Expat Life

Jungfraujoch – Top of Europe 3’454 metres above sea level

For more than 100 years, the Jungfraujoch has been considered one of the most spectacular destinations in Europe, right in the middle of the Alps, surrounded by the famous Eiger, Mönch and Jungfrau mountains. In 2001, this region became the first in the Alps to receive “UNESCO World Heritage” status.

The Jungfrau railway is one of the most impressive achievements of Switzerland’s mountain railways. It was opened in 1912 after 16 years of construction. It leads from the Kleine Scheidegg mountain up to the Jungfraujoch – Top of Europe at an altitude of 3,454 m, to the highest train station in Europe.

Many visitors view the journey to the “Top of Europe” as the highlight of their Swiss holiday. The train covers the distance of 9.34 km to its destination largely through a seven kilometre-long tunnel hewn out of the mountain. It traverses the mountains of Eiger and Mönch and surmounts 1,400 metres in altitude.

The Jungfraujoch opens up a world of ice and snow for visitors with a view to the Aletsch Glacier which, at 22 km, is the longest in the Alps. On a clear day, it is possible to see beyond the Swiss border into the Vosges Mountains in France and the Black Forest in Germany. Popular attractions on the Jungfraujoch include the Sphinx viewing terrace, the ice palace, the Alpine Sensation opened for its 100th anniversary, the Snow Fun Park, various restaurants, the Lindt chocolate shop (the highest of its kind) and the highest post office in Europe.

Journey time to the Jungfraujoch slashed by 47 minutes

Since 5 December 2020, the Eiger Express, the heaviest and most modern tricable aerial cableway, has been taking guests from the Grindelwald terminal to the Eiger Glacier station in just 15 minutes. The impressive ride in 26-seat cabins passes by the world-famous north face of the Eiger.

Alpine Sensation adventure tunnel

The Alpine Sensation is a new attraction on the Jungfraujoch, opened on 30 March 2012 to mark the hundredth anniversary of the Jungfrau railways. In a 250 metre-long adventure tunnel, it brings to life the story of the Jungfrau railway and the development of tourism in the Alps.

Ice Palace

In the middle of the Jungfrau firn, 20 metres below the viewing platform, on the watershed of Europe, the ice is piling up to move slowly northwards and, once it melts, it will eventually flow into the North Sea. In the 1930s, two mountain guides started to carve this vast hall out of the glacier ice. Working by hand using ice picks and saws, they created the 1,000 square metre Ice Palace. The cave-like corridors lead to various ice sculptures.

Jungfraujoch .Aufgenommen am 28.12.2019, 04.01_05.01.2020 auf dem Jungfraujoch ©David Birri

Sphinx

The glazed sphinx viewing hall gives a view of the glacier landscape in all weathers. In sunny weather, the terrace surrounding the building invites you to linger. The terrace is at an altitude of 3,571 m and offers a view of the Aletsch Glacier and into the neighbouring countries of France, Germany and Italy.

Jungfraujoch .Aufgenommen am 28.12.2019, 04.01_05.01.2020 auf dem Jungfraujoch ©David Birri

Research station

The Jungfraujoch has Europe’s highest research station, and the highest in the world that can be reached by train. This enables the transportation of highly advanced equipment required for the sophisticated research. The research station is of enormous significance for environmental scientists, astrophysicists, meteorologists, glaciologists and materials scientists.

Snow Fun Park

It is also possible to enjoy winter sports in summer at the Snow Fun Park on the Jungfraujoch. In good weather, various winter sports can be practised from the beginning of May to mid-October. Whether zooming down the piste on skis or a snowboard, gliding down the sledding piste in comfort or hovering over the crevasses on the steel cable, endless snow can be enjoyed to the fullest.

Mönchsjoch hut

The Mönchsjoch hut is the highest manned hut in Switzerland. An excursion onto the Jungfraujoch can be easily combined with a winter walk to the Mönchsjoch hut. The trail goes over glaciers but, weather permitting, is prepared daily using a snow groomer. The hut, which is at an altitude of 3,657 m, can be reached in around an hour.

Dining

The Jungfraujoch offers various restaurants with a total cover of 1,000. In the a la carte restaurant Crystal, guests are spoiled with a choice of Swiss specialities and international menus. The self-service restaurant Aletsch offers an extensive range for every taste and is best for quick and simple meals.

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