We are back from our first trip to Switzerland where we spent 6 nights in Murren,and since this forum and particularly Arno and Annika were so incredibly helpful, I wanted to say thank you by sharing our experience.
We are a family of 2 adults, 3 children (ages 13, 11 and 8). We have done a lot of hiking all over the US as well as traveling abroad but were unfamiliar with Switzerland. We planned time to hike in the Alps, originally thinking France/Italy as we were coming from Paris, but are so glad we took a friend’s advice to head to Murren! We were in awe of the beauty of the Jungfrau and were fortunate to have three clear days to fully appreciate it (we never saw the peaks again once the weather turned).
We had a lot of questions and concerns about how to get around, which people on this forum patiently answered, and the advice was spot on. We chose to two the Transfer Ticket and Half Fare card combi along with a Family Pass for our children and it was the best way to go for the trips we took, which were all short hops to hiking destinations. The farthest we went was to Schynige Platte to hike from there to First, which was spectacular but fairly crowded. We enjoyed the many hikes we took beginning in Murren (such as to Brindli and Schtegelberg) almost as much and preferred to spend our time walking rather than riding.
We loved the varied terrain and sights, stopping by the huts on the trails for an authentic and delicious mid-day meal, and returning to our rented chalet in Murren for dinner. It was a lovely town where our kids could walk alone to the playground and where we had easy access to groceries and transportation without many crowds or people – I know many people prefer the liveliness of Wengen but for us Murren was a great choice.
As promised by this forum, once we got the hang of the train system we found it easy to use, and we learned that if we told the person at the ticket counter where our final destination was, s/he would print out an itinerary with each train/gondola/etc, the times and the platforms. We found this to be enormously helpful, particularly when we were departing and needed to ensure we arrived at Basel in time for our TGV to Paris.
Some highlights for us were paragliding (all 5 of us did this and loved it, including the 8 year old), visiting the Children’s Adventure Trail and playground above Murren, and every hike we took as they were all different and lovely in their own way. Our kids visited the playground in every town we ended up in (they liked the one in Grindelwald the best). We found Gimmelwald to be particularly charming and an easy hike away from Murren.
Overall, we absolutely loved our time in Murren and truly hated to leave. The only drawback we could see was the often-cloudy weather (we expected this and were grateful for the clear days we had rather than frustrated by the cloudy days, but we met other travellers whose time was too short to be there for a clear day and who were unpleasantly surprised by how the peaks completely disappeared). Food was expensive but we tended to eat one meal per day away from our chalet, usually mid-hike. It takes some effort to get to this region of Switzerland but it is so well worth it!!! I hope everyone reading as as wonderful a vacation in the Swiss Alps as we did.
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