With the mountain lifts soon to close for seasonal maintenance, we must start looking for routes that don’t require mountain transport or the funicular run year-round. The Zugerbahn, an overland funicular that takes you up the Zugerberg, is just such a place.
You can take the kids on a 5.5km loop trail, Zugiblubbi Erlebnisweg, up the Zugerberg, where you’ll find several interactive stations, beautiful barbecue spots, viewpoints, restaurants, and, of course, a search for the stolen diamond treasure. Plus, it’s stroller-accessible.
After the track was reconstructed in 2022, the funicular to the Zugerberg was reopened for visitors. The funicular runs from Monday to Friday from 6 am to 11 pm every half hour, always at .26 and .56, on Saturdays and Sundays from 7 am to 11 pm. The ride takes 8 minutes. However, it can also run at quarter-hour intervals as needed (e.g., on Sundays or when there are more visitors).
The local public transport tariff in Zug applies for the funicular so you can buy a ticket valid for 1 hour or 2 hours. But for this trip, buy a full-day ticket. It costs CHF 11,60 for adults, CHF 7 for Halb-fare Abo holders, children from 6 to 16 years, and dogs. Children with a Junior Card are free.
How to get there
The funicular station is located south of the town. There are about 30 parking spaces in the adjacent car park, so I recommend arriving by public transport. The bus stop is right next to the cable car station.
By public transport: Take a train to Zug, then with the bus No. 11 to Schönegg stop.
By car: drive through the city center, turn left at about Casino Zug level, and start climbing. After about two kilometers, you will reach the car park at the cable car station.
Right at the cable car station, you can pick up a map and a pencil to fill in the letters of the riddle. If you forget to take the map, it can still be picked up at the top station or the restaurant. Alternatively, you can download it here and print it in advance. The route is a loop, 5.5 km long, and runs mainly in the woods. It is doable with a stroller, but it will be about 30 minutes longer in this case.
The themed route starts right next to the funicular mountain station. At the first station, you will find a letter box where you can drop your filled-in ticket, and you will be automatically entered into the draw. Unfortunately, I couldn’t find any information about when the draw takes place or what the prizes are.
The route is very well-marked, and you have nowhere to get lost. The story of the stolen diamonds is told at the first few stations. It is divided into several parts, so even more minor children can keep their attention while reading it. Alternatively, you can scan the QR code at station A (see photo above) and listen to the audio version of the story.
Schattenwäldli playground and barbecue area
After the trail splits, you will come across a beautiful playground. There’s even a zip line. But apart from that, you’ll also find several fire pits, toilets, and running water. The perfect place for a family picnic.
The trail leading from the playground is slightly uphill at the beginning. This is where the stations with “diamonds” and letters for the riddle begin.
Soon, you will come across another picnic area. It’s a beautiful spot with a view, more play features, deck chairs, and a fire pit. You’ll also find a photo spot here. What blew me away was the tree stump with cutouts where you can put your smartphone and easily take a memory photo with a timer.
The other “diamond” stations are again equipped with play elements: the labyrinth with a spider is admittedly a bit scary 😀 By the barefoot path, you will find a shelter with benches where you can comfortably take off and put on your shoes and clean your feet with a brush before putting on your shoes again. Nice, huh?
Wurzelpfad – Rootpath
Not far after the barefoot path, the trail splits. If you have a stroller, continue on the path to the left, otherwise, you can go through wooden steps and lots of roots through the forest. This section of the trail is relatively short and ends at the entrance to the pasture.
Here, an exciting task awaits you: identify which animal the footprints belong to (the solution can be found under the question mark card).
The route then continues along the tarmac road and you will soon come across the Hintergeissboden restaurant. However, it was closed during our trip because of the holidays, so I can’t report on what goodies they have here. But if you ever head here, let me know what the menu is like.
After that, there are only two diamond stations to go. The kids will love Zugiblubbi’s house (although it’s nowhere near as well equipped as the gnome house at Hasliberg).
The Schattwäldli playground is also within sight again. And on the way to the funicular station, you can still enjoy lovely views of the town, the lake, and the Alpine peaks in the distance.
At the top station of the funicular, you can have a snack in another restaurant. And, of course, don’t forget to drop your completed card in the box.
- Although the official materials say the route is 4.5 km long, my smart watch measured 5.5 km. And I didn’t take the “detour” for strollers at all.
- You’ll spend about 2 hours of pure time on the trail itself, but of course, if you’re barbecuing or the kids are enjoying themselves on the playground, you can count on half a day.
- I appreciate that all the play elements are made of natural materials (old tree trunks and their branches serve as a climbing frame, etc.).