Traveling to Europe is expensive, but the cost of traveling to Switzerland is even more expensive than average vacation cost of Europe. The fact that so many people say that you should go to Switzerland once in your life or that Switzerland is so beautiful without any dead corner has made me wary and not dare to expect too much. In the dorminity room that I stayed when I came to Interlaken, there were six female friends, but 4 of them come back here for the second time. And I really lost my heart the day I came to Interlaken.
- Interlaken travel blog — The fullest Interlaken travel guide for first-timers
- Interlaken Lauterbrunnen blog — Visit the beautiful town of Interlaken & dreamy Lauterbrunnen valley
- Basel blog — The fullest Basel travel guide for first-timers
- Switzerland itinerary 5 days? — What to do & how to spend 5 days in Switzerland perfectly?
- Most beautiful train rides in Switzerland — 9 best train trips & most scenic train routes in Switzerland
If I could go back to Switzerland 100 times, I would go back to Interlaken almost 100 times. I’m sure the photos taken in Switzerland are only for keeping as a souvenir, but they can’t describe the beauty in real life! So, is 3 days in Interlaken enough and what to do in 3 days in Interlaken? Let’s check out our suggested Interlaken itinerary 3 days on how to spend 3 days in Interlaken. With this Interlaken itinerary you have fully 3 days in Interlaken, 3 days in Interlaken itinerary is also good if your time is tight, an Interlaken itinerary 3 days is also very good and enough!
Interlaken region (# interlaken itinerary 3 days)
Interlaken is in the Bernese Oberland region in central Switzerland. The name Interlaken partly tells about its location, located between two beautiful lakes, Lake Thun and Lake Brienz. It is also the gateway to the famous high peaks of Jungfrau, Eiger and Monch. Interlaken has Interlaken Ost station on the east side near Lake Brienz and Interlaken West station on the west side near Lake Thun. There is also Spiez station located by the Lake Thun, this is also an important big station, I left Interlaken to Milan from Spiez station.
What is the best season for travel? (# 3 days in interlaken itinerary)
Weather is very important and will greatly affect how you feel about the trip. Spring and autumn are two seasons that I think everywhere will be very beautiful, but for me personally, summer will be the best season to explore the Swiss mountains because the days are longer, the weather is not too cold, the sky is clear to see the snowy peaks and you can easily participate in some outdoor activities such as hiking, paragliding…
If you go in the winter, besides having to prepare carefully, for example snow shoes and other outdoor activities. How to keep warm clothes but still comfortable when wearing them, in addition, you should pay attention to the matters of vehicles for traveling because many roads, railways will be closed in winter, many places to visit will not open.
How to get to Interlaken?
Travel time from Luzern to Interlaken West railway station is 2 hours. Note that if you have a Swiss Travel Pass or a Bernese Oberland Pass, this route is completely free, you just need to get on the train, any time is ok. I bought the Bernese Oberland pass for three days but it will start on the first morning when I arrive in Interlaken, so I still have to hunt for a super saver ticket for this trip.
Where to stay?
This hostel is a very budget hostel and is a 5-minute walk from Interlaken West. Everything at the hostel is just the most basic level. Under the hostel is a beer bar, but fortunately it is not noisy when sleeping.
In terms of accommodation, in my opinion, if you stay near Interlaken Ost station, it will be more convenient than Interlaken West. And if you have the conditions, you can refer to staying 1 night in Grindelwald or Lauterbrunnen, it’s even better.
Below we recommend more best budget, mid-range and upscale hotels with good ratings and reviews you can refer to.
- Hotel Roessli (Agoda.com or Booking.com)
- Victoria Jungfrau Grand Hotel & Spa (Agoda.com or Booking.com)
- Hotel Krebs Interlaken (Agoda.com or Booking.com)
- Hapimag Resort Interlaken (Agoda.com or Booking.com)
- Metropole Hotel Interlaken (Agoda.com or Booking.com)
My Interlaken itinerary 4 days 3 nights as follows
I went from Luzern to Interlaken the night before, went back to the hostel to rest.
- Day 1: Because the weather was not very favorable, it was a bit foggy and rainy, so I chose to go to 3 villages Lauterbrunnen, Wengen and Mürren.
- Day 2: I went to Lake Brienz, Brienz Rothorn Peak and Lake Blausee
- Day 3: Jungfraujoch Peak and Grindelwald
- Day 4: Enjoy a morning in the center of Interlaken then catch the train to Milan.
