What you do here is walk along the shady lakeside quays, among the country's most scenic parts, taking in views of the wild and remote lake, the Urnersee. The views of the lake from the quays are stunning, taking in the awesome Uri-Rotstock, twin peaks with a small glacier.
The area around Brunnen -- so beloved by Hans Christian Andersen -- is the cradle of the Confederation and abounds in reminders of the country's history, including archives in Schwyz where the Confederation documents are displayed, and the Federal Chapel in Brunnen.
This is also William Tell country. Around the year 1250, several families left Raron in the Valais and crossed the Alps to establish new homes in desolate Schächental/Uri. Records confirm that the Tell family helped found the settlement. According to folk legend, William Tell was the hero of a decisive battle in 1315 and reportedly died in 1350. Historians, however, have no proof of these events.
Nevertheless, the Swiss honor the man who shot an apple off the head of his brave young son with a bow and arrow in a test of prowess. Many visitors travel to Sisikon, just south of Brunnen, to see the Tell Chapel, which was restored in 1881. The chapel contains records from the early 16th century and paintings by Stückelberg.
Brunnen is the starting point of Axenstrasse, the stunning panoramic road -- a masterpiece of engineering -- leading south to the St. Gotthard Pass. It goes along the rim of Lake Uri, in and out of subterranean passageways and galleries carved out of the mountain. Brunnen is also a base for excursions by ship, mountain railway, bus, and train to points around Lake Lucerne.
Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.