Bernese Oberland

Bernese Oberland

Dispatch by Delano Lavigne
Photos by Jimmy Martinello

Having the opportunity to visit Grindelwald takes us away from the Valais region and into the neighbouring Bernese Oberland region. It is another region with wonderful landscapes and countless mountain peaks, including Jungfrau, Monch and the Eiger. This region shares with the Valais region, and Zermatt, an incredible love for mountain life and seamlessly stitches together what I have come to learn is a Swiss standard in terms of outdoor access. Again, we are awarded with trains and gondolas that bring us high into the mountains and place us in the heart of alpine environments.

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Mesmerized by the beautiful Swiss landscape

What is unique about this area, among many things and as compared to that of Valais, is its reputation as the outdoor playground of Swtizerland. With Grindelwald as the geographic center of the region locals and visitors alike are minutes away from skiing, mountain biking, rock-climbing, mountaineering, base jumping, paragliding, running, and more. The town itself boasts a very welcoming spirit, encouraging each of us to think, as we have each said, that “I could live here.”

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Delano enjoying Grindelwald

The region had multiple valleys and each are unique in their landscape. Grindelwald rests in a V-shaped valley with gradually rising pastures on each side. Traditional pine houses dot the hillsides with ski runs carved between them. The next valley over is home to Lauterbrunnen, a U-shaped valley with vertical cliffs and waterfalls dropping to the valley floor on either side of the valley.

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Delicious Swiss cuisine

Between these two valleys within the Bernese Oberland region there is so much beauty, so much majesty in nature’s splendor that it imposes an impression upon me that seems likely to last a lifetime. No wonder J.R.R Tolkien, after having traveled through here, found inspiration for the fantasy world of Rivendell that he wrote about in the Lord of the Rings. Just as his writing lends itself to epic scenes of immeasurable grandeur, so do the Bernese Alps.    

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