So I have 3 full days in Interlaken, but the above itinerary is also a “race” against time. There are a few spots close by that I have to skip them such as taking the train to the top of Harder Kulm to watch the sunset. Although it’s free and close, but after a long and tiring day out, I had to give it up. I really wish I had another day here. So, in my opinion 4-5 days will be the most ideal.
The thing that confuses me the most when planning a Switzerland itinerary is the travel passes. Oh my god, there are so many types of travel passes that each pass will cover a different number of routes. It depends on the places you choose to visit to find the most suitable pass. For first-timers like me, it’s really a headache because if you want to save money on travel costs, you have to find out carefully. To sum up, to know which is the most economical option, you need to make a detailed itinerary of the places you want to visit, and then make a comparison table between the travel passes, then you will really know which pass is the most economical.
I quote Ha Nguyen: “If you want to go to Jungfraujoch and other peaks in the Jungfrau region (from Interlaken onwards), the Top of Europe Pass (TEP) will be the best pass for you. If you want to take more boats on Lake Thun and Lake Brienz, the Jungfrau Travel Pass (JTP) is a more suitable pass. If you want to travel more, for example want to go to Blausee, Brienzer Rothorn… Bernese Oberland Pass (BOP) might be the cheapest option. If you are not going to Jungfraujoch but just want to visit mountain villages like Murren, Wengen or Grindelwald, Lauterbrunnen, or if you are visiting other parts of Switzerland, perhaps the Swiss Travel Pass (STP) will be the best choice”.
I didn’t buy a travel pass in advance online, but the first morning in Interlaken, I went to Interlaken West station, entered the station, I gave the my itinerary of places I wanted to go to the ticket saleswoman to ask again to confirm which pass should I buy because I was still afraid. Well, the ticket seller also advised me to buy a BOP pass, so that’s a peace of mind. After buying the pass, she gave me a map of BOP with a lot of information inside. Visit the link of the Bernese Oberland pass with all the necessary information you can research in advance to take full advantage of the offer.
I stayed at Interlaken for 3 days just enough to buy a pass for 3 days. In the high mountains, the weather changes erratically, I went in the summer but also encountered rainy and cloudy days. These days are not suitable for going to the high mountains. So with this pass, you can rest assured to change the itinerary as you want without having to set a schedule and buy tickets in advance for the cable car routes up the mountain or the riverboat. Extremely convenient.
Where to go and what to do on my journey
Lauterbrunnen valley and Staubbach waterfall (# interlaken itinerary 3 days)
After buying the BOP pass, I took a bus to Wilderswil station and from here took the train to go to the Lauterbrunnen valley. Another way is to take the train from Interlaken West to Interlaken Ost, and from there take the train to Lauterbrunnen. Travel time was about 35 minutes.
The name Lauterbrunnen – meaning “many waterfalls”, is only 1km wide, but this valley possesses 72 waterfalls. Lauterbrunnen valley is twice as deep as Yosemite (an extremely famous valley in the US). Lauterbrunnen is surrounded by 3 majestic peaks including Eiger (3970 m), Mönch (4107 m) and Jungfrau (4158 m). It is also one of the deepest valleys in the Alps. It is also one of the largest nature reserves in Switzerland.
Lauterbrunnen valley is the perfect picture that nature bestows on Switzerland. This place attracts visitors thanks to the beautiful natural scenery created by stretching mountains, green forests, endless golden flower meadows and hundreds of large and small waterfalls flowing from the mountains.
After visiting Lauterbrunnen, I took the cable car to Mürren. After a cable car trip, then transferred to a train to go to the village, this time it was pouring rain.
Mürren is a traditional Walser mountain village in the Bernese Highlands of Switzerland, at the foot of the Schilthorn mountain overlooking the poetic and majestic Mont Blanc. This village will be most beautiful when it is clear, sunny or snowy. I went on a cloudy rainy day, so I couldn’t really feel the beauty of the village, which made me regret it. When I first went to Europe, whenever it rained, I would decide to stay at home and not go anywhere. But European rain is also rarely torrential, usually just light rain, most people often wear waterproof jackets and cover and go. If it rains, don’t be discouraged!
