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7 Best Things to Do in Walensee, Switzerland

Last Updated on April 8, 2024 by Darla

Discovering the myriad of things to do in Walensee, Switzerland, presents an adventure ready to be embraced. Walensee, a stunning lake in Switzerland, has tons to explore for anyone who loves nature and adventure. There’s something for everyone to enjoy in this beautiful place.

Image of Walensee by

7 Best Things to Do in Walensee

Image of the Betlis Chapel on the Hike Trail by

What’s fascinating about Walensee is its landscape—it’s not just flat and surrounded by buildings like Lake Zurich. Here, you’re greeted by mountains, especially the Churfirsten group, with seven peaks rising between 2,205 and 2,300 meters. These mountains, the southernmost part of the Appenzell Alps, create a stunning view.

long the lake, there are hiking trails offering waterfalls, stunning views of the blue lake, and mountain peaks all around. It’s a truly fantastic destination to explore.

One of the best things to do in Walensee is to pick one of the scenic hikes in the region. Here are some of the most scenic hiking trails that you can visit in Walensee:

  • Walenstadt to Quinten: This 11-kilometer hike from Walenstadt to Quinten offers stunning views of Walensee and the towering Churfirsten mountains. With its car-free charm and mild climate, Quinten, often called the Riviera of Eastern Switzerland, sits nestled amidst these breathtaking landscapes accessible only by foot or boat, making the boat trip back a perfect ending to the adventure. You may also approach Quinten from Betlis and pass by the Betlis Chapel as shown above.
  • Aussichtspunkt Chapf: The Chapf viewpoint, just a 20-minute walk from Arvenbüel, offers stunning views at 1,288 meters above sea level. From the majestic mountains of Mürtschenstock and Leistkamm to the sparkling Walensee below, this spot welcomes nature lovers with easy paths, benches, and even a fire pit for a comfortable and unforgettable experience.
  • Paxmal Peace Monument: The Paxmal Peace Monument brings calmness to the circular hike starting from Walenstadtberg, Reha-Klinik. During this two-hour trek passing Schrina-Hochrugg and Grund, enjoy stunning views over Lake Walen, finding inner peace amid nature’s beauty. Once you’ve reached Paxmal, the hike loops back via Schönegg and Hochrugg, offering a serene end to this tranquil experience.
  • Chestnut Hike (Autumn) – The Chestnut Trail in Murg is an exciting adventure through chestnut forests, with glimpses of the stunning Walensee and the towering Churfirsten mountain.! Along the way, you’ll discover the Murgbach Gorge with its impressive watermills and charming wooden sculptures, like leaping fish and cute fawns, making it a delightful nature walk. During autumn, kids can gather the delicious chestnuts to bring these home.

Hiking Time Calculator

Plan your hikes with ease using our Hiking Time Calculator. Calculate estimated hiking times based on distance, altitude, terrain, and average speed.

Image of Walensee from Strandbad Walenstadt by

Walensee stands out as one of Switzerland’s cleanest and most invigorating places to swim. Stretching over 15 kilometers, it offers several free lidos to explore. The water might feel a bit cooler than lakes like Zurich because of strong winds blending warm surface water with colder depths, making it a hotspot for surfing.

In winter, the lake remains mild and never really freezes, making it perfect for those who enjoy swimming in cool, freshwater, or other water sports, given its impressive depth of up to 145 meters.

Here are some swimming spots for you to consider:

  • Murg Lido – 8877 Quarten, Switzerland
  • Badestrand Unterterzen – Gostenstrasse 20, 8882 Unterterzen
  • Strandbad Walenstadt – Kasernenstrasse 10, 8880 Walenstadt

Image of the Quinten Boat taken from a Rental Boat by

Cruising around Walensee stands out as one of the best things to do in Walensee. We’ve tried it twice and loved it each time, especially in the quieter spring when the lake is too chilly for many swimmers. It’s a great way to spend an hour or two. From the boat, you can admire the surrounding mountains and Seerenbach Falls.

