Home » Essential Tips for Visiting The Top Of Europe in Switzerland With Kids

Essential Tips for Visiting The Top Of Europe in Switzerland With Kids

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Last Updated on June 5, 2024 by Leslie Stroud

If you plan to visit a “postcard in real life,” as I like to say it, and make your way to Switzerland with kids, you will likely want to see the Top Of Europe in Grindelwald. Rest assured, the Swiss have done excellent planning and work for this attraction and how to get there. However, I’ve compiled my most helpful hints to assist your next family visit to enjoy the many activities, overwhelming beauty surrounding you, and a few modes of transportation to get you to the top.

The Swiss Alps, famed for their beauty, height, and snow, have been recognized by many of us from childhood, and for a good reason. These impressive peaks will shock you with their jagged mountains, massive glaciers, waterfalls, and sheer drops and humble your sense of nature.

No trip to the Swiss Alps would be complete without seeing them from the top!  While Jungfraujoch, or The Top Of Europe attraction, is not the highest point you can visit, it delights young and old with the longest glacier in Europe, snow or summer activities, lush green hills or snow-covered mountains, and more.

Ascend to the Top Of Europe via Eiger Express Cable Car

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What Is The Top Of Europe?

A stunning feat of engineering, this marvel has been open since 1912, when the first train ride was completed after a fascinating history of bringing it from imagination to reality. It took 16 years to finish and dig out of a mountain. This railway is the highest in Europe still today and now services the Top of Europe Complex.

The complex offers various attractions to spend the day.  Take in the sweeping views of the alps and the Aletsch Glacier, Europe’s longest glacier at over 22 km and around 1 km thick.  Or head inside for various attractions and delights.  There are also outdoor offerings.

Clear clouds everywhere at the Top Of Europe

Other delightful facts about the Top Of Europe:

  • Jungfraujoch is the highest accessible point in Europe.
  • It stands at an impressive 3,454m height above sea level (over 11,300 feet)!
  • You can count on 1700 hours of sun per year.
  • The average temperature here is -8 °C.
  • Jungfraujoch train station is the highest in Europe.
  • Let’s be clear – The plateau where the railway is located is named Jungfraujoch, while the closest mountain peak to the plateau is named Jungfrau. 
  • On August 3, 1811, J.R. Meyer made a mark as the first person to climb the Jungfrau peak.
  • Railway employees are doing weekly maintenance checks on the 9.2 kilometers long track between the Jungfraujoch and Kleine Scheidegg.
Exploring Jungfraujoch-Top Of Europe with kids is an incredible experience when in Switzerland

How To Visit The Top Of Europe With Kids

Getting to the Top Of Europe takes some time and planning. The journey consists of several legs, and you have options for getting there. 

You’ll need tickets to travel to the complex itself, and I’d recommend NOT buying tickets far in advance. While the attraction can be top-rated and crowded in busier months (summer being the most crowded from June-August), weather plays a huge factor in your visit.

The views offer the most delight at the top, and a sweeping blizzard or thick fog will completely block your view. It’s best to closely monitor the weather and pick the best option during your stay in this magical part of the world.

Catching fantastic views from Sphinx Observation Deck with kids

How To Buy Tickets To The Top Of Europe

You can purchase tickets directly from the Top Of Europe Website. Their helpful trip planner will assist you in planning the right amount of time for the visit. You can estimate which activities you want to do and how much time you’ll need for each attraction.

Alternatively, you can purchase tickets from hotels in the area (sometimes at a discount) and local train ticket booths in Grindelwald. The trip involves many parts; sometimes, it’s best to go along with someone familiar with how the journey works.

Several discounts are also available for tickets to the Top of Europe, which can help with the hefty price tag.

On our second visit, the train station helped us book an all-day sledding ticket to combine with the Jungfrau Railway. This did make it more affordable, and if going with kids, might add another activity for the day! I’d encourage you to ask locals how to get a discount ticket to find more tricks like this.

Amaze yourself with wonderful ice sculptures at the Top Of Europe Ice Palace

Different Options To Get To The Top Of Europe

Travel to this attraction often begins in the towns of Interlaken or Grindelwald, and your journey may come from cities like Zurich or Lucerne. European trains are lovely, efficient, on time, and easy to navigate.

Getting To The Top Of Europe From Interlaken

From the Interlaken Ost station, follow signs to the train for Grindelwald.  It may be the back of a train that also heads somewhere else. Look for the train conductors, which are very helpful, and they all speak incredible English if you are unsure.

Ride the gorgeous rails up to the Grindelwald Bahn. It is the central base station for your ride to the Top Of Europe and houses the Eiger Express, a super fast, 15-minute cable car that soars over the side of the mountain to the next station (Kleine Scheidegg) in your journey.

Another way is to book a seat reservation (recommended in busy seasons) on the train ride from Grindelwald to Kleine Scheidegg station. You’ll need to continue on the first train from Interlaken to Grindelwald if you are taking the train up the mountain.

This ride is one of the most beautiful train journeys in the world and has a couple of stops along the way that you can explore if you have time. Skiers utilize this train in winter with their skis to get up and down the mountain.

Wrap up your day with the views and food at Harder Kulm Restaurant

Getting To The Top Of Europe from Kleine Scheidegg Station

Once you’ve reached the Kleine Scheidegg station, either by the quick gondola or scenic train, feel free to explore. This area is home to several activities, a cafe, a gift shop, and gorgeous views.

