Camping Eigernordwand

Europe Switzerland

  • Electrical hook-ups
  • Children’s playground
  • Laundry
  • Groups welcome
  • Good walks nearby
Close-up views of the awesomenorth face of the Eiger
Say the phrase ‘Hinterstoisser Traverse’ to most people and it’ll mean nothing – it could be a German action hero or a section of Belgian motorway. But say it to a few cognoscenti climbing wonks and they’ll immediately know it’s a section of the awesome north face of the Eiger, named in honour of the first climber to cross it successfully, in 1936.

Eiger means ‘ogre’ and it’s easy to see where the name came from. The rock rises 1,800 metres from the valley and is so high that it creates its own mini-climate, conjuring storms on even the most placid days. It’s one of the reasons why it’s such a brute to climb and why you’re far better off sitting in a campsite, watching others take the strain. And this is just the place for it. Camping Eigernordwand is at the foot of the Eiger. The site’s run by a charming old gent, Rudi, who’s been here since canvas bags and cable-knit woollies were all the climbing rage. He comes round every evening to say hello, but finds all chairs turned towards the Nordwand as campers search out tiny specks of human dust trying to clamber up the rock. Of course, there’s more to Grindelwald than a huge slab of rock and the views from the site are just as inspiring if you turn your camp chair around and look down the valley. It’s just that now everyone’s looking at you.

Details

Facilities

Housed in a Swiss-chalet building, there are über-powerful hot showers and everything else you need after a hard day in the lounger watching the climbers.

Nearby

Try the cable car that runs from Grindelwald up to Männlichen (00 41 33 854 80 80). It’s supposedly the longest one in the world and starts a 10-minute walk from the campsite. Take the 35-minute ride on the cog train up through the Eiger to Kleine Scheidegg. It’s the best place for views of the face, but it’s not cheap at CHF83 return per person.

Food & Drink

There’s a small hotel next to the site with a terraced bar looking up to the Eiger. Up in the village, Hotel Grand Regina has a posher wood-panelled bar and terrace for evening drinks, while across the road by the railway station Hotel Kreuz und Post serves generous, good-value meals.

Opening Times

Early-May–mid-Oct.

Location

Contact Camping Eigernordwand, Camping Eigernordwand, 3818 Grindelwald, Switzerland

Show Map

Getting There

By car, come off the A8 at Interlaken, heading for Lauterbrunnen. After about 3 miles (4.8 km), turn left towards Grindelwald. On entering the town you’ll see the site down to your right. Take the right fork at the roundabout, down the hill past the railway station and follow the road over the river. There are also trains roughly every 30 minutes during the day from Interlaken. There are regular trains and buses to Grindelwald from Interlaken. Check for times at www.sbb.ch/en. The campsite is a 10-minute walk from the station.

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