Should your family ski at Engelberg Titlis?

Engelberg is a beautiful classic Swiss village near Luzern surrounded by towering mountain peaks, where you’ll find excellent skiing and summer hiking. Our family has skied there a couple times and really enjoyed it, though there are things that we love and things that are not our favorite. So here are our impressions to help your family decide if this is a good fit and have a successful visit if you choose to go. We love the views and the terrain, but the resort layout can be a little tricky for beginning skiers as we describe below.

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Location:   Central Switzerland
Address: Titlis Cable Car – Gerschnistrasse 12, 6390 Engelberg
Car: 1hr10 from Zurich, CHF 5 parking fee
Cable Car: 46°48’59.4″N 8°23’48.4″E
Train: 1hr50 from Zurich HB to Engelberg, Bahnhof,
then 3 min bus ride or 10 min walk to cable car station
CHF 38 Adult return with Halbtax + bus fare
Suitable for: advanced beginners to expert
Lift type: cable car to reach resort, chair lifts, T-Bars on beginner hill
Prices 2017-18: Day ski pass: Adult CHF 65, Junior CHF 46, Child CHF 26, under 6 free
One way for long sled run: Adult CHF 14, Junior CHF 11, Child CHF 7
Sled park at Trübsee (incl cable car): Adult CHF 35, Junior CHF 26, Child CHF 17
More info: www.titlis.ch – webcams – piste map

First, a little overview. Please give us a thumbs up and subscribe to our channel, thanks!

Overview

Here is the piste map for Engelberg Titlis, which is on the west side of the valley. There is another smaller ski resort called Engelberg Brunni on the east side of the valley, more for beginners. As you can see, the Titlis resort is mostly red and black runs. With beginners, it’s best to stay on blue runs 12 & 13 on the far west side of the resort. The blue runs in the middle at Gerschnialp are rather boring T-bar runs for beginners, without big views. And because of the lower elevation, they sometimes have much worse snow. More info and pics of all this below.

To reach the ski area, catch the Titlis Express cable car from the valley up to Trübsee. From there, ski down to the Trübsee Hopper, which is a chair lift that carries you horizontally across a flat valley to the Jochpass lifts, which where we spent all our time.

The runs above Trübsee from Stand are narrow and steep, didn’t look that great for our family but good for more advanced skiers. The runs at the top of Klein Titlis are on the glacier and are more of a novelty, but the views are fantastic from that high up.

Now for some pics and detailed description. For how to get there, scroll to the bottom of this post.

Jochpass Ski Area

To reach the Jochpass ski area, first take the Titlis Xpress cable car from the Engelberg valley up to Trübsee (do not take the funicular). After exiting the cable car, ski the short hill down to the Trübsee Hopper chair lift, which carries you horizontally across the flat valley/lake area as shown below.

Then take the chair lift up to the Jochpass. This whole process takes a long time, which is one thing we didn’t like. It was a good 45 mins from the bottom before we could ski down our first run.

The photo below shows the red run from Jochpass down to Trübsee (run 8). It can be quite steep in parts and was a bit difficult for our 7 year old the first time we went. This run gets a lot of traffic and is often in the shade, so it can get icy and you have to watch out for fast skiers zooming by. We didn’t like spending time on this run for those reasons. Except it sometimes has a little race course, where it measures your speed. So when we found that, my kids wanted to do that over and over.

At Jochpass, there are a couple restaurants, both self-serve and with service. We like the smaller, cozy restaurant downstairs but ours always packed, maybe try to reserve. There is also a small picnic area with tables. Great views from here.

Above Jochpass, there are red and black runs accessed with the lift shown below.

You can see the steepness of the red run in the picture below (run 10). My kids could manage this run, but the trail was narrow in parts and skiers tend to race down very fast. So it was tricky for advanced beginners to slowly make their way down with lots of turns without getting run over by other skiers. We  accidentally ended up on the black run (10) under the lift and it was way too steep for my kids. We had to traverse across the off piste section in the middle to join back up with the red run. Not ideal but possible.

Great views from the top of the red run. Nice place for a photo opp with Grandpa.

Jochpass Blue Runs for Advanced Beginners

Father west of the Jochpass, you’ll find really fun blue runs (12 & 13) that are serviced by the slower chair lift shown below. We spent most of our time here. It has lots of little jumps on the sides of the runs that the kids like.

Beautiful views of another lake below this run. We liked that the lift played oompa music while we waited in line.

With good snow, there are lots of rolling hills off piste (shown below) where the more advanced skiers and boarders can have fun in powder but still keep an eye on the kids on the groomed path.

Trübsee winter walk around frozen lake

From the Trübsee cable car station, you can easily access the lovely winter walk trail around the lake. They groom the trail, so it’s easy walking. We took an all terrain stroller on it and dragged one child on a sled. More about this walk in this post.

Sled Park at Trübsee

Next to the gondola station, there is a little curved sledding hill shown below, with a magic carpet to bring you back up the hill. In 2016, this area was under construction again, including building a roof for the magic carpet. So they are definitely adding more features. It used to be free to use but now the website says a day pass for this sledding area costs CHF 17 per person. I’m not sure it’s worth it. There is a restaurant with panorama views at the cable car station above the sledding hill.

Gerschnialp / Ritz T-bars

This Gerschnialp area is designed for learning to ski, with two T-bars for beginners. There is also a cross country track, winter walks, and the long sled run leaves from here.

To reach the T-bars and ski area at Gerschnialp, you have to take the funicular from Engelberg to Gerschnialp (not Titlis Xpress), then walk over to the T-bars. I think this is really inconvenient. It’s also so separated from the rest of the resort that you couldn’t easily meet up with family at a different part of the resort. The slopes are good for beginners but I find it a bit boring, just a straight slope parallel to the T-bar. The views are a little closed in as well. It doesn’t get much sun because it’s under the shadow of the mountains above. Also, it’s a much lower elevation than the rest of the resort, so one time we went, this area had no snow even though the resort above was still in great condition.

For beginners, I think it would be better to visit the Engelberg Brunni on the other side of the valley, which has more facilities and services for families and the sun all day long.

Getting Here

By car: Drive to Engelberg and follow signs to Titlisbahn. Park in the metered lot next to the base station, CHF 5 per day.

By transit: Take a train to Engelberg, then a bus to Titlisbahn. It’s close up the rain station, but a little too far to walk with ski gear.

For more fun places to ski with kids in Switzerland, see our recommendations>>>

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