It may be the middle of a heatwave and the height of summer, but all this hot weather has certainly got me longing for cool mountain air!
Today our blog post is about one of our most popular winter resorts – Lauterbrunnen in Switzerland – where the air is refreshing and the views are magical all winter long. Having spent two seasons working as Oak Hall team in our Chalet Jungfrau, it’s my pleasure to tell you what you can look forward to as a guest in Lauterbrunnen. I hope it will inspire you to visit for the first time, or bring back memories if you come with us year on year.
A typical day in Lauterbrunnen
The Lauterbrunnen chalet is open for eighteen weeks of the season, from early December all the way through till late April. We start every day with a time of prayer. It is important to us to start our day with God, praising and giving our day and holiday over to Him. We then enjoy breakfast together in the dining room before meeting to travel up to the slopes.
If you take the full area pass, you can access around 206km of slopes across the Jungfrau region. Throughout the week you can explore three different mountain areas: Männlichen and Kleine Scheidegg on the Wengen side, and Murren across the valley. Hopping on a train or cable car to travel higher gives a bird’s eye view of the whole Lauterbrunnen valley and finally we meet the stunning mountains that we are lucky enough to ski right beneath. On a clear day, skiing or boarding beneath the shadow of the Eiger and seeing mountain views for miles is something you’ll never forget and will be sure to feature on your Instagram!
After a morning of skiing or boarding, either in lessons or with friends and family, we meet up to enjoy packed lunches in the fresh air or in one of the restaurants with a warming hot chocolate. After lunch there are more lessons with our Oak Hall instructors or time to get those last few runs in. A favourite afternoon run for many is the ‘Narnia run’ down to Brandegg, which can be found in the Kleine Sheidegg ski area. This gentle blue run winds down the mountain through trees and opens out to stunning views. It is especially popular because of the restaurant at the bottom that serves the famous Brandegg apple fritters.
At the end of the day, it’s time to head back to the chalet and relax with a cup of tea – along with perhaps some fresh baking from our chalet team. We then all come together for dinner and recall our best ski stories and wipe-outs of the day! It’s a great time to regroup and get to know people.
The Oak Hall team lead an hour’s meeting each evening including a time of worship, a testimony and a Bible talk. A range of fun evening activities follow for those ready for more! Fondues, mountain walks, ceilidhs or a warm friendly environment for those just wanting to sit and chat about their day.
Something for everyone
What if you don’t ski or snowboard? There’s plenty of things to do and see in the valley if you’re not keen on snow sports. Here are some of our favourite alternatives:
- Visit the Shilthorn on the Murren side of the valley: complete with a revolving restaurant and incredible views. On a clear day you can see across the mountains to Mont Blanc in France. The Schilthorn featured in the 1969 James Bond movie On Her Majesty’s Secret Service and there is an exhibition to commemorate this.
- Jungfraujoch – The highest railway station in Europe is well worth the train ride up the mountains and through the Eiger. At the top you will find an ice palace, a chocolate shop and, on a clear day, views for as far as the eye can see.
- Winter walks – From our chalet in Lauterbrunnen there are a wide variety of winter walks in Lauterbrunnen and higher up on the Wengen or Murren sides. There are also plenty of cafes in the villages, perfect for a hot chocolate stop.
Written by: Rebecca Adair
You can can browse all of our winter programme for 2019 here.