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Gstaad is surrounded by several mountains that are easily accessible by gondolas or other mountain rides. At an altitude of approx. 2,000 m / 6,560 ft you get great views of the Simmental- and the Saanen Valleys, including the villages, and you can see several higher peaks of the Bernese and Vaudoise Alps. These mountains offer numerous opportunities for winter sports, as well as summer sports.
Les Diablerets / Glacier 3000 (3,000 m / 9,840 ft):
Half- or Full-day excursion (approx. 1 1/2 hours by bus and gondola from Gstaad to the top). Glacier 3000 - the nearest 3,000 meters-peak to Gstaad - has become a popular destination for tourists, both in summer and in winter. You will be amazed by the breathtaking, 360-degree panorama of the Vaudois, the Bernese and the Valaisan Alps and great views of twenty-four 4,000 meters-peaks including the Mont Blanc and the Matterhorn.
Schilthorn - Piz Gloria (2,970 m / 9,742 ft):
Full-day excursion (approx. 3 1/2 hours by train from Gstaad to the top). The most spectacular 360° panorama in the Alps! Dine-and-wine in the world's first revolving restaurant at an altitude of nearly 3,000 meters. Impressive views embrace some 200 snow-capped peaks, ranging from the Bernese Alps to Mont Blanc in France and Germany's Black Forest.
Jungfraujoch - Top of Europe (3,454 m / 11,330 ft):
Full-day excursion (approx. 4 1/4 hours by train from Gstaad to the top). Snow and ice 100% guaranteed! The UNESCO World Heritage offers the Sphinx observation hall, an impressive Ice Palace and a hiking plateau in the glacier - these are year-round attractions up on the Jungfraujoch, the highest railway station in Europe. Summer attractions include a skilift, husky-drawn sledging and adventure activities.
Bern - Switzerland's captivating Capital:
Full-day excursion (approx. 2 hours by train from Gstaad). Founded in 1191, this is a city of medieval magic, listed by UNESCO as a World Cultural Heritage. Attractions of Bern include several historic sites such as the famous Clock Tower, the bearpits (home to the city's heraldic animals), the House of Parliament, the Paul Klee Center, the Swiss Alpine Museum, and excellent shopping arcades.
Thun - Gateway to the Bernese Alps:
Half- or Full-day excursion (approx. 90 minutes by train from Gstaad). Thun (pronounced "Toon") is one of the most original towns in Switzerland. It occupies an admirable site with magnificent views of the Bernese Alps and is much overlooked by visitors pressing on to Interlaken. With its picturesque castle, the quaint medieval Old Town, and Lake Thun, one of the loveliest and largest lakes in Switzerland, Thun is well worth a visit.
Interlaken - in the Heart of the Swiss Alps:
Half- or Full-day excursion (approx. 100 minutes by train from Gstaad). Interlaken, the small town between the cristal-clear lakes of Thun and Brienz is surrounded by Alpine pearls such as sparkling streams, fantastic falls and extraordinary mountain scenery including the famous peaks of the Eiger, the Moench and the Jungfrau. Don't miss strolling along Interlaken's famous "Höheweg" promenade - it is one of the best locations in Switzerland for souvenir and watch shopping, and offers superbe views of the Jungfrau mountain range. Consider combining the excursion to Interlaken with visiting other sights of the Jungfrau region, such as the Jungfraujoch or the Schilthorn, the Ballenberg Open-Air Museum or the St. Beatus Caves.
Lucerne - City of Lights:
Full-day excursion (approx. 3 hours by train from Gstaad via Bern). Lucerne is ideally situated in the historic and scenic heart of what many believe to be the "true" Switzerland - picture mountains, lakes, cowbells, alpine villages and meadows full of Edelweiss. Lucerne is renowned for its attractive townscape, historic Chapel Bridge and shopping facilities. There are various routes to get from Gstaad to Lucerne: either going or on your return, take the scenic ride on the Golden Pass train via Interlaken and over the Brünig Pass (travel time 4 hours).
Montreux - City of the Swiss Riviera:
Half- or Full-day excursion (approx. 80 minutes by train from Gstaad). This attractive excursion crosses the "border" between German and French-speaking Switzerland and takes you to the shores of Lake Geneva. Enjoy the mild climate and the beautiful terraced vineyards of Lavaux that are part of the UNESCO World Heritage. While in Montreux, you want to consider visiting one of the most beautiful historic buildings in Switzerland, the Chateau de Chillon: in the 13th century this castle was built in a unique setting on the shores of Lake Geneva, and today also serves as a typical postcard souvenir from Switzerland.
other Excursions / Sights:
Half- or Full-day excursion (approx. 70 minutes by train from Gstaad). The small village of Gruyeres is very charming and is easily reachable from Gstaad. You can walk the cobblestone road to the old castle and visit the Cheese Factory - "la maison de Gruyere" - to observe making of the Gruyere Cheese. You might consider combining this excursion with a visit of the Cailler Chocolate Factory in Broc (April through October).
Cruises on Lake Thun or Lake Brienz:
Half-day or evening excursions during April - October. Enjoy a leisurely cruise on a modern motorship or one of the renovated stately steamers. Excellent catering and banquet facilities, theme events and club, company and family festivities, paddle steamer with children's club, evening cruises with entertainment. Cruises on Lake Thun depart at Thun's railway station, cruises on Lake Brienz from Interlaken's Ost station.
Golden Pass Scenic Train:
Full-day excursions. In Gstaad you can board the scenic Golden Pass train with its panoramic wagons. Your destination either is Lucerne or Interlaken traveling through the Simmental Valley to Interlaken (travel time approx. 2 hours), then along Lake Brienz and the Bruenig Pass to Lucerne (total travel time 4 hours), or you are heading to Montreux along the Saane River (travel time 80 minutes).
Hot-Air Balloon Ride:
Rides are available from Chateau-d'Oex (approx. 20 minutes from Gstaad) to wherever the wind takes you... The view of the Alps or the Gruyere from a balloon basket is incredible.
Alpine Cheese Diary Visit:
There are several mountain farms that can be visited to observe cheese making and/or for other activities. Ask at the local tourist offices for locations and hours.
Ballenberg Open-Air Museum: open Mid-April through End of October.
Full-day excursion (approx. 160 minutes by train and bus or 2 hours by car from Gstaad). Experience Switzerland as it used to be! In Ballenberg rural culture and the life of our ancestors becomes a fascinating experience. More than one hundred century-old buildings from all over Switzerland, 250 farmyard animals, traditional, old-time gardens and fields, demonstrations of local crafts and many special events create a vivid impression of rural life in days gone by.
There are numerous more options such as a visit of the "Parc Aventure" in Aigle (one hour from Gstaad) for climbing and adventure fun for all the family, or a Husky Tour (dog-drawn sleigh ride) on Glacier 3000. Contact the local tourist office to discuss your interests and options.