Rainy days in the Bernese Oberland: 10 tips on what to do and where to go

I completely understand your disappointment: You have planned your holiday in the Bernese Oberland more than six months in advance, and when you are finally here, the weather apps only show rain, rain, and more rain. Your planned activities include hiking in the mountains, but the weather forecast says bad weather for the entire duration of your stay. It’s really hard not to be frustrated or disappointed at this point, especially if you came here as a tourist and wanted to get so much done.

My advice is: Don’t despair about the weather forecast for more than a few days ahead; it may not be that bad. Don’t worry, the rain may stop during the day, the clouds may break, the wind may blow them away, the sun may peek out, and you’ll end up with the beautiful photos you’ve been looking forward to. However, you need to be prepared to be flexible and it’s always good to have some “plan B” ideas that can be done under a roof or in more sheltered locations. Also, some places are worth visiting despite the light rain showers. There is always something to do in the Bernese Oberland. In this post, you will find 10 tips on what to do and where to go on rainy days in the Bernese Oberland.

Note: Headings are, as always, “clickable.” If you click on them, you will get to the details of the trip or place.

10 tips for activities in the Bernese Oberland when it rains

1. Glacier Gorge Grindelwald

A glacier gorge, less than a kilometer long, where the roar of the water will amaze you if you are here in the rainy season or in spring when the snow melts. The highlight of a visit to the canyon is the net that arches seven meters above the roaring river—nothing for the faint of heart. Adventurous visitors can pay an extra 149 francs and jump (with a safety harness) into the abyss and then rush down the narrow glacial gorge at speeds of up to 120 km/h on the Canyon Swing.

2. Aare Gorge

The Aare Gorge is 1 400 meters long, just one meter wide at its narrowest point (Kleine Enge), and 40 meters wide at its widest point. The rocks rise to a height of almost 200 meters, and the water flows through the gorge in 11 minutes at normal flow. The walk through the rock gorge is not very long – 1.4 km from one entrance to the other, so even an untrained holiday hiker can manage it :). It takes about 45 minutes. The gorge can be found near the village of Meiringen.

3. Reichenbach Fall

And while you’re in Aareschlucht, don’t forget to buy a combi ticket for the Reichenbach Falls right next door. Yes, the waterfalls where Sherlock Holmes had his final battle with his nemesis, Professor Moriarty. The historic funicular runs every quarter of an hour.

4. Giessbach Falls

Have you ever walked BEHIND a waterfall? This is where you get an amazing view over the water cascade. Believe me, it’s a unique experience! Plus, you won’t be able to help but enjoy the views of the fabulous Grandhotel Giessbach with Lake Brienz and the mountains in the background.

5. Trummelbach Falls

A unique and impressive series of ten glacial waterfalls hidden deep inside the rock walls is worth visiting in the Lauterbrunnen Valley area. Up to 20,000 liters of water per second flow through the rock walls.

6. St. Beatus Caves

Not far from the shores of Lake Thun, about 3 kilometers northwest of Interlaken, are the St. Beatus stalactite caves. Visiting the caves is about a two-kilometer walk – one kilometer there and (with a few exceptions) the same way back. You can either take a guided tour or go on your own and explore the caves with the help of information boards, which provide a fair amount of information. You will also find a photo frame of the Grand Tour of Switzerland inside.

7. Boat cruise

The cruise on the two local lakes, Thunersee and Brienzersee, is operated by BLS. No matter which one you choose, both lakes are beautiful. If you settle comfortably in the covered deck, where there is usually a restaurant, you can enjoy the views of the Berner Oberland from a different perspective under the roof. And if it’s your birthday and you show a valid ID at the ticket office that day, you get a free all-day cruise in first class!

8. Castles on Lake Thun

If you cruise on Lake Thun, how about visiting one of the five castles on its shores? Schloss Thun, Schloss Spiez and Schloss Oberhofen, Schadau Schloss or Schloss Hünneg?

9. Panoramic train ride

If you get a Regional Pass Berner Oberland, Swiss Travel Pass*, or simply a day pass for your stay in Berner Oberland, you can easily get to Lucerne. The route of the Luzern-Interlaken Express panoramic train is beautiful in all weathers. You can also take the MOB Golden Pass to Gstaad.

*no affiliate link here, sorry

10. A day trip to Bern

A small, beautiful city with a long history – this is Bern, the capital of Switzerland, set almost in the middle of the country. Bern has also been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1983. In the city center, you will find 6 kilometers of covered arcades dating back to the 15th century. In these arcades, you will find a combination of charming boutiques, restaurants, wine bars, and international brand shops, making Bern boast the title of one of the longest indoor shopping promenades in Europe.

The Best of Bern City Tour Guide
  • Want to see the best of Switzerland but don’t know where to start?
  • Would you like to go on holiday to Switzerland but don’t have time to spend hours searching Google and reading travel guides?
  • Have you always gone on holiday with a tour operator but would like to try traveling on your own one day but don’t quite feel “confident in the crampons” yet?
  • Do you want to enjoy your holiday in Switzerland but not stress about the preparations?
  • Are family and friends coming to visit you in Switzerland, and would you like to have a trip plan for them?

I would be happy to help you! With my tailor-made itinerary, you can start discovering amazing places just the way you like them.

Categories: Canton Bern, The best of canton Bern, Travel
Hiking with kids: the “Forest Treasure” theme trail in Les Paccots
Summer hike at Lake Brienzersee: Giessbach Falls – Iseltwald


Hana Hurábová

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