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Our month in Switzerland, June/July 2019


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Adelaidean
Adelaidean
121 posts
active member
Jul 12, 2019 - 11:10 AM

We have just returned from our June/ July 2019 trip. Here's the start of my 'live' trip report.

We are currently in Montreux and I've decided to do a live trip report. Sending a big thank you to anyone who patiently answers questions here.

We are returning to some favourites in June 2019, and have added some new bases.

Priorities are mountains, lakes, forests, charming villages, farming hamlets, small cities with walkable old town, generally look for pleasant walks in addition to village/ town strolls. For example, on our previous trip we visited Soglio/ walked Sils to Isola and Maloja along lakeside / Solothurn walk to Verena Gorge/ St Ursanne along river. We are more into gentle strolls, no hard hiking for us.

We prefer smaller places, but Swiss towns and cities are really lovely, too.

Switzerland has such diversity in culture and language, the regions feel like they could be different countries. We were very keen for a stay in French speaking Switzerland choosing Vevey for its obvious natural lakeside beauty as well as charming architecture and the variety of nearby excursions. I love those buildings with shutters and cobblestone alleys in the old town. (Considered Estavayer Le Lac initially, much of interest in western Switzerland, too ….that will have to be on a future trip)

Had a perfect 8 night stay in Wengen in 2017, great hotel and excursions on that trip, so adding in a short visit. We had a day in Thun that trip, found it charming and noted it for a future base. So another 8 days in the Bernese Oberland (but split bases between Wengen and Thun). I'd considered spending a week in Meiringen or Brienz, which might happen another time.

The Engadin villages architecture is very distinctive (not the wooden chalets seen elsewhere, but really solid buildings with thick walls and tiny windows, often beautifully etched 'sgrafitti'), and the landscape is really striking.

The Upper Engadin valley is a high, wide valley with gorgeous lakes, the Lower Engadin is narrower without the large lakes or the volume of tourists.

From Scuol we travel to Thusis, our gateway to Zillis and the Splügen pass, taking us to Chiavenna for a taste of Italy before looping back to Sils Maria via the Maloja Pass.

Language: Moving from French speaking Montreux, to German speaking Bernese Oberland we then head to the Engadin. The Graubünden (German) / Grisons (Romansh), canton in eastern Switzerland, is officially trilingual - Swiss German/Italian/Romansh speaking (and then there are several dialects of Romansh).

The rest of the report is here: www.fodors.com/communi ty/europe/our-month-in-switzerland-1668229/

my photos are on Flickr flic.kr/s/aHsmEas4pP

This was a slow trip and follows our September 2017 holiday - we had very clear goals, preferring fewer bases and a gentle pace.

I learnt so much from the many posters across the various forums, much appreciated!

I know how much fun it is to read reports, hope you enjoy mine 😀

Arno
Arno
15709 posts
expert &
moderator
Jul 12, 2019 - 3:43 PM

Thanks for sharing Adelaidean! Sorry, but I edited your post a bit and posted the introduction from the other website right here. The other website loaded quite slow for me, and was hard to read because of the large photo's, but I left the link so the details are all accessible. Glad to read you were able to explore Switzerland for almost a month! Thanks again.

Slowpoke
Slowpoke
7567 posts
expert
Jul 12, 2019 - 6:16 PM in reply to Adelaidean

Hi Adelaidean -

I really appreciate the photos of the streets and alleys; streetscapes.

You've caught the way it looks and feels.

Slowpoke

rockoyster
rockoyster
8888 posts
expert
Jul 12, 2019 - 11:33 PM in reply to Adelaidean

WOW! Great report and photos. Thanks for sharing. Flickr album a great way of doing that.

Very timely report for us as we are heading to the “French side” in September.

Arno - Fodors link works fine for me, loads fast and photos not too large at all.

Last modified on Jul 12, 2019 - 11:42 PM by rockoyster
rockoyster
rockoyster
8888 posts
expert
Jul 13, 2019 - 3:51 AM in reply to Adelaidean

Hi Adelaidean,

Have had a bit more time to go through your Fodors report. My congratulations - it's a quality product and the photos look fantastic in there. I have picked up heaps of pointers and ideas.

What sort of camera do you tote? Not that it matters greatly as the quality of your shots clearly has more to do with the person behind it. I am contemplating leaving my camera at home this time and treating myself to an iPhone XR. One less thing to cart around. Having difficulty making the plunge though.

rockoyster
rockoyster
8888 posts
expert
Jul 13, 2019 - 4:59 AM in reply to Adelaidean

Hi Adelaiean,

I should have said about your Fodors report that you had me at “We like strolls, coffee and cake time, an hour or 2 of reading on our balcony, sitting on a park bench. We could definitely ‘fit more in’ if we’d wanted.”

