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10 Best Day Trips from Engelberg

Last Updated on February 22, 2024 by Darla Uhl

Engelberg, a charming mountain resort nestled in Canton Obwalden, is a haven for nature enthusiasts and relaxation seekers. Engelberg boasts lovely spots like Titlis, Lake Trübsee, Brunni, and Fürenalp

Although Engelberg has so many activities to offer, those who spend several days there might still want to take day trips to other places nearby. Below are some suggestions for the best day trips from Engelberg for those based there.

Typically, these day trips are located one to two and a half hours away from Engelberg by train.

This article discusses the 10 best day trips from Engelberg. Let’s go!

10 Best Day Trips from Engelberg

1. Lucerne

Lucerne, just 36 kilometers away from Engelberg, is a great choice for a day trip. A must-see destination for travelers, Lucerne is one of Switzerland’s most beautiful cities, boasting breathtaking views of the lake and mountains, a fascinating history, and a wealth of cultural attractions.

Image of Lucerne by TouringSwitzerland.com

The city of Lucerne is one of the most popular tourist spots in Switzerland. In Lucerne, you’ll find everything you’d want in a typical Swiss city. The beauty of its fjord-like blue lake, charming old town, and mountains are unbeatable. For those who want to spend some time in Lucerne city, there’s so much to see: the Transport Museum, the Lion Monument, the Rosengart Collection, and Chapel Bridge, just to name a few. 

You can get around Lake Lucerne with the Lake Lucerne ship company. Various basins and bays provide exhilarating and changing views of the landscape on the lake – Stansstaad, Weggis, Buochs, Gersau, and Uri.

Don’t miss these attractions in Lucerne
Lion Monument
Chapel Bridge
Transport Museum (Verkehrshaus)
* Rosengart Collection
Glacier Garden

You can read more about other stunning places to visit near Lucerne such as BürgenstockVitznau, and Weggis in this article 10 Beautiful Places Near Lucerne. And for those who wish to visit the mountains near Lucerne, you can find out about the Closest Mountains To Visit From Lucerne.

How do you get from Engelberg to Lucerne?

You can read about the trains from Lucerne to Engelberg in this article – Lucerne To Engelberg Train: All You Need To Know.


2. Stanserhorn

Stanserhorn, just 21 kilometers away from Engelberg, is an ideal day trip for its extraordinary vistas of lakes and peaks. The standout experience is the open-air cable car journey.

Image of Stanserhorn by TouringSwitzerland.com

Stanserhorn may not be as adjacent to Lake Lucerne as Rigi, Bürgenstock, and Fronalpstock, but it does provide a spectacular view of the lake from the top. At 1,848 Meters above sea level, it is located between the borders of the Cantons Nidwalden and Obwalden.

Those who visit the Stanserhorn can take in the stunning view of ten Swiss lakes and over 100 kilometers of alpine mountain scenery.

When the Stanserhorn train opened to the public in 1893, it was the steepest and longest cable car in the world. There used to be three funiculars that went to the summit. Open wagons roll from Stans to the middle station of Kälti. Even after 100 years, this train still retains its original wooden carts. Nowadays, Stanserhorn has a cable car with an open upper deck. From Kälti, one changes to the double-decker panorama cabin which glides up to Stanserhorn. In the station, passengers can go directly out of the roof without having to get back to the cabin.

You may purchase tickets for Stanserhorn in advance via Viator if you wish by clicking this link – Skip the Line: CabriO Mt Stanserhorn Railway Ticket.

Don’t miss these attractions in Stanserhorn
* Vintage Funicular Train from Stans
* Open-air CabriO to Stanserhorn
* Summit Trail
* Rondorama Revolving Mountain Restaurant

If you would like to read more about Stanserhorn and CabriO, check out our article Ride the Open-air CabriO to Stanserhorn, Switzerland.

How do you get from Engelberg to Stanserhorn?

In Engelberg, take the train to Stans. In Stans, take the funicular to Kälti. In Kälti, change to the cable car to Stanserhorn. The total travel time from Engelberg to Stanserhorn is 1 hour and 22 minutes.


