What does your ideal Swiss holiday look like?
Endless views of majestic mountain ranges with snow-capped peaks and miles of panoramic hiking trails that pass through alpine meadows? Or perhaps an evening relaxing in a cozy chalet in a quaint and peaceful mountain village after a day of skiing and snowboarding?
You can experience all these – and a lot more – in Switzerland’s Jungfrau region. While it may be known mostly as the home of Jungfraujoch, the highest railway station in Europe, there’s a lot more you can do in the Jungfrau region.
Plan to spend a couple of days in one of Switzerland’s most exciting destinations and enjoy a slew of Alpine peaks, tremendous waterfalls, and vast glaciers.
Here’s how to spend 5 days in Jungfrau.
Little Holidays Guide to Jungfrau, Switzerland
- How to spend 5 days in Switzerland’s Jungfrau region
- Map – essential landmarks in Jungfrau
- Best things to do in Jungfrau
- Day trips from Jungfrau
- Planning your trip
- Beyond Jungfrau – where to go next
- Download the PDF guide
Day 1 – Settle in on your first day in the Jungfrau region with an easy hike around the beautiful valley town of Lauterbrunnen. Hike past rocky cliffs and alpine meadows to the thunderous waterfalls Trümmelbach and Staubbach. If you have a couple more daylight hours, hop on the train to Wilderswil and ride up to Schynige Platte.
Day 2 – Wake up early and make your way to the star of the Jungfrau region – the Jungfraujoch. Once you’ve had your fill of the fantastic views from Europe’s highest railway station, make your way down to Kleine Scheidegg and go for a short panoramic hike. Stop by Wengen on the way down for views of the valley and the Alps.
Day 3 – Make your way to Stechelberg and enjoy a series of cable car rides up to the Schilthorn summit. Make sure to stop by Birg and get on the Thrill Walk. End the day with a pleasant stroll around Mürren and a hearty Swiss dinner in one of the lovely mountaintop chalets.
Day 4 – Time to get an adrenaline rush! Head to Grindelwald and up the First Summit for a day of adventures. Go down on the glider, the flyer, or on a mountain cart, or take a leisurely uphill hike to Bachalpsee.
Day 5 – After several days in the mountains, it’s time to see the lakes. Head to Interlaken and ride up to Harder Kulm for breathtaking views of Lakes Thun and Brienz. Ride the ferry for a relaxing afternoon then end the day at the Höhematte Park.
Tell us: What are you most excited about your trip to Jungfrau?
Use this Google map to plan your holiday in Jungfrau. I added all the important landmarks, the best places to visit, and the best areas and hotels to stay in.
Day 1 – Explore Lauterbrunnen
Settle in on your first day in the Jungfrau region and spend the day exploring Lauterbrunnen.
Wear comfortable shoes and begin your walk from the village past the charming timber houses and to our first stop, the impressive 300m Staubbach falls.
You can get closer to Staubbach falls with a steep hike up a hill, through a tunnel, and through a passageway carved on the side of the mountain. It’s a great spot to take pictures of the Lauterbrunnen valley, but remember to protect your camera from the mist and spray.
From Staubbach, continue your hike to Trümmelbach falls, another one of Lauterbrunnen’s impressive glacial falls. You can go up on a tunnel lift and then a series of stairs and check out the thunderous falls from various angles and viewpoints. The view from the top is also stunning.
You can continue your hike around Lauterbrunnen, or, if you have a couple more daylight hours, hop on the train to Wilderswil and ride up to Schynige Platte.
If it’s a nice bright and sunny day, Schynige Platte is a lovely summit to visit via a vintage belle époque cogwheel train, which runs from July to October. The ride itself is an attraction but at the top, you can visit the Botanical Alpine Garden, go for a short hike, and enjoy fantastic views of Eiger, Mönch, and Jungfrau.
Getting there: Take the train to Lauterbrunnen. The train goes every half-hour from Grindelwald or Interlaken, and the SBB app is super convenient for traveling around. If you’re driving, you can park near the railway station. There are also parking lots near the Staubbach and Trümmelbach falls.
To get to Schynige Platte, ride or drive to Wilderswil then go by cogwheel train to the summit.
Day 2 – Jungfraujoch, Kleine Scheidegg, and Wengen
On your first full day, wake up early and make your way to the star of the Jungfrau region – the Jungfraujoch.
The journey to the top is a series of scenic train rides. You can start either in Grindelwald or Lauterbrunnen and ride the train to Kleine Scheidegg – on both journeys, try to get a window seat on the right side facing forward to enjoy the best views.
