snowkings logo


Grindelwald in winter. - (c) Jungfrau Tourism

Grindelwald is one of the classic Swiss ski resorts that has a location opposite the north face of the Eiger that is the envy of mountain villages the world over. Nestling beautifully in the Bernese Oberland at a height of 1034m, it is famous not only for it's skiing but as the main starting point and base for ascents of the mountains that dominate over the village - the Wetterhorn and the Eiger. As with near neighbours Wengen and Murren, Grindelwald is not only a popular winter sports destination but also a favourite in the summer, mainly for it's wealth of fantastic hiking trails.

Grindelwald - The Good, the Bad, ...and the Facts!

  • Grindelwald Resort Alititude: 1030m.
  • Incredible scenery, particularly the north face of the Eiger.
  • Good slopes for intermediates.
  • Getting to the slopes can be slow during peak times and holidays.

Grindelwald Live Streams

No live-streams are currently available for Grindelwald.

Grindelwald Web Cameras

A list of webcams for Grindelwald and the surrounding area.

Grindelwald Snow Record

Grindelwald is Family Friendly

Families or couples looking for somewhere traditional and pleasant will love the charm of it all, and it seems many get seduced into returning year after year to Grindelwald and the surrounding area. The pace of the place, and the attitude and hospitality of the folk who live and work here mean that families will love it.

Grindelwald has Amazing Scenery

It's a tricky thing having to hand this resort second place to anyone else in the scenery stakes » and it was a close run thing with Zermatt. Grindelwald sits on the side of a valley at a height of 1034m with an alpine backdrop that is the envy of the world - the Eiger » Monch » Jungfrau and Wetterhorn. To be honest pictures don't do the location of Grindelwald justice » you have to go there to witness the sheer scale of the Eiger looming over you. Dont be too disappointed if there's a cloud » seeing the top of the North Face appearing high above you sometimes feels more dramatic than on a cloudless day when the whole wall is in view. Most of the skiing takes place on the slopes facing the Eiger » such as First » so the view from the pistes is as good as that down in the town.

Any Summer Skiing at Grindelwald ?

Surprisingly, given the size of the mountains that are surrounding Grindelwald and the Jungfrau region, you can't actually ski anywhere in the summer. The Eiger has a glacier (the Eigergletscher) and from the visitor centre at the top of the Jungfraujoch you're right next to another one, actually the largest glacier in the Alps - the Great Aletsch Glacier (Grosser Aletschgletscher) but there are no lifts or skiing on these. Instead, Grindelwald, and the other resorts in Jungfrau region, turn their attention to a whole host of other outdoor activities during the summer months, such as hiking, climbing, paragliding and water-sports down on the lakes near Interlaken.

Grindelwald History

Grindelwald - Getting There

Consider travelling by train - it takes about 3 and a half hours from Geneva with changes required at Bern and Interlaken Ost. This may sound like a long time and a lot of hassle changing but it's worth it. It's a fantastic journey around Lake Geneva to start with and then the final legs as you hit the Bernese Oberland.

Getting to the Slopes at Grindelwald

First is the main ski area for Grindelwald, details of how to get to the slopes from the village are below. For details on how to get to the Mannlichen and Schilthorn slopes, go to the Wengen and Murren sections.

Getting to the Slopes of the First Ski Area above Grindelwald

First is Grindelwald's best known ski area and is situated at 2168m and with views straight over to the Eiger. You get access to the First ski area via the gondola from Grindelwald, with mid-stations at Bort and Schrekfeld. As with most ski areas that require a single main lift to get you to the main area, it can be a bit of a bottleneck in really busy times, but the lifts are quite fast and the situation is much improved from the slower lift system that was previously installed. First is home to Grindelwald's main nursery slopes and beginners area. There's a chairlift to take you up to the Oberjoch ski area and a series of lifts over at the Schrekfeld and Bargelegg areas to allow you to access the slopes over in these sub areas.

The Skiing at Grindelwald

Grindelwald is part of the Jungfrau Region Ski Region:

Jungfrau Region

Information on the Swiss ski area Jungfrau Region, including links to the surrounding resorts, webcams, slope information and lift details.

Grindelwald has access to two main ski areas - the First area, situated up above Grindelwald facing the Eiger, and the Mannlichen/Kleine Scheidegg ski area that is normally associated with Wengen. For this reason many people argue that Grindelwald is a better ski base than Wengen because you have similar access to both First and Mannlichen/Kleine Scheidegg, whereas Wengen only has easy access to the latter.

