blausee-blue-lake

Walking and E-biking in the Swiss Alps

8 days
from
£1,369
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Walking & Trekking
Activity level:
Moderate
Activity Rating - Moderate
Trip code: 
M07AF
Way to Travel:
Self-Guided Holidays
Activity:
New Cycling Holidays
Ages:
16+

In the heart of the Bernese Oberland lies the pretty village of Kandersteg, where the great arc of the Alps culminates in some of its highest and most spectacular peaks. Awe-inspiring and dramatic, the area epitomises the 'chocolate-box' Alps: lush green pastures and lowland slopes carpeted bright with wildflowers against a backdrop of rugged mountains - all topped off with sun-glistening glaciers.

Awe-inspiring and dramatic, the area epitomises the 'chocolate-box' Alps: lush green pastures and lowland slopes carpeted bright with wildflowers against a backdrop of rugged mountains - all topped off with sun-glistening glaciers.

On this 7 night holiday you can explore the best the region has to offer on foot and by e-bike. This single centre holiday is totally flexible, we have suggested an itinerary for you but on this holiday you are free to pick and choose where you walk and cycle each day. A stay here uncovers the very best of the region: on foot the stunning Oeschinensee mountain lake enclosed by towering cliffs, the Sudrampe; high above the youthful river Rhone passing tradtional Swiss chalets along a fertile valley and superb railway engineering with impressive viaducts tunnels and bridges and an easy stroll to the beautiful Blausee Blue Lake. You can use the extra power that the e-bike has to offer to discover the hidden Gasterntal Valley with its glacial meltwaters thundering down a narrow gorge, the glorious Gemmi Pass crossing the swiss counties of Bern and Wallis before reaching the crystal clear waters of Lake Arven and Daubensee Lake and the spectacular views of the Bluemlisalp mountain range.

Did we mention the spectacular views? One moment you will be spellbound by the glacial legacy, whilst in another it will be the cobalt blue of the Oeschinensee that will take your breath away. Woodlands, pine forest and open meadows are decorated with lady slippers, fire lilies and more than 25 varieties of scented orchid, where you walk to the the tuneful ringing of cowbells. With the company of the occasional swooping eagle, it is easy to feel on top of the world.

Highlights

  • Excellent walking and mountain biking made easier with E-bikes on this Swiss Alps multi activity holiday.
  • Natural beauty at its finest, snow-capped mountains, beautiful glacial lakes, Alpine green slopes and meadows.
  • Excellent family run hotel with new spa and sauna facilities, heated indoor swimming pool.
  • Delicious high quality meals; plentiful breakfast, picnic or light restaurant lunches and 4 course dinner included every day.

Key information

  • 7 nights single-centre accommodation in a hotel
  • Route directions and maps
  • High quality Electric bikes (age restrictions apply)
  • Kandersteg Guestcard - discounts at local sites and attractions
  • Regional travel pass for use of local buses and cable cars
  • Countries visited: Switzerland

What's included

  • 7 nights single-centre accommodation in a hotel
  • Management by local hotelier
  • Route directions and maps
  • High quality Electric bikes (age restrictions apply)
  • Kandersteg Guestcard - discounts at local sites and attractions
  • Regional travel pass for use of local buses and cable cars

What's not included

  • Travel insurance
  • Visas
  • Single accommodation (available on request - compulsory supplement)
Call for general departures:
01606 720003
Call for private group trips:
020 3885 9103
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

6

Days of Walking & Trekking
Day by day breakdown
Day 216.0km/10.0miles
Day 328.0km/17.5miles
Day 415.0km/9.5miles
Day 510.0km/6.5miles
Day 622.0km/14.0miles
Day 721.5km/14.0miles

At Exodus we believe in the power of Responsible Travel.

Every time we travel, we are part of a global movement that creates jobs, builds more sustainable societies, encourages cultural understanding and safeguards common natural and cultural heritage. To learn more about what Responsible Travel means to Exodus click here

Itinerary

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Kandersteg
to
Kandersteg
  • Day 1

    Arrive Kandersteg

    Arrive at the 3-star Hotel Alfa Soleil, well known locally for its excellent cuisine and enjoy a welcome drink before dinner. Dinner is included all week along with picnics or light restaurant lunches. Below is a suggested itinerary for the week but you are free to pick and choose where you walk and cycle each day, just be sure to check the e-bike availability with the hotel as they have been reserved for your on the days specified in the itinerary.

  • Day 2

    Sudrampe Walk

    Today starts with a 25-minute train ride (payable locally) through the Lotschberg mountain rail tunnel (14km long) to Hohtenn. The walk takes you high above a youthful River Rhone, through a landscape of gorges and hidden side valleys - and small hillside villages boasting traditional wooden chalets built on the upper edges of this fertile, vineyard-adorned valley. You follow part of the Lotschberger-Sudrampe railway trail - superb railway engineering with impressive viaducts, tunnels and bridges - but you don't need to be a train buff to enjoy this great little hike.

