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Wengen, Lauterbrunnen or Grindelwald - overnight stay?

Wengen, Lauterbrunnen or Grindelwald - overnight stay?

Old Mar 6th, 2016, 08:39 AM
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Wengen, Lauterbrunnen or Grindelwald - overnight stay?

Which is a better place to stay - Wengen, Lauterbrunnen or Grindelwald? We will be going there in the first week of July. We want to do Jungfrau but need a base to stay for 2 nights so we can hike from Mannlichen to Kleine Scheidegg and also do the cable car ride and Jungfrau.

I checked the forums there are discussions touching this topic. But could not decide where to stay. If someone can share their views the pros and cons or staying in Wengen, Lauterbrunnen or Grindelwald.

Thank you,
Dipti
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Old Mar 6th, 2016, 09:03 AM
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Everyone has their own preferences! FWIW, here are my opinions:

The views from Wengen are stunning, but not all views are equal. I came away with the impression that I would have done better to have paid more than I did. (And I already thought I had splurged for a night there.) Also, Wengen is a bit further than Lauterbrunnen -- about 15" train ride, which you can catch about once every 1/2 hour IIRC. So if time is of the essence, Lauterbrunnen might have advantages over Wengen.

I was very happy with my stay in Lauterbrunnen, as it suited my interests very well. I stayed at the Hotel Staubbach, which offers glorious views down the valley and toward the magnificent Staubbach Falls. Lauterbrunnen has several restaurants ranging from very casual to upscale.

I only visited Grindelwald briefly during one late afternoon. I found it a bit too jammed with rowdy tourists, but I don't know how common that is.

It's a beautiful area - enjoy!
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Old Mar 6th, 2016, 09:21 AM
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We have been told over, and over, and OVER again that Grindelwald is loaded with tour buses and that it is a mob scene and that it "isn't the real Switzerland" and on and on.

So, where did we stay when we finally WENT to the Berner Oberland? Yep, in Grindelwald and IN the summer, and at a hotel whose front door opens onto the rail station platform.

And when I put all that into my trip report I got the usual, "Boy, were you misguided" comments.

What we liked: the convenience of being close to the rail station. The main shopping street was further on. Easy connections up to the Jungfrau, down to Lauterbrunnen, etc. The view of the Eiger was spectacular from our room

What we didn't like: a hotel which did not have screens on any windows and as a result we learned a lot we didn't ever want to know about houseflies.

Lots of visitors like ourselves and many in organized groups but that had nothing whatsoever to do with Grindelwald and everything to do with the (then) economic dynamism of certain Asian countries and a lot of these people jammed themselves into the trains (do get OUT of their way).

I guess we were blind because we never did see "all those tour buses" people keep talking about.

The shopping opportunities: nothing to write home about in terms of uniqueness.

If you have patience I would stay in one of the other well-located (TO transportation and personally that means more than a cablecar) and less-developed villages.

And I agree, the VIEWS are everything up there.
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Old Mar 6th, 2016, 09:30 AM
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Hi The Awesomes12,

Here are my thoughts/impressions of the 3 towns:

Lauterbrunnen is settled at the base of the valley, at the bottom of some towering cliffs. The cliffs have always looked dismal to me, and I have never been able to persuade myself to get off the train to explore the town. Folks tell me that the town is in shadow in mornings & late afternoons because of the cliffs. On the other hand, some folks don't even "see" the cliffs, and others think the cliffs add charm to the locale. If I were staying there and no one had told me about the cliffs, though, I would be angry. You can research how you'd feel about this by looking at google images of the town.

Grindelwald is as high as people can drive, and so in July and August it attracts a lot of tour busses for day-tripping tourists. I spent a few days there with my mom one year, and the tour busses detracted quite a lot from our enjoyment of the town. In addition, the town is too small to absorb so many off-loaded passengers at one time, and there tend to be clumps of folks roaming the streets and clogging up the store entrances.

Wengen, to me, is a no-brainer. When I was there with my mom, we went to Wengen to visit, and it was a calm and peaceful contrast with Grindelwald. The views are great, and being in a car-free village adds to the purity of the air and the atmosphere of being in an Alpine village.

I have spent 6 weeks skiing the area -- three times from Wengen and three times from Grindelwald (in addition to the summertime visit with my mom).

Have fun as you plan!

s
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Old Mar 6th, 2016, 12:10 PM
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I was in Grindelwald yesterday (to take advantage of the heavy snowfall). I've been to Grindelwald a few times over the past couple of years and I just can't warm up to it and probably won't go back again. I'd pick Wengen -- IMO, being car-free gives it a much better atmosphere. As far as hotels go, my favorite in Wengen in the Alpenrose.
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Old Mar 6th, 2016, 12:19 PM
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Wengen, hands down. I loved my room to the south in Hotel Silberhorn, even more the balcony with gorgeous views of the valley, the cliffs, the glaciers and P. Jungfrau. Quaint, no car traffic, only the sound of cowbells ... and ideal for the trip up to Männlichen - Jungfrau: The cable car leaves in the back of hotel Silberhorn, the cog-train back arrives in front.
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Old Mar 6th, 2016, 12:19 PM
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You can't go wrong.

for views Grindelwald IME has the best of all of them.