Details of the skiing in both areas is show below:

First Ski Area

Below is a description of the various skiing areas at First:

First Area

We'll start with First, Grindelwald's best known area situated at 2168m and with views straight over to the Eiger. You get access to it via the gondola from Grindelwald, with mid-stations at Bort and Schrekfeld. First is home to Grindelwald's main nursery slopes and beginners area. There's a chairlift to take you up to the Oberjoch area. Slopes down from First consist of a blue (no 3) and a red (no 4) that lead down to Schrekfeld. For advanced skiers there's a black (no 5) that winds all the way down to Bort.

Oberjoch Area

Access up to Oberjoch, the highest lift-served point on this side of Grindelwald, is via a chairlift from First. There are then two runs back down to the base of the chairlift, an easy blue and a slightly trickier red.

Schrekfeld Area

As well as the pistes down from the First area there is a chairlift (named Schilt) that you can get on and a few runs lead down from it - blue no. 8 and red no. 9 both end up back in the Schrekfeld area whilst another beginner-friendly blue takes you right down to the Bargelegg area. Advanced skiers can skip a long section of this blue by opting for a black (no 14) that runs in parallel to it. Going back to the main Schrekfeld area, there are 2 blacks and a red that run down from it - red 7 and black 16 take you down to the base of the Grindel chairlift at the Bargelegg area whilst black no 6 runs right down to Bort, its a long black that'll really get those thighs burning with a vertical drop of about 400m.

Bargelegg Area

The Bargelegg area has three lifts - the Grindel chair and the Bargelegg drag start from a similar location and the Hohwald drag which is a bit further to the right. The Grindel lift connects the red 7 and black 16 to Schrekfeld whilst taking the 206m Bargelegg drag opens up either red 12 or blue 13. Taking red 12 brings you to the base of the Hohwald lift, take this drag to the top and you've then got two options - an easy blue will bring you straight back to the bottom of the drag again, or red 23, one of the longest in the area will sweep you right around the valley through Stepfi and Blumlisalp and right down to Rancher Bar

Mannlichen Ski Area

Below is a description of the various skiing areas at Mannlichen-Kleine Scheidegg:

Mannlichen Area

From Mannlichen there is a blue (piste 2) or a red (number 3) to take you right down down to the base of the Mannlichen chairlift (note - that's the chairlift, not the cable-car back down to Wengen, you wont be skiing down that way unless you're about the same level as Candide Thovex). There are also 2 sections at the top where you can ski black piste no. 1 and then get down via the aforementioned reds or blues. One thing worth pointing out is that some of the higher slopes around Mannlichen can sometimes be closed due to high winds - it's quite an exposed area. Wengen village centre sometimes get's protected from the winds from the other side of Mannlichen but it's worth being aware that the conditions on the top run can be very different. However, this is a problem common to many ski resorts, not just Wengen.

Grund Area

Also going down from Mannlichen top station is the Grindelwald Grund - Mannlichen gondola. The gondola goes from 2230m right down to Grund at 944m. There are a variety of blues and red pistes to navigate down to the bottom of the fantastically named Lager chairlift (not as good as it sounds!) but to get down further to the Holenstein station of the gondola or right down to the bottom at Grund early intermediates need to be able to get down a red run (piste number 3). Be aware that in busy holiday periods such as half-term the routes down to Grund can get busy before lunch as lots of people head down there (anyone skipping lunch or stopping earlier/later will find the runs down to Grund much quieter over lunch).

Tschuggen Area

There are a number of pistes between Mannlichen and Kleinne Scheidegg but the vast majority are reds and suited to intermediates. One thing we're too keen about in this area is some of the piste markings - which were were a bit unclear. Red pistes no. 7 at Tschuggen and no. 21 at Honegg or Kleine Scheidegg both meet up just below the Tschuggen drag lift and then take you down to Grund. Speaking of the Tshuggen drag lift - it's extremely long - worth bearing in mind if you've got kids with you who have a tendency to fall off them if they need to hold on for longer than 2 minutes !! Nervy intermediates or developing beginners can get down to Grund avoiding the reds if they want to by using the long blue piste (no. 22) that goes right down under the north face of the Eiger from Kleine Scheidegg, past Alpiglen and down into Grindelwald.

Lauberhorn-Kleine Scheidegg Area

There are a couple of reds up on the top of the Lauberhorn, and you can ski the World Cup run that starts up here and winds it's way back down to Wengen. It's the oldest race on the downhill circuit and also the longest, the pro's doing it in a staggering 2 and a half minutes ! There's a cracking bar up here called the Start Bar, if you're there when the Lauberhorn race is on then get yourself up to it, you'll be amazed that you can rub shoulders with the racers before they hurtle off down the course. If you're up on the Lauberhorn and look onto the opposite side of Kleine Scheidegg you'll see another area at a similar height - the Eigergletscher. More advanced skiers will be pleased to hear that there are a few black runs up here around the Fallboden lift as well as a couple of reds.

