the snowy Alps.
Centred around a 15th-century church, Adelboden‘s chalet-styled village is linked to Lenk. The ski area totals 205km of groomed pistes as well as having cross-country trails, backcountry skiing and winter hiking routes. Each January, the sweet village is transformed into a weekend of spandex-clad skiers weaving down the slalom and giant slalom courses during the FIS Ski World cup.
Family friendly, there are plenty of white-out or evening activities for the whole family. These include tobogganing, snowshoeing or dining on the Swiss traditional dish, cheese fondue, in an igloo. The indoor sports complex also has a large heated pool, rock climbing wall and a bowling alley.
The first destination in Switzerland to be awarded the Alpine Wellness certificate, there are fantastic spas to choose from. The Cambrian is our favourite, soak in the heated indoor or outdoor pools with snowy mountain views, then treat yourself to a mountain herb massage or a Finnish sauna, steam bath and a rain shower.
A glamorous resort, it is popular with celebrities for its chocolate box chalets, high-end restaurants and spas. The pedestrianised shopping street is lined with contemporary art galleries, designer shops and locally run shops. While the newly-renovated Le Grand Bellevue, the turreted Gstaad Palace and luxurious Alpina Hotel all have luxurious rooms, fantastic dining and spas.
With 200km of tree-lined slopes, the pistes in Gstaad tend to be crowd free with so many sought-after restaurants, shops and spas to divide your time between. The tree-lined slopes are predominantly blue and red, making it great terrain for intermediates, families and leisurely skiers.
On Glacier 3000, you can cross the Peak Walk by Tissot – a suspended bridge with vertiginous views of 6,500ft! Alternatively, take a horse-drawn carriage to Lauenensee, stopping for traditional lunch at Bochtehus and admiring Julie Andrew’s sculptures dotted around Gstaad.
At the foot of the imposing Schilthorn peak, Mürren is a tiny and charming Swiss mountain village. Take the cable car from Lauterbrunnen, followed by a short train ride to get to the car-free resort. Like travelling back in time, getting to your hotel or restaurant is a short, scenic walk by foot while you admire the surrounding mountains and the lack of cars.
Slopes vary between confidence-building blues to more challenging blacks and off-piste. In particular, the Schilthorn run with its 1,300m vertical that has incredibly scenic views across the Eiger, Mönch and Jungfrau as you descend.
In 1931 the first FIS World Cup race was hosted in Mürren, and is now home to the Inferno race. The Inferno run even featured in James Bond’s On Her Majesty’s Secret Service where George Lazenby chases the villain from the revolving Piz Gloria restaurant. Here, the immersive Bond World 007 gives you a great insight into the film as well as spectacular views of Mont Blanc and the Lauterbrunnen valley on a clear day.
Part of the Jungfrau region, the traditional village is also car-free and accessed by mountain railway. Once a farming community, Wengen has a wonderful Alpine feel to it. Thanks to its geographic location, the town is protected from wind and has plenty of sunshine. With 206km of variating levels of groomed runs in the Jungfrau region, there are family-friendly slopes in Kleine Scheidegg-Männlichen and the World Cup runs on Lauberhorn. The majority of the pistes are tree-lined blues and reds, making it great for those wanting to progress.
Popular with British families, Wengen has plenty of activities off the slope. Whether it’s soaring through the sky while paragliding, tobogganing, curling or ice skating on the open-air ice rink. There are also a collection of après-ski bars and great dining options, our favourite is Hotel Restaurant Bären – don’t miss the indulgent Toblerone mousse!
To find out more about our favourite ski resorts in the Bernese Oberland, speak to one of our ski experts on 020 7471 7700 or make an enquiry here.