Want to visit Leukerbad but you’re not sure what there is to do in town? Then you’ve come to the right place because this detailed guide will tell you about all the top things to do in Leukerbad!
The village in the alps is best known for its many thermal baths. It boasts the largest thermal bath complex in the Alpine region, which is the main attraction that draws tourists into town.
But relaxing in warm water certainly isn’t the only thing you can do here – nature attractions, cruises, cosmetics workshops, local wildlife, culture, food, and much more await in this village, so keep reading to learn more about all the best things to do in Leukerbad.
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Ride The Torrent Cable Car
The Torrent cable car is a popular and scenic ride from Leukerbad to Rinderhütte. The top station is at an altitude of more than 2,300 meters, and it boasts stunning panoramic views of the surrounding mountains.
The best time to visit Torrent cable car is either summer or winter. The lift is operated seasonally and it is closed for a few months during the shoulder seasons, so you won’t be able to ride it whenever you want.
In the winter months, the cable car is most popular with skiers and snowboarders who wish the explore the many kilometers of ski pistes that await near the top station. In the summer months, those ski pistes turn into mountain biking and hiking trails, and they’re frequented by adventurers who want to discover the natural landmarks in the area.
Leukerbad has always been famous for its thermal baths. The first mentions of baths in the town date back to the 14th century, and thermal tourism has been a thing in the area since the 16th century. You have to at least visit the thermal springs if you travel to Leukerbad, otherwise, you’re missing out on the most popular tourist attractions in town.
Leukerbad Therme features thermal and regular swimming pools, both indoors and outdoors. They’re open year-round, so you can relax in the thermal pools outdoors while enjoying the views of the snow-capped mountain peaks surrounding you. It’s truly a special experience, not to mention all the health benefits you’ll reap during a swim session.
In addition to thermal baths and regular swimming pools, Leukerbad Therme also features a children’s pool with slides, saunas, and even a dedicated sports pool. They’re the largest therme in the Alps, so definitely a top-tier Swiss attraction!
Thermal Canyon Walk
If you enjoy hiking, you can visit Thermal Canyon Walk – it’s a hiking area dedicated to Leukerbad’s popular thermal springs, and it includes a visit to the famous Dala gorge.
The hiking trail is not too challenging but it does include some rather steep and slightly dangerous sections, and I wouldn’t do this hike with small children or pets. It is still possible to do the hike with pets and kids, but you’ll need to help them a bit along the way, which will distract you from the spectacular views around you.
A good section of the hike takes place over the metal grating, so you are walking on a man-made path for a while. The steel structure leads hikers deep into the gorge, where you can see the thermal springs just underneath your feet.
The Pfyn Forest is a vast nature park with countless hiking and mountain biking trails, so the perfect playground for all outdoor adventurers in Leukerbad. If you enjoy hiking and climbing mountains, you will absolutely love exploring this area.
It’s best to visit the nature park in the spring or summer when most of the snow has melted and the hiking trails are in decent condition. The park is easily accessible by public transport from Leukerbad – you can take the train to Leuk and then a bus to Salgesch.
The forest is also popular among birdwatchers, thanks to a variety of rare species within the nature park. There’s also lots of unique flora and fauna here, and all visitors are encouraged to discover it, but without disrupting it.
It’s worth noting that there are multiple accommodation options throughout the nature park, from mountain huts to campsites. There are also plenty of places where you can grab drinks and food, so you don’t have to overpack your backpack even if you want to stay at the park for a few days.
Daubensee is a mountain lake and one of the most popular day tours from Leukerbad. You can travel to the lake via the Gemmi Gondola – either get out at the Gemmi Pass station and explore both Leukerbad attractions during a single outing or ride the cable car all the way to the top station at the lake.
Loop trails around the lake are the most popular in the area, and they’re perfect for discovering the absolutely stunning surroundings. I’d bring a picnic basket on the hike because the area is so magically beautiful that the food will without a doubt taste better than anywhere else.
Another thing to note about the lake is that it’s home to the annual Shepherd Festival, which takes place on the last Sunday in July. If by some miracle you happen to be in Leukerbad at this time, definitely make time for the festival. It’s a unique experience, and it’s absolutely impressive to observe the sheep racing down the mountainside!
The Gemmi Gondola takes you from Leukerbad to Gemmi Pass, an important mountain pass that has historically connected the cantons of Valais and Bern. It’s a popular hiking area with an entire network of trails that are waiting to be discovered.
It is possible to hike from Leukerbad to Gemmi Pass, but this is a challenging ascent that should only be attempted by experienced hikers. The path is steep and challenging, and the hike is only made more difficult by the changing weather at higher altitudes.
The loop hike around Daubensee is another popular hike in the area that can be done from Gemmi Pass. You can see the lake from the pass, and it’s possible to reach it by both hiking trails and the gondola from Gemmi.
Wysse Lake offers stunning panoramic views of the Alps and the Rhone Valley, and it’s one of the best natural landmarks to visit on a day excursion from Leukerbad. It is easily accessible from the town by gondola and hiking trails – you can ride the Torrent cable car to Rinderhütte, and from there it’s about a three-hour hike to the beautiful lake.
Bring a picnic basket on the hike – the nature around the lake is mesmerizing, and it’s just the perfect place for a picnic. Also, there aren’t any restaurants close to the lake, so you will need to bring food and drinks to get you through the hike.
Without Wysse Lake, Leukerbad likely wouldn’t have a thermal bath, let alone as many as it has today. Rainwater falls onto this lake, gets enriched with sulfates and calcium near Triassic gypsum, and ultimately it flows out into the countless springs in the town.
The Soapery Switzerland
The Soapery Switzerland is the perfect place for wellness shopping in Leukerbad. You can purchase hand-made cosmetics here, which are infused with all sorts of natural ingredients that have great benefits for your health.
This place also offers various workshops, so in addition to shopping, you can learn to make soaps, body scrubs, and other cosmetic products. It’s a fun place for visitors, especially those who are into the entire wellness and spa Leukerbad experience.
It’s worth noting that products at this shop are a bit pricey, but that’s expected considering the ingredients. Nothing that’s good for you comes cheap, and that’s certainly true for soaps infused with thermal water from the many springs in Leukerbad.
Daubenhorn is a mountain summit in the Bernese Alps, which boasts the longest via ferrata in Switzerland. It’s the perfect adventure for all outdoor enthusiasts, especially those who find relaxing in the thermal baths a little bit boring.
Daubenhorn rises to an elevation of 2,942 meters above sea level, and a six-hour climb can get you to the mountain summit. The view from the top is absolutely incredible and it will make all the hardships of getting there absolutely worth it.
The via ferrata is on the southeastern face of the mountain and it goes all the way to the summit. It’s an extremely challenging route suitable only for the most experienced alpinists – it takes some six hours to complete it, and not everyone can handle dangling off the side of the mountain for such a long time.
It’s worth noting that there is an alternate route to the summit of Daubenhorn. It’s a semi-circular hiking trail from Gemmi Pass, which can get you to the mountain summit in 2-3 hours. This is also a challenging hiking trail with a very steep ascent, so it should be attempted only by experienced hikers. The entire trail to Daubenhorn and back to Gemmi Pass is around 10 kilometers long, and the out-and-back hike can usually be completed in 4-5 hours.