KanderstegKandersteg is a village in the Bernese Highlands in Switzerland. Located in the heart of the Alps, Kandersteg is the perfect location to explore the mountains and observe the traditional Swiss alpine lifestyle and it is also on the edge of the Swiss Alps Jungfrau-Aletsch UNESCO world heritage site.
A small farming village with a population of 1,200 Kandersteg today relies heavily on tourism for economic support. The village is also home to Kandersteg International Scout Centre, which is open 365 days and welcomes over 12,000 Scouts and Guides from around the World each year.
In Summer, Kandersteg acts as a resort for hikers from all corners of Europe offering hundreds of kilometres of marked hiking paths. Well maintained and secure via-ferrata and multi-pitch rock climbing areas also attract many guests.
Winter offers a wide range of posted hiking paths and is one of the biggest cross-country areas in Switzerland. The village also has snowshoe trails, sled runs and skiing areas suitable for beginner-intermediate skiers.
The Jungfrau-Aletsch UNESCO World Heritage information point located outside the Tourist Office.
By trainKandersteg is well served by regular trains, operated by the Swiss Federal Railways. Trains to Kandersteg run from Thun in the north and Brig in the south. The public transport system is punctual, multilingual and easy to use.
By roadMost European motorways will bring you to Spiez which is 30 minutes north of the village. Travellers from the South use the Goppenstein car-train through to Kandersteg.
In high season there is a local bus which runs from the train station to Sunnbuel Cable Car and the Oeschinen Gondola. The bus is free with a Guest Card which is available from your accommodation in Kandersteg. This service is operated by AFA Busbetrieb who have up to date timetable information.
BlauseeThe spectacular lake is nestled among pristine forest below the village. The crystal clear lake is home to ancient fossilised trees and delicious local trout. The downhill walk takes approximately 1.5 hours from the village and it is possible to get the bus back uphill to Kandersteg.
The viewpoint at the HohAdmire the breathtaking views over the village and surrounding mountains. 35 minutes walk one way from the centre of town.
Gasterntal ValleyVisit this peaceful valley and see the third largest glacier in Europe perched above you. Spring, summer and autumn only.
- Ride the cable cars and see what each one has the offer:
Oeschinen Gondola Lift StationA gondola lift from Kandersteg leads to Oeschinen, 25 minutes by foot from the lake Oeschinensee, one of the most spectacular scenes in the Alps. During summer it is also possible to ride the Rodlebahn.
Sunnbuel Gondola Lift StationThe highest cable car in the village and offers spectacular views toward the southern section of the Alps.
Allmenalp Gondola Lift StationOperates in summer only and has a small traditional alpine cheesery at the top as well as great views over the village.
SupermarketsThe village has three supermarkets which have a basic range. All are located within a few minutes walk from centre of the village:
- Coop - open Monday to Saturday (with lunch break at 12:00-14:00) and has the biggest range of goods.
- Treffpunkt - open on Sunday morning, but closed Wednesday afternoon (lunch break 12:00-13:30 on other days).
- Volg - Monday - Saturday.
- Victorinox or Wenger 'Swiss Army Knife'
- Piece of local alpine cheese from Hari Käsespezialitäten
- Kandersteg 'Wanderkarte' Walking Map
Hotel Des Alpesphone: +41 33 675 1112address: HauptstrasseGreat pizza and service.
Hotel Ermitagephone: +41 33 675 8020address: Gondelbahn OeschinenCosy, local restaurant.
Hotel Victoria Ritterphone: +41 33 675 8000address: HauptstrasseUpmarket restaurant with delicious, local specialities.
Tea Room Marmottephone: +41 33 675 1070address: HauptstrasseBreakfast, cakes, snacks.
Hotel Des Alpesphone: +41 33 675 1112address: HauptstrasseInviting local bar with good, cheap beer and carpet on the walls. Absolute must visit
Hotel Victoria Ritterphone: +41 33 675 8000address: HauptstrasseSki Bar - popular winter hangout. Summer terrace also available for an afternoon drink
Hotel Alfa Soleilphone: +41 33 675 8484address: HauptstrasseHigh Moon Pub - only nightclub in town. Selected nights only, watch for posters
Some of the most popular include:
phone: +41 33 675 8282address: Wagetiweg
phone: +41 33 675 8875address: Hauptstrasse
phone: +41 33 675 8000address: Hauptstrasse
phone: +41 33 675 1112address: Hauptstrasse
- There are several Mountain Huts in Kandesteg surroundings.
- Cards are rarely used at point of sale in Switzerland, especially in small villages. As there are only 2 ATMs in the town, have cash handy.
- Remember that Switzerland takes Swiss Francs, not Euros.
- During low-season, March-May and October-December almost all of the village is closed - most hotels, tourist information, local shops etc. If you visit during this time it is good to remember that the International Scout Centre is open 365 days and the office provides tourist information, maps, catering as well as accommodation.