behind the Giessbach waterfall

The Giessbach Waterfalls – The Powerful Cascading Water of the Giessbachfälle


guide to the giessbach falls on Lake BrienzSo, do you agree that to marvel at one water fall is amazing, but what about being in awe of several water falls cascading down over 14 tiers, plunging 400 metres down into the turquoise water of the magnificent Lake Brienz – Brienzersee

The Giessbach Falls which pass in front of the Grandhotel Giessbach, offers exactly that within a beautiful setting.

Definitely a place you must visit when in the Bernese Oberland  Interlaken Region, or in the Jungfrau Region.

Here you will find some other activities within Switzerland!


How Best to visit the Giessbach Falls

Located in the beautiful Bernese Oberland near the Village of Brienz, these waterfalls thunder down into Lake Brienz.

In our opinion there is only one perfect way to visit the Giessbach Falls at Lake Brienz and this is via a boat cruise from either Bönigen by Interlaken or from Brienz itself.

on lake bruienz on a bar approaching the Giessbach See boat station
Arriving at the Giessbach See docking station on Lake Brienz

The boats on Lake Brienz are have a regular schedule and stop at different places. Below you can find a map of the boat jetties. Choose the closest jetty to your accommodation in the Interlaken region and plan your trip accordingly.

The boat will stop at the foot of the Giessbach waterfalls also called the “Giessbach See” where also the Giessbach funicular station is located. The Giessbach timetable for boats can be found here.

map of Lake Brienz and the boat routes
Boat route map of Lake Brienz by @BLS

Visit the Giessbach Falls – Giessbachfälle

You will have several options to admire this powerful spectacle. Here is what we did and I believe this is the best way to get the best views of the Giessbach Falls and perfect photo opportunities.

For a bit of nostalgia and fun, ride up to the Grandhotel Giessbach with the Giessbach funicular. In 2021 it was Chf 5.- one way per adult. The ride is short but it adds the fun factor for the kids. For those who are sporty, there is a 1km path hiking path up to the Hotel.

At the top, look around this most gorgeous fairytale hotel. A beautiful looking restaurant invites for a cold drink or why not even stay for lunch.

You will also find one of the Grand Tour of Switzerland photo stations. 🙂

the Giessbach Falls funicular
Ride up to the Grandhotel Giessbach with the Giessbach Funicular from Lake Brienz
kids at the grand Swiss tour photo station at the Giessbach waterfalls
Add the Giessbach waterfalls photo station to the collection

We continued with our discovery, followed the path that zigzags alongside the Giessbach Falls and up the mountain.

The hike along the waterfall is a shady place within the forest which is great when you visit the Giessbach Falls on a hot summer day. Outside of summer you may want to bring a warmer waterproof jacket with you.

map of the Giessbach waterfall area
The map gives a rough idea of the whole area.

Arriving by Car to the Giessbach Falls

If you prefer to arrive by car you would aim to get to the parking lot seen on the map above. The Grandhotel Giessbach also has paying parking places although they might be fully booked with the hotel guests. Better to park at the top parking and walk to the Giessbachfälle. It will bring you to the 1st bridge from where you can then discover however you like.

Follow on the Autobahn N8, and take the “Brienz – Giessbach” exit. Then follow the signs to Giessbach / Axalp.

Crossing the Giessbach Falls – Giessbachfälle

Various trails run up the mountain next to the falls and some are heading off to different viewpoints. On the hiking map at the end of the post, you can clearly see the different hiking trails.

When you are at the 1st bridge, after having taken some photos, come back over the bridge and take the path that leads up on the left side of the waterfalls. See photos.


The most famous bridge is for sure the one where you can walk behind the falls. It was amazing and mesmerizing at the same time. We visited in June when the falls where carrying a LOT of water and therefore needless to say, you will get wet.

From this particular bridge, you have an amazing view down to the Grandhotel Giessbach and lake Brienz.

behind the Giessbach waterfall
The most spectacular waterfall at the Giessbach Falls. 2nd bridge

Most tourist are stopping here before making their way back down. They are missing out. Carry on hiking up the waterfalls on the left-hand side path. There are several other viewpoints of the Giessbach Falls and many, many more rainbows to be seen.

The last bridge is where we found the water thundering down on its journey to the lake. Probably because the ledge from which the water drops is quite high.

It is also the bridge where we got pretty wet. But it was worth it. Nobody was up there, just us. From this point on the path is guiding you away from the falls. This is why we stopped here and made our way back down to the Grandhotel Giessbach.

different stages during the Giessbach Falls hike
Vistas during the Giessbach Fall hike

Ending the Visit to the Giessbachfälle at Lake Brienz

We planned to catch the boat back to Iseltwald where we were staying. With 30min left until the boat departed we decided to hike back down to the pier.

The 1km path is heading down on the right hand side of the Giessbach when you face Lake Brienz. Again you get spoilt with great views of the lower falls and once more there is a bridge to cross at the very end before reaching the Giessbach See boat jetty.

lower part pf the Giessbach Falls with the boat on Lake Brienz
the end of our visit to the Giessbach Falls at lake Brienz

Hiking Tips when at the Giessbach Falls

After having checked this path out a bit better on the map, we realised that you can actually hike all the way to the top and beyond. Therefore, if you are hiking in from anywhere else or would like to hike back to your accommodation, you can check the hiking map below to plot your path.

Hiking Facts

Location:: Lake Brienz at Giessbach Falls
Length:: 2.8 km in a loop
Level:: easy to moderate hike some slippery places, uphill
Ascent:: 208m / Descent:: 305m
Highest point:: 870m

Good to know

    • The funicular railway and scheduled passenger boat do not operate in winter, because of the possibility of ice and slippery paths. The summer season runs from the beginning of June to the end of October. Off season you would have to arrive by car.
    • This is not a push chair friendly visit. Although we have seen someone taking the pushchair from the boat up the funicular to the hotel. But to visit the falls, I suggest you bring a carrier.
    • Refreshment stop possible at the beautiful Grand Hotel Giessbach
    • On colder days bring a waterproof jacket as it might be a bit chilly/damp.

You May Also Like these Posts within the Region

I hope that the information provided here when you are planning to Visit the Giessbach Waterfalls at Lake Brienz will prove itself useful.

If I have left anything out, please ask your questions in the comments below and share your experience, so that other readers can join in the conversation and benefit from your queries and stories as well.

Thank you & Never forget to explore

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Hi, my name is Corina, a mum of twins, a wife and founder of Packed Again – a Swiss Family Travel & Adventure Blog. We live in the most amazing mountain valley in Switzerland, the Valais.

It is outdoors where we feel the most connected and happy with each other.

The Blog will give you lots of information on Swiss Adventures & Beyond.

Never Forget to Explore!

Thank you Corina

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