From Kleine Scheidegg, change to the Jungfrau Railway, which will bring you all the way to Jungfraujoch, Europe’s highest railway station.
You’ll have some time at Kleine Scheidegg between arriving and departing for Jungfraujoch. You can eat at the restaurant beside the station or go for a short walk. You can also explore Kleine Scheidegg further on your descent.
Once in Jungfraujoch, first take time to adjust to the high altitude. Take your time visiting all the attractions – from the Sphinx Observatory to the Ice Palace, the Glacier Walk, and lots and lots of great photo spots. Plan to spend at least 2-3 hours at the summit. If you get hungry, they do have a restaurant at the top. It’s also a nice place to buy souvenirs and chocolates from the Lindt shop, and the prices are surprisingly not higher than elsewhere.
Once you’ve had your fill of the amazing views from Europe’s highest railway station, make your way down to Kleine Scheidegg and go for a short panoramic hike. Visit the souvenir shop by the railway station and have a snack or a meal and just enjoy the ambience and fresh mountain air.
If you have more time, stop by Wengen on the way down for views of the valley and the Alps.
Getting there: If you have a Swiss Half Fare Card, you can buy your tickets from Lauterbrunnen or Grindelwald to Jungfraujoch using the SBB app. Make sure to indicate which discount card you have. Otherwise, you may be able to get better deals on round-trip tickets here a day or two before your trip.
Day 3 – Schilthorn and Mürren
Make your way to Stechelberg and enjoy a series of cable car rides up to the Schilthorn summit, famous for being one of the locations in the James Bond movie, “On Her Majesty’s Secret Service.”
If you’re looking for the full Bond experience, make sure to reserve a table with window seats at the revolving Piz Gloria restaurant at least a few weeks in advance. This will give you stunning 360˚ views of Titlis, Eiger, Mönch, and Jungfrau.
On your way up, take some time to explore Birg and go on the Thrill Walk. This is a 200-meter walkway built on the side of the cliff, with a glass-bottom floor and a rope bridge that will give you a glimpse of what it’s like to scale mountains.
On the way down, stop in Mürren and explore the beautiful village. You can also hike or take the funicular to Allmendhubel, where you’ll find a beautiful flower park. During summer months, there are plenty of hiking trails you can take from Mürren, while winter turns it into one of the prettiest ski resorts in the Alps.
Mürren is also a great place to have dinner before heading home. We absolutely loved our meal at the Stägerstübli, a short walk from the cable car station.
Getting there: Bus 141 goes every half-hour from Lauterbrunnen to Schilthornbahn in Stechelberg and back. The ride takes 15 minutes. If you’re driving, Schilthornbahn has a huge parking area.
Day 4 – Grindelwald
Grindelwald is the place to go for adventures and excitement.
The main attraction is the First Summit, which you can reach from Grindelwald via a cable car. At the top, you can hike to various viewpoints – from the easy 3-KM uphill hike to Bachalpsee to the more challenging Eiger trail. Or you can fly across the beautiful Alpine landscape on the First Glider or First Flier, or drive down the mountain on a cart.
During the winter, it’s an excellent place for skiing, snowboarding, and all sorts of winter sports.
Day 5 – Interlaken
Interlaken is excellent for a relaxing city break. After several days of being active in the mountains, it’s time for a laidback day by the lakes.
By this time, you’d have been up plenty of spectacular summits around the Jungfrau region. Still, the view up at Harder Kulm is pretty special. This time you’ll see not only the Alpine mountain ranges but also the beautiful lakes Thun and Brienz.
There are several hiking trails you can take from Harder Kulm. For a totally chill day, though, opt for a round-trip cable car ride and then ride the ferry.
Interlaken is also a great place to do some shopping, especially for Swiss chocolates and souvenirs. In the afternoon, Höhematte Park is a great spot to hang out and watch the day end.
We were lucky to have great weather in Jungfrau on our first couple of days and never imagined we would want to take a day trip away from the area. But on our fourth day, it started pouring, so we decided to head to sunny Lugano.
It was an amazing road trip across the Susten Pass filled with epic views and hairpin bends. It’s a great day trip for avid road trippers who can drive 3-hour stretches or have road trip buddies to share driving duties with.
But if you’re looking for more relaxed day trips in case of rainy days in the Jungfrau region, here are some destinations a shorter drive away.
Lucerne is a historic lakeside city that’s great for a day of picturesque strolls, shopping, and dining.