We have always rented from the Weesen dock. Depending on the boat type, you may or may not need a boat driver’s license. In this area, there are also restaurants to visit afterward.

You may also join the public Walensee Ship operated by Schiffsbetrieb Walensee. You can visit the website to check the schedule and plan your trip accordingly.

I haven’t given surfing a go, but I’ve seen many folks enjoy it on Walensee. Especially when the wind’s just right, surfing is among the most thrilling things to do in Walensee. The best part? No need to bring your gear. There’s a rental shop in Mühlehorn offering reasonably priced equipment, frequently rented out to schools, sports camps, and vacationers.

The address of the surf rental shop is Mühlehorntunnel, 8874 Mühlehorn, Switzerland.

Image of Seerenbach Falls by

A trek to Seerenbach Falls offers breathtaking views of Lake Walen and easy paths suitable for strollers, bikes, and families. Visiting the Seerenbach Falls is one of the best things to do in Walensee, Switzerland.

Seerenbach Falls, near Betlis in Amden, St. Gallen, comprises three waterfalls cascading into Lake Walen. The upper, middle, and lower falls measure 50 meters, 305 meters, and 190 meters, respectively, forming a gorge at the lake’s base. Despite once being incorrectly labeled Switzerland’s highest falls, they hold a mesmerizing charm and join with the Rin Spring, the region’s largest karst spring.

The best times to witness the falls are post-winter or after heavy rainfall, accentuating their beauty. You can park at Weesen or Betliser Street but beware of the street’s narrowness, strictly following its one-way regulations.

If you want to learn more about Seerenbach Falls, visit Among Switzerland’s Tallest Waterfalls – Seerenbach.

After visiting Seerenbach Falls, you may also stop in Restaurant Burg-Strahlegg nearby (Betliserstrasse 4, Weesen, Switzerland). It is a simple restaurant with amazing views, local produce, a play area, and animals close to you. There are also various outdoor grilling options in Walensee if this is what you prefer.

Image of Spielerlebnis Walensee Playground, Weesen by

Around Lake Walensee and the lake’s ship, there are exciting playgrounds waiting to be explored. Equipped with an explorer’s kit containing a small backpack, 2-day boat trip tickets for a child, the book “The Secret of Walensee,” a treasure map with puzzles, a brochure, a Spielerlebnis Walensee keychain, and a pen, each child can embark on an adventure.

Clues within these playgrounds or on the ship lead to discovering a secret, and uncovering it leads to a prize. This thrilling journey spans Weesen, Quinten, Murg, Unterterzen, Mols, Walenstadt, and the ship, making it Switzerland’s largest theme playground. It is one of the best things to do in Walensee with the little ones.

Image of Quinten by

Discovering Quinten is a true joy. This village without cars, embraced by the grand cliffs of Churfirsten, is a peaceful getaway with a mild climate akin to Ticino. Famous for its grapes, figs, kiwis, and the local Seyval Blanc wine, Quinten is a lovely spot to visit in Walensee. It is located 419 meters to 2,193 meters above sea level.

Quinten is only reachable by boat or on foot. You can take the boat ride from Murg West to Quinten, or reach it on foot from Weesen or Walenstadt. It is a picturesque walk through vineyards and along the lake, though you can expect some challenging parts with steep inclines.

If you would like to discover other car-free villages in Switzerland, check out 12 Charming Car-Free Villages in Switzerland.

Final Thoughts: 7 Best Things to Do in Walensee

Walensee isn’t just a destination; it’s a treasure trove of experiences. From its fjord-like appearance and stunning Churfirsten cliffs to the mild Riviera-like climate and classic trails accessible only by foot or boat, there’s something for everyone here.

Whether you’re hiking amidst scenic beauty, enjoying lakeside picnics, outdoor grilling, or discovering the allure of car-free towns, Walensee promises unforgettable moments for families and adventurers alike. Dive into this Swiss gem and create memories that last a lifetime.

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Darla is the owner of 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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