“Do you want to hear my advice?” my instructor asks. I can barely hear him over the rapid heartbeat in my ears. “Don’t wait, just jump.” I had just listened to the same man tease the people who went before me, but he could see the fear in my eyes – joking was not the right approach. I repeat his advice in my head, along with his earlier tips, “it’s all about mindset” and “don’t look down”. He attaches me to whatever equipment I need to be attached to, and hands me a rope to hold. I find a point to focus on far in front of me, and somehow my feet manage to shuffle forwards until I’m standing on the edge of a 90-metre high platform. After a 3-2-1 countdown, I don’t wait. I jump.
And it was terrifying and electrifying all at once. A three second death-defying freefall feels like a lifetime, before the rope catches and I begin to swing between the walls of a narrow gorge. My fear instantly turns into exhilaration. I let out a shriek of pure joy and can finally begin to appreciate the remarkable landscape I’m flying through. Leaning back in my harness, I listen to the gushing white waters of the Lütschine river below, while gazing up at the cloud dotted sky which glows between the dark canyon walls. This is Interlaken, Europe’s Adventure Capital.
Sitting in central Switzerland in the Bernese Oberland, Interlaken is Switzerland’s answer to an adult’s playground. Built in a narrow valley beneath many mountain peaks, the traditional resort town is sandwiched between two lakes; the azure coloured Lake Thun, and emerald green Lake Brienz, the latter getting its unique hues from the sediments in glacial particles. The scenery in and around Interlaken makes it a dreamlike landscape for both soft and hard adventure. Let the fun begin!
The best summer adventures in Interlaken