One of the favorite kinds of pastime in Switzerland are walks in the mountains (Wandern). This is practically a national sport, and they start to join it at a rather early age. In the mountains they take with them even babies in wheelchairs and older children. If everything is quite simple with a pram, as long as it is adapted for mountain roads, then it is not always easy to motivate self-walking kids. And here parents come to the aid of special thematic routes.
There are many of them in the country, almost every region boasts a path specially adapted for children. But there are some of the most famous ways, and I want to tell about one of them. ⠀
Muggenstutz, or Gnome trail
On the Hasliberg mountain in the Berner Oberland region is one of the most popular children’s routes, which, however, will be of interest to adults. What is he like?
This is a 3-kilometer walk through an incredibly beautiful area, where there are several “station houses” of dwarfs. At the very beginning of the route you will be given a map on which all points of the path are marked. Every couple of meters you will meet shields with stories about the lives of gnomes. At each station, the child needs to perform some simple task (for example, to find a certain number of gnomes hiding in a tree, etc.).
In addition to the fairy-tale component, the child on this path learns a lot about the nature of the Alps, about animals, birds and plants in this region.
Separately, it is worth noting with what care and love all the stations performed. Here you will meet and a children’s lift, which the children can manage themselves, and tree houses, and a water mill, which the child can again rotate the millstones on its own. And at the end of the path a gnome village awaits you. Three houses in which there is absolutely everything: furniture, dishes, and dwarf clothes. In all the houses you can go, everything can be touched and everywhere you can play. Nearby are specially equipped places for picnics.
While the children are playing ⠀
Adults can enjoy extraordinarily beautiful nature. This region is famous for its stunning views of the so-called “Northern Wall” – the Jungfrau massif. In addition to the species, high-mountain swamps (don’t be confused, they are dry) with their special microclimate and abundance of butterflies, some of which are found only here, are of interest.
Подкрепиться в пути ⠀
There are restaurants at the end and at the beginning of the route, where you can taste national Swiss dishes, and also, around the middle of the route, there is a small settlement, where you can try and buy local cheeses and sausages on a special stand, as well as drink coffee with the freshest cream.
How to get there⠀
By train to the town of Meiringen and then by bus to the Hasliberg Reuti lift station.
The path is seasonal (from June to the end of October), it is necessary to clarify the schedule of lifts on the website www.meiringen-hasliberg.ch/de/Sommer/Muggestutz/Zwergenweg_Kaserstatt-Lischen.
Council of the experienced traveler
The best time to visit this amazing place is autumn. Firstly, at this time of year there are much fewer people here (in summer almost all of Switzerland comes here), and secondly, you can hardly see such a riot of autumn colors. And, thirdly, it’s not hot anymore, and your little travelers will be able to comfortably explore everything, everything in the way of the dwarfs!
Maria Mayer, organizer of hiking tours in Switzerland
Instagram author: meiermaria.switzerland, more interesting: #хайкинг_с_ребенком_meier.