3. Zofingen

Zofingen, 80 kilometers away from Engelberg, is an ideal day trip if you want to visit a charming, lesser-known small town. It features a lovely, well-preserved center, as well as shops and restaurants.

The Swiss canton of Aargau contains the walled city of Zofingen, home to an ancient monastic settlement. It used to be a settlement of the Celtic Helvetii. The House of Frohburg also built a monastery here in the 11th century. You can get to Zofingen in ninety minutes from Engelberg.

Image of Zofingen Buildings by TouringSwitzerland.com

Zofingen has ten of its buildings listed as Swiss heritage sites of national importance. Zofingen’s Old Town is also one of the best-preserved in Switzerland. 470 meters long by 225 meters wide, the old town has the shape of a rectangle. There are front and back alleys, and narrow alleyways provide cross-connections.

Don’t miss these attractions in Zofingen
* Walled old town of Zofingen
* Villa Rustica Zofingen with its Roman mosaic floors 
* Small Monastery at Klösterligasse 2
* Historic Museum Zofingen
* Art Museum Zofingen
* Zofingen Wild Animal Park and Aviary
* Heiternplatz 

How do you get from Engelberg to Zofingen?

From Engelberg, take the train to Lucerne. In Lucerne, change to the connecting train to Zofingen. The total travel time from Engelberg to Zofingen is 1 hour and 29 minutes with the Interregio trains.


4. Pilatus

Pilatus is an excellent day trip from Engelberg for mountain enthusiasts. It’s famous for having the world’s steepest rack railway.

Image by Rene Staempfli from Pixabay

Pilatus Kulm, the top of Pilatus, has great views of Central Switzerland, restaurants, a bar, a souvenir shop, and a panorama terrace. Here, you can also find a short, secure way to enjoy the panorama. The area also offers other attractions such as the Rope Park and the Dragon Glider in Fräkmüntegg, as well as a big playground called Pilu Land located in Krienseregg.

Pilatus has the steepest cogwheel railway in the world. It has a maximum gradient of 48% and an average gradient of 35%. The train links Alpnachstad in Obwalden to Pilatus Kulm at 2,073 Meters.

The golden round trip is also a popular choice for tourists. It combines a ride on the steamboat, the red cogwheel railway, and going down with the cable car. Tourists can book the golden round trip from May to October.

Don’t miss these attractions in Pilatus
* Golden or Silver Round Trip to Mount Pilatus
* Steepest Cogwheel Railway in the World
* Pilatus Kulm and Panorama Terrace
* Rope Park in Fräkmüntegg
* Dragon Glider in Fräkmüntegg
* Pilu Land

How do you get from Engelberg to Pilatus?

The simplest way to reach Pilatus is by driving from Engelberg to Alpnachstad, which is about 31 kilometers away (a roughly 30-minute drive). Once you’re in Alpnachstad, you can hop on the funicular to reach Pilatus Kulm.

If you go by train, you’ll journey from Engelberg to Stans and switch to the connecting train bound for Hergiswil. From Hergiswil, you’ll catch another connecting train to Alpnachstad. These transfers will increase your travel time. Taking the train can range from 90 minutes to 2 hours, depending on your connections. So, if possible, I suggest using a car.


5. Zurich

Zurich’s numerous museums, shops, and activities make it one of the most vibrant day trips from Engelberg. In less than two hours, you can reach Zurich from Engelberg.

Image of Zurich by TouringSwitzerland.com

As Switzerland’s largest city, Zurich offers plenty of restaurants, bars, museums, and shops. Here you will also find beautiful churches such as Grossmünster and Fraumünster. My favorite family outing here is the Zoo, which, in my opinion, is the best zoo in the country.

There are many things that you can do in Zurich so if you would like to visit somewhere larger and livelier than Lucerne and Zofingen, I highly recommend that you give it a try.

Don’t miss these attractions in Zurich
* Landesmuseum Zurich
* Grossmünster Church
* Uetliberg Mountain
* Lindenhof
* Lake Zurich
* Bahnhofstrasse for shopping

If you would like to plan a day in Zurich, you can read our article 25 Best Things To Do In Zurich, Switzerland.

