Skiing in Adelboden

Adelboden has 210km of family-friendly skiing and boarding, two-thirds of which is in the main ski area between Adleboden and Lenk, and the remainder in four small satellite ski areas nearby.

Adelboden Ski Area Overview

The five Adelboden-Lenk ski areas have over 100 well maintained pistes, 90% of which are designated either blue (92km) or red (96km) and ideal for intermediates and confident beginners. More advanced skiing on piste is limited to a handful of black runs, none of which are very challenging, but there’s also easy off-piste terrain between the pistes and more challenging off-piste at higher altitude for ski touring with local mountain guides.


The Sillerenbuhl-Hahnenmoos-Metsch ski area, the biggest in the region, has an abundance of red and blue runs with north and south facing aspect either side of the Hahnenmoos Pass and the ridge between Adelboden and Lenk. Most of the skiing is between 1,500m and 2,200m and on wide open slopes which are usually uncrowded.

Beginners in Adelboden can gain confidence and improve their technique on wide, gentle blue slopes before progressing to the red runs, many of which can also be navigated with reasonable ease by confident beginners. While the skiing is fragmented across five separate ski areas, the main ski area is varied and big enough to entertain most recreational skiers for several days or more. Advanced skiers, however, will quickly exhaust the half a dozen black runs and need to look to the off-piste terrain for more challenging skiing.

Some of the ski lifts are quite old, notably the sequence of antiquated gondolas connecting Adelboden to the main ski area and the gondola to Hahnenmoos, but these are due to be upgraded in 2013. Three smaller ski areas near Adelboden, the Tschentenalp, Engstligenalp and Elsigenalp, also offer good skiing for beginners and intermediates and Engstligenalp also has some good off-piste. There’s another ski area above Lenk, but getting there from Adelboden and back is time consuming.


Adelboden’s local mountain, Tschentenalp, is easily reached by gondola from the village and offers half a dozen easy red runs and a blue run for intermediates and beginners, two black runs, a popular mountain restaurant with sun terrace and ski bar at the summit (1,950m). There’s also a long toboggan run and toboggans are available for hire at the gondola lift stations.


The Engstligenalp is a 2,000m high plateau and secluded wilderness, 5km from Adelboden. A cable car provides access to the ski area which includes half a dozen runs and five drag lifts on south facing slopes as well as 8km of cross-country skiing, some excellent dog sledding and winter walking on the plateau. The ice igloo with its glittering Iglu Ice Bar is recommended for its special cheese fondue produced by local cheese merchant Manfred Schmid and to admire works of ice art.


The Elsigenalp, sometimes referred to as Elsigen-Metsch, is a family-friendly ski area 10km from Adelboden (a 20 minute bus ride) with eight drag lifts serving 16 pistes – three blue, 11 red and two black runs – including wide pistes which are good for beginners and great for carving.


The small town of Lenk in the Simmental Valley has a ski area, but to reach it from Adelboden is not easy. By the time you reach the bottom of the Metschberg chairlift on the far side of the main ski area, it is likely you will to want to repeat the excellent blue runs above Metsch rather than take time out from skiing to get to the far side of Lenk.  Those determined to ski all five ski areas must ride the gondola down to Rothenbach, then catch a bus to the gondolas on the far side of Lenk which lead to a dozen more red and blue runs, and a solitary short black run; then repeat the journey in the reverse direction, but don’t leave it too late otherwise it’s a long bus journey or an expensive taxi ride to get back to Adelboden.

Beginner Skiing in Adelboden

Adelboden has plenty of good blue runs for beginners and nursery slopes for small children including a small nursery slope near the village, but getting to the main ski area by gondola or by bus is slow and takes at least 15 minutes.

Adelboden is good for beginners but the main ski area and Snowli Kids centre are some distance from the village, which is not ideal for novices; but if you’ve been on a skiing holiday before, are able to ski a snow plough and used to riding draglifts, there are plenty of uncrowded blue runs for beginners.