Grindelwald has a pulse for folks into the apres-ski or hiking thing - Grindelwald attracts a much younger crowd - if under 35 you may well feel more whatever in Grindelwald - especially again if you like nightlife.

Wengen is great for older folks and folks with young kids -

Grindelwald, Lauterbrunnen and Wengen have just about as easy access to the things you want as each other - well Lauterbrunnen a bit farther out as you have to go up to Wengen to get the Jungfraujoch train or gondola to The Mannlichen (also gondolas from Grindelwald).

I prefer Grindelwald of all and this is a subjective take - I would never say "no-brainer" for any of the places because they all appeal to different type of persons - Lauterbrunnen is great for the younger folk too as college-aged tour groups like Contiki have their bases there (or did at last notice).

Most people are not in a Grindelwald when the tour buses roll in during the day but are out hiking or whatever and don't care what it is like in the day.

IMO no one can say it's a 'no-brainer' for any of those without qualifying who and what kind of people they may appeal to.
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Old Mar 6th, 2016, 12:32 PM
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"Grindelwald has a pulse for folks into the apres-ski or hiking thing - Grindelwald attracts a much younger crowd - if under 35 you may well feel more whatever in Grindelwald - especially again if you like nightlife."

Where do you get this info from? When were you in the two villages last? I've been to both in the past few months and last summer and found that Wengen certainly had plenty of young adults, rather than just "old folks and folks with young kids."

And, FWIW, there were plenty of "old folks" in Grindewald yesterday.
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Old Mar 6th, 2016, 12:35 PM
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I get my info from having been and stayed in Grindelwald many times in summer, not March - have you been in summer - I have not been in Grindelwald for five years - has it changed that much - have they done away with the youth hostle, Nature Friend's house and other inexpensive options they had then.
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Old Mar 6th, 2016, 12:46 PM
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I've stayed in all three several times (plus Murren).

They're all good. FWIW, my personal order of preference

1) Murren 2) Wengen 3) Lauterbrunnen 4) Grindelwald

Having said that, I'd avoid all four in July - too many people - we're very much off season travelers, but that's just us.
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Old Mar 6th, 2016, 01:00 PM
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Palq, of course I've been in Grindelwald in summer. Including summer 2015.
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Old Mar 6th, 2016, 01:44 PM
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While I would say Wengen, as we stayed there, for your priorities:

"Jungfrau but need a base to stay for 2 nights so we can hike from Mannlichen to Kleine Scheidegg and also do the cable car ride and Jungfrau."

I would say Wengen. It was without a doubt the highlight of our trip to Switzerland. We were in our 30's during that trip.
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Old Mar 6th, 2016, 02:15 PM
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>Where you you get your info. from?<

He's stoned! He admits here he smokes ganja daily.

For years, he touted Lauterbrunnen (as if) as the place young people partied it up. ROFL!

I dont agree AT ALL that Grindelwald has the best views.

Stay in Wengen.


Thin
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Old Mar 6th, 2016, 02:24 PM
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He's stoned! He admits here he smokes ganja daily.>

Despite that advantage I am open to the fact that Wengen swings as much as Grindelwald - just think you could legally buy cannabis in Switzerland about 20 years ago - just like Amsterdam!

Wengen is great but to make it sound like the only place in this area that is is well to me a bit over the top.

I take Weisser Tee's observations seriously and will modify my stance since Grindelwald has apparently changed so much in the several years since I've stayed there - as I travel now mainly in winter and don't like snow and cold (I live in northern Michigan and we have more than enough) so I have not been able to go to I guess a very changed Grindelwald recently.

It's Wengen - no other place in the Jungfrau Region can come close to whatever you want being there.
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Old Mar 6th, 2016, 09:23 PM
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ooooh, so "no other place . . can come close to whatever you want. . " is better than "no-brainer."

And btw, I did say that "TO ME, Wengen is a no-brainer."

So happy you don't take my experiences and observations seriously . .

I have told you numerous times that there are plenty of young people in Wengen -- children and teens of families visiting and staying in apartments, ski instructors, and the hiking guides in summer.

Happy to continue to post over the top!

s
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Old Mar 7th, 2016, 05:59 AM
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ooooh, so "no other place . . can come close to whatever you want. . " is better than "no-brainer."

Look up and see what satire means!

In the future I will not comment on which of those are best but to just say you can't go wrong - quite a different take than some's prescriptive 'no-brainer on this one' take.

Young folks who want hostels or things like the Nature Friend's House may want to head to Grindelwald however for economic reasons - all are very well situated and have awesome but different views.
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Old Mar 7th, 2016, 06:11 AM
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There is a public swimming pool and a playground (across the road from Hotel Shönegg) in Wengen.


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Old Mar 7th, 2016, 06:17 AM
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Is that pool heated? Or is it toasty warm at that high altitude in July?
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Old Mar 9th, 2016, 04:19 PM
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Thank you for your time. We will certainly avoid Grindelwald as we are going to be there in July.

Probably go with Murren or Wengen.

Thank you!
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Old Mar 10th, 2016, 04:31 AM
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Wengen is a lot better situated for day trips around the area than more remote Murren which to get to requires a gondola ride to the top of the cliff then a train to Murren and then to get to the Jungfraujoch train you have to go thru Lauterbrunnen and Wengen.
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