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  • Writer's pictureDeborah Kade

Hiking through Iseltwald

Because of the success of the South Korean Netflix series "Crash Landing on You", it seems the go to destination in the Berner Oberland is Iseltwald. Iseltwald appears in a few episodes of the South Korean television series.

It is the only village on the left bank of Lake Brienz. With around 420 inhabitants, the pretty fishing village is one of the small communities in the canton of Bern. The village has an idyllic fishing bay and breathtaking views of the highest mountain peaks around Lake Brienz.

The municipality lies on a delta on the southern shore of Lake Brienz. For a long time the community had no road and could only be reached by water. Since the construction of the A8 motorway, the community has had its own motorway exit. Before the exit was built, a road led from Bönigen to the village. The highest point is the 2687 meter (8816 ft.) high Faulhorn .

There is even an Iseltwald Express bus from Interlaken Ost that goes directly to Iseltwald. I think the population of this village doubles or triples with all the people coming by coach, cars, or by the boats that criss-cross Lake Brienz.

"The village was first mentioned as Iseltwalt in 1146. After a dispute with Interlaken over the important forest, all rights to Iseltwald went to Interlaken in 1303. In 1342 Iseltwald was devastated by the Unterwaldners. With the secularization of the Interlaken monastery in 1528, the village became part of Bern and the bailiwick of Interlaken. In addition to fishing, fruit growing, livestock and alpine farming, a glassworks in 1680 also offered work. But this went out again around 1715."

Tourism began in 1871 with the advent of Lake Brienz shipping. Hotels and hospitality businesses emerged. Today it is mainly day tourists who stay in Iseltwald.

I applaud the villagers for charging a CHF 5 entrance fee to have a picture taken on the boat pier. After all, their lives have been disrupted.

Seeburg Castle

In 1907, Gottfried Siegrist, a trader from Bern, had the buildings that were then on site torn down and rebuilt at the entrance to the village. He built a southern-style villa on the peninsula, but it was no longer inhabited shortly after completion. In 1927 the villa became the property of the Evangelical Diakonieverband Ländli, which converted the “Seeburg” into a convalescent home. Since September 1987, the “Seeburg” has been a congress, conference, education and spa center. The Schnäggeninseli, the only registered island in the canton of Bern, belongs to the Seeburg.

Michael and I stayed away from the boat pier and walked along Lake Brienz's shoreline. It was a fantastic hike. No tourists but locals walking along the shore.

It was too cold to be in the "hot tug" this morning, but the weather was perfect this afternoon with the sun shining down.

Different mode of transportation. Huge tires! Wonder if it is a comfortable ride?

Whimsical wood carving

When we first saw the building from the side, we thought it was a huge sauna.

No, it's a camper of sorts. I would like to see what the inside looks like.

Unique shape to that tree

Couple very old boats

The chairs fold up so easily.

I wonder what cucumber lemonade tastes like?

Now...that's a hanging plant!

Different combination of geraniums colors.

Dahlias Surprised not to see any bees around the flowers.

Enjoyed the winding pathways along the lake. This hike has become a favorite of ours.

Trickling water.... Soothing sound!

No four leaf clovers.

Rustling sounds as we walk in this section.

Ferns grow in tiny crevices.

What a beautiful place to have a picnic, a BBQ, or just enjoy the view.

Clear cold water

"The works of the Lord are great, to be marveled at by all who delight in them." We came across the sign along the pathway.

Yes, one has to marvel at the beauty of the surroundings. It's magical!

Boats criss crossing the lake.

The bus driver is fearless! I was so happy to be able to sit in the front seat. Yes, the sun visor is a distraction but...... it is a crazy ride!!!!!!!!! Glad I'm not standing for this ride!

Had our bags picked up by the Swiss transport and checked all the way to Phoenix. Before, we had to bring our bags to the Interlaken West train station one or two days ahead of time to be sent ahead to the airport. The morning of the flight we used to have to pick up the bags at the Zürich airport train station. Now the bags go directly to the plane.

