Local guides to visit smaller towns near Bern?

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davismavis3
davismavis3
18 posts
new member
Apr 24, 2018 - 9:12 PM

I'm not sure if this is the right forum, I did a search and didn't see anything. I want to visit several small towns outside of the Bern city but I don't know that I can rely on bus or train to provide a schedule that will accommodate all the stops in one day. Is it possible to hire a local person for half a day to drive you to these small towns? Definitely would want to make sure they are a professional guide of some sort (not just a random person looking to make some money.) Any suggestions would be great!

Slowpoke
Slowpoke
5163 posts
expert
Apr 24, 2018 - 11:03 PM in reply to davismavis3

Hi DavisMavis -

<<"Is it possible to hire a local person for half a day to drive you to these small towns? Definitely would want to make sure they are a professional guide of some sort ">>

While you are looking for such a guide, could you tell us which towns you have picked? I recall some in the neighborhood of Thun or Münsingen?

Maybe we could check the timetable for you. It is reasonable to be concerned; buses tend to run once per hour, and might have a gap at midday.

<<"I want to visit several small towns">>

Also- if you only have half a day, you may find it quite difficult to visit more than a couple of places, instead of "several." Depends a lot on where you start ( and when) as well as where you must finish, how many constitute "several" and when you must finish.

From your post I find <<"a schedule that will accommodate all the stops in one day. ">>

and

<<"hire a local person for half a day to drive you to these small towns">>

Do you mean a half day or a one full day? When does the day end?

And, most important, what constitutes a "visit."

Slowpoke

Slowpoke
Slowpoke
5163 posts
expert
Apr 25, 2018 - 1:20 AM in reply to davismavis3

Oh yes-

Forgot to ask...Could you rent a car, perhaps at Bern Belp airport, if your target towns are south of Bern?

At a minimum, Hertz, Avis, Budget, Europcar, and Sixt rent there.

Slowpoke

Last modified on Apr 25, 2018 - 1:23 AM by Slowpoke
davismavis3
davismavis3
18 posts
new member
Apr 25, 2018 - 4:04 AM

The towns seem fairly close in proximity...Herbligen, Buchholterberg, Oberdiessbach etc. they seem small and I’m not sure there is much to do other than quick stops. These are where our ancestors came from.

Slowpoke
Slowpoke
5163 posts
expert
Apr 25, 2018 - 8:55 AM in reply to davismavis3

<<"The towns seem fairly close in proximity...Herbligen, Buchholterberg, Oberdiessbach etc.">>

Oh yes, now I recall the earlier thread.

www.myswissalps.com/fo rum/topic/visiting-small-towns-in-bern-region

The work that Alpenrose posted on using local transport seems reasonable to me in light of your goals. Alpenrose likes to make use of public transport, knows how to do it, and with good reason. It is very effective.

A map was included in that earlier post.

Has your available time for the quick visits changed?

Langanau i.E. was included. It is not on the list of three you just presented, and it is the outlier in the earlier post. If you chose not to include it, you could easily fit it into a half a day, using buses.

Here is a bit more information about buses. In this link I have zoomed in to a map of the region and turned on the icons for bus and train stops in the Menu, under Points of Interest/Traffic.

map.search.ch/?pos=613896,188152&z=64 &poi=haltestelle,zug

Zoom in and out, and, if the icons are annoying, go to the Menu/Points of Interest/Traffic and check or uncheck the boxes for trains and buses.

If I were doing it with your constraints as originally mentioned by you in your post and discussed then, and, in fact, asked about - I'd think that renting a car makes a lot of sense. That is what I would do. I'd rent at Bern/Belp Airport. It is within about 10 miles of your area of interest.

It would almost certainly be cheaper than hiring a guide. If you stay in the area, you could leave your luggage at your inn.

You can also leave luggage at the airport:

www.google.com/search?q=lockers+luggage+at+B ern+Belp+airport&clien t=firefox-b-1&tbm=isch&tbo=u&sourc e=univ&sa=X&ved=0ahUKE wjGx9WdgtXaAhVP0lMKHc7 IAhQQsAQIgQE&biw=1560& bih=925

Thun Tourist Info could likely help you search for a guide. I've not used that office, but, in general, those places are really helpful.

www.thunersee.ch/en/en terprise-lake-thun/thun-lake-thun-tourism/thun-contact-and-opening-times.html

<<"Is it possible to hire a local person for half a day to drive you to

these small towns? Definitely would want to make sure they are a

professional guide of some sort (not just a random person looking to

make some money.)">>

That made me think a bit. Locals often know a lot about family histories. The families have been in the rural regions for a long time, and are frequently connected by marriage, church membership, Jodlerklubs, political parties, etc. There are many farmsteads in Switzerland like yours in Missouri, but they may go back to roots older than the country of the USA. Do you have any distant cousins there? They might be able to point you to someone who can help you. They might even want to do it themselves, although I'd not actually ask anyone to do that. They could always volunteer. Many Swiss have excellent English language skills. And, I've found many people, while chatting with locals around the country, that have stayed a few years in the USA at one time or another. They like to help travelers, especially those who display interest in the local history.

Slowpoke

davismavis3
davismavis3
18 posts
new member
Apr 25, 2018 - 11:11 PM in reply to Slowpoke

I'll revisit the bus schedule but with ending the trip we will have been traveling for 7 days and I'm just becoming overwhelmed with trying to figure out schedules with trains and buses, etc. So I was thinking if just for one day or half day if we could find someone that would be willing to drive us to the small towns it might be easier to pay someone for that. I didn't include Langnau because it's a bit bigger and I think we can get there on our own and have a few things to do. I get nervous with the idea of renting a car now, I talked with someone a little more familiar and she said one wrong move and you could get pulled over! HAHA. Wish we had some long lost relatives for sure. My research indicates that the two surviving brothers came over to US and I've never found evidence that any siblings stayed back.

Slowpoke
Slowpoke
5163 posts
expert
Apr 26, 2018 - 1:00 AM in reply to davismavis3

<<"I get nervous with the idea of renting a car now, I talked with someone a

little more familiar and she said one wrong move and you could get

pulled over! HAHA.">>

Well, I've been renting for 20 or 30 years, possibly I am a a little more "familiar", and my only problem is that there are radar cameras everywhere. The fine for speeding shows up a few weeks later.

Remedy- don't speed. Amazing, isn't it?

You may take whatever advice you choose , wherever you can get it.

The particular members and moderators of this forum with whom you have been communicating have over 100 years of experience in Switzerland.

Your choice.

I say- rent a car; you won't have to figure out schedules.

We don't always understand the perspective that a poster brings. Many wish to save money, and are willing to work out bus schedules. For me, probably for Alpenrose, it is almost a game.

I gave you a link for a local tourist info office. Ask them.

Slowpoke

Slowpoke.

Lucas
Lucas
9613 posts
expert &
moderator
Apr 26, 2018 - 4:04 AM in reply to davismavis3

I think renting a car would be fine - just don't speed as Slowpoke says. Radar cameras are everywhere and they will fine you for 1km/h over without hesitation (at least at lower limits). On the highway the camera may give you 2-3 km/h over. Cruise control is your friend. :)

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