On the periphery of the Gantrisch Nature Park and to the east of Lakes Neuchâtel, Bielersee and Murtensee, the city of Bern is the capital of Switzerland.
Sharing its name with the Canton of Bern, which is the second-largest of Switzerland’s 26 cantons by both surface area and population. Known just as much for its fabulous lakes and landscape as it is for its world-class skiing, the Canton is home to the towns of Grindelwald, Lauterbrunnen, Thun and Biel.
The official language of the canton is bilingual Swiss-German and French, with the vast majority of its residents speaking Swiss-German.
Situated in west-central Switzerland, Bern is home to some spectacular examples of Swiss medieval architecture, one of which being Laupen Castle in the municipality of Laupen. With its rust orange roofs and grey stone brick walls, the fortress stands as testament to days gone by. The old town of Bern is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, with plenty of postcard-perfect things to see and do.
The highest mountain in the Bernese Alps is the Finsteraarhorn at 4,274 metres above sea level, but the most famous mountains are Eiger, Mönch, and Jungfrau.
Skiing in the area is excellent for all abilities and ages, with 940 kilometres of slopes to be explored.
Bern also has an extensive train network, with 275 state-of-the-art cable cars, ski lifts and funiculars, including the longest gondola cableway in the world from Grindelwald to the Männlichen.
One of the most popular ski resorts in the Canton of Bern is Wengen, known for its quaint wooden chalets and belle époque ski hotels. Particularly popular with intermediate skiers, this partially pedestrianised ski resort has access to over 100km of pistes.
Must-see landmarks in the region include the Trümmelbach glacier waterfalls, where 72 glacier-fed waterfalls have carved out hollows in the mountainside. Europe's largest subterranean waterfalls, they can be fully enjoyed via elevator, tunnels, paths and viewing platforms.
Reportedly the home of emmenthal cheese, Bern should not be overlooked as a place to enjoy fabulous skiing, food, outstanding natural beauty and culture.
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