on the trail // aare river gorge

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On the drive home from Mürren and the Schilthorn, we stopped for a quick visit to the Aare River Gorge (Aareschlucht), just outside Meiringen. We were a bit tired and hot from the morning’s adventures and even though we didn’t know exactly what to expect, we stopped. It was so worth it. The cool breeze along the path and tunnels through the river gorge was the perfect way to finish off a day of sightseeing.

The gorge itself has been accessible to pedestrians via path and tunnel for over a century, with caves also used during World War II. While the water is cold and fairly fast moving, I just wanted to float through in an inner tube to get an even better view of the Gorge walls from the water.

It was an easy 1 kilometer walk, ca. 40 minutes, over wooden paths anchored into the cliff walls and through carved tunnels to the other side. From there you can either hike back along another path, or take a short train ride back. Since there are few stairs at the east end of the Gorge and my brother-in-law primarily uses a wheelchair, we entered from the west and walked along the paths as far as the stairs before turning around and going back. That being said, we could see the end of the Gorge so there was very little that we missed.

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travel information
The very scenic trip to the Aare River Gorge via car is about 1.5 hours (and ~2.5 hours by train and bus) from Zurich. As mentioned, we combined this stop with a visit to Mürren, but you could also stop at Trummelbach Falls, the Ballenberg Open Air Museum, or visit the nearby scenic town of Meiringen, something we’d still like to do. As of this post, standard entrance fee is CHF 8.50 and free for wheelchair users. There is a nice playground outside the Gorge’s west entrance, as well as a restaurant and gift shop. For more information, see the official website, which also includes the map below.

Aare Gorge map

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