A luxurious resort and a spectacular elevator
Those who can splurge will have plenty of options to do so at the beautifully located resort of Bürgenstock, at a mountain ridge above Lake Lucerne. But there’s also more than enough to do for lovers of the outdoors. The hike to the spectacular Hammetschwand elevator is just one example.
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Attraction type: natural site, mountain top, by funicular
Escort: independent (no guide)
Region: Lake Lucerne (Central Switzerland)
Duration: 1 day or less
Luxury and beautiful views at the Bürgenstock resort
The Bürgenstock resort has a long history: the first hotel at this ridge overlooking Lake Lucerne was founded back in 1873. After a recent update, the resort features several luxurious hotels, spa facilities, business facilities and numerous restaurants. But it doesn’t only cater to demanding guests with a large budget: Bürgenstock is also an easy-to-reach, beautiful viewing point and a base for hiking, biking and other outdoor activities.
What to expect at Bürgenstock
Hotels and restaurants are the main features at Bürgenstock. There are four hotels, each with its own style and decoration. Some offer luxury spa facilities as well. Visitors have a wide choice of bars and restaurants, with different cuisines ranging from Swiss specialties to oriental meals. In the arcade between the Bürgenstock Piazza and the Bürgenstock Hotel’s terrace, you’ll find several luxury shops, including a Swatch store and the highly recommended Swiss Chocolate Chalet. Sports lovers can indulge themselves at the alpine golf court, or join a guided outdoor hiking, biking or adventure sports trip. In winter, there’s an ice rink near the hotels, and several fun snow activities are offered.
Bürgenstock can well be enjoyed on a budget too. The bus ride up from Stansstad is free with several rail passes, and Bürgenstock can be used as viewing point and as a base for several non-guided, free hiking trails.
The Hammetschwand elevator
One of the main hiking options is the so-called “Felsenweg” or “rock path”: an easy trail above the lake on which you can learn about the history of the Bürgenstock area using QR codes on your mobile phone. Via either several stair-like paths, or more gradually curved paths, you can reach the Hammetschwand lift: an iconic structure dating from 1905, that can be seen from far and that’s lit by night. The elevator is attached to the steep rock wall. Its frame of glass and steel allows you to keep enjoying the views, as you’re taken up 152 vertical metres at an impressive speed. At the top, you’ll find a cosy restaurant with a terrace and you can continue hiking in several directions.
How to prepare
No special preparations are needed for a visit to Bürgenstock, unless you plan on hiking or other outdoor activities. In that case you’ll need proper gear and check weather forecasts. Mind that the Hammetschwand elevator may not be suitable for those suffering from fear of heights.
Combine your visit to Bürgenstock with other activities
If you don’t plan a long stay up at Bürgenstock, you can easily combine this trip with other activities in the Lake Lucerne area. One of the ways to access Bürgenstock is by funicular, with its valley station right at the boat dock Kehrsiten-Bürgenstock. A boat trip over Lake Lucerne before or after your visit to Bürgenstock is an excellent choice. Another way up is by bus from Stansstad, which allows for an easy combination with a visit to the Stanserhorn. Please find all activities in the area here.