Gimmelwald in Switzerland is a very beautiful place. I was mesmerised by this scene: the white snow mountain view, green grass, wooden houses, blue sky… it is a fairytale. I have seen many fairytale places in Europe, but so far this is the most peaceful and less touristy place. Mürren, on the other hand, is very touristy. Still, it is a good place to have your meal and enjoy the lovely view. Both Gimmelwald and Mürren are worth a visit.
Staying in Interlaken, Switzerland
I arrived in Interlaken in the night and stayed at Backpackers Villa Sonnenhof for 3 days. There are not many things to see or do in Interlaken. Most of the people who come to Interlaken are planning to go to mountains (e.g. Jungfrau and Schilthorn) or do some hiking in other places.
But I was different. I stayed here so I can visit Gimmelwald. The famous author of European guidebook, Rick Steves highly recommended Gimmelwald as one of the best places to visit in Switzerland. I thought it would be crowded, but to my surprise, it was one of the most peaceful places that I have ever been!
If you want to visit Gimmelwald, here is the direction. It seems complicated at first but it is not.
No one pays the full ticket price for the trains in Switzerland!
Well, this may be a bit exaggerated, but taking a train in Switzerland is very expensive. Luckily there are some discounts available for tourists.
For instance, if you have a Eurail Global Pass, you are entitled to 25% discount for the train rides. It costs 36 CHF (€33) to travel from Interlaken to Gimmelwald (return way). I did not aware of this discount before I bought the ticket, so I paid the full price! If you are planning to take a train in Switzerland, please do not make the same mistake.
I recommend buying the Swiss Pass if you are staying in Switzerland for at least 4 days. It looks very expensive at first, but well, everything in Switzerland is expensive. Also, you have 50% reduction on most mountain railways and cable cars in Switzerland.
Gimmelwald – undiscovered beauty
I started my trip at about 9 am. It took me one hour in total to reach Gimmelwald from Interlaken by train + bus + cable car. Many people were taking the cable cars with me, but I was the only person who got off at Gimmelwald at that point of time. All of them were going to Schilthorn mountain.
When I reached Gimmelwald, my first impression of that was a very, very quiet village.
Very beautiful. Very simple. And hardly saw anyone at this place.
I sat down on the bench and enjoy the wonderful view. It was only me. Only about me. My mind was empty… This is an ultimate happiness in the contemporary world!
It is many people’s dream to live in such a peaceful place… Most of the houses are far away from each other. The big field and the mountain view… wow…!!
I nearly stayed at the Mountain Hostel (shown in the photo below). This hostel has an amazing view. The reason that I cancelled this hostel last minute is because I don’t like having more than 10 people in a dorm room (this is the only room option that I can get for this hostel).
Most of the shops in Gimmelwald are self-service. It is based on trust. You take the stuff and put the money in the box.
Just a little thought: Most of the people take wedding photos in the popular places, but I think Gimmelwald is a better option (if you live not too far away from here) because it is deserted. It is a perfect place to take lovely photos with the important person on your very special day. But I am sure after a few years, Gimmelwald will become a touristy place too.
Walking from Gimmelwald to Mürren
It is easy to walk from Gimmelwald to Mürren (uphill), and vice-versa (downhill). It took me about 1 hour for one way, and that included a lot of time to take photos and rest on the bench.
It is definitely worth the walk because you will enjoy the wonderful scenery along the way, but you should be reasonably fit to walk uphill (and the road is a bit narrow as you need to share the road with cars).
Mürren… similar view but very touristy
In my opinion, Mürren is as beautiful as Gimmelwald. But unlike Gimmelwald, there are many tourists in Mürren, which is not a bad thing as it means there are many shops and restaurants… So I can have my lunch here. 🙂 By the way, the buildings here are very lovely.
Signboard in English… this village is all about tourists!!
I had a chicken burger for 10 CHF/ €9 at this café (in the photo below) and it was the cheapest food that I could find. It had free Wi-Fi so I can upload/show off the photos on FB instantly! 😝
Train in Mürren
Isn’t it a romantic place?
Walking around and busy taking photos~
A kind old guy took a photo of me, and he also taught me about the famous 3 mountains – Eigel, Mönch, Jungfrau. The mountain behind me is Eigel.
I love these places
Overall Gimmelwald and Mürren are very beautiful places, and worth a visit. I recommend visiting both places on the same day. I don’t get it when some people compare them over the internet because I think it is a good combination to visit both together. One day is enough.
If you are planning to stay here, I think Mürren is a better option because there are more shops here and have more choices of accommodations. Although Gimmelwald is really pretty, you will most probably get bored after 2-3 hours doing nothing. So it makes sense to visit both places.