Knowledge & culture

Simmental House Trail

Discover the rich heritage of carpentry and wood building tradition.

This enjoyable hike from Wimmis to Boltigen offers the chance to admire the elaborate carpentry and magnificent facade paintings of the houses in the Simmental. The numbered houses are marked with small brown signs, which provide the main information about each particular house.

The richly decorated houses are testament to the great wealth that the breeding and export of the now world-famous Simmental cattle brought to the sunny mountain valley even very early on. During the 17th and 18th centuries, the demand for ornamentation and decoration reached its peak, as the façades of the houses facing the valley or the street became a show front. They demonstrated both the social status of the owners and the craftsmanship of the master carpenters.

Travelling by train, you can reach the train stations at Wimmis, Oey-Diemtigen, Erlenbach i.S., Ringoldingen, Därstetten, Weissenburg, Oberwil i.S., Enge i.S. and Boltigen every hour from Bern.

Route description

The Simmental House Trail consists of two sections: the valley trail and the terrace trail. The terrace trail leads from Erlenbach to Boltigen, and the valley trail from Wimmis via Erlenbach to Weissenburg. The 39 selected houses are marked with plaques that inform you about the special features of each building. In addition to the aforementioned houses, there are many other pretty buildings along the way, as well as proud barns, wooden bridges, granaries, gardens, flowers, trees, forests, cows and lush meadows. It’s also worth taking a stroll through some of the villages, such as Erlenbach and Wimmis.

Depending on your endurance, enthusiasm and the time of year, the two legs of the trail can also be divided into smaller sections. The starting points of the various hiking routes are always the BLS train stations. Choose from a selection of easy, medium and challenging hiking routes.

BLS suggestion

“Agensteinhaus” valley museum

Would you like to see the inside of a Simmental house? One such house is open to you in Erlenbach at the “Agensteinhaus” valley museum, where the permanent exhibition includes objects from the daily agricultural life of the past in the Simmental. The museum is housed in a large farmhouse, which is itself a highlight of skilled carpentry.

Opening times

May – October: Wednesdays and Saturdays from 2.00–5.00 p.m.

Guided tours also available outside the opening times: Bernhard Wüthrich, Tel. +41 79 885 00 39

Admission

Adults pay CHF 5.00 for admission; children visit the museum for free.

Healing plant garden

The Simmental healing plant garden in Adlemsried (municipality of Boltigen) is home to more than 70 medicinal plants.

Opening times

Mid-June to end of September
Wednesdays from 9.00 a.m.–5.00 p.m.

Admission free.

Availability Today (Sunday) open

The Simmental House Trail is accessible daily from April to October.

Getting there

Travelling by train, you can reach the train stations at Wimmis, Oey-Diemtigen, Erlenbach i.S., Ringoldingen, Därstetten, Weissenburg, Oberwil i.S., Enge i.S. and Boltigen every hour from Bern.

The Simmental House Trail is signposted from the train stations with brown signs.

Food & drink

Fuel up before, during or after the hike in a cosy inn.

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