Beginners in Adelboden can access the main ski area by riding the gondola from Adelboden (1,353m) down to Oey (1,260m), then ride gondolas C7 and C8 to Sillerenbuhl (1,974m) which is a gateway to the main ski area. Gentle blue runs (60 and 62) offer easy skiing from Sillerenbuhl to Geils (1,707m), which is in the heart of the ski the location of the Snowli Kids centre. There’s also a free bus service from Adelboden to Geils, which is a useful alternative for larger groups with young children.

The large Tepee in Geils marks the location of the Snowli Kids centre which is a special area for children including a small nursery slope and magic carpet lift for novices and a drag lift serving a short blue run which also has slalom gates for children to race down under the watchful eyes of their ski instructors.

There are three main ski lifts at Geils including the Luegli and Lavey chairlifts, which offer access only to red and black runs, and the gondola to Hahnenmoos which provides access to some excellent blue runs on the Lenk side of the ski area. While most of the pistes on the Adelboden side of Hahnenmoos are red runs, there are also some easy blue runs (47 and 48) from Hahnenmoos back to Geils and the red runs (44 and 43) from Metschstand to Geils are wide and quite forgiving. The best blue runs are on the Lenk side of Hahnenmoos, where beginners and intermediates can let rip on a choice of wide open blue runs served by three high-speed chairlifts and a drag lift.

Ski Schools & Ski Lessons in Adelboden 

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Intermediate Skiing in Adelboden

Adelboden is ideal for intermediates with 90% of 210km of pistes designated red or blue and nearly all are wide open pistes amid splendid scenery. The main challenge for intermediates will be to ski all of the runs in each ski area.

Most of the skiing is in the Sillerenbuhl-Hahnenmoos-Metsch ski area between Adelboden and Lenk with north and south facing slopes either side of Hahnenmoos. With 22 blue runs, 32 red runs and 6 black runs, none of which are particularly difficult, intermediates are spoiled for choice.

Most of the red runs and five of six black runs are on the north-facing slopes on the Adelboden side of Hahnenmoos. Some runs are relatively short and close together, especially those near the Aebi-Sillerenbuhl chairlift, but good fun nevertheless. The runs from the top of the Luegli (C3) chairlift are relatively long and include the best red and black runs in Adelboden. There’s a mountain restaurant with a large terrace and sun beds half way down between red runs 42 and 43, if you feel like stopping between runs.

The south-facing slopes on the Lenk side of Hahnenmoos have the best chairlifts and offer excellent skiing for intermediates (and beginners) on wide open blue runs. They’re typically uncrowded so you can choose your own line and ski slowly or as fast as you wish, within reason, then ride back up in comfort. Start by skiing blue 35 or 36 to Buhlberg then work your way along from the Buhlberg lift (B5) to the Guetflack drag lift and be sure to visit the Standhutte on Metchstand (2,100m), which is one of the best mountain restaurants in Adelboden complete with an Igloo bar and stunning views from the south-facing terrace.

Speedsters can check their speed on Luegli or on one of several permanent race pistes then check out the FIS Ski World Cup run at Chuenisbargli, which is one of the most challenging giant slalom courses on the World Cup circuit. To get to it, ski red 55 from Aebi as far as the chairlift at Reharti, or blue 46 from Geils to Berglager then blue 61, also to Reharti, take the short C6 chairlift to Eselmoos then ski to the bottom of the Boden-Chuenisbargli chairlift and ride to the start of the Chuenisbargli World Cup Run.

The Tschenten Alp offers easy skiing for intermediates and beginners including six red runs and a blue run served by a draglift and a chairlift. There’s a restaurant at the top of the gondola and toboggans for hire if you feel like a break from skiing or boarding. Tschenten Alp is accessed by gondola from the lift station just off the main street, close to the centre of Adelboden. The freeride run (97) allows advanced skiers to ski back to Adelboden, but most people use the gondola to return to village.