This evening, we took a walk around the neighborhood.

This lady sells honey and pollen.

The Eiger- The Mönch - The Jungfrau

The Jungfrau - The Jungfrau, at 4,158 m (13,642 ft.) is one of the main summits of the Bernese Alps, located between the northern canton of Bern and the southern canton of Valais, halfway between Interlaken and Fiesch. Together with the Eiger and the Mönch, the Jungfrau forms a massive wall of mountains overlooking the Berner Oberland and the Swiss Plateau one of the most distinctive sights of the Swiss Alps.

The Sphinx Observatory is an astronomical observatory located above the Jungfraujoch. t is named after the Sphinx, a rocky summit on which it is located. At 3,571 m (11,716 ft) above mean sea level, it is one of the highest observatories in the world. Accessible to the public, it is also the second highest observation deck in Switzerland.

The Eiger is a 3,967 m. (13,015 ft.) mountain of the BerneseAlps, overlooking Grindelwald and Lauterbrunnen in the Berner Oberland, just north of the main watershed and border with Valais.

It is the easternmost peak of a ridge crest that extends across the Mönch to the Jungfrau at 4,158 m (13,642 ft), constituting one of the most emblematic sights of the Swiss Alps. While the northern side of the mountain rises more than 3,000 m. (10,000 ft) above the two valleys of Grindelwald and Lauterbrunnen, the southern side faces the large glaciers of the Jungfrau-Aletsch area, the most glaciated region in the Alps. The most notable feature of the Eiger is its nearly 1,800-meter-high (5,900 ft) north face of rock and ice, named Eiger-Nordwand, Eigerwand or just Nordwand, which is the biggest north face in the Alps. This huge face towers over the resort of Kleine Scheidegg at its base, on the eponymous pass connecting the two valleys.

The Mönch is at 4,110 meters (13,480 ft). Together with the Eiger and the Jungfrau, it forms a highly recognizable group of mountains, visible from far away.

The Mönch lies on the border between the cantons of Valais and Bern and forms part of a mountain ridge between the Jungfrau and Jungfraujoch to the west, and the Eiger to the east. It is west of Mönchsjoch, a pass at 3,650 meters (11,980 ft), Mönchsjoch Hut, and north of the Jungfraufirn and Ewigschneefäld, two affluents of the GreatAletsch Glacier. The north side of the Mönch forms a step wall above the Lauterbrunnen Valley.

The Jungfrau railway tunnel runs right under the summit, at an elevation of approximately 3,300 meters (10,830 ft).

The summit was first climbed on record on August 15, 1857 by Christian Almer, Christian Kaufmann (1831-1861), Ulrich Kaufmann and Sigismund Porges.

The scientific part of the Sphinx observatory includes two large laboratories, a weather observation station, a workshop, two terraces for scientific experiments, and an astronomical as well as a meteorological cupola. The astronomical cupola is equipped with a 76cm telescope with Cassegrain and Coudé focus.

The observatory plays an important role in a range of long-term experiments; it serves as a solar spectrometer for the Institute of Astrophysics and Geophysics at the University of Liège, Belgium, and plays a key role in a LIDAR experiment conducted by the École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne. In 1949, nuclear emulsion plates exposed to cosmic rays in the observatory provided first precise evidence for the existence of the charged K-meson.

My friend came to say hello and goodbye.

Don't forget the contest..........

Vacation has come to an end. Next year, it will be the 25th year of exploring Switzerland.

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1 Comment

Sibylle Banholzer
Sibylle Banholzer
Sep 26, 2023

Dear Debbie, I've really enjoyed your pictures over the past few weeks. It is always a pleasure to see your own country from your point of view.

But now one more question: did you receive the package from Basel? It arrived at the inn on 9/25/23.

Best regards Sibylle

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