Cowbells decorate the side of a barn in Gimmelwald.

I find it helpful to think of the Lauterbrunnen Valley in three layers. The bottom layer is the valley floor, including the town of Lauterbrunnen itself, Trummelbach Falls, and the town of Stechelberg. The middle layers are the towns halfway up, like Grutschalp, Murren, and Gimmelwald on the west side, and Wengen on the east. The top layer is the mountain peaks, the places where we all go to see the views: Schilthorn, Birg, Jungfraujoch.

The mountain views from the middle-layer towns are different (but no less wonderful) than the views at the top. It’s rewarding to walk through and between the towns, and imagine what it must be like to live there.

We walked through Murren twice on the day we visited Schilthorn, and the second time we took a very nice paved path from there down to Gimmelwald. I say “down” because the walk was downhill all the way, sometimes quite steeply so.

View across the valley from Murren. The town in the distance is Wengen, on the other side of the valley.

Our group walks through Murren in the morning. Some shops weren’t open yet, so they needed to be visited in the afternoon.

Like the other towns in this valley, Murren has lots of hotels, restaurants, and shops. Some of our group members were pretty interested in the shops! Instead of walking to Gimmelwald in the afternoon, they stayed in town for more shopping.

Karen poses with a new friend.

We had a lot of fun walking through Murren, enjoying the wood-carvings and the amazing mountain views. 

Jungfrau pokes her head between these two  hotels in Murren.

Twins separated at birth?

Woodcarving seems to be a popular pastime in Murren. There are many attractive carvings all through the town.

Janet frames a view.

A gondola passes over Murren on its way up to Birg.

The beautiful walkway from Murren to Gimmelwald. You can see the valley floor in the distance.

We had read someplace on the Internet that the path from Murren to Gimmelwald afforded some excellent views, and is an easy walk, so we decided to try it. It is pretty easy, but the downhill slope is constant and fairly steep, so it was a bit tiring. The weather was so warm, we actually took off our jackets!

We weren’t the only ones who took advantage of the great weather. The paragliders were out in force. I so enjoyed watching them soar around the alpine peaks.

On the way down to Gimmelwald we crossed several mountain streams.

As we neared Gimmelwald we passed several farm animals, including sheep, goats, and horses.

Here are Steve and Arden entering Gimmelwald at the end of our long trek down from Murren. The building behind them is Gimmelwald’s largest guesthouse.

This is what passes for a housing development in Gimmelwald. It looks just the same as it did three years ago!

When we were here before, it was in the fall, and there were lots of cows in these pastures. They must be somewhere else in the spring – we saw no cows on this trip to Gimmelwald.

Here’s the main intersection in the town of Gimmelwald; note the heavy traffic.

From Gimmelwald we took the gondola down to Stechelberg, and from there we caught a bus back to Lauterbrunnen. Those Swiss Travel Passes are great!