You can explore the Old Town in half a day. Walk along the River Reuss from the Chapel Bridge, past the Jesuit Church and the Spreuer Bridge. You’ll find plenty of restaurants and shops along the river. Afterward, head to the Lion Monument and continue your walk along Lake Lucerne and wait for a gorgeous sunset.
If you find yourself missing the mountains, a trip to Mt. Pilatus on board a panoramic gondola should be in your day trip itinerary.
One thing I haven’t talked much about in this itinerary is Swiss gastronomy. While we definitely had a lot of fantastic meals everywhere in Switzerland, if you’re looking to indulge in Swiss chocolates and cheese, you should make your way to Gruyères.
This small storybook town is home to La Maison du Gruyère, where you can learn everything about cheese, and Maison Cailler, where you can go for a chocolate tasting. Afterward, walk around the beautiful medieval castle and village.
If you still have time, continue your drive to Chillon Castle, a grand medieval fortress on the shores of Lake Geneva.
Train travel to Jungfrau – The gateway to the Jungfrau region is Interlaken – you can check SBB for train routes from anywhere in Switzerland and surrounding countries. You can get tickets and plan routes on the go using the SBB app.
Here are the usual train travel times:
- Luzern to Interlaken – 2 hours
- Zurich to Interlaken – 2 hours
- Geneva to Interlaken – 3 hours
- Milan to Interlaken – 3 hours
From Interlaken Ost station, you will then need to change to a regional train to get to Lauterbrunnen or Grindelwald.
If you’re traveling extensively around Switzerland, get a Swiss Half Fare Card before your trip. This slashes your transportation expenses by half, which can really amount to huge savings.
If you’re traveling from April to October, a Jungfrau Travel Pass will be your best deal.
Public transportation – You can get around Jungfrau and to nearby destinations using trains and cable cars. I highly recommend getting the Jungfrau Travel Pass (if traveling from April to October) or the Swiss Half Fare Card (can be used for a month year-round).
You can plan routes and buy tickets using the SBB app.
Renting a car – Most of the top sights in the Jungfrau region cannot be reached by car, so I wouldn’t recommend renting a car to explore the area. However, if you’re visiting other cities in Switzerland, driving is a great way to see the country.
Best places to stay in Jungfrau
It can be challenging to choose one base from which to explore the whole Jungfrau region. But if you have an idea of what you’d most like to do or experience while in the area, these quick recommendations can help you choose.
If you want to explore as much of Jungfrau as possible and do a lot of sightseeing, stay in Lauterbrunnen. Most of the region’s top sights, like Jungfraujoch and Schilthorn, can be reached most conveniently from Lauterbrunnen. It’s also the base that works best with this 5-day itinerary. Hotel Oberland is a charming family-run hotel in a convenient and central location with beautiful views all around.
If you want a full-on Swiss Alps holiday experience, stay in a quiet mountaintop village, like Wengen or Mürren. These tranquil car-free mountain villages are perfect if you’re looking for a relaxed holiday in a charming, traditional Swiss village. Wengen is closer to Jungfraujoch while Mürren is closer to Birg and Schilthorn, but both have connections to the rest of the region. Hotel Wengener Hof in Wengen and Hotel Eiger in Mürren are the most charming hotels in these villages.
If you’re in Jungfrau to hike, ski, and engage in adventure sports, stay in Grindelwald. This is the ideal base for hiking and biking during the summer, for skiing and snowboarding during the winter, and for visiting Grindelwald First and Jungfraujoch year-round. Hotel Belvedere is the best one with incredible panoramic views of the Alps, spacious and stylish rooms, and proximity to the town center, ski lifts, and train station.
Here’s a more in-depth guide to the best places to stay in Jungfrau.
Top tips for travel to Jungfrau
Languages spoken: German, English
Money: Swiss franc (CHF) – You can pay for almost anything using a credit or debit card, but if you want to have cash with you, it’s best to withdraw from ATMs.
If you have a borderless card like TransferWise or Revolut, you can withdraw from any of the Swiss banks’ ATMs for free. Convert your currency to CHF on your app first, then withdraw easily and hassle-free.
- Accommodations – A stay for two in a luxurious hotel (like Hotel Belvedere in Grindelwald) can cost from CHF 350/night. A charming family-run hotel in a less-touristy area (like Hotel Alpina in Mürren) costs around CHF 170/night. You can also find budget accommodation and hostels in and around the main touristic areas (like Valley Hostel in Lauterbrunnen) where you can get a comfortable bed for as low as CHF 34/night.
- Food – You can spend CHF 50 upwards for dinner for two in a nice restaurant.
