The sleepy mountain village of Gimmelwald is probably as close to heaven as you can get. With only 130 residents, no cars, no TV, not even newspapers, Gimmelwald is a completely different world. Since it sits at the edge of a cliff above the Lauterbrunnen Valley, the views are guaranteed to be breathtaking. The town is not as wealthy as most towns and cities in Switzerland, but it is pleasantly stuck in the past, which gives travelers the perfect off-the-beaten-path experience.
There aren’t a lot of options for a stay in Gimmelwald, but the few that are available give enough life to the rest of the town. Nightlife in Gimelwald means hanging out in hostels and local watering holes, chatting up hikers and residents about all the knowledge they can share about the alps.
If you are in for a hike or a cable car ride to Gimmelwald, consider these places for a memorable stay.
The most sought-after place in all of Gimmelwald, Mountain Hostel is as good as a landmark in the town. For only CHF 45 per night, including a breakfast buffet, Mountain Hostel attracts hikers and travelers of all kinds. The mood is always light and welcoming, and there will always be sharing of stories about experiences in the Alps and across the world.
All rooms are decked out with bunk beds. There are boys, girls, and coed dorms, and a family room that can be booked privately for six people. There are no fancy facilities in the hostel, but there is free WiFi and guests also get a 30% discount for the Schilthorn.
The Mountain Hostel is open in winter from the 1st of December to the 30th of March, and in the summer from the middle of April till the 31st of October.
Nidrimatten, Chilchstatt, 3826 Lauterbrunnen
+41 33 855 17 04
Esther's Guesthouse is a small family-run accommodation with seven rooms and two apartments. Each room and apartment vary in size and capacity, but all have the picturesque views of the mountains that surround Gimmelwald. The guesthouse sits in a quaint garden with benches and the occasional barn animal roaming around, which make for a relaxing time with other travelers.
Despite the wooden structure, the guesthouse features contemporary decor and facilities. There isn't much when it comes to gadgets and electronics, but the fully-functional shared kitchen, modern showers, and skylights make for a more than comfortable stay.
Chilchstatt 746, 3826 Lauterbrunnen
+41 33 855 54 88
Hotel Mittaghorn is a very rustic old building with very simple facilities. Communal bathrooms have showers where you insert 1 Franc for 5 minutes of hot water, and floors are nothing less than creaky, but the old world charm is what a lot of travelers visit the Mittaghorn for.
While most accommodations in Gimmelwald are simple and family run, Mittaghorn takes the cake. Hearty breakfasts are served and the owners of the hotel make sure to sit with their guests and help them plan the day. However, the kitchen closes for dinner, so guests would have to visit the nearby hotels and B&B's if they wish to eat out. Otherwise, guests are encouraged to have picnics within the Mittaghorn property where the hotel provides plates and utensils.
Out of all the accommodation in Gimmelwald, Hotel Mittaghorn has some of the best views.
+41 33 855 1658
Hotel Pension is a Swiss style structure that has hardly changed in the last 100 years. Views from the rooms as breathtaking, as always, but their restaurant is one of the biggest attractions. Breakfasts are only free for the winter season, but travelers to Gimmelwald make sure to visit the Hotel Pension restaurant to sample hearty, homemade Swiss cuisine.
There is a minimum of two nights to book a room at Hotel Pension, but the old wooden Swiss chalet style of the rooms will make travelers want to stay even longer. Room facilities and capacity vary per room, which means that they have space for every person on every budget.
Gimmelwald, 3826 Gimmelwald / Lauterbrunnen
+41 33 855 1730
Olle & Maria's Bed and Breakfast opened its doors to the public in 1994. What used to be a private home now provides comfortable accommodations and fantastic views of the alps to hikers and travelers to Gimmelwald. Run by the couple Olle and Maria, service at this place is very personalized and warm, making guests feel right at home.
The minimum stay policy for Olle & Maria's Bed and Breakfast is three days. Since it used to be a house, accommodations are limited. The bed and breakfast has an apartment with its own entrance that can house up to three people. It's fully fitted with its own kitchen and shower, and basically function as one's own home. There is a double room and a triple room within the main house with a shared bathroom with Olle and Maria's family and other guests if both rooms are booked.
Niderimatten 783, 3826 Gimmelwald
+41 33 855 3575
Roger is a little obsessed with travel. He has been to over 40 countries, broken 3 suitcases and owned over 10 backpacks in 12 months. What he doesn't know about travel, ain't worth knowing!