The four lakes walk is one of the loveliest excursions in Engelberg. Its highlights include the imposing mountain scenery centred on the mighty Titlis, the flora, glassy Lake Trüb, deep blue Lake Engstlen, turquoise Lake Tannen, picturesque Lake Melch and the views of the distant Bernese Alps.
Distance 24.8 km
Highest point2,209 m
Lowest point997 m
Engelberg railway station is the starting point for the four-lakes walk, one of the high-level hiking classics. Just a five-minute walk away (signposted) is the lower terminus of the Titlis cableways. Once there, you have a choice: either take the waymarked footpath past the Untertrübsee cheese dairy up to picturesque Lake Trüb, or take the Titlis Xpress gondola to the Trübsee midway terminus. The latter option involves you then heading back downhill to the lake and along it to the Alpstübli restaurant. Continue by chairlift or on foot to the first vantage point of the outing, the Joch pass. With the Titlis behind you and views of the majestic Bernese Alps before you, bask in the sunshine on the terrace of the Berghuis Jochpass. The restaurant serves good food, including "Urner Häfelichabis" (a traditional stew), homemade maize croquettes, traditional hamburgers and warm chocolate cake; you're spoilt for choice. The path now heads down the valley towards deep-blue Lake Engstlen in the direction of Melchsee-Frutt. The section from here to above the lake can also be done using the chairlift. From the Engstlen alp, the ascent starts via an increasingly steep and narrow path along the slope to Tannalp. The rocky terrain gives way to hilly moorland scenery. On the high plateau to Melchsee-Frutt you walk past Lakes Tannen and Melch (or board the Fruttli road train from Tannalp). The Melchsee-Frutt - Stöckalp stretch once again presents you with a choice: you can reach Stöckalp by gondola cableway or (at speed!) by kick-scooter.
With its pure walking time of 6.5 hours, the four lakes walk calls for a good level of fitness. Incorporating all the cableways cuts the walking time down to two hours. Alternatively, you can make this two-day excursion and spend the night in one of the guesthouses on the way. This then gives you plenty of opportunity to savour the views on restaurant terraces and indulge in a little boating or fishing.
The following cableways and public transport are available for you to use: • Titlis Xpress (gondola) Engelberg – Trübsee • Chairlift Trübsee – Jochpass • Chairlift Jochpass – Engstlenalp • Fruttli-Zug (road train) Tannalp – Melchsee-Frutt • Gondola Melchsee-Frutt – Stöckalp • PostBus Stöckalp – Stans • Zentralbahn railway Stans – Engelberg
National and international connections to Lucerne, e.g. trains from Zurich airport every half hour; travel time approx. 1 hr. Then Zentralbahn railway up to Engelberg in 43 minutes through a varied landscape including gorges.
A2 motorway (Basel-Gotthard) to Stans Süd exit, then main road for 20 km to Engelberg. Engelberg is 30 minutes' drive from Lucerne, 75 minutes from Basel, Zurich or Bern.