- Transportation – You can plan for your train travel around the Jungfrau region using the SBB website. A train ride from Lauterbrunnen to Grindelwald, for example, costs CHF 9. A return trip from Lauterbrunnen to Jungfraujoch, including all transfers, costs CHF 180.80. If you’re planning to go to Jungfraujoch and another sight like Schilthorn, you should get a Swiss Half Fare Card or a Jungfrau Travel Pass (if traveling from April to October) before your trip to save on transportation costs.
- Activities – Once you get to the summits, there’s plenty to do for free. Some activities you may have to plan to spend for are the adventure packages on Grindelwald First – these range from CHF 46-CHF 99.
Tipping: Tipping is not required, and a service charge is usually added to the final bill. However, rounding up to the nearest CHF 5 or 10 (when with a bill less than CHF 100) or tipping 10-15% (with a bill more than CHF 100) is appreciated.
Is a Swiss travel pass worth it? Switzerland has a remarkable rail network and other means of public transportation. All that convenience and comfort, however, comes at a pretty steep price. If your Swiss itinerary involves plenty of long-distance travel by rail, you should consider getting a Swiss Travel Pass. This is particularly ideal for itineraries that involve long-distance travel over short periods – for example, going to 3 cities/towns that are at least 2 hours’ travel time apart over 3-5 days.
If your travel plans are more spread out – for example, traveling to 5-10 cities over 2-4 weeks – a Swiss Half Fare Card may be a better deal for you.
If you’re visiting Jungfrau between April and October, get a Jungfrau Travel Pass instead.
Weather and best times to go: Jungfrau is a year-round destination, and your experience will vary depending on what time of the year you visit.
Summer (from June to August) is a great time to visit as you’re most likely assured of bright and sunny weather. This is perfect for visiting Jungfraujoch and the other summits, as well as for going on hikes and biking trips around the area. This is also the busiest season, though, so make sure to book your hotel reservations at least 2 months in advance.
Winter (from December to February) is a great time to visit if you’re into winter sports and adventures. If you’re planning to stay in a ski resort like Grindelwald, make sure to book your hotels in advance. Otherwise, the rest of the region will have fewer tourists compared to the summer months and you’ll get to experience a full Swiss winter wonderland.
Spring (from March to May) and fall (from September to November) are great times to visit if you want to avoid the peak tourist seasons. You’ll get better deals on hotels, tourist crowds would be slightly thinner, and the weather milder. Rain showers are more common during these months, though, so don’t book your tickets to the summits too far in advance. Keep an eye on the weather, and take advantage of sunny days to visit the key sights.
Staying connected: You can get a pocket Wi-Fi device delivered to your hotel in Switzerland or anywhere in the EU.
Remember that if you have an EU SIM card, the no-roaming charges rule does not apply in Switzerland. Check with your provider and make sure to turn off your cellular data to avoid enormous roaming fees.
Continue your adventures around Switzerland and to neighboring countries. Here are more amazing destinations with a great mix of sightseeing and outdoor adventures.
Hop over to the lovely cosmopolitan lakeside city of Geneva. It’s an excellent base for adventures to more alpine destinations like Chamonix and Montreaux, as well as charming towns like Gruyeres and Annecy. Geneva is also a great city to shop, dine, and enjoy more of the finer things in Switzerland.
If you love exploring nature, you’ll enjoy a road trip in Alsace, one of France’s wine-growing regions. You’ll have lots of hiking and biking trails to explore, plenty of small storybook villages to discover, and fantastic food and wine to enjoy.
Salzburg is an excellent base for exploring the gorgeous Lake District. You can spend days exploring the many beautiful lakeside towns in the Salzkammergut and going for hikes around the area. It’s also an ideal destination for skiing and winter sports!
Slovenia is certainly one of Europe’s most underrated destinations. With breathtaking and diverse natural landscapes and smooth and efficient roads that bring you from the Alps to the countryside and all the way to the coasts in a few short hours, it’s the perfect destination for a road trip.
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I hope this guide helps you plan your trip to one of Switzerland’s most beautiful destinations!
There’s certainly a lot to see and do in Jungfrau – you can easily spend a week or two in the region and you’ll still have something new to do. Hopefully, this 5-day itinerary helps you plan your holiday so you can see the best of the region in a short time, and make you want to come back for more.
Make sure to download the PDF guide and use it to plan your trip to Jungfrau. If you have any questions or need extra help planning your trip, send me a message, and I’ll do my best to help you out.
Happy travels to Switzerland!
First published – 11 December 2019
Last updated – 26 November 2022 – updated travel-planning information