Jungfrau

After that exhilarating trip to Mt Titlis, we were headed to Jungfrau.

Our first halt was at Interlaken.

As a vacation destination , Interlaken is an ideal starting point for many Alpine excursions. It lies in a plain between the Lake Brienz and Lake Thun ( hence Interlaken)with the River Aare alongside and surrounded by three mountain ranges…the Eiger, Monch and Jungfrau.

In winter, skiers throng the place as it provides easy access to many alpine ski slopes like Jungfrau, Beatenberg or Axalp-Brienz. Mountain railways, ski lifts and cable cars take these ski enthusiasts to their chosen destination from Interlaken.

In summer, the trains to Jungfrau region depart Interlaken . Just around 10 km from Interlaken is the famous paragliding slopes of Beatenberg-Niedrehorn.

Interlaken and its surrounding areas have excellent conference centres making it an international conference venue of repute.

No wonder then , that Interlaken finds itself in every tourist’s itinerary.

Interlaken itself has lots to offer the tourists. Untouched natural surroundings, snow covered peaks and crystal clear lakes make it a tourist’s dream destination .The beautiful turquoise water of Lake Brienz is very attractive indeed!

Some pictures from Interlaken for you to enjoy :

As we reached Interlaken

The 3 Alpine ski slopes seen from Interlaken (Eiger, Monch Jungfrau)

Interlaken (don’t miss the paraglider in the shot)

Lake Brienznote the turquoise coloured waters

A typical Swiss Chalet

A paraglider lands at Interlaken

A closer view of the snow covered Alps as we left Interlaken for Jungfrau

Jungfrau

Jungfrau ( meaning virgin) is one of the main summits in the Swiss Alps and together with Eiger and Monch forms a wall of mountains overlooking the Swiss plateau.

Though various expeditions reached the summit in the 19th century, the construction of the Jungfrau Railway in the 20th century has made it more accessible and one of the most visited sites of the Alps. This rail journey takes one to Jungfraujoch (highest train station in Europe) which is referred to as “Top Of Europe”. The 2 hour journey takes one to a height of 3454 m above sea level. We boarded the train from Lauterbrunnen

At Lauterbrunnen station

The train to Jungfrau

The views from the train were simply beautiful ! Large tower like snow covered peaks against the brilliant blue sky ;amazingly beautiful meadows with wild alpine flowers and cattle grazing around.

Snow covered peaks from the train

Alpine wildflowers near the tracks

Cattle grazing near the tracks

As the ascent of the train continued, the snow covered peaks seemed to come closer and the greenery outside was gradually replaced by a sheet of white!

Views as we reached closer to the summit

Just before we reached the Jungfraujoch station, there was a 7 km tunnel and the train halted at Eismeer station within the tunnel. We alighted here and enjoyed the amazing views of the glacier through windows in the tunnel. Got some great pictures too!!

View from the tunnel window

The Jungfraujoch station was located within a building complex which housed various restaurants and other amenities.

We headed to the Sphinx Terrace (a viewing platform) via an elevator. There we had panoramic views of the Swiss Alps and Aletsch glacier. There is an astronomical observatory located here called the Sphinx Observatory. Adjacent to the observatory is an open viewing deck.

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The Sphinx Observatory

At the viewing platform

A lone avian visitor

Panoramic view of the Alps from the viewing platform

The Aletsch glacier

We walked on to the Plateau which is an open area where you can walk closer to the glacier.

At the Glacier Plateau

Tourists enjoying the snow at Glacier Plateau

The Ice Palace – another attraction

This unique tunnel carved out of ice and lined with ice sculptures is another attraction here. We walked around the tunnel enjoying the sculptures .Walking on the ice floor can be very slippery and we had to be very careful specially with numb fingers holding on to the railings!

Ice Palace

Ice Sculptures

After enjoying the views and snow we headed to the building complex where there is a Lindt Swiss Chocolate shop . Chocolate making demos were on and everyone got busy with tasting and buying Swiss chocolates.

The Lindt Swiss Chocolate shop

After a very exciting and engaging tour of Jungfrau, we headed back to the station on time to board the train back to Lauterbrunnen and then to Engelberg.

This marked the end of the Swiss visit and we were headed to Austria the next day. See you next week in Austria.

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