BY JERRY ALONZO LEON
Situated between Lake Brienz and Lake Thun in central Switzerland, Interlaken has long been a popular destination for backpackers and adventure seekers alike. Whether you are looking to hike across a multitude of diverse terrains, skydive above beautiful expansive landscapes, or zip down slope atop freshly laden snow, this adventure hub has almost everything you need to satisfy the adventurer in you! Here are my five quintessential activities for the first time visitor.
Imagine freefalling 40 feet into a pool of tranquil blue water, zip lining from one rocky cliff to another, rappelling down a 100 foot high wet rock face just a few feet away from a roaring waterfall, and then diving underwater, where a constant flow of rushing water massages over you, as you swim to a hidden cove on the other side of the river. Not bad, right?
Price ranges vary with difficulty depending on which canyon you wish to traverse. Also, the greater the difficulty the longer your tour will take, so plan on getting plenty of sleep the night before as this is an all day type of activity. No previous experience needed, fully trained guides will lead you through to the end.
2. Canyon Swinging
If you’re looking for something a little quicker and, perhaps, even more thrilling than canyoning, then a canyon swing may be for you. This 85m (278ft.) deep canyon is an incredible sight to behold when you first walk up to its edge. The view is even better when you take the plunge into this canyon expanse. For added thrill, let go of the harness and throw your hands into the air when you go down!
Tip: If you plan to go canyoning, ask your guide about canyon swinging. They will more than likely give you a nice discount for the latter if you do both.
Reward yourself from an exhausting day of canyoning and canyon swinging by going paragliding. From early morning to late evening, you’ll almost always see a myriad of varicolored parachuted gliders adorn the Swiss sky. For a lasting impression of Interlaken’s natural beauty and landscapes, consider taking this bird’s eye view of the city.
Now that you are well acquainted with the serenity of the sky, it’s time to up the ante and go skydiving! Try a tandem jump from 13,000 feet, where a 40 second free fall from this height—at 200 kh/h (182 mph)—will undoubtedly leave you with a lasting impression of the Swiss Alps that you will never forget!
5. Ice Climbing
Had enough of rushing water and jumping out of planes? Then Ice climbing may be what you’re looking for. With the help of highly trained professional guides, you’ll get the chance to explore enormous glacier canyons and trek inside giant ice crevasses like you never thought possible. A mixture of hiking, climbing, exploration all in one, this is truly an all-encompassing experience!
For more information, please visit Alpin Raft