The Engstligenalp is a small secluded ski area 5km from Adelboden with a handful of good pistes including one blue run, two red runs and two black runs from the top of the Dossen drag lifts. There’s also some good off-piste but Alpine skiing is not the main reason for visiting. Most visitors come to Engstligenalp for other snow sports including cross-country skiing, ski touring and winter walking or to experience dog-sledding and the Ice Igloo, which is well worth visiting.

The Elsigenalp, 10km from Adelboden, is another family-friendly ski area with 16 pistes including three blue, 11 red and two black runs. The pistes are best for intermediates and beginners, and include Adelboden-Lenk’s longest continuous descent: the blue run (120) from 2,300m at the top of the draglift (F6) at Elsighorn to Elsigenalp (1,800m) connecting to another blue run (126) all the way down to the cable car base station at Elsigbach (1,250m); over 1,000m vertical descent.

There’s another ski area south of Lenk with six red runs and six blue runs, which are good for intermediates and beginners, but not so easily reached. To get there from Adelboden means skiing to the far side of the main ski area then transfer from the main ski area to Lenk by gondola, bus and two more gondolas to reach Leiterli (1,943m) at the top of the ski area south of Lenk.

Advanced Skiing in Adelboden

Adelboden has only a handful of black runs none of which are very challenging, but powder hounds can find good off-piste in the ski area as well as good ski touring nearby at higher altitude, and professional mountain guides are available locally.

The red runs below the Sillerenbuhl gondola top station are good for warming up first thing in the morning, especially red run 67 from the top of the Aebi chairlift (C9) and red 55.  While riding the chairlift back to Sillerenbuhl you can visually check out the off-piste area to your right beyond the groomed ski area which is accessed by riding the Lavey chairlift (C2) then heading skier’s left off black 57 or by hiking up the ridge.

Black 51 from Lavey (2,200m) to Geils allows access to another off-piste area between pistes which can be reached skier’s right of 51 or by following red 49 along the top of the ridge line towards Hahnenmoos to find a suitable entry point skier’s left of red 49, black 50 or blue 48. The slopes on the Adelboden side of Hahnenmoos are north-facing and hold good snow for longer than on the Lenk side of the ridge, but when it snows you can find good powder on either side of the pass, but check snow conditions and avalanche risk locally to make it’s considered safe to ski!

Luegli (2,138m) is reached by chairlift (C3) and offers a choice of four excellent runs, black (40 and 41) and red (42 and 43) which are fun to ski fast and offer a roller coaster style experience over undulating terrain all the way down to Geils. These are among the best pistes in the region so allow time to ride the chairlift repeatedly and be sure to ski all four of pistes at least once.

The Hahnenmoos pass and the ridge between Lavey (2,200m) and Metschstand (2,100m) is the dividing line between Adelboden in Engstligtal and Lenk in Simmental. With the exception of one short black run (30), the runs on the Lenk side of the pass are mostly easy red and blue runs, but not to be missed. These wide, open runs are usually quiet and great fun for cruising at speed, then ride back up quickly on high-speed chairlifts (B5, B3 and B2) and work your way along the slopes from Buhlberg to Metschberg and to the top of the Guetflach draglift (B4). From there two excellent red runs (45 and 43) offer a long and fast return to Geils.

While there’s plenty of ungroomed terrain close to many pistes, strong skiers and boarders seeking more challenging off-piste, should hire a mountain guide privately or join an off-piste group. The Alpine School Adelboden offer easy ski and snowboard tours off-piste for “beginners” and longer freeride tours of Wildstrubel or Bunderspitz for more advanced off-piste skiers and boarders. To ski off-piste with a guide, you need to be fit enough to hike up for 2-3 hours or more! The Alpine School also offer weekend, 5-day and 7-day ski touring off-piste in Adelboden with accommodation at the Berghotel in Engstligenalp.

Boarding & Freestyle in Adelboden

Adelboden has plenty of boarder-friendly terrain including plenty of wide red and blue runs, the action-packed Gran Masta Park and lots of easily accessible off-piste between the marked runs.

