How Jungfrau And Geneva Wow With Its Highest, Mightiest And Shiniest

Some travel to escape, while others look to immerse themselves in culture. Those seeking to check off a bucket list of the highest, mightiest and shiniest will knock a good dent in that endeavour with Switzerland, especially in Jungfrau.

The Jungfrau region.

Mention Jungfrau and the 4,158m peak in the southern end of the Swiss canton of Bern looms into formidable view. However, Jungfrau more generally encompasses a region of two valleys that join below an equally impressive cluster of peaks known as the Jungfrau Massif. Here, three mountain sentinels—Eiger, Monch and Jungfrau—stand guard over the Great Aletsch Glacier, the longest and mightiest glacier of Europe.

Eiger, Monch and Jungfrau.

Getting there puts into motion a journey through as many superlatives as the destination. Begin at Interlaken, the scenic town cradled between two impossibly turquoise lakes, Brienz and Thun, that shot to fame for being the shooting location of K-drama Crash Landing on You. The lake in question, Brienz, is 14km long and 260m deep of the cleanest lake water in all of Switzerland, a natural drinkable phenomenon encircled by majestic mountain slopes. Get a bird’s eye view of them from Harder Kulm, the ‘Top of Interlaken’, where a viewing platform grants you views upon Brienz and Thun, as well as the Eiger, Mönch and Jungfrau. For best effect, do it over lunch on a sunny day at the Harder Kulm Panorama Restaurant.

With your Swiss Travel Pass, which grants you unlimited travel by train, bus and boat, including mountain excursions, hop on the high-speed train of Jungfrau Railways to Grindelwald Terminal, the most modern terminal in the Alps, where the new Eiger Express, the world’s most modern tri-cable gondola, will take you to the Eiger Glacier station in just 15 minutes. After the cable car ride, another train will bring you right into Jungfraujoch— Top of Europe, located in the centre of the UNESCO World Heritage Site Swiss Alps Jungfrau-Aletsch.

Eiger Express Tri-cable Car.

You have arrived in the halls of Europe’s highest altitude railway station, standing at 3,454m above sea level. Home to four restaurants, a cafeteria, stores and souvenir shops, it is also the base of the MeteoShweiz, the highest permanently manned research and weather station in Europe, which tracks air pollution and climate change in the Alpine region.

Here, the Sphinx Terrace opens up to the crowning glory of Jungfrau, spectacular views across the Aletsch Glacier and, on clear days, the Vosges in France and Black Forest of Germany. Don’t miss the Ice Palace, a cavern of more than 1,000 sq m that houses crystal-like ice sculptures in countless niches and passageways, some of which move up to 15cm a year due to shifting ice.

Sphinx Terrace.

What goes up must come down. On your descent, it’s worth a stop in Wengen, the car-free village at the foot of Jungfrau that is home to a handful of traditional, sun-blessed spa and family resorts. Right next to it is Lauterbrunnen, the Valley of 72 Waterfalls, where the most spectacular waterfalls in Switzerland tumble down from an impressive valley set between gigantic cliffs and mountain peaks at 796m above sea level.

The Woodward Geneva has some of the best views of Geneva, including its most famous monument, the Jet d’Eau.

A taste of city life awaits in Geneva. The most cosmopolitan city in all of Switzerland as well as the world’s most compact metropolis, Geneva is often mistaken as the capital city of Switzerland (it’s not!). What it is, though, is the capital of luxury watchmaking.

Walk through the history of time with museums of torchbearers such as Patek Philippe, Omega, IWC Schaffhausen and more, or try your hands at a watchmaking course to discover the secrets of Swiss mechanical watchmaking in a fun and original way. Initium is one such endorsed establishment that offers a complete immersion into the world of mechanical timepieces, revealing an ancestral skill that, over the centuries, has become synonymous with an entire region and country.

Initium Watchmaking Workshop.

Gourmands are in for a real treat in Geneva. With the Choco Pass, a feature of the Geneva City Pass that opens new ways to discover the city, walk into a selection of partner chocolate boutiques, from Guillaume Bichet to Canonica and Chocolats Favarger, and sample a variety of the finest Swiss chocolates. Wine is also on the menu for oenophiles. A short 20 minutes away from the city will bring you to the vineyards of some of Geneva’s finest wines, backdropped against breathtaking countryside.

Be removed from the hustle and bustle of the city centre at the Ultima Grand Villa Geneva, a private villa that plops you in the quiet affluence of Geneva’s suburbs.

For haute cuisine, stars ascend on the dinner table at the likes of L’Atelier Robuchon in The Woodward Geneva. The trendy space of red and black features the legendary chef’s open kitchen concept, creating a theatrical dining experience as Geneva’s first and only Swiss address for the French chef and the only two Michelin-starred Robuchon restaurant in Europe.

The Woodward Geneva.

Constantly innovating through its repertoire of rich history, cultural gems, vibrant dining scene, and warm hospitality, Geneva has it all, from fondue to Michelin stars, day trips to nights out, and water to the peaks, despite its small size of approximately 16 kilometres squared. It truly is the world’s most compact metropolis.

L’Atelier Robuchon at The Woodward Geneva.


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