    A shorter walk is also available.

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 3

    Gasterntal Valley by e-bike

    Today it's a glorious bike ride into the unspoiled landscape of Gasterntal. With your e-bike follow the route along the river Kander taking the steep, unpaved road up to the Gasterntal, offering the most breath taking views. The road continues through the valley to Selden or you can carry on to Heimritz. The descent passes through dark tunnels as you head back to Kandersteg.

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 4

    Oeschinensee Walk

    Widely regarded as the jewel in the crown of the Bernese Oberland, Oeschinensee is one of the most beautiful Alpine lakes in Switzerland. After a short ride up on the gondola lift (included), follow a marvellous mountain path up to the Heuberg Viewpoint and picnic spot. The cobalt blue water of the lake, surrounded by the snow-capped, razor-edged peaks of the Doldenhorn (3,638m) and the Bluemlisalphorn (3,663m) towering 2,000m above, will be a lasting memory. Call in at the mountain chalets at Obberbargli and Underbargli for refreshments and soak up this unforgettable scenery as bell-toting cows munch at the grass in the pastures below, while dainty waterfalls trickle down from the Frunden Glacier.

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 5

    Blausee Blue Lake Walk

    A gentle hour's stroll takes you down to the Natural Park of Blausee - the Blue Lake (discounted entry with short boat ride). Here you can wander through verdant woodland around the little lake, visit the organic trout farm and enjoy a drink on the lake terrace before returning to the hotel.

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 6

    Gemmi Pass by e-bike

    A glorious bike ride through the impressive Gemmi pass today. You'll soon discover the benefit of an e-bike as you cross the two Swiss counties of Bern and Wallis passing the crystal-clear Lake Arven, as well as the famous Schwarenbach hotel and the stunning Daubensee lake. Reaching the summit of the Gemmi pass take in the spectacular views of the eleven peaks above 4000m that make up the imposing Mischabel massif, an ample reward for your efforts.

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 7

    Ueschinental/Allmenalp by e-bike

    Glorious views of the Bluemlisalp mountain range today. Climb uphill from Kandersteg with steep curves on the paved path to Usser Ueschinen where you head right in the direction of Ryharts - Allmenalp. Continue your ascent where you are rewarded for your efforts with more impressive views. Descend from the Allmenalp or if you fancy a rest, you and your bike can use the cable car and then enjoy the easy bike ride back to Kandersteg via Ryharts - Usser Ueschinen.

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 8

    Depart Kandersteg

    Meals included: Breakfast
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Essential Info

Visas

Switzerland

No visa required for British passport holders.

Vaccinations

Switzerland

There are no specific health risks.

Eating and Drinking

All meals are included throughout the trip, including picnic lunches. For dinner enjoy regional dishes and fine wines in Nico's restaurant.

At the beginning of each set of notes we advise on the lunch situation and suggest good picnic spots. You can obtain supplies daily from the hotel's picnic buffet or you can return to the hotel for a light lunch. We suggest you to carry 1-5 litres water per person, there are often benches for resting and admiring the views. There are also mountain restaurants with sun-trap terraces. 

With such a mixture of language and tradition co-existing in such a small country, it is no wonder that there are so many regional dishes. In the Bernese Oberland, Austrian and German influences predominate; gastronomic local delicacies include geschnetzeltes Kalbsfleisch (veal in a rich cream sauce), Kandersteger Bratwurst au Mad re-Jus (roast sausage with a Madeira sauce), Lammbraten gefüllt mit Kraütern (herb roasted lamb) and smoked pork with sauerkraut, and a selection of colourful salads. Typical desserts include Caramel-Birne mit Rum-Sabayon (caramelised pear with a rum sabayon) and Aprikosen-Symphonie (apricot gateau).

Weather

June through to August have the nicest weather, pleasant for walking. On average July is the warmest month. The rainy season falls between May and September, so rain is expected, remember to take your waterproofs. A word of caution - Switzerland can be hot in high season and so serious walking should be started early - remember your sun hat and suncream and take plenty of water with you. Our minimum recommendation is 1.5 litres per person per day. Please refer to the 'All you need to know guide’.

Is this trip for you?

Activity Level: 3 (Moderate)
Average daily distance
No. of days walking: 6
Terrain and route:

This is a self-guided tour, as such there will be no group or tour leader and you are free to complete the walks at your own pace and in whichever order you choose. Please bear in mind that although this is a self-guided holiday, the atmosphere in the hotel tends to be quite social and they will sometimes seat guests together at breakfast and dinner. We have suggested that 8yrs is the minimum age for this trip, but as it is self-guided and you will be leading your own family we will ultimately leave this decision up to you.

A week's stay here uncovers the very best of the region: a huge turquoise lake enclosed by towering cliffs, a hidden valley headed by a glacier, a sheer gorge carved out by glacial meltwaters, an Alpine pass that has been used since Celtic times and an abundance of wildflowers. Did we mention the spectacular views? The impressive white peaks of the 3970m Eiger, Monch, Jungfrau and Matterhorn dominate the skyline with a plethora of other summits and glaciers close at hand. Amazingly, all of this is accessible on well-defined paths directly from the hotel (with excellent signposting) or after a short bus or gondola ride.