Allmend Area

You can get back down to Wengen from either the Eigergletscher, Lauberhorn or Kleine Scheidegg areas (with the latter having the blue option) but all 3 routes (with the exception of the black World Cup run) eventually end up at the Wengernalp area, sweeping round the corner on a steady blue to Allmend. If you do come down the World Cup run look out for boards detailing the different sections and jumps of the course. If you like your Ski Sunday or Eurosport then you'll recognise the names, if not they're still worth taking a breather at and reading. There are a couple more black and red runs in the Allmend area, ending down at the foot of the Innerwengen chairlift, one of the blacks is the Mannlichen World Cup slalom run, which traditionally takes place the day after the downhill. Back up at Allmend the blue run continues back down into the village - you can then make your way back over to the cable car and start again or if it's the end of the day head for a well-deserved drink !

Grindelwald Piste Maps

A list of piste-maps for Grindelwald and the surrounding ski areas.

First-Grindelwald Piste Map

Piste-map of the First ski area above Grindelwald.

Mannlichen-Kleine Scheidegg Piste Map

Piste-map of the Mannlichen and Kleine Scheidegg ski areas above Wengen.

Grindelwald The Resort Itself

Grindelwald Other Activities

Grindelwald Local Knowledge

  • In modern culture, Grindelwald is used in the JK Rowling Harry Potter/Fantastic Beasts books and films as the name of one of the sinister characters, "Gellert Grindelwald".

Grindelwald Apres Ski

Grindelwald - Any Chance of Early Snow ?

Grindelwald Resort Style

Grindelwald Annual Events

Annual Events in this and neighbouring resorts...

Grindelwald Useful Links

If you want some further information on Grindelwald, then you might find these links to other sites useful...

Hotels + Chalets in Grindelwald

Grindelwald hotels and chalets.

Bodmi Hotel

Picture-book holidays for individual travellers at the "Bodmi", individual travellers really come into their own, because there are no tourist groups here. Instead, lots of personal service and endless luxury. The number 1 topic of conversation: the unique Wellness Oasis in the goat's stable, where 12 mountain goats really bring your wellness experience to life. But really, relaxation is guaranteed simply by the wonderful peaceful location out in the countryside, close to footpaths, ski slopes and the ski school.

Lauberhorn Hotel

The Lauberhorn is a casual hotel, simple but contemporary with a refreshing hospitality in a particularly relaxed atmosphere located 600m from Grindelwald centre in front of the north wall of the Eiger. The hotel has a free internet corner, WiFi throughout, a ski-bus-stop right outside the hotel (free of charge), free daily afternoon tea and a Finnish sauna. The Lauberhorn also offers weekly cheese-fondue evenings, sells ski-passes, does resort-briefings and ski-guiding with Beni. The hotel has some newly renovated "chic" and "top" rooms and serves home-made soup, salad, spaghetti and sweets.

Romantik Hotel Schweizerhof

The Romantik Hotel Schweizerhof is located near to the centre of Grindlewald. It offers breathtaking views of the Eiger and easy access to over 240km of ski slopes. There are three restaurants, a lobby with fireplace and hotel bar, as well as a brand new complementary Spa for the perfect energy boost at the end of the day. Here you will find a heated indoor pool with views of the Eiger, Kneipp-basin and climate shower, steam bath, Finnish sauna, bio-sauna and a large choice of massages. The Romantik Hotel Schweizerhof offers a large variety of packages including ski passes, half board, spa and wellness inclusive.

Sunstar Hotel Grindelwald

This holiday and spa hotel is in an outstandingly panoramic location, quiet and central but with uninterrupted views of the famous North Face of the Eiger, Wetterhorn and First. Inside, the hotel is decorated with lots of warm wood, and the spacious lobby has an open fire, creating a cosy atmosphere. The half-board "Ambiance" restaurant has picture-perfect views of the mountains, tempting you to linger and eat to your heart's content. Gourmet diners are also superbly catered for in the a-la-carte "Adlerstube" restaurant. In the spa centre, you'll find all kinds of ways to unwind: try the large swimming pool, the Finnish sauna, the Roman baths with four climate zones, the hydro-massage showers, the solarium or the rest room.

Alpenhof Hotel

The family-run Alpenhof hotel is only 3 minutes' walk away from the centre of Grindelwald and the train station, and is situated very close to the ski slopes. The rooms and suites feature free wireless internet access and all have either a balcony or a patio, with double rooms having superb views towards the Eiger mountain. During winter time the outdoor whirlpool and the Finnish sauna are available free of charge and provide for ultimate relaxation after a grand day on the slopes.

Share Share