The Village of Brienz is located along the northern shore of Lake Brienz in the Bernese Oberland region of Switzerland. The entire municipality of Brienz includes many communities as well as the village oif Brienz and stretches into the neighboring mountains, over the Brienerberg and to Giessbach Falls, one of the regions most popular sites. A fairly small area in terms of population, this quaint mountainous region is famous for tourism today thanks to its stunning natural setting. From historic steam trains to funiculars and open air museums, come with Island Trader Vacations as we explore this region’s top attractions.
The Village of Brienz itself is the first must see. A Heritage Listed site, Brienz may be small but its promenade, steam powered railways, the lake and its historic homes, churches and hotels dating back as far back as the 12th century are stunning and offer visitors a great place to spend the day or longer
The Swiss Open Air Museum is made up of over 80 buildings scattered throughout Switzerland including the Brienz region. Here, visitors have the opportunity to stroll through the past. The theme changes each year and features special events and exhibitions. 2014’s theme has been Crafts today. During the year, the museum offered a closer look at rural life in the region.
The Brienz Rothorn Railway represents another of the region’s most popular attractions. This steam train makes its way each day up the Brienzer Rothorn from May through late October. The fourth highest railway in Switzerland, the Brienz Rothorn reaches a height of over 7300 feet above sea level. Opened in 1892, the railway is only 4.7 miles long and offers visitors a fun and convenient way to get to the top of the mountain.
Giessbach Falls is just one of many falls found in the country of Switzerland however, it is certainly one of the most stunning. Cascading down the side of the mountain down to Lake Brienz below, this lovely falls tumbles down several tiers during its 1600 plus foot journey. A trail can be found along the falls offering beautiful views. For those who prefer less of an adventure, daily boat rides offer lovely views of the area as well.
The Giessbachbahn funicular dates back to the year 1879 and is considered one of the oldest in the country. A historic funicular, this enjoyable small railway is accessible near the falls and the historic Giessbach Hotel and is a great way to spend some time exploring the area. Designed by M. Riggenbach, this funicular was first designed as a water ballast funicular. Today, it is moved by electricity and is one of the oldest still in use today.
The last featured destination on our journey is the historic Giessbach Hotel itself. Built in 1873 by Horace Edouard Davinet for the Hauser Family, this lovely and elegant hotel was long a favorite meeting place of high society. Its lovely location and nearby natural beauty made it a favorite for artists. Today, this historic hotel has been renewed and includes restaurants, a ball room, bar and lovely suites and rooms all beautifully decorated to increase its historic appeal. Visitors here enjoy a host of activities including a steamboat, nearby Nature Park and of course the funicular.