Interlaken Stories and Tips

Interlaken Hodgepodge

Interlaken is a fairly small town (population not much over 15,000). It is very easy to tour on foot. It lies in a valley between the mountains and between two lakes -- Thun and Brienz. If you arrive via Berne in the west, the scenery around Lake Thun prior to reaching Interlaken is breathtaking during months when snow is on the mountains. My last trip was in November. The first snow of the season had just fallen and there was none to speak of in the lower elevations. When I visited in June, the snow from the winter was still on the ground and it was absolutely wonderful. I would not want to return in November -- either later in winter, spring, or early summer.

Interlaken has two train stations -- West and East -- connected by the main street - Hoheweg. Most shops and many restaurants are located along the Hoheweg. At the end of town, closer to station East, is the Casino Kursaal. After taking a day trip to Jungfrau, we decided to drop in. It is not a large casino by Las Vegas standards, but was "elegant" -- we were probably underdressed, but no one said anything! There is a small entry fee. The casino has both slots and table games. Slots are different than Las Vegas. I won about $500 when I played $10, so I took the money down the street to a store that sells watches and bought a new watch!

Speaking of watches, there are many shops from which to choose with a very wide variety and reasonable prices. There are also several shops that sell cuckoo clocks at prices better than I found in Germany.

Although I rated the last place I stayed while in Interlaken, I must also mention another place that I stayed on a previous visit. The Swiss Inn is on the west side of town, about a five-minute walk from the West station. I suppose it is classed as a bed and breakfast or guesthouse. It is a pink Victorian-style house divided into apartments. When we arrived, the proprietress showed us all the available apartments and let us choose. I was with a friend and our two teenagers, so they chose the apartment with a view of the Jungfrau and with a loft with 4 beds. It was a wonderful choice. The skylight in the loft was raised and in the morning we awoke to hear the birds singing. The beds were very comfortable with down bedding.

The furniture is old, but oh so clean. There is a washer and dryer in the basement for guest use. Quite expensive for a load (about $5), but we threw all our clothes in together which made it possible for us to only have to take half as many clothes for our 10 day journey.

The owners had a son about the same age as our children and they played basketball with him in the backyard. On the morning we left, the owner took us to the train station.

I don't remember the rates, but it seems like the apartment was less than $200 per night. We thought it was a great bargain and the only reason I did not stay on my last trip is they were closed for the week. I would definitely consider them again. Check out this website for more information.

Been to this destination?

Share Your Story or Tip