The Adelboden-Lenk region has a total 210 km of well-maintained pistes spread across five distinct ski areas. The single biggest area, Sillerenbuhl-Hahnenmoos-Metsch, is centrally located between Adelboden and Lenk and is where you’ll find 60% of the marked runs and the Gran Masta Park for boarders and freestylers.

Boarders will like the mostly wide runs over undulating terrain and easy lift-accessible off-piste terrain between many marked runs. There’s also plenty more off-piste terrain on the north and north east facing slopes beneath Lavey, which are easily visible from the main ski area, making it easy to enter and exit the off-piste area from the pistes.

Boarders may be less impressed by Adelboden’s drag lifts, which could be an issue for newcomers to boarding, but they’re mostly on gentle slope and easy to ride. Moreover, although the statistics show high number of drag lifts, they are located mostly in quiet satellite ski areas which have no need for major high speed lifts.

A highlight for many boarders and feestyle skiers is the large Gran Masta Park with its own lift and a Quik Silver hut and bar. The Gran Masta Park is a popular venue for many boarding and freestyle events including the Salomon Jib Accademy international freestyle ski tour event for top teenage freestylers.

Gran Masta is around 600m long, 60m wide and located at 1,850m next to the Brenggen drag lift and close to the top of the Hahnenmoos pass. The park faces south and west and is best between January and April with different size kickers from 3m to 18m and three different skill levels from easy (blue) to red (medium) and black (hard).

Other Gran Masta attractions include numerous straight jumps (6-18m), the 18m Hubba Bubba box, straight boxes (3-6m), kink boxes (4-6m), C-boxes (6-9m), a 9m wave box, 9m double kink box, 12m S-box, a 6m straight to rainbow rail, rainbow boxes (3-9m), 2-6m wallride with extension tube, 4m mailbox and an 8m downrail.

Adelboden Mountain Restaurants

Adelboden has one of the highest concentrations of mountain restaurants with many Alpine huts and bars in the main ski area including the popular Alte Taverne and many farm buildings doubling up as restaurants and bars.

Adelboden’s Tourist Office literature includes 25 officially recognised restaurants in four ski areas surrounding Adelboden (excluding Lenk). Several farm buildings dotted throughout the main ski area also double up as restaurants and offer an even more authentic Swiss mountain experience as well as good food and fair prices.


Sillerenbuhl is an attractive rustic building at 1,970m featuring a self-service restaurant with a soup corner, salad buffet, pizza and desserts, and a table service restaurant for more traditional dishes. It also has a large sun terrace, sometimes with live music later in the afternoon and the Mara-Bar (Snow Bar) just 30 metres from the main restaurant is handy if you just want to stop for a drink. Get there by riding gondolas C7 and C8 (the main approach from Adelboden) or chairlift C9 from Aebi. Tel: +41 33 673 38 40.


Chuebodmi is a small rustic hut with a large sun terrace beside a red piste running from Sillerenbuhl to Aebi (1,530m) and approximately half the way down. (No phone number listed).

Restaurant Aebi

Restaurant Aebi is a stunning farmhouse over 220 years old with an impressive collection of Swiss cowbells hanging from the eaves, one of the largest sun terraces in Adelboden and the popular Rangers Treff umbrella bar next door. Open daily for lunch and dinner it offers traditional Swiss cuisine using only fresh products from the farm and the region and a gourmet menu for dinner from 6 pm each evening. Tel: +41 (0) 33 673 13 56.

Restaurant Chujerstube

Restaurant Chujerstube is an authentic and charming mountain hut, with a fairly priced menu of fresh ravioli, special cheese and meat dishes, with wines from the Valais and Ticino and a choice of desserts including meringue, profiteroles and ice cream. Follow that with coffee, an Ovomaltine with rum or a glass of Abricotine 40°, Poire Willamine 50° or a 1978 Armagnac 48°. The Chujerstube is located in the middle of the main ski area near Geils. Tel: +41 33 673 23 02.

