"Challenging hiking with stunning scenery as the reward for effort; some less arduous days still with beautiful views; nice accommodation in which to relax after hiking; good food; professional caring guides; companionship with our guides; the guides’ enthusiasm which was infectious and encouraging."- Michael G.
"I loved everything about the trip! The hiking was wonderful (and enough of a challenge to keep it interesting), the hotels lovely and comfortable and the meals were yummy. But all of those things would mean nothing without the guides Willi and Dave. Everything ran smoothly because of their care and attention to details. On parts of the trails that I found challenging, they were patient with me and very encouraging. Also they are such nice guys it was always a pleasure to talk to them."- Andrea Ostrowski
"You get into towns, hotels and trails that would be hard to discover on your own. I return because the guides always make it a really, really fun trip."- T. Leadbetter
“My wife and I just completed this hike with Branford and Conan. They were great guides and companions who were very professional and took very good care of us while giving us all options available. Hiking the entire trek without shortcuts allowed us to really experience the beauty of this part of Switzerland and enjoy the physical side of trekking. The walks were well balanced with some really tough ones but with great rewards visually, and other easier ones, still with spectacular scenery. The accommodations were excellent and the food was very good and certainly enough to keep us going. Some sharing also allowed us to experience a wide range of Swiss cuisine. Overall it was a very special and unforgettable week. Thank you Ryder-Walker.”- Michael and Nicky Gregora
A week of spectacular hiking through fairytale Switzerland.
Storybook chalets, lofty mountain passes, glaciers, snowcapped peaks and full days on the hiking trail.
A delicious sampling of traditional Swiss alpine accommodations. Spend 6 nights in well-appointed, superior inns and 2 nights in remote mountain berghauses situated in spectacular mountain environments.
An in-depth exploration of the Bernese Oberland region. We hit the popular highlights and the hidden trails of the quieter side, too.
The Bernese Oberland in central Switzerland is one of the most stunning mountain ranges on earth. High, glaciated peaks and vertical rock walls ascend thousands of feet above tumbling waterfalls, pristine valleys, and flower-filled meadows sporting the world’s happiest cows.
Our nine-day hiking tour begins on the west side of the Berner Oberland in the fashionable resort village of Gstaad. Hiking eastward, we wander past perfect little chalets huddled around magnificent gardens. Cross airy mountain ridge lines, like the Wasserngrat and Ammertepass, and overnight in a simple mountain hut at Engstligenalp, drifting to sleep above tree line with the smell of wood smoke and tinkling cowbells in the distance.
The topography ramps up considerably as you hike out of your luxurious hotel in Kandersteg. Cross the lofty Hohtürli Pass, meaning “the high little door,” in German. Drop into the remote and mysterious Kiental, a valley with the steepest post bus route in Europe, and climb over the Sefinenfurgge, offering eye-popping views over Europe’s most famous mountains, the Eiger (13,025 feet), Mönch (13,474 feet), and Jungfrau (13,642 feet), among many others.
The hiking mellows out a bit during the last part of the trip, but the scenery explodes. We hike at the very foot of the Eigernordwand, the vertical north face of the Eiger, and bed down in famous Swiss destinations like Mürren, Wengen, and Grindelwald. Glaciers, iconic mountains, and quintessential Swiss scenery provide the finale for our tour.
Meet your guide(s) and group at 7 pm at your lovely, four-star, chalet style hotel for dinner, drinks, and orientation in Gstaad.
We begin today with a lift to the fabulous Wasserngrat and enjoy beautiful views of the pastoral Saanenland. The trail winds through enchanting meadows and limestone outcrops. The scenery changes to showcase the emerging glaciated peaks of the Oberland. Descend to the idyllic village of Lenk by cable car.
Distance: 9 miles. Elevation gain/loss: 3700/3310 ft. (without lift).
Distance: 7.5 miles. Elevation gain/loss: 1890/1500 ft. (with lift).
Today’s hike begins by the raging headwaters of the Simme as we climb to the remote Ammertenpass. After an airy crossing, we descend into the hanging valley of Engstligenalp.
Distance: 8 miles. Elevation gain/loss: 4200/2200 ft.
Ascend to the lush pastures above Engstligenalp, then hike underneath the Tschingellochtighorn and across Chindbettipass to Berghotel Schwarenbach. From there, take the Sunnbüel cable car for an optional descent, or follow ancient carriage roads to the village of Kandersteg.
Distance: 9 miles. Elevation gain/loss: 3000 ft.
Enter the very heart of the high peaks of the Oberland with a scenic gondola ride out of Kandersteg to Oeschinensee, a beautiful lake that sits in an amphitheater of rock beneath the dramatic Blümlisalp massif. Pass through the Hohtürli (German for “high door”), right beneath glaciers tumbling from the region’s highest summits. Upon descending to the hamlet of Griesalp, enjoy expansive views of the Berner Oberland’s peaks and glaciers.
Distance: 9 miles. Elevation gain/loss: 3900/4445 ft.
Today, we ascend out of Kiental, a pastoral gem beneath the impressive walls of the Blumlisalp massif. When crossing the challenging Sefinenfurke we begin to witness amazing views of the Eiger. Descend into the Lauterbrunen valley and our charming hotel in Mürren.
Distance: 10.5 miles. Elevation gain/loss: 4150/3400 ft.
Enjoy a long ramble down the Lauterbrunnen Valley, with views of thundering falls and the vestiges of pastoral culture in this picture-perfect valley. We continue to the carfree village of Wengen, perched on the cliff opposite Mürren.
Distance: 9 miles. Elevation gain/loss: 1800/3200 ft.
A most classic hike lies before us today as we cross the spectacular Kleine Scheidegg, the saddle beneath the infamous Eiger Nordwand, (north wall) and descend through a lush forest along a wooded path to Grindelwald.
Distance: 10.5 miles. Elevation gain/loss: 3860/2800 ft.
Wake to a delicious Swiss breakfast, then depart. The transfer to Zurich airport takes about three hours by rail.