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Zermatt, Les Diablerest, Grindelwald/Murren - Need to choose ONE

Zermatt, Les Diablerest, Grindelwald/Murren - Need to choose ONE

Jul 10th, 2006, 06:48 AM
  #1  
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Zermatt, Les Diablerest, Grindelwald/Murren - Need to choose ONE

Dear All

I have had such great advice from here in the past. I am going to Geneva for work and have 5 days afterwards to spend in Switzerland. I am going end of August (work) beginning of September (my 5 days).

So far the plan is:
See something of Geneva in 2/3 day when I arrive.
Work for 4 days
There is a guided tour afterwards to Gruyere and Bern which I thought to join. It is an 8 hour and cost a fortune, but at least I would have some company (I could be convinced to drop this)
Then I have 5 days. I would like to spend 2 of these along Lac Leman (Vevey and Montreux) and would like to spend 3 in the mountains. I thought one of the following would be great: Les Diablerets (nice cable car to the top and see Glacier 3000), Zermatt - hike, Grindelwald or Murren and hike.
I can speak German (Hochdeutsch, not local dialect) and no French. Should this feature into my decsion making? Would German help me at all in Les Diablerets? (Would signs at least be bilingual?) I will be alone, does this make any one of the destinations more attractive? Cost is a bit of an issue. What else should I use to choose between these destinations? The travel cost and time would be much higher to Zermatt than to Les Diablerets. Being alone I would use trains, not hire a car.

Any advice?
Nuut is offline  
Jul 10th, 2006, 10:42 PM
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Nuut is offline  
Jul 11th, 2006, 12:10 AM
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If you speak German and Engish you will have no problems in the French-speaking Switzerland. Most things are in 4-5 languages, and most people have at least some knowledge of one of the other offical languages AND/OR english.
The tour to Bern and Gruyere - you can do it as well yourself for far less by train on your own schedule, but it depends whether company is worth the extra money... it's up to you
altamiro is offline  
Jul 11th, 2006, 12:24 AM
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Considering the time factor, your selection fits fine......... I will opt for Grinderwald as you have many options and nice ones considering heights.......enjoy
yildy is offline  
Jul 11th, 2006, 06:38 AM
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Difficult choice, actually. All 3 areas have much to offer. If I had to pick one, and only one, I would select Wengen. It is a small mountain side village that cannot be reached by automobile, but there is regular train service from Interlaken Ost via Lauterbrunnen.

There are several excursions you can make directly from Wengen:
The Männlichen, Kleine Scheidegg, and the Jungfraujoch.

The Männlichen is the ridge that towers over the Lauterbrunnen Valley. From its crest you can look down its gradual eastern slope to Grindelwald. On the west, there is a steep dropoff to the floor of the valley. Trails from the ridge crest lead downward to varius destinations. A popular walk is from the crest to Kleine Scheidegg, which is a pass between the Männlichen and the Eiger-Mönch massif.

From Kleine Scheidegg there are several trails that take you to various views.
One of the trails, terminating on the uphill side, is the Eiger North Wall trail that runs from the Eigergletscher stop on the Jungfraubahn line downhill to Alpiglen on the KS - Grindelwald line.

You can also easily go by train from Wengen to Lauterbrunnen to Grindelwald.
From Grindelwald there are several excursions. I like the gondola ride to a station called First. From there you can take the steep walk up to the Faulhorn or the more level walk across the meadows to Grosse Scheidegg from which you can return to Grindelwald by Post Bus.

If you want more activity, then Grindelwald is the better choice because it is larger and has more attractions than the high mountain villages of Wengen and Mürren.

The Jungfraujoch trip is expensive. That aspect of a visit to that area cannot be excluded. I will be there in a few weeks myself, and I am debating now if I want to pay the price to visit the Jungfraujoch again. (It would not be my first visit.)

Zermatt has many options as well. The two major rides are to the Klein Matterhorn and to the Gornergrat.
If you have a clear day, the Klein Matterhorn trip should provide you with awesome views of the Matterhorn itself.

The train trip to the end station on the Gornergrat gives views of the Matterhorn as well as some awesome vistas of Monte Rosa and the large alpine glaciers which flow from it.

The area of the the Diablarets also has much to offer. I am not as familiar with it as I am with Zermatt and the Lauterbrunnen area. The glacier that you mention is a nice walk and a worthwhile objective. There are hundreds of miles of trails in the area from which to choose.

I don't think you can lose with any of the choices. All 3 areas have a loyal following, and all 3 are worthy objectives.

brookwood is offline  
Jul 11th, 2006, 07:42 AM
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We went to Grindelwald and Zermatt a few weeks ago and I would choose Grindelwald not only for the vast amount of things to do and places to go from there, but I also think the Swiss chalet type architecture in the town is more pleasing to me than Zermatt. Zermatt seemed to be hotel after hotel smashed on top of each other. Zermatt was tougher to get to and it was harder to find something to do in a town outside of Zermatt that was a reasonable distance by train. We will go back to Grindelwald for sure and have been there before. Zermatt for us was a one time thing. . .
where2 is offline  
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