Zugiblubbi Erlebnisweg - Zugiblubbi Adventure Trail
When I mentioned to my kids we were going on a small hike this past weekend, I got the usual endless sighs and complaints. How long will we hike for? Is it a long drive to get there? Will we be gone ALL afternoon?
My kids love hiking once we are actually there, but merely suggesting a hike makes them look at me like I have just asked them to eat some dirt. But this time was a little different. Instead of making excuses about needing to stay home to study, the kids were easily enticed by the idea of an adventure trail with hidden diamonds along the way. Their imagination started to run wild and with a bag full of enthusiasm that I haven’t seen in awhile, we were in the car heading up the Zugerberg.
I had recently heard that a new adventure trail had opened up on the Zugerberg and since the weather had started to clear a bit we were looking for something to fill our Sunday afternoon. With little Z getting too heavy to carry in the hiking backpack (and having divested ourselves of our last pram), I need to look for shorter hiking options for the time being. I aim for a path where she can easily walk most of the way on her own so we won’t have to carry her too much.
Aside from the easier path, what I’ve found really helps at this age, and really any age, is kid-themed hikes. Stations are usually spread out strategically so that by the time they begin to lose interest in walking any further, a new post appears, their energy returning from out of nowhere and they zoom ahead.
The new Zugiblubbi Adventure trail ticked all those boxes, so we were excited to try it out and see what we could discover along the way. We grabbed a treasure map from the top of Zugerberg Bahn and got on our way.
The adventure trail starts at the Zugerberg Bahn top station and it's where the story of the diamonds begins. Here we met Zugiblubbi, the friendly ghost of the Zugerberg, who is trying to help his friends recover from a big storm in time for winters arrival. Through the first couple of stations (which are all in both German and English), you will follow along the story and find out if they make it. You will meet their friends the Cave Dwarfs who help them along the way. You will also discover why 9 Diamonds are now hidden in the forest.
Did you know that cave dwarves live in the dark deep depths of the Zugerberg? We now do--and if you ever need their help here is the secret code to open their door.
Erdmanli tüend ir no Pfusse
Ermannli chömed doch uuse
Ermannli sind ihr dehei?
Nennt ne doch ewäg de Stei
Cave Dwarfs are you asleep?
Cave Dwarfs wont you come out?
Cave Dwarfs are you at home?
Would you please move that rock
The trail continues along a 4.5km path where the kids mission is to find the different diamonds along the way. Each station is set to a new theme, from giant mushrooms, a maze, a barefoot path as well as giant wooden marble runs. Don’t forget to collect the letters along the way (in German) where by the end you will discover the secret word. You can then fill in your form and drop it back at the start and maybe win a prize.
Wanting to help encourage your kid to give up their pacificer? At the Marble Run post (number 4) the kids can give their pacifier to Mister Money’s Nuggitresor (pacificer safe). It's a cute and motivating way to end the pacifier phase.
The Hike was a little long for Z (3.5 at the time) to do all on her own, and we did have to carry her on our shoulders for awhile. So for those of you with younger kids, you will be happy to hear that the path is pram and even wheelchair friendly (one little detour is needed for prams and wheelchairs, but it is all well sign posted). Talk about being friendly for all.
We walked the entire trail in about 2.5 hours, not only enjoying what each station had to offer and discovering out the secret word, but also enjoying the golden hues of autumn and the late afternoon sunshine that broke through the clouds. We finished the hike with a BBQ at the Schattwäldli playground before heading home with a very tired little Z.
There are plenty of restaurants to choose from on the Zugerberg, but we almost always bring something for the BBQ and this time was no exception. Along the trail are a couple of different places to start a fire, and all you need to bring is some matches and your sausages. We feasted on a not so healthy, but very hike friendly, feast of sausages, bread and chips and finished off with marshmallows over the fire for dessert. (I did sneak in some apples and edamame for snacks along the way. Of course I did).
Take the number 11 Bus up to the stop “ Schönegg” and then hope on the Zugerberg Bahn up to the top. As you exit, you will be greeted by Zugiblubbi and Mister Money (the mascot of the Zuger Kantonalbank). Look here for your treasure map (or print one before you go) and pencils and walk up the stairs to start the trail. The Schattwäldli playground also has the treasure maps, or you can even print them at home before you go.
It's also possible to drive up the Zugerberg from Zug. However on the weekend the car park fills up quickly. We arrived at 3pm and grabbed one of the last car park spaces.
Good to know:
Z was a little young to take it all in in one go, and so when we returned home we were happy to find the Zugiblubbi story online as well as some colouring pages. She coloured the afternoon away while I wrote this blog post and we both listened to the story in Swiss German narrated by Jolanda Steiner
So now is as good a time as ever to discover (or rediscover) the Zugerberg and all its new friends. I should imagine that we're not the only one with unmotivated little hikers in our family as is evidenced by this fabulous new trail. So strap on those hiking boots, pack your sausages, and go explore with Zugiblubbi!