Comfortable Hiking trail with ascent and descent Ascent: Brienz-Giessbachfälle/Waterfalls (120m height difference)
Brienz/ Kienholz (577m) - Aaregg (567m) - Engi (686m/725m) - Hotel Giessbach (666m) – Giessbach-Seeufer (566m) Iseltwald (566m)- Sengg (672m)- Bönigen (566m) - Interlaken
From the road, we turn off to the left to the hiking path leading up through the wood to the houses of “Engi” and to the Axalp road. We follow it a short while and then take the Giessbachweg on the right, leading westwards. Before we reach the big curves, we take a shortcut to the right, down to the well-known Giessbach falls, a beauty of nature of the first order. Huge masses of water plunge over 14 cascade down to Lake Brienz. Also the romantic “Hotel Giessbach”, built in the jugendstil in the 19th century, is an ideal side trip and place for a rest. From there, the outlook over the lake,
the chain of mountains and villages on the opposite shore is beautiful. The Giessbach can also be reached by boat from Brienz in a short time. A historic funicular leads up from the lakeshore to the hotel. From the hotel terrace, our path leads down the mountain. We cross the funicular at an underpass and presently join the romantic “Iseltwalder Uferweg” which we follow along the wooded lakeshore until the first houses of Iseltwald.
Iseltwald - Interlaken
Following the shore and past cosy restaurants, we come to the village centre. Pilgrims are very welcome here, and inexpensive specialities are on offer. From the village centre (where the road to Interlaken joins it), we go westwards on the Dorfstrasse as far as the landing pier. Here, we turn off left and now southwards, and climb up over the sloping meadow to the bus stop “Mühle” below the motorway. On the quiet
country road, we proceed westwards to the hamlet of Sengg, offering an outlook over the lake. On a paved road through fields and through the wood, and crossing the motorway below its viaduct, we walk down to the lake. We remain on the paved road (in part with sidewalk), and along the shore, we come to the first houses of Bönigen. Here, we change to the lake promenade to reach the landing pier of Bönigen. The old village of Bönigen offers picturesque narrow lanes and many beautiful farmhouse facades.
The shore path from the landing pier to Interlaken is well-marked. The idyllic path leads across the river “Lütschine”, past the bathing place to the discharge of the lake into the river Aare. From here, we walk along the river westwards passing below the railway bridge, past factory buildings and the area of the landing pier, to the railway station of Interlaken Ost. Near the former “Zollhaus” (customs post), we cross the railway line (Bern – Interlaken line) through an underpass and go through a park to the
Beaurivage bridge. Here, we can go either across the Beaurivage bridge to join the official “Jakobsweg” leading us along the river to the town of Unterseen, or we continue straight on and then turn off to the right into the castle compound where we come to the St Augustine monastery and the two churches. From the castle area, the route leads past hotels and the open field of the “Höhematte” until shortly before the Kursaal where we turn off to the right and the river Aare. Across the “Strandbad” bridge, we return to the Way of St James.