Lauterbrunnen is situated in one of the most impressive trough valleys in the Alps, between gigantic rock faces and mountain peaks. With its 72 thundering waterfalls, secluded valleys, colourful alpine meadows and lonely mountain inns, the Lauterbrunnen Valley is one of the biggest nature conservation areas in Switzerland.
The very name ‘Lauter Brunnen’ (‘many fountains’) suggests the magnificence of this landscape. There are 72 waterfalls in the Lauterbrunnen Valley, the most famous being the Staubbach Falls. Plunging almost 300 metres from an overhanging rock face, they are one of the highest free-falling waterfalls in Europe. In 1779, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe visited the valley, and was inspired by the roaring waters to write his well-known poem ‘Spirit song over the waters’
Another deafening natural phenomenon are the Trümmelbach Falls in the ‘Black Monk’ mountain, hidden behind mighty rock faces. Up to 20,000 litres of water per second cascade over the ten glacier falls from a total height of about 200 metres. This spectacle can only be reached in summer by tunnel lift.
Mürren – a former settlement of people from the Lötschen valley in the Valais, which still remains recognisable today from the design of the houses and the pronunciation of the Mürren dialect – is the highest, continually inhabited village settlement in the canton of Bern and lies on a terrace at 1650 metres, high above the Lauterbrunnen valley. A double-cable ropeway leads up onto the plateau from Lauterbrunnen, while a cableway runs from Stechelberg, past turbulent waterfalls and craggy rock faces, into the centre of the car-free village of Mürren, and further to the Schilthorn at 2970 metres.
At the end of the 1960s, the makers of the Bond film “On Her Majesty’s Secret Service” were immediately taken by the futuristic revolving restaurant on the Schilthorn: the scenes involving the imaginary ‘Piz Gloria’ had to be shot here… The film became a great success, the Schilthorn cableway and the revolving restaurant equally so. The magnificent 360° panorama from the summit takes in the world-renowned Alpine triumvirate of the Eiger, Mönch and Jungfrau, reaching right to Mont Blanc and into the Black Forest.