Almost on top of the world, at an elevation of 1,640 meters (5,413) feet, Mürren clings to the edge of precipice in the upper reaches of Lauterbrunnen Valley. On a clear day, this typical village in Bernese Oberland offers an indescribable view of the Eiger, Mönch and Jungfrau.
It is inaccessible by car, yet tourists still find it. A popular destination, Mürren, though only having 450 inhabitants, offers 2,000 hotel beds. Originally a farming community, tourism in the summer and skiing in winter provides the steadiest livelihood for the locals. Reaching the village is part of the fun. Visitors must take the panoramic funicular and then a short train ride up from Lauterbrunnen, which offer stunning views of the valley.
Main Street is dotted with an eclectic mix of restored wooden chalets and hotels from the early part of the last century. Giant cowbells hang from the awnings; flowers line window boxes of balconies and dainty lace curtains cover the pane glass windows with red shutters.
Walking paths zigzag up and down the mountainside winding through the meadows where hardy wild flowers in yellow, lilac, and white, orange, blue burst into color on a verdant palate. Cowbells clang like old silver milk cans in horse drawn wagons. Insects buzz and birds’ twitter in harmony with the soft swoosh of the wind that whips through valley.
One man mows his yard at precipitous angle, while another splits wood then lines each log in a perfect, uniform stacks so typically Swiss. The locals speak the thick, guttural Swiss German language. They are easily identified, by their ruddy, wind burned completion and strong calves and thighs for every step outside one’s door requires movement on incline.
Hikers of every age dot the meadows bearing backpacks and walking sticks.
The three Kings, Mönch, Eiger, Jungfrau appear deceptively close, as if you could reach out and touch them giving one a surreal other worldly feeling.
On a summer day in Mürren, the light, color and mountains topography, are so perfectly intertwined that it is hard to deny God’s existence.
Villages across the valley below look like match boxcars and miniature towns. In the distance one can imagine seeing Heidi skipping off from Grandpa’s hut to herd the sheep grazing in a the verdant valley over yonder.
It is as if time stood still. Invigorated, renewed, exalted, I want to burst into song. Indeed, the hills are alive with the sound of music.
Truly in Mürren, God perfected nature’s symphony.