Picture this: amazing hikes, a cheese fondue in the outdoors with the most impressive scenery, an arty pop-up hotel, and iconic Swiss wooden buildings. Gstaad Saanen is a great place to spend a few days in summer in the mountains!
Gstaad Saanen lies in the Bernese Oberland region in Switzerland and really has a lot to offer for everyone. The village has had famous visitors over the years but has managed to keep its authentic Swiss village feel. The picturesque wooden chalet style houses in both Gstaad and Saanen village are often covered with flowers in summer.
Things to do in Gstaad:
From hiking, to a scooter bike trail, or learning all about traditional cheese making, there are a lot of summer activities to do in Gstaad and Saanen.
Hiking in Gstaad:
There are many hiking trails to choose from. A very scenic hiking trail is the one that leaves from the top of the Wispile cable car (1911m) towards the scenic mountain lake Lauenensee.
The hike to Lauenensee from Wispile takes about 3 hours and has some steep parts. A very beautiful hike! Two beautiful waterfalls can be seen on the way. There is a restaurant at the starting point at Wispile, which also has a playground for kids, and also one at the end at Lauenensee. You can opt for the hike towards the village of Lauenen which will cut your hike for about an hour shorter, but then you will miss the mountain lake. Both at Lauenen and at Lauenensee, there is a bus stop which will take you back to Gstaad. The bus ticket is included in your cable car ticket. Make sure to check out the time table of the bus beforehand. We had the last bus of the day to take us back.
Website for more information: https://www.gstaad.ch/en/summer/hiking/hikes/detail/wispile-chrine-lauenensee.html
And for the bus timetable, you just enter Lauenensee on the Swiss Postbus website: https://www.postauto.ch/en/timetable
From the top of the Wispile cable car, you can also do the cheese trail instead of the Lauenensee hike. The cheese trail is about 2 km long and you can learn about the traditional way of cheese making from information panels on the way.
From the middle station of the Wispile cable car, you can also take a fun scooter bike to get back down! This activity is recommended for children as of 12 years old.
Cheese fondue in style
It actually doesn’t get any better than this! Fondueland Gstaad is a great concept which allows you to pick up a Swiss style ‘ready to go’ cheese fondue backpack at several participating dairy shops in Gstaad or Saanen. All you have to add is your favorite drink and check out which of the fondue pot picknick tables or huts you would like to head for. There are two huts and three fondue pots on different hikes. A fondue pot can seat about 8 people. The huts are suitable when the weather is uncertain. In case the fondue pot or hut is occupied, just find yourself a good spot in nature to enjoy the fondue. We went to the fondue pot on the Lauenensee trail, which is about 40 minutes from the Wispile cable car.
The village of Saanen is just as beautiful as Gstaad with its wooden chalet buildings. There is a museum about the region, there are toy cars on the main square, and some restaurants. We had our dinner in restaurant 16th which serves burgers and Thai food and also does take-away! Website: https://www.16eme.ch/
Where to stay in Gstaad Saanen?
Pop-up hotel in Saanen
On top of the hill in Saanen, with beautiful views over Gstaad, lies a pop-up hotel with a bit of an arty decoration style. The pop-up hotel will only be in use for 1 year, as after that it will be transformed into a 5-star hotel. So if you would like to seize the opportunity to stay at a 5-star location for a better price, then here is your chance. The hotel also rents out e-bikes, has a good breakfast, a selfie room for some fun, and at night you can serve yourself to eat something which you will pay later with the hotel bill.
Family friendly hotel in Gstaad:
This hotel is known to be family friendly and has an indoor swimming pool, 2 restaurants and a fondue chalet.
Would you like to discover more of the Bernese Oberland region? Check out our article on Blausee and Oeschinensee in the Kander Valley.