Jul 3, 2014 - 5:14 PM
We are soon to set off for our next visit to Switzerland and I thought for a change instead of asking a question I would post a suggestion for other travellers!
Axalp above Brienz
Axalp lies at around 1535 metres altitude high above Brienz on the southern shore of the lake. It can be reached by post bus or car in 35 minutes from Brienz. Axalp has spectacular views of the surrounding mountain chains and Lake Brienz far below. From spring to autumn, Axalp is an ideal location for hiking and climbing activities. A woodcarving trail leads to the tiny deep green Hinterburgseeli lake; it is flanked by sculptures carved out of tree trunks by local woodcarvers. The idea for trail project was born after a terrible storm in 1999 wreaked havoc on the mountainside and felled many trees. Carvers and sculptors continue to add to the art along the trail.
In winter, Axalp is a compact and family-friendly ski resort off the beaten track where locals and visitors alike hang out. It has one chair lift (Windegg), three drag lifts (Dotweg, Hüttboden, Tschingel) and one children’s lift.
The journey by bus from beside the railway station of Brienz is an experience in its own right with spectacular views of the lake below. Get off the bus at the terminus in Axalp and you will find the trail signposted as “Schnitzlerweg” just before the excellent restaurant “Axalpstubli” (well worth a visit after your walk). The well signposted path leads through rich varied scenery to the small lake Hinterburgseeli. The time suggested is 1 hour one way but it will take longer as you can’t resist stopping to take photographs of the 90+ wonderful and entertaining carvings. The trail is probably too difficult for a pushchair unless it is a lightweight one and there are 2 of you to lift it over tricky bits. Buses are not frequent so it is wise to note the departure times (especially the last one!) before you set off on your walk.
The website from which the first two paragraphs are a quote is www.interlaken.ch/en/axalp-above-Brienz
If you click on the link for more information (which is in German which is why I have added extra info myself using my limited German to translate the gist!) then click on werke then the links on the left of the page i.e. tierfiguren, menschenfiguren and blumen und pflenzen you can see pictures of the carvings.
I thoroughly recommend visitors to take this little-known excursion which we found ourselves by accident 2 years ago when a landslide on the Brienzer Rothorn meant our planned trip was cancelled and we saw a bus about to depart for Axalp so got on it to see what was up there! We enjoyed it so much we plan to go back again.