Valais or Bernese Oberland-family trip Switzerland

Valais or Bernese Oberland-family trip Switzerland

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jea2006
jea2006
3 posts
new member
Mar 9, 2018 - 5:57 AM

Hello, we are a Spanish family, with an 11-year-old girl, we really want to go to Switzerland 7 days in June, we love nature and the mountains. We are hesitating between the Valais and the Bernese Oberland, what area do you recommend? Another alternative to these two areas? Thank you very much.

Lucas
Lucas
5491 posts
expert &
moderator
Mar 9, 2018 - 10:50 AM in reply to jea2006

Hi Jea2006 and welcome to MySwissAlps!

Both regions are quite fantastic for mountain adventures - read more about the Valais here and the Bernese Oberland here.

I think, the Bernese Oberland is more popular in general. It has well-known mountains like Jungfraujoch and Schilthorn and lakes like Lake Brienz and Lake Thun. It is a very large region with a lot to do. You may want to focus down on the Jungfrau region for 7 days (which includes the above areas).

Valais' most popular destination is Zermatt, with the Matterhorn. It also includes Brig and Saas-Feeand you aren't too far from Chamonix- Mont Blanc in France.

Tough call! For a first-time visit, I think I'd lean to the Bernese Oberland and more specifically the Jungfrau region. There is a lot there to keep you busy. Either way you will be happy with your choice! If you are interested in hiking in the mountains, try to come as late in June as possible.

If you haven't decided on a method of travel I would go by train and look at the various rail passes available to you. The Swiss Travel Pass is very popular. If you stay in the Bernese Oberland or Jungfrau regions you can choose from their local rail passes: the regional pass - Bernese Oberland or the Jungfrau Travel Pass.

Last modified on Mar 9, 2018 - 10:51 AM by Lucas
1960man
1960man
164 posts
active member
Mar 10, 2018 - 12:49 AM

The Bernese Oberland is popular with Spanish visitors

Lucas
Lucas
5491 posts
expert &
moderator
Mar 10, 2018 - 8:45 AM in reply to 1960man

Is it? Interesting! Do you know why?

jea2006
jea2006
3 posts
new member
Mar 10, 2018 - 12:25 PM in reply to Lucas

Hello, finally I think we will go to the Valais and Saas Fee region. Specifically, we have seen good apartments in Grachen. Do you know this village? Is there any excursion in the Jungfrau region that we can do and that is not too far from this population? We will go to Switzerland with our own car.

Lucas
Lucas
5491 posts
expert &
moderator
Mar 10, 2018 - 3:44 PM in reply to jea2006

No, I haven't heard of Grächen before. perhaps another member has.

It is about 2 hours from the Jungfrau Region (Interlaken Ost train station which is the region's main station). So you can do any number of activities there.

You are also about 1.5 hours from Zermatt and 1.5 hours to Saas-Fee. So it is relatively in the middle if you want to explore all 3 areas. You can check train schedules on the Swiss railways timetable here.

Last modified on Mar 10, 2018 - 3:44 PM by Lucas
rockoyster
rockoyster
3345 posts
expert
Mar 10, 2018 - 7:14 PM in reply to Lucas
Lucas
Lucas
5491 posts
expert &
moderator
Mar 10, 2018 - 7:17 PM in reply to rockoyster

Well I know it exists. 😉I've just never heard of it before.

1960man
1960man
164 posts
active member
Mar 11, 2018 - 12:35 AM

Grächen is very attractive area, and a bit more off the beaten track so a good choice.

However Grächen is not the best place to stay if you are determined to do the Jungfrau area as you are the south side of the Bernese Oberland mountains. Getting there would be a bit tortuous by road (very tortuous is you want to avoid the Lötschberg car carrying train) . Train is much better (St Niklaus -Visp - Spiez - Interlaken.

If you are staying in the Valais, I recommend enjoying that area more leisurely (visitors to Switzerland tend to get drawn into to trying to cover all the 'classics' in one go.)

Instead of staying in the Valais but then leaving it to go to the Bernese Oberland for the day, why not go west down the Valais valley and over to Mont Blanc?

Valais has:

vineyards

high mountains

unusual little railways and cableways

castles

rivers

waterfalls

...

Arno
Arno
10333 posts
expert &
moderator
Mar 11, 2018 - 9:29 AM in reply to 1960man

Good advice 1960man, thanks! Grächen sits on a terrace half way up the mountain above the Matter valley. Very scenic, but indeed not a central place to explore a larger area. Ideal for a week of hiking and/or taking it slow though. It's a bit more off the beaten track, yes, but still pretty touristy. There are quite some holiday homes owned by foreigners too.

Last modified on Mar 11, 2018 - 9:30 AM by Arno
rockoyster
rockoyster
3345 posts
expert
Mar 11, 2018 - 9:41 AM in reply to Lucas

Hmmmmmm! In my case I never new it existed - but now I've heard of it. 😎

Last modified on Mar 11, 2018 - 9:42 AM by rockoyster
jea2006
jea2006
3 posts
new member
Mar 11, 2018 - 9:54 AM

Ok, thank you very much for the advice, as we go 7 days we will focus on the areas of the Matter, Saas Fee and Mont Blanc. Do you know any other village to reserve an apartment that were better situated than Grächen? Thank you.

Lucas
Lucas
5491 posts
expert &
moderator
Mar 11, 2018 - 9:58 AM in reply to rockoyster

We're always learning here! I know I am. :)

Arno
Arno
10333 posts
expert &
moderator
Mar 11, 2018 - 12:22 PM in reply to jea2006

Mont Blanc is a bit out of the way, but for the rest of the area you can consider Brig, Visp, St. Niklaus, Täsch (apart from Zermatt and Saas-Fee which are the main tourist towns in those valleys).

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