Switzerland Insider

Switzerland Insider

Lauterbrunnen, a Swiss village in the Jungfrau Region, is renowned for its dramatic landscapes, with 72 waterfalls cascading down its cliffs and its beautiful alpine scenery. Despite its natural beauty and appeal, many tourists make common mistakes that can detract from their experience. Whether you’re a first-time visitor or returning to this idyllic destination, here are ten mistakes to avoid to ensure you make the most of your trip to Lauterbrunnen.

View down Lauterbrunnen valley

1. Not Taking the Famous Pic of the Lauterbrunnen Valley

One of the most iconic images of Switzerland is the breathtaking view of the Lauterbrunnen Valley with the towering Staubbach Falls and the church in the center. Many tourists rush directly to Staubbach Falls without taking the time to visit the main photo spot of the Lauterbrunnen Valley. In order for you not to miss this money shot (actually the image above), here is its location:

Location of the famous Lauterbrunnen Valley Photo

2. Only Walking to Staubbach Falls

Many tourists make the mistake of only walking to Staubbach Falls and then turning back. While Staubbach Falls is certainly a highlight, there’s a whole world of beauty beyond it if you continue walking along the valley road. You’ll encounter charming honesty shops where you can buy local goods, peaceful farms, grazing cows and more stunning waterfalls. The path leads to breathtaking views and offers a serene and authentic experience of the Lauterbrunnen Valley that many visitors miss out on. Don’t stop at Staubbach—keep going and discover the hidden gems this valley has to offer.

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3. Not Visiting Mürren and Gimmelwald

Mürren and Gimmelwald are two charming mountain villages accessible by cable car from the Lauterbrunnen Valleyd. Many tourists overlook these spots, missing out on their unique alpine charm and panoramic views. Mürren offers stunning views Jungfrau, while Gimmelwald is a secret, less commercialized village perfect for experiencing traditional Swiss mountain life. Make sure to include a visit to these villages in your itinerary for a more rounded alpine experience.

Top 5 Reasons to Add Gimmelwald to Your Swiss Itinerary

4. Thinking the Swiss Travel Pass is Valid Everywhere

While the Swiss Travel Pass is a fantastic way to get around the country, it doesn’t cover all transportation options in Lauterbrunnen. Many tourists mistakenly believe it grants free access to all cable cars and mountain railways. Great news, the two villages from before, Gimmelwald and Mürren, are covered under the Swiss Travel Pass. However, some rides, like the Schilthorn cable car (departing from Mürren), are not included. Always double-check which routes are covered by your pass to avoid unexpected expenses and plan accordingly.

Map of Validity of the Swiss Travel Pass

If you feel like the Swiss Travel Pass is not for you, then the following post might help you!

10 Travel Hacks Only Swiss Locals Know (Train Edition)

5. Not Visiting Wengen and Männlichen

Wengen and Männlichen are must-visit spots in the Lauterbrunnen area that offer breathtaking views and unique experiences. Wengen, a car-free village, is accessible by train (included in Swiss Travel Pass) and provides stunning views of the Lauterbrunnen Valley. From there, you can take a cable car to Männlichen (discounts with the pass), where you can enjoy panoramic hiking trails and incredible alpine scenery. Missing these destinations means missing out on some of the best views and experiences in the region.

 

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6. Not Visiting Trümmelbach Falls

Trümmelbach Falls is an awe-inspiring series of waterfalls hidden inside a mountain. They are often overlooked by tourists who stick to the more visible Staubbach Falls. The Trümmelbach Falls, fed by the melting glaciers of the Eiger, Mönch, and Jungfrau, are a truly unique sight. Accessed by a combination of tunnels and lifts, these waterfalls offer a dramatic and unforgettable experience that should not be missed.

7. Visiting Instead of Grindelwald

While Grindelwald is a beautiful destination, Lauterbrunnen offers a different and equally enriching experience. Some tourists opt for Grindelwald, believing it has more to offer, but they miss out on the unique charm and dramatic landscapes of Lauterbrunnen. Ideally, you should visit both, as each offers unique perspectives of the Swiss Alps. Lauterbrunnen’s serene valley and spectacular waterfalls provide a quieter, more intimate alpine experience.

Top 10 Tourist Mistakes to Avoid in Grindelwald

8. Not Driving in Lauterbrunnen Valley

Driving through the Lauterbrunnen Valley is an incredibly scenic experience, offering stunning views of waterfalls, meadows and the majestic cliffs surrounding the village. While parking can be challenging during the peak tourist season, the drive itself is well worth it for the breathtaking scenery. Plan ahead to find parking options (i.e. big parking at the train station), and don’t miss out on the opportunity to enjoy one of the most picturesque drives in Switzerland.

9. Being Intimidated by the News about Overtourism

Reports of overtourism can deter visitors from enjoying Lauterbrunnen’s stunning scenery. While it can get busy during peak times, the area is large enough that you can still find peaceful spots away from the crowds. Plan your visit carefully, perhaps aiming for early mornings or late afternoons to avoid the busiest periods. Don’t let the fear of crowds keep you from experiencing one of the most beautiful places in the world.

10. Not Visiting in Shoulder Season (Less Crowded)

Many tourists visit Lauterbrunnen during the peak summer or winter seasons, leading to crowded attractions and higher prices. The shoulder seasons, such as late spring and early autumn, offer a less crowded and more relaxed experience. Visiting during these times allows you to enjoy the scenery and attractions at a more leisurely pace, often with better availability and lower costs for accommodations and activities.

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