a hidden gem in the swiss alps
Last summer I’ve learnt about the Hinterburgseeli for the first time – until then, this little gem above the Axalp was a blind spot for me in the Jungfrau region.
The hike leading to the lake is called “Schnitzlerweg” – the wood carving path. Along the way are over 100 different wood figures on display. The history of the Schnitzlerweg starts in the winter 98/99, known as the “avalanche winter” when many trees were snapped in half. The great storm Lothar in the following spring made the situation in this forest even worse.
Wood carving is a very old swiss handicraft and it has its roots in the area of Brienz where until today the only wood carving school of Switzerland is located. Many of those local artists have come together to make something new and beautiful from this partly destroyed forest. They have over the years sculptured all these different forms and figures from the trunks of the damaged trees. There are different humans, a cool little dwarf and many animals to be explored along the way.
I have actually visited this place for the first time only 2 weeks ago. Again it was the visit of a good friend that made me explore something new close to my hometown Interlaken. After breakfast we drove to the Axalp (that took us less than half an hour) where the hike starts. Axalp is located high above the lake Brienz and offers stunning views. There are many different hikes up there to be explored and everything is well signposted. The start of the Schnitzlerweg is very easy to find, there is a large wooden sign just next to the parking.
The path leads mostly through the forest and there is only a small incline. The one hour hike never gets boring as there is so much to be seen! It is perfect for families with kids.
You can only see the lake just before you arrive there. It has a beautiful green color and in the clear we’ve seen many different fish. There are picknick areas and fire pits around the lake, when it’s warm enough you can even swim in the lake.
There are different cows living there in summer. There is a family of water buffalos living up there, on warm days you get to see them swimming and even diving in the lake!
All those things considered a day at the Hinterburgseeli is the perfect summer day – not only for families. I will visit this place soon again to see what it looks like in autmn colors
Greetings from paradise
PS: in the village you can buy local products and cheese from the alp
PPS: travelling by public transportation you take the train to Brienz and from there the Bus to Axalp
PPS: there is a small ski area up there in winter with views over the lake!