The mountain village of Wengen in the Jungfrau region is a highlight. Honestly, the feelings when looking at the Lauterbrunnen valley are indescribable and hard to put into words. Find out everything important about Wengen regarding viewpoints, sights, shopping, hotels, excursions and more in our travel guide.
Wengen Switzerland – the sun terrace of the Jungfrau region
Wengen, situated at 1274 meters above sea level, is the sun terrace of the Jungfrau region. Other villages nearby like the famous Grindelwald have no sun at all in winter or Lauterbrunnen only two hours. Compared to Lauterbrunnen, Wengen is about 400 meters higher. Thanks to its excellent location, the village also gets sun until late in the evening in summer. And when there is fog in the valley below in winter, the sun often shines in Wengen.
Other advantages of Wengen are on the one hand that the place is protected from the wind, on the other hand car-free like the village of Gimmelwald and Mürren. This makes a visit a relaxing and dreamlike experience.
By the way, Wengen was first mentioned in the 13th century. Long before industrialization, however, people in the mountain regions had a particularly hard life and lived as mountain farmers and hunters. Avalanches or landslides hit regularly the village. Today, the mountain slope above the tree line is secured in many places with avalanche barriers. These are the lines on the mountain that you can see in the direction of Männlichen.
In winter, Wengen also hosts the famous Lauberhorn Downhill, a World Cup ski race. Also on the program is the slalom and the combination. Then the hotels are particularly well booked and more expensive.
For the right planning we give here important tips, some of them are real insider tips.
Arrival in Wengen and hotel pickup
Since Wengen is car-free, getting there is a little more complex. But don’t worry, any hardships are worth it, because the view from the train is simply fantastic. Not surprisingly, these scenes have gone viral quite a few times on Instagram and Facebook.
If you come by car, then you can park in the station parking of Lauterbrunnen. Especially in winter, the parking garage is extremely full and already booked out shortly after 8 o’clock. Therefore I recommend to arrive early or to use the alternative parking at the church. From Lauterbrunnen, the Wengenalpbahn runs every 30 minutes during the day in the direction of Wengen and on to Kleine Scheidegg and the Eiger glacier. By the way, the train ride takes less than 15 minutes to your dream destination. If you want to go to the village center, get off at “Wengen” and not “Wengwald”. A few hotels are closer to Wengwald.
By the way, some hotels offer a free shuttle transfer from the railway station. These electric vehicles are allowed in Wengen. Likewise, farmers get a special permit for a car or work equipment.
Walk through the village
If you expect Wengen to be a huge town, you will be disappointed. Moreover, Wengen is a small neat alpine village at the foot of the mountain called Männlichen. There are also various shopping possibilities. On the one hand, there are the many tourist and watch stores as well as restaurants in the main street.
But in Wengen there is also a Coop supermarket. Unlike many other places in Switzerland, it is open 7 days a week, which means also on Sunday. The opening hours are from 8.00 am to 6.30 pm.
The most beautiful viewpoints in Wengen
Often you get to a place and you wonder where the most beautiful viewpoints and photo spots are. In Wengen I have three favorites, which I have marked for you on the map.
The first viewpoint is at the end of the main shopping street. From here you have on the steep road the perfect view and photo spot of the village and the Jungfrau. There is almost no better postcard picture.
Or is it? At least, at the second vantage point near the church of Wengen, built in 1953, you look in a completely different direction. From here you have the ideal view of the breathtaking Lauterbrunnen Valley. Especially the evening atmosphere is simply fantastic. There are also a few benches waiting for you here, but the place is popular.
If you want to be alone in Wengen, it’s about a 30-minute walk to the viewpoint above Wengwald. In my opinion, the view is once again much more beautiful and the feelings can hardly be written in words. Definitely a true place of power and hidden gem in the Swiss Alps.
Excursions from Wengen
Wengen is known as an excursion destination in the Jungfrau region. By the way, trains have been running to the mountain village in the Bernese Oberland since 1893. The number 1 in terms of excursions is clearly the Jungfraujoch. If you are staying in a hotel in Wengen, it is recommended to take one of the first trains. Because even off season the Jungfraujoch can be very crowded. If the weather should not be good, the trip is only worthwile for train lovers. You can check the webcams before you buy a ticket.
By the way, you can take the Wengernalpbahn from Wengen to Kleine Scheidegg. There you have to change to the train coming from Grindelwald. A second change is again at the Eiger glacier, where you then drive almost 20 minutes inside the mountain. The changes are very easy, as you can basically just follow the crowd or ask a train employee if necessary. Also everything is always very well signposted.
Excursion from Wengen to the Männlichen
The cable car takes you from Wengen to Männlichen, where you have great hiking opportunities in summer. In winter, the main focus is on skiing.
The cable car ride takes only 6 minutes and climbs about 950 meters in altitude.
Hike from Wengen to Lauterbrunnen
The hike from Wengen to Lauterbrunnen takes about 1.5 hours and goes steeply downhill. Yes, this is definitely not for people with sensitive knees. But the hike with the views of the Lauterbrunnen valley, the idyllic forest and the various waterfalls is always beautiful. The hike should only be done from late spring to fall, when the paths are dry, because otherwise the risk of slipping is too great.
Accommodation and hotels in Wengen
Wengen offers accommodation and hotels for almost 8500 people, while 4’700 of them are tourist beds. Compared to Mürren, which offers about 2500, Wengen is much larger and more touristy.
During the off-season, only around 1500 people live here, but in winter during the ski season there are over 10,000 and in summer between 5,000-6,000. This includes the vacation accommodations of private individuals, but there are also several Airbnbs and hotels in Wengen. Like Mürren, Wengen does not have its own 5-star hotel. But there are various 4-star hotels such as the top-rated Beausite Park Hotel, the Hotel Silberhorn or the also good Sunstar Hotel Wengen.
If you check into a hotel, be sure to ask for the guest card which is for free of charge. With it you get some discounts, which are especially worthwhile if you use cable cars. For example, the Wengen-Männlichen cable car is 30 percent cheaper. On the Schynige Platte you can save even more with 38 percent (as of 2022). Unfortunately, the guest card is not valid for the train ride Lauterbrunnen-Wengen.