How do you get from Engelberg to Zurich?

To start, catch the train from Engelberg to Lucerne. In Lucerne, there are two direct trains each hour heading to Zurich. The journey from Engelberg to Zurich takes around 1 hour and 48 minutes.


6. Lake Lungern

A day trip to Lake Lungern from Engelberg is an excellent choice if you’d like to swim in one of Switzerland’s most stunning lakes.

Image of Lake Lungern by TouringSwitzerland.com

Lake Lungern is a serene and picturesque lake surrounded by forests, mountains, and the towns of Lungern, Kaiserstuhl, and Obsee. It is a natural lake and reservoir in the canton of Obwalden that receives its supply of water from the Melchaa, an outflow of Lake Melchsee of the mountain resort Melchsee-Frutt. The water of Lake Lungern then flows into the Sarneraa, a 10-kilometer-long tributary of Lake Lucerne.

Lake Lungern is surrounded by lush forests and nearby mountains such as Wilerhorn (2,005 meters), Höch Gumme (2,205 meters), Chingstuel (2,118 meters), and Giswilerstock (1,825 meters).

Don’t miss these attractions in Lake Lungern
* Seepark Lungern
* Lake Lungern Circular Trail

If you would like to learn more about Lake Lungern, you can check out Lake Lungern: A Beautiful Lake in Obwalden, Switzerland.

How do you get from Engelberg to Lake Lungern?

To start, catch the train from Engelberg to Lucerne. In Lucerne, take the Luzern-Interlaken Express to Lungern. The journey from Engelberg to Lungern takes around 1 hour and 48 minutes.


7. Bern

One of the most important day trips you can take from Engelberg is to Bern, Switzerland’s de facto capital, which is 144 kilometers away.

Image of Bern by TouringSwitzerland.com

Nestled along the banks of the Aare River, Bern offers a variety of attractions for all tastes, whether you enjoy history, art, animals, or simply relaxing in a beautiful setting. It is the federal city of Switzerland. There is much more to discover when you take the time to explore this charming city.

There is no better place in Bern to start your day than the Old Town, located across the Aare River. The Old Town of Bern, which consists of well-preserved buildings from the medieval era, was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1983. A famous symbol of Bern, which dates back to 1218-1220, can be seen right at the entrance to the Old Town: the Zytglogge.

Don’t miss these attractions in Bern
* UNESCO World Heritage Old City of Bern
* Parliament Building
* Bern Minster Cathedral
Historic Museum
* Bern Bear Pit (Bärengraben)
* Bern Zoo (Tierpark Dählhölzli)
* Zentrum Paul Klee
Gurten
* Museum of Communication

If you would like to learn more about Bern, check out our article How to Spend 1 Day in Bern, Switzerland.

How do you get from Engelberg to Bern?

To start, catch the train from Engelberg to Lucerne. In Lucerne, there are two direct trains each hour heading to Bern. The journey from Engelberg to Bern takes around 2 hours.


8. Solothurn

A 90-minute drive from Engelberg takes you to Solothurn, which is around 116 kilometers away. Solothurn is one of Switzerland’s most beautiful cities and well worth a day trip from Engelberg.

Solothurn is generally regarded as Switzerland’s most beautiful Baroque city. Solothurn is a city, municipality, and the capital of Solothurn, a canton in Switzerland. The city is situated along the Aare River and at the southern end of the Jura mountain range.

Combining French charm with German practicality, Solothurn is a fascinating small city. The old town is a pleasant place to walk among historical monuments, patrician houses, and strong fortifications. The area is car-free and teeming with small shops and hotels. Aside from its impressive past, Solothurn offers a wide range of contemporary art and entertainment.  

Those looking for a place with a stunning view should visit the St. Ursus Cathedral. With beautiful stained glass windows and interiors, this stunning Cathedral was built between 1762 and 1773 by the architects Gaetano Matteo Pisoni and Paolo Antonio Pisoni. It is the city’s main attraction.

