Stanserhorn is a majestic mountain located in Central Switzerland, offering breathtaking views of the Swiss Alps, Lake Lucerne, and the surrounding picturesque landscapes as well as neighboring mountains Rigi and Pilatus. The journey to Stanserhorn itself is an adventure, combining a nostalgic funicular and a spectacular open-air cable car ascent.
To this day, Stanserhorn stands a bit in the shadow of the popular mountains of the region, Rigi and Pilatus. For this reason, locals keep this spectacular mountain a secret. But it is now for you to discover that Stanserhorn does not need to fear the limelight in terms of views and price.
In this travel guide you will get to know everything the mountain, the Swiss don’t want to you to know about!
Stanserhorn funicular and CabriO cable car
To ride up Stanserhorn, you will need to take a nostalgic funicular, that connects to an open-air cable car called CabriO.
Upon reaching Stans, proceed to the Stanserhorn funicular station. This nostalgic funicular, dating back to 1893, will take you on a short but charming ride up to Kälti, the starting point of the cable car journey. Enjoy the vintage atmosphere and take in the surrounding Swiss countryside.
CabriO Open-Air Cable Car
At Kälti, you’ll board the Stanserhorn cable car, which will transport you to the summit of Stanserhorn. The cable car is an open-top design, providing an immersive experience as you ascend through the alpine landscape. From the cable car you will have a fantastic view of the surrounding area, Lake Lucerne and other peaks including Pilatus or Rigi!
A lot of the passengers of the funicular will find a spot on the open air section, but if you want to be sure to get one, either make sure you sit on the left hand side or at the front of the funicular to be first in line at the station you switch.
What to do on Stanserhorn?
Once you reach the summit, prepare to be mesmerized by the panoramic views. Here are some highlights and activities to enjoy at the top.
Explore the Summit on a Round Trip Hike
There is a hike that goes around the summit and takes about 30 minutes. You will get the chance to walk up the summit on this hike. Underway you will experience beautiful Swiss alpine plants and amazing views of both Titlis and Jungfrau as well! The hike can go somewhat uphill and over some steps but is generally quite flat as you see in the image.
Enjoy the views from Stanserhorn Summit
Either you climb the summit by the round trip hike or via a short direct hike to the summit. In both cases you will be greeted with breathtaking views of the surrounding lakes and mountains of Central Switzerland. On clear days, you can see very far as well!
Enjoy a Traditional Swiss Meal
Treat yourself to a delightful meal at the mountain restaurant, where you can savor traditional Swiss cuisine while reveling in the stunning surroundings. Indulge in regional specialties such as Älplermagronen (Swiss style Mac’n’Cheese) all while enjoying panoramic views from the restaurant’s terrace. Additionally, there is a revolving restaurant that offers 360° views of the surrounding scenery!
Start a Hike to in the Swiss Alps
Stanserhorn boasts several hiking trails suitable for different fitness levels. Lace up your hiking boots and explore the well-marked paths that lead you through alpine meadows, forests, and breathtaking viewpoints. The trails cater to both leisurely strolls and more challenging hikes. Many of these hikes do not lead back to the mountain station, so plan ahead. Check out the official Stanserhorn website for hike suggestions.
Visit the Marmots
On your way down from the summit, make a stop at Marmot Park, located near the middle station of the cable car. Here, you can observe adorable alpine marmots in their natural habitat. Watch these playful creatures as they go about their daily activities and learn more about their lives through informative displays.
How to get to Stanserhorn?
From Lucerne’s main train station, take a train to Stans, a small town located at the foot of Stanserhorn in the Canton of Nidwalden. The train ride takes around 20 minutes, and you can enjoy scenic views along the way. From there it’s a short walk to the funicular station.
There is a car park at the funicular station at Stansstaderstrasse 19, 6370 Stans. However, this car park only offers limited spaces and will likely be full, if you don’t take the first train. Alternatively there are signposts for more parking spaces throughout the town. The parking spots are subject to charge.
Tickets and Prices
Stanserhorn is in the price range of other Swiss mountain experiences with about CHF 75 for a full-fare ticket. However, it gets interesting for those in possession of the Swiss Travel Pass, as the entire transportation with funicular and cable car is included. Also there are good discounts for Swiss Half Fare Card holders and if you’re and early bird and travel in the off-season, you get a cut on the fare for that too! I recommend you check out the official website for prices.
The Stanserhorn is open from the beginning of April to the end of November with the first train up after 8am and the last train down at about 5pm. During high season, the funicular and cable car run in the evenings of Thursday, Friday and Saturday. You can find the days and hours of operation on the official Stanserhorn website.
With its remarkable views and memorable experiences, Stanserhorn is a must-visit destination in Switzerland. Take your time to explore the mountain, immerse yourself in nature, and create lasting memories of this alpine wonderland.
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