Berghotel Hahnenmoos

Berghotel Hahnenmoos is a mountain hotel with 34 beds in single, double and family rooms, and dormitory accommodation for up to 44 more guests. Located in the middle of the main ski area at 2,000m, the Berghotel Hahnenmoos was fully renovated in 2010 and features an open-plan self-service restaurant offering a wide choice of regional delicacies. Outside there’s a large sun terrace and umbrella bar with amazing views and those that stay can also enjoy legendary sunrises and sunsets as the sun rises and sets behind 4,000m Alpine peaks. Tel: +41 33 673 21 41.


Buhlberg is a scenic mountain restaurant at 1,664m, overlooking Lenk and with panoramic views to the south. It’s on the far side of the main ski area (from Adelboden) and easily found by riding gondola C1 to the top of the Hahnenmoos pass then skiing blue 32 and the delightful blue 35 to the bottom of the Buhlberg chairlift which returns you to the top of the pass. Tel: +41 33 733 15 60.


Chumihutte is a small mountain hut with a self-service counter, a restaurant and a large south-facing snowy sun terrace with tables, bench seats and ten sun beds for serial sunbathers. Ride chairlift C3 to Luegli (2,138m) then ski red run 42 and you will find the Chumihutte to the left of the piste, about halfway down. (No phone number listed).


Standhutte on Metchstand (2,100m) is the highest mountain restaurant in the Adelboden-Lenk ski area with accommodation for up to 25 guests. Open in winter only, the Standhutte restaurant serves tasty traditional Swiss dishes including Rosti, Cheese Rarebits, Fondue and Bratwurst and offers excellent 360° panoramic views from the sun-terrace and Iglu bar. Tel: +41 33 736 30 00.


Chuenisbargli is an authentic and cosy mountain restaurant serving traditional Swiss dishes including fondue. Situated at the top of the World Cup piste (black 80) at 1,730m, Chuenisbargli is open for lunch daily in winter and in the evening only for small groups with a reservation. Call in for lunch or late afternoon drink; return to Adelboden using the free ski bus from Boden. Tel: +41 (0) 79 356 09 31.

Bergrestaurant Tschenten Alp

Bergrestaurant Tschenten Alp is easily reached by gondola from the centre of the village in just 7 minutes and worth visiting for splendid views of the Bernese Oberland as well as for traditional dishes from an Argentinean barbecue, daily specials and quality Swiss wines. Tel: +41 33 673 16 53.


Engstligenalp is a self-service restaurant offering traditional food and a large sun terrace. Allow time before or after lunch to try the dog sledding nearby and to visit the large Ice Igloo which is an experience not to be missed. You can walk around inside and admire the igloo structure’s many rooms and the collection of ice sculptures, enjoy a cheese fondue washed down with a glass of bubbly or white wine from the region. Tel: +41 33 671 10 26.

Berghaus Bartschi

Berghaus Bartschi (closed Mondays) is another restaurant on the Engstligenalp plateau which serves delicious Rosti and a good sun terrace. Tel: +41 (0) 33 673 13 73.


Elsigbach is a guest house and restaurant known for good cooking including traditional Swiss dishes such as fondue, raclette and rosti. It’s located next to the base station of the Elsigenalp cable car at 1,250m. Tel: +41 33 671 13 45.


Elsigenalp is a restaurant and guesthouse at 1,800m at the top of the Elsigbach-Elsigenalp cable car with accommodation in winter for 12 guests.  Tel: +41 (0) 33 671 10 26.


Elsighutte is an attractive traditional alpine hut at 1,946m with a sheltered sun terrace located beside a red piste (121), but can also be reached on foot with snowshoes. Traditional Swiss dishes include raclette, rarebits, fondue, winter salad and special mountain hut coffee. Tel: +41 (0) 33 671 46 80.


Hochst is a guesthouse at 1,565m offering beautiful views, cosy guest rooms and a restaurant at the foot of the Hochst-Metsch ski lift. Tel: +41 33 671 44 25.


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