Frick Sensory Trail

The Frick Naturena Sinnespfad is a theme trail for children with 8 interactive stations focused on the five senses. It has a maze to test your orientation skills, a guess-the-smell game, a barefoot path to tickle your feet, water play, etc. The easy obstacle-free path circles a lush valley, cutting through farm fields and forests. It doesn’t have the big views of the alps, our kids loved this simple trail, happily spending a few hours playing and laughing together outdoors. It’s a great choice for the shoulder seasons and when higher elevations are covered in clouds.

This one of four Naturena Sinnespfad theme trails; we’ve also done the ones in Seebachtal and Zugerland, which we also like.

Location:   Aargau Region
Address: Kornbergstr, Gipf-Overfrick, Switzerland
Car: ~40 mins from Zurich
Train: ~25 mins from Zurich
Trail: 3.5 km loop, about 2 hours with playtime
Condition: dirt, obstacle-free options
Skill: moderate, some steep sections
Open: year round, weather dependent
More info:

 

Overview

This is a 3 km loop trail through farm fields and forest, with 8 interactive stations, with a theme of the five senses. Each station has an activity related to one of the senses, like guessing forest smells, listening to the birds, or walking on a barefoot trail. The stations are very done and we were surprised how fun they were.

The path is dirt, obstacle-free, suitable for strollers. The walking is easy and takes about an hour. But we spent about 3 hours on the trail, with lots of time playing at each station.

Here is the official trail map that shows where the interactive stations are located. There is a picnic area and fire pit at station #3 and after station #7, neither of which has shelter but both have picnic tables. Station #7 has firewood and a WC.

The theme trail is officially open from mid-May through mid-October, meaning the trail is maintained during this time. You can walk on the trail outside of this period, but they don’t guarantee that all stations will be in working order.

More trail info is available on the website, including a detailed brochure in German. There is also more trail info on GPS-Tracks and Jurapark Aargau.

Other amusements in the area include:

 

Getting There

By car: Drive to Gipf-Oberfrick, then turn right on Kornbergweg, where you see a big brown sign pointing to Sinnespfad. Just after you leave the neighborhood and enter the farm fields, there is a small dirt parking lot with a trail map and info board for the Naturama Sinnespfad.

By public transport: Take a train to Frick, then bus 136 to Gipf-Oberfrick, Rösslibrücke. Walk south on the Landstr, taking your first right on Kornbergweg. Walk about 500 m to the start of the trail.

Trail Details

Here’s the map and info board at the parking.

The trail starts back the road a bit from the parking, following the Naturena sign shown below.

Station #1 is up this dirt road.

Station #1 – Sight – look through the telescopes. There are two telescopes low to the ground and one in a tower. The climb would be tricky and a little dangerous for very little kids. Use caution.

Station #2 – Orientation. Time yourself running through the maze and see if your orientation improves after multiple runs. This was our favorite station, running through many times trying to beat our last time. Make sure your phone has a stopwatch app.

Each station has a signboard as shown above (German only) explaining what educational concept you should learn. It also has a “Did you know?” section at the bottom that gives some cool facts about animals and other things related to the mini-theme, which I thought was the most interesting part. For example, I learned that a linx can hear a mouse rustling in the grass 65 m away. A bull frog lays about 4000 to 6000 eggs, sometimes in a row up to 5 m long. A beaver can build a dam up to 100 m in length. Weird! If you only read a bit of the signs, definitely read those parts. I’d love to translate it for you, but I don’t have the time for that.

Station #3 – Water. Kids can pump water into this contraption and lower and raise the dams to control the water flow. It’s so simple but our kids never wanted to leave this one. There are picnic tables here and a fire pit, but no wood.

Picnic area next to the water play.

The Feuchtbiotop is just a little pond where frogs and bug live. We didn’t see any frogs that day.

A little view of the surroundings, so green!

Station #4 – You stand on the rock and swing around on the pendulum with your eyes closed to experience disorientation.

Station #5 – Sound. There are two funnels that you can either use to listen or amplify your own sounds.

Station #6 – Touch. This barefoot path had a great variety of textures to walk on, includes two shallow dips into the water. Make sure your kids are holding the handrail while going through the water since the rocks can be slippery. You might want to have a towel to wipe off muddy feet afterwards before putting socks back on. My kids were a little unhappy as I cleaned their feet with the top parts of their socks. So picky!

Station #7 – Sound. You use wooden mallets to bang on different kinds of wood. It was interesting how different they sounded from one another.

Picnic area. A couple minutes after #7, there is a big picnic area with a few picnic tables, two big fire pits, a wood pile and WC.

The day we were there, it was fully occupied by a party group, thus the cars. It must be a popular spot for locals.

View from the picnic area. It was raining at that moment.

Station #8 – Smell. Push on the block to spray a scent, then guess what it is.

So pretty on the way back, if a bit wet.

Don’t forget to Pin this for later…

The Frick Naturena Sinnespfad is a theme trail for children with 8 interactive stations focused on the five senses. It has a maze to test your orientation skills, a guess-the-smell game, a barefoot path to tickle your feet, water play, etc. The easy obstacle-free path circles a lush valley, cutting through farm fields and forests. Canton Aargau, Switzerland. www.momstotszurich.com

 

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