The walking is of moderate difficulty and includes mountain walking on good (though sometimes narrow) paths with occasional steep climbs. NB: Some gondolas/cable cars do not operate in early/late season when alternative walks will be proposed.

Call for general departures:
01606 720003
Call for private group trips:
020 3885 9103
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Accommodation

Walking and Cycling in the Swiss Alps

hotel-alfa-soleil
hotel-alfa-soleil

The excellent 3 star superior Hotel Alfa Soleil is a wonderful family run hotel, your hosts, the charming Seiler family will ensure you receive a full introduction to the area. The food is of excellent quality and both your picnic lunches/light restaurant lunches and dinner is included each day in Nicos restaurant, with tasty regional dishes and fine wines. When you feel like a rest from walking or cycling, there's an elegant lounge, swimming pool, sauna, solarium and gym to keep you entertained.

Call for general departures:
01606 720003
Call for private group trips:
020 3885 9103
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Call for general departures:
01606 720003
Call for private group trips:
020 3885 9103
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

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Dates & Prices

An overview of flight options

Exodus is committed to making joining our tours as easy as possible, wherever you live. We generally only block book seats from London, but this certainly does not mean that you need to fly from there. Depending on the route and airlines available, there will usually be various options available for those who want to fly from their local airport.

This page aims to provide a useful overview of the options available to our clients. However, the best flight arrangements should be tailored to your personal requirements, so please contact our Sales team for expert advice.

 

What kind of options do I have ?

1. We can book for you: Flights from anywhere in the world - not via London  

Depending on the route, this may be direct or via an overseas hub like Amsterdam, the Middle East or elsewhere. On short haul routes there may be direct flights with low cost airlines, charter flights or scheduled airlines. Exodus can book most, but not all, of these for you. The most appropriate airline may be different to that which we use for the group flight from London, but many people now travel on different airlines and meet up with their fellow passengers at the destination.

Pros Cons
  • May be the most direct route
  • Often the extra fare compared to the London flight is minimal.
  • As you will be in the hands a single airline for your entire journey, the airline will be responsible for your bags and your connections.
  • You may not be able to join the group transfers. However, we can usually arrange private transfers, or book your flights to try and coincide with the group transfers. See notes on transfer arrangements below.

 

2. We can book for you: Connecting flights from your local airport to London

Exodus can book connecting flights to London so you can join the group flight there. Connecting times will be followed according to airline advice, or as requested by clients. There are two types of fares we can use for this option: a 'through-fare' or a 'published fare'.
 
a) A 'through-fare' is where you will be in the main airline's care throughout. You change planes, but your bags are checked all the way through to your final destination. 

b) A 'published fare' ticket is completely seperate from your onward ticket from London. It is usually cheaper than a through-fare but will need to be paid for and issued as soon as it is booked. This can be a problem if your tour has not yet reached minimum numbers. On 'published fares' neither airline is aware that you have connecting flights, so Exodus is responsible for timing your connection, not the airlines involved. The tickets are also usually non changeable and non refundable.

Pros Cons
  • Depending on the fare type, Exodus or the airline is responsible for flight connections.
  • Through fare tickets can be expensive.
  • On a published fare, tickets must be issued immediately; tickets on published fares can be very difficult to change if onward flight times change; bags are not checked though to your final destination.
  • Published fares are non-refundable.

 

3. Booking some or all of the flights yourself

You can also book connecting air travel yourself, either to London, or all the way to the start point. There may be certain airlines or routes we don't have access to, so this is always an option. However, if you make your own travel arrangements you become liable for any delays, cancellations or missed connections, and Exodus is not required to offer refunds if you have trouble reaching the start of your trip.

Pros Cons
  • You might find cheaper fares, or routes not available to Exodus.
  • You are responsible for any delays or missed connections, and the cost of the tour is not protected should you miss your flight be cancelled.

 

 Notes on transfer arrangements

Sometimes it is possible to travel on a different airline to the group flight from London. Where this is the case, we need to think about ensuring you meet up with the group with minimum extra cost and hassle.

  • On certain trips, it is easy to arrive on a different flight and still meet the group at the hotel with time in hand. We can usually arrange private transfers (at extra cost) or offer advice on taking a taxi to the start hotel.
  • On other trips (especially in Europe), the transfer meets the group flight and then travels some distance to the first night's accommodation. Where this is the case, our Sales team will try to arrange flights that arrive before (and depart after) the group. However, we do have to make it clear in your final documentation that if your flights are delayed, the transfer cannot wait for you. While Exodus or our local operators will do what we can to help you reach the start point of the tour, any additional costs must be paid by the client. 

 

Next steps? 

Call our Sales team on: 0203 733 0698

Email your query: [email protected]