The geographical position is located on a towering mountain of 1650m above sea level, so from here you can see the surrounding mountains very clearly. The village is completely isolated from the hustle and bustle of life outside.
The cafes along the main path, looking over the high mountains. Sitting here on a rainy afternoon, sipping a cup of hot coffee, you will feel time standing still.
From Mürren there is a cable car station to go to Schilthorn. But with BOP pass, you only get 50% off and have to pay an additional CHF 42.80 for the round trip cable car ticket. This mountain is very famous because it used to shoot the movie James Bond 007. I was planning to go to Jungfrau so I didn’t go to this mountain anymore.
From Murren, I returned to Lauterbrunnen before continuing to take the train to Wengen. On the way, the bus stops at the Trümmelbach waterfall station. This spot I did not know and was not in my itinerary before. But also out of curiosity, I jumped out of the bus to see. The entrance fee to enter this waterfall is 14 CHF. All quick decisions in Switzerland are paid with a pretty high amount, everyone.
Walking a bit, the waterfall is nowhere to be seen because Trümmelbach is hidden behind the mountain. You take the elevator and then take another very steep elevator, lying in a dark cave to go inside the waterfall. Trümmelbach Falls consists of a series of ten glacial waterfalls that deliver 20,000 liters of water per second. It fell from a height of 200 meters. The majestic waterfalls have formed spiral canyons inside the limestone mountains. These waterfalls remained a mystery until 1877, when a tunnel was dug deep into the mountain.
The amount of water in the falls varies greatly. From December to March only a small stream flows under the thick ice.
But in the summer when the ice melts, the amount of water is so huge. I went up the stairs to follow the waterfall but hearing the rumbling sound of the waterfall was really scary, the water splashed all over my body.
This place is suitable to go in the summer because at this time there are strong flows of water and you will feel the power and sound of the waterfall. However, it is not suitable for young children because it is quite dangerous and climbs the stairs along the waterfall a lot, and is always wet and easy to slip.
After leaving the waterfall, I continued to take the bus to the train station to Wengen. The village is quite similar to Mürren but is located at a lower altitude. From Wengen you can take the cable car to Männlichen, a mountain 2343 m high and free with BOP pass. The cable car up the mountain is only open from May to October, the last one from Wengen to Männlichen at 4:50pm – 5:10pm and the last one from Männlichen BACK to Wengen at 5:10pm – 5:30pm, there are slight variations between months so you should pay attention to the time. I was busy playing and didn’t find out first, so when I got there, the cable car was closed. So if you have a BOP like me, you should go to Wegen to go to Männlichen first, then go to Murren later.
After the trip, I went back to the hostel to eat and rest, the end of the day was quite interesting and also quite tired. Although the weather is rainy and cloudy, it is still possible to visit. Unfortunately, I couldn’t go up to Männlichen, but I added Trümmelbach waterfall to the itinerary. Travel is not only a destination but also a journey with countless colors. The picture of Switzerland will be written in the next post, come with me!
Some best day tours, trips, activities and transfer services, tickets in Interlaken and Switzerland you can refer to
- 4G WiFi (SG Pick Up) for Europe
- 4G Portable WiFi for Europe from Uroaming
- 3G/4G SIM Card for Multiple European Countries (HK Airport Pick Up)
- Half Day Trip to Mount Titlis with Cable Car from Lucerne
- Jungfraujoch Day Tour from Lucerne
- Day Trip to Mount Titlis with Cable Car (Zurich Departure)
- Swiss Travel Pass
- Jungfraujoch Day Tour from Interlaken
- Paragliding Experience in Interlaken
- Day Trip to Grindelwald and Interlaken from Zürich
- Sulwald Snowshoeing Experience from Interlaken
- Schilthorn Piz Gloria Ticket from Murren
- Harder Kulm – Top of Interlaken Funicular Ticket
- Jungfraujoch Top of Europe Multiple Tour Options & Departure Points
- Jungfraujoch – Top of Europe Ticket from Interlaken
- Jungfrau Travel Pass
- The Golden Eagle Tandem Paragliding Experience in Interlaken
- The Top Flight Tandem Paragliding Experience in Interlaken
Are you looking for more Switzerland travel guide and top things to do in Switzerland: Tours, activities, attractions and other things? Read more: Interlaken Lauterbrunnen blog — Visit the beautiful town of Interlaken & dreamy Lauterbrunnen valley? And here.