Don’t miss these attractions in Solothurn
* St. Ursus Cathedral
* Historic Old Town
* St. Verena Gorge and Hermitage
* Jesuit Church of Solothurn
* Solothurn’s Clock Tower
* Museum of the Old Arsenal
* Weissenstein Mountain

If you would like to learn more about Solothurn, check out our article Solothurn – 9 Best Things to Do in this Beautiful Baroque City.

How do you get from Engelberg to Solothurn?

Take a train from Engelberg to Lucerne, then to Olten, and finally to Solothurn. The entire journey takes approximately 2 hours.


9. Aare Gorge

With steep rock walls, rushing water, and stunning natural scenery, visiting the Aare Gorge makes for an interesting day trip from Engelberg. It takes just a bit over 2 hours from Engelberg.

Image of Aare Gorge by TouringSwitzerland.com

Known for its limestone formations, Aare Gorge is a large piece of bedrock. It stretches 1,400 meters long and 200 meters deep between Innertkirchen and Meiringen. With a system of safe paths and tunnels, you can walk through the gorgeous gorge to experience nature uniquely.

Access to Aare Gorge has been possible for more than a century. It has been open to the public since 1888. Restaurants, a winter-covered terrace, and a playground have expanded the tourist appeal over the years. Throughout the years, they have also made continuous efforts to make the gallery safer.

If you would like to read more about Aare Gorge, you can check out our article The Aare Gorge Canyon Walk in Haslital, Switzerland.

How do you get from Engelberg to Aare Gorge?

Board the train to Lucerne, then hop on the Lucerne-Interlaken Express train to Meiringen. From Meiringen, catch the connecting train to Aareschlucht Ost or Aareschlucht West. The journey from Engelberg to the Aare Gorge train station via Meiringen takes around 2 hours and 18 minutes. The entrance to Aare Gorge is just a short walk from the train station.


10. Fribourg

In two hours, you can drive 175 kilometers to the lovely town of Fribourg from Engelberg. It is one of the most interesting day trips that you can do from Engelberg. In this city, you will see the cultural bridge between the country’s German- and French-speaking regions.

Image of Fribourg by TouringSwitzerland.com

In Switzerland, Fribourg is a bilingual city that serves as a cultural border or bridge between German and French-speaking areas. The city has a picturesque alpine setting, an ancient castle, and many historically significant buildings. The city is also home to Fribourg University, the only bilingual university in Switzerland.

Located on the banks of the Sarine River, the city features both a preserved old town and modern structures. One of Fribourg’s most famous landmarks, St. Nicholas Cathedral is a masterpiece of Gothic architecture.

For fantastic views of the city, you can walk up to Chapelle de Lorette, a Baroque-style building dating back to 1648.

Don’t miss these attractions in Fribourg
* St. Nicholas Cathedral
* Pont du Milieu
* Old City of Fribourg
* City Fortifications
* Chapelle de Lorette

If you would like to learn more about Fribourg, check out our article How to Spend 1 Day in Fribourg, Switzerland.

How do you get from Engelberg to Fribourg?

To start, catch the train from Engelberg to Lucerne. In Lucerne, there are two direct trains each hour heading to Fribourg/Freiburg. The journey from Engelberg to Fribourg/Freiburg takes around 2 hours and 23 minutes.


Summary: Best Day Trips from Engelberg

For those who are staying for a couple of days in Engelberg, Switzerland, and wish to venture out to other places, we hope that this list was helpful.

To summarize, if you are looking for large cities with lots of activities, Lucerne, Bern, Zurich, and Fribourg are great choices. Solothurn and the Zofingen are for those who want something a bit smaller and more laid back.

Aare Gorge offers some of the most picturesque landscapes for photographers. Lake Lungern is a great option during the summer if you’re looking to go for a swim. Lastly, Stanserhorn and Pilatus are the most suitable choices for those who want to visit the mountains.

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Darla Uhl is the owner of TouringSwitzerland.com. Her home is in the German-speaking part of Switzerland. Having lived almost 20 years in Switzerland, she's traveled extensively all over the country.

Darla's favorite regions to visit in Switzerland include Engadin, Lake Geneva, Bernese Oberland, Ticino, and Valais. She loves spending time with her family, hiking, visiting museums, and reading books.

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