Wengen Ski Holiday Guide
This more than 100-year-old resort has been offering excellent skiing and scenery for a long time, and doesn’t show any signs of slowing down.
Wengen is more than just a skiing experience. It is an Alpine experience.
The ambiance, mountains, friendly locals, and overall feel of the place makes it a destination even aside from the skiing – which is nonetheless excellent, especially for intermediates.
Wengen grew out of an Alpine farming village, when early British skiing enthusiasts began visiting the place and brought a winter income to the otherwise-agricultural local economy. This is a very popular spot for British visitors even today, with a sense of loyalty among its visitors that is seen in few other places – many guests visit year after year, without variation.
The small village or Wengen sits on a shelf at the edge of the Lauterbrunnen Valley. It is manly comprised of a main street of shops and hotels, with a few residences clustered around them and trailing out on the roads to and from the shelf.
The nearest place to fly into is Berne, an hour away by bus, and Zurich is only 2 hours away. Wengen has its own train station too, that will drop you right at the resort. In about the same time.
The area is excellent for intermediate skiers who will find the central area to their liking, but who can also range further afield throughout the Jungfrau area – assuming purchase of the suitable lift pass. There are several nursery slopes for beginners as well, and enough to challenge expert skiers, especially if they take advantage of the Jungfrau area as a whole.
Wengen sits at 1250-2320m, so though not overly high, it is high enough to maintain reliable snow throughout its season, which is usually late November to mid-way throug April.
This is not known as a party area, and is therefore popular with families and those less interested in the party scene than in a great skiing experience steeped in Alpine charm. There are a few bars in local hotels, such as the Lauberhorn Victoria and Belvédère, and they do have DJs, but it isn’t the writhing throngs of some resorts that cater to the all-night party crowd.
Likewise with restaurants, there are some cheap and cheerful offerings, a couple offering more refined meals at higher prices, but it’s not a mecca for the foodie. Most who come here come to ski, and things like eating and partying are a distant second in their priorities, if they make the list at all.
There are other things to do though, when you need a break from the slopes. The highest railway station in Europe, the Jungfraujoch, is nearby, perched at 3454m. There are two viewing galleries carved out of the mountain on the way up to it, and are well worth the money to experience.