Also figured out from your Flickr albums you are shooting with a LUMIX DMC-FZ200. That was on my shortlist a while back but I went for a more pocketable Sony at the time.

Adelaidean
Adelaidean
121 posts
active member
Jul 13, 2019 - 5:16 AM in reply to rockoyster

Hi rockoyster,

there are a lot of rubbish photos that didn't make the cut!

You know how the glare ruins a shot. A lot of good luck in terms of lighting and I crop if background affects overall colour and brightness. My husband doesn't get why I take "6 photos of the same thing" but..I vary the angle, the zoom, etc and get very different outcomes. I don't know anything about photography, so just play with it until I capture something I like. It might be quicker if I knew what I was doing 😂

It is a bulky camera, no denying that. I'd rather cut back on other luggage, though, ha!

Glad you got something out of my report, I enjoy writing them.

Adelaidean
Adelaidean
121 posts
active member
Jul 13, 2019 - 8:20 AM in reply to rockoyster

Seeing as you like slow travel, rockoyster...here is my TR from Bavaria last year

www.fodors.com/communi ty/europe/3-slow-weeks-in-bavaria-1658311/

not as dramatic as the Swiss Alps, but a lovely holiday, also. And kinder to the hip pocket...

rockoyster
rockoyster
8888 posts
expert
Jul 13, 2019 - 11:13 AM in reply to Adelaidean

I’ll check it out. Had already seen you Bavaria photos on Flickr. Last Swiss trip we finished off with a few lazy days in Gengenbach in the Black Forest on the way back to Framkfurt Airport.

Slowpoke
Slowpoke
7567 posts
expert
Jul 13, 2019 - 12:48 PM in reply to rockoyster

G'Day Rockoyster.

I'll be in Switzerland in mid September, and typically spend time near the Röstigraben, even venturing to the French side on occasion.

If you think it would be worthwhile to have drink together, assuming my schedule would put me somewhere near you, I'll ask Arno to pass on my e-mail address.

I'll note that my schedule is sometimes constrained by visits with friends and which restaurants are open on Mondays, but I have not put it in place yet.

Slowpoke

Meemskirk
Meemskirk
84 posts
active member
Jul 14, 2019 - 11:06 AM in reply to Adelaidean

Thanks for your great report and pixes!

We will be there in September--it looked like you had amazing weather in June but I understand there was a "heat wave"? Pondering if I'll have any really nice warm sunny days...

Gunzel
Gunzel
241 posts
active member
Jul 14, 2019 - 8:26 PM in reply to rockoyster

Thoroughly enjoyed your report! And loved the quote:

"We like strolls, coffee and cake time, an hour or 2 of reading on our balcony, sitting on a park bench."

Similar to our style - always travelling by public transport of course and finding surprises "at the end of the line".

Photos similar to mine to - although I've always got lots of trains, trams, buses, ferries and other public transport vehicles too.

Well done - but we digress ...

Paul in Australia (who's got a 10 day "TellPass" itinerary prepared for late next month).

Slowpoke
Slowpoke
7567 posts
expert
Jul 14, 2019 - 8:57 PM in reply to Gunzel

G'Day Gunzel-

As long as this thread is posting all kinds of photos, I'll attach a few here.

Some are to convince you to get a ride on a sidewheeler on the lake.

Others are from that train in Emmental linked once before, I think.. It actually does carry passengers, so I think it fits in your parameters.

www.emmentalbahn.ch/in dex.php

www.emmentalbahn.ch/in dex.php/fahrplaene

Slowpoke

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Slowpoke
Slowpoke
7567 posts
expert
Jul 14, 2019 - 10:30 PM in reply to Gunzel

Hi Gunzel-

<<"always traveling by public transport of course and finding surprises "at the end of the line".">>

For your Tell Pass Adventure, here is an "end of the line" that you might not have planned on. It is quite close to Brunnen, and runs up from the bus stop named Brunnen, Seilbahn Urmiberg.

map.search.ch/?pos=689064,206992&z=12 8&poi=bergbahn,haltest elle

I've ignored it for years, but decided to check it out in May, 2017. The Bergstation has a tiny restaurant on a steep grade, and the views of the Urnersee and Trieb+Seeliberg are really good. Brunnen lies at your feet.

Slowpoke

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