Wengen is a small and traditionally Swiss resort at the foot of the infamous Eiger. With more focus on the charm and less focus on the chichi, it is the perfect destination to go as a family, especially if you are looking to teach the little ones how to ski.
HOW TO GET THERE
Like many ski resorts across Europe, Wengen requires a full day travelling in order to get there. It is a 2 hour drive from Zurich and Basel airports and a 2.5 hour drive from Geneva. What adds to the quaint and idyllic charm of Wengen, is that you cannot drive directly there and must instead head to neighboring Lauterbrunnen and get the sweet little train up the mountain to reach it. As a result, there are hardly any cars in Wengen and if there are, they are tiny old-fashioned electric ones! Another fun way to get there is to get the train from either three airports, travelling past the beautiful Lake Thunersee and Brienzersee en route.
WHERE TO SKI
Wengen offers a variety of blue, red and black pistes to suit all levels of skier. In order to get up to mountain to ski, one can take the Männlichen mountain cable car up and ski the Männlichen area and all the way down to Grindelwald or alternatively take the train up to Kleine Scheidegg and ski the surrounding runs with the infamous north face of the Eiger on view at all times. All pistes are extremely well groomed and it is rare to stand in a queue to get on a chairlift. The chairlifts themselves are modern and comfortable, with many of them having covers to pull down and keep the cold breeze away! There is a nursery slope in down in the Wengen village as well as one up at Kleine Scheidegg with plenty of renowned ski schools and ski instructors to choose from.
WHERE TO STAY
There’s a wide selection of hotels to stay in but we recommend the wonderful Beausite Park Hotel at the top of the village, which offers comfortable rooms, a relaxing spa and gourmet cuisine. Alternatively, The Caprice offers a similar vibe on a slightly smaller scale and in a different location within the village.
WHERE TO EAT
The best restaurant in the area is undoubtedly Jungfrau Wengernalp, set half way up the mountain and reachable on skis, on foot or by train. The outdoor fur-covered seating provides delectable views to go with the daily-changing menu and magnificent wine list. For a taste of tradition, the restaurant at Hotel Bellevue Des Alpes in Kleine Schidegg is a great lunch spot for fondu, rosti and Glühwein. If you’ve skied hard and fancy treating yourself or the kids, the apple fritters at Brandegg Restaurant halfway down the mountain are not one to be missed!
WHAT TO DO
If you don’t fancy skiing, why not take the train through the Eiger mountain, all the way to the top of the Jungfrau to the highest railway station in Europe, and admire some of the most impressive views Switzerland has to offer. For discerning hikers and dog owners, Wengen has a network of beautiful hiking trails in both summer and winter. For those who want to try tobogganing, there are 95km’s worth of toboggan runs throughout the Jungfrau region. Although there isn’t a huge party scene in Wengen, a après drink at the Tanne Bar on the main street, will no doubt make for a fun evening!