Small group guided tour with guaranteed departures, max size 14 people
Everything but the guide...custom tour design, hikes, and all the details.
Are you interested in a private guide? A private guided tour is booked specifically for you and your friends and family. You choose the dates that work best for you and choose the itinerary that feels right. We can help you make any custom changes you like to our guided Bernese Oberland Traverse – Part B itinerary and we will take care of all the details. Hotels are booked, rail passes ordered, and your own private guide will be waiting, so all you need to do is show up and enjoy your trip!
This route, which is also known as the via alpina, was recently named the “World’s best hike” by Backpacker magazine, and we agree! Our tour differs from other tours of the Bernese Oberland by adding a memorable detour to the Gasterntal valley that adds to an already impressive itinerary. This tour is a beautiful collection of supreme alpine scenery, remote inns, and quiet trails, and is a strenuous trip, with high, steep passes through quiet countryside. We’ll move to a new location nearly every day, and we’ll stay in a combination of 3-star village hotels and traditional country inns, where you’ll have a private room with bathroom down the hall. We’ll have one night without our luggage when we will need to carry just a few extra things, and on other days we’ll send the luggage ahead, so you can hike with the freedom of a small daypack.
Our typical day starts with a continental buffet breakfast at our inn – delicious fresh baked bread, local cheeses, cereal, fruit, coffee and juice – which gives us the energy needed for a full day of hut-to-hut hiking.
Soon we’ll be out on the trail for 6-9 hours, where often you’ll get to choose between an easier or more strenuous hike for the day and we explore the Alpine Pass Route. Each morning, you’ll be handed a lunch to carry, and at a mid-point along the way we’ll choose a beautiful spot to stop and enjoy our picnic. We get a lot of compliments on our imaginative lunches – making them something to look forward to as well!
We should finish our hike around 4-5 pm, giving you time to wash up and relax. You’ll have your own room every night, often with private bathroom. Each evening we’ll enjoy dinner together at our inn. These are multi-course feasts, featuring local specialties like bratwurst, rösti, or cheese fondue. Our hotels all serve fabulous food, and can cater to vegetarians, gluten-free or other dietary requirements. Dinners will be hearty, filling, well-earned and very delicious.
Mürren – Arrive in Switzerland, and transfer by train and cable car to the car-free village of Mürren, with its unparalleled cliffside views of the surrounding mountains.
Enjoy your first stunning introduction to the Bernese Oberland and unwind in one of the most scenic and relaxing villages in the Alps. Stay in a comfortable 3-star hotel.
Mürren – There are numerous dayhike possibilities around Mürren. The Lobhorn hut is a favorite dayhike, with beautiful views of the Eiger, Mönch and Jungfrau mountains across the valley. Another beautiful trail takes a rolling route through the meadows above Mürren, with non-stop views, passing numerous small farmhouses and mountain restaurants along with way.
Some people use this day to take the cable car above Mürren to the Schilthorn, with it’s James Bond-themed revolving restaurant and 360 degree views. Or you can take the train across the valley to Jungfraujoch, an amazing trip that tunnels through the Eiger, and brings you to a massive glacier viewpoint at 11,388 ft. Feel free also to just unwind in one of the most scenic and relaxing villages in the Alps.
Griesalp – Your trail meanders back into the deep recesses of the Sefinen valley before crossing the first of two major passes, Sefinenfurke, into the tiny hamlet of Griesalp.
A moderate but long climb past Rotstock hut and over the pass, followed by a very steep descent, is rewarded by a friendly welcome at our rustic but pretty inn. The Kiental valley is filled is a quiet, off-the-beaten-path corner, filled with impressive waterfalls and a timeless, pastoral quality.
Kandersteg – You’ll need an early start for our most challenging day of the tour, crossing your second major pass, Hohtürli. The trail is steep the whole day, but offers many scenic highlights, and a welcome hut at the pass for a well-deserved break.
Hike past glaciers and high mountain peaks to the jewel-like Oeschinen lake – an emerald-green lake surrounded by cliffs which has to be seen to be believed. For bad weather, or if you simply don’t feel like tackling the pass, you can take a bus around to Kandersteg and enjoy a mellow dayhike to the lake instead. We stay in a 3-star hotel in the quiet village of Kandersteg for the night.
Gasterntal – We’ll detour slightly from most Bernese Oberland routes into one of our favorite hidden gems. Leaving Kandesteg, you’ll quickly escape town on a quiet path leading south towards the Klus gorge and into the hidden Gasterntal valley. The power of the Kander river is impressive as we climb through this narrow gorge into the valley.
The Gasterntal is a picture-perfect hideaway – a small, U-shaped valley, carpeted with wildflowers and guarded by savage cliffs. Waterfalls bursting from the sides of cliffs add to the scenery. There are just a handful of farms and a couple small inns dotting the valley. We’ll stay in a pleasant inn toward the back of the valley with great mountain and waterfall views.
Gasterntal – For your grand finale, one of our favorite hikes is a strenuous climb to the nearby Lötschen pass. Old Roman trails lead you through meadows and woods, with a short stretch across a glacier, to the small hut at the pass where the views to the south are superb!
Return to the same inn at the bottom of the valley that night. Have a final, celebratory dinner and peaceful night’s sleep before departing on a bus tomorrow. A fitting way to end a great tour.
depart – Today you say good-bye to the Bernese Oberland and depart for Kandersteg and your post-tour destinations. A small bus takes you to Kandersteg where you can catch trains to your next destination.
This private guided tour covers the most scenic and challenging sections of the Alpine Pass Route across the Bernese Oberland…Learn more ›
Private guided tour of a region filled with great hikes and jaw-dropping views, anchored by the Matterhorn – one of the world’s defining mountains…Learn more ›