Once you are ready to contuse up to the Top Of Europe, you’ll board the Jungfrau Railway. This cog rail climbs steeply inside the mountain in about 25 minutes, with a quick, 5-minute break in the middle of the ascent to view the snow fields from the windows. Sounds impressive, right?

The luxury train astounds with how fast it ascends inside the mountains, and video clips showcase some of the histories of the railway.

Grindelwald railway station is one of the most beautiful train terminals in Europe. We are so in love with European trains!

Getting To The Top Of Europe From Grindelwald

Staying overnight in Grindelwald before your trip to the Top Of Europe is ideal for saving some travel time on the day of your visit. Grindelwald is quite magical and has shot to the top of our list of favorite European cities. We love this quaint town, the warm, lovely restaurants, fun activities, and the set at the base of stunning, snow-capped peaks.

If you are traveling by train to the Top Of Europe, your journey begins in town and Grindelwald station. However, if you are going by the beautiful Eiger Express, you’ll need to take a quick ride down the mountain and bit to the Grindelwald Bahn station. You’ll find a small shopping complex with the entrance to the Eiger Express.

Shopping in Grindelwald, enjoying a meal and taking in the breathtaking Alps before heading to the train station is easy!

Planning Your Visit To The Top Of Europe

Weather At The Top Of Europe

As already stated, weather is critical to your visit. While there are many things to do on the Top Of Europe, the views are still the main attraction, and a white-out storm will dampen the experience.

The weather is different than in the valley, so it’s best to check some live webcams and weather predictions like this site.

Time To Visit The Top Of Europe

You should allot an entire day to experience the Top Of Europe fully. Even if you are staying in Grindelwald, the experience lasts several hours.

Coming from another city, like Interlaken or farther, can mean several hours of travel to the top.

It’s always best to go first thing in the morning as the weather can be a bit clearer, and crowds are smaller.

While in the Top Of Europe Complex, you’ll need at least 90 minutes to see everything. Add more time if you plan to hike or do any outdoor activity.

Frozen Scrat in the Top of Europe Ice Palace. Tell the kids to search for him!

Queuing and Lines At The Top of Europe

LInes can be long in peak times. As always, first thing in the morning is the best time to go.

If you find yourself dealing with long lines, stay calm. There is no way to get around it. You can only access the Top Of Europe one way. However, the staff are prepared for times like these and will get you there as soon as they can.

What To Do At The Top Of Europe

Once at the complex, there are several activities to enjoy:

  1. Sphinx Observatory Terrace
  2. Snow Fun Park
  3. Jungfrau Panorama
  4. Ice Palace
  5. Eiger Express
  6. Hike to Mönchsjochhütte
  7. Lindt Swiss Chocolate Heaven
  8. Alpine Sensation
  9. Eismeer Station

The vistas and attractions are well worth a visit. We loved the snowy peaks and incredible views but had to visit twice because of the weather! A blizzard steals away many of the joys of a visit, so be sure to watch the weather predictions beforehand.

Drink anyone? Serving up pretend drinks in the Ice Palace to all the Top of Europe visitors
Giant snowglobe in the Alpine Sensation at the Top of Europe
Ice Sculpture at the Top of Europe all year long. This one features the Piano Guys.

Other Tips For Visiting the Top Of Europe With Kids

  • Train vs. the Eiger Express. I’d recommend using both modes of transportation when visiting. Depending on time constraints, you can pick which way you’d like to go up and down. However, they offer very different experiences, and both are magical. Additionally, you can hike down in the summer.
  • Lack of signage or directions. The experience of visiting is a bit confusing, to be honest. Not many signs explain how to get to the Top of Europe. Be sure to ask employees when you have any confusion. They can easily explain it to you. 
  • Language barrier. Switzerland has three main languages: German, French and Italian, and everyone seems to speak all of them, as well as Swiss and English. We’ve only met friendly people. Don’t be nervous to ask questions.
  • Time commitment to visit Top Of Europe. You really need some serious time to enjoy this place. Go on a day you won’t be rushed!
  • Visiting in all seasons. We’ve been to the Top of Europe in summer and winter, and I love both. I think any season with good weather is a perfect trip. The alps draped in snow are stunning, but rolling green fields are equally pretty!
  • Altitude sickness can be a concern when you are up this high, especially if you live at or near sea level. Remember to drink plenty of water and pay attention to the symptoms: headache, nausea, shortness of breath, and possible vomitting.

Where To Stay Near Jungfraujoch-Top Of Europe With Kids

Since I recommend staying close to Jungfraujoch, you can check these hotels near the area:

Did I make you even more excited to travel to Switzerland and see the Top Of Europe with your family? 🙂



Book your next flight to Europe with Booking.com, Skyscanner, Kiwi.com, or Expedia

Thinking about where to stay? Find great hotel deals on Expedia, Vrbo, and Booking.com (we also love Tripadvisor!)

Discover more of Switzerland through fun activities from GetYourGuide, Airbnb Experiences, or Viator

Need a car? Visit Rentalcars.com

Get your family’s travel insurance from World Nomads

Want to have a photo shoot while traveling? Check out flytographer!

Capture your best memories at Jungfraujoch-Top Of Europe with a GoPro, Sony camera, or our favorite drones: DJI FPV, Air, and Mini

Check out other travel necessities for your trip from a comprehensive list of all the 7Wayfinders Travel Must-Haves. Click Here!

Additional Reading

10 Important Things To Know When Traveling From Italy to Switzerland By Train

Our Review Of All Disney Parks In The World

10 Tips For Surviving Jet Lag When Traveling With Kids


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