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Scenery of Neuchâtel to Ligerz by boat?

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Mageo
Mageo
60 posts
active member
Feb 18, 2020 - 12:33 PM

Am wondering if the scenery is interesting by boat from Neuchatel to Ligerz, or would it be more worthwhile spending the extra time exploring the villages, whilst walking the vineyards around the area? We plan to visit in September.

Mageo

rockoyster
rockoyster
8888 posts
expert
Feb 18, 2020 - 7:59 PM in reply to Mageo

We had an “interesting” boat ride from Neuchâtel to Biel. We were supposed to stop at Ligerz but they skipped a few stops to get back on schedule. This was not a normal trip! 😉

See this trip report.

Peterli
Peterli
1192 posts
top member
Feb 19, 2020 - 6:56 AM

Hello,

The relief is quite steep almost all of the way from Neuchâtel to Bienne (Biel). If you go by boat you will be looking up at the vinyards as you move along. If you do a walking tour, you will be right in the vinyards and you will also be rewarded with the view down to Lac de Bienne (the Bielersee), over to the St. Petersinsel, and further off Mont Vully and perhaps a glance at Lac de Morat (Murtensee). If you are really lucky, you will see, further off, the Eiger, Mönch, and Jungfrau and many more of the Alps. My choice ? Do a walk. In this region, it is known as le Chemin des Vignes (the Vine Path, or Rebenweg in German). Check out the following description: www.j3l.ch/en/V1973/vine-path You can do it from either end (La Neuveville or Bienne), and you would not have to do the full length if you didn't want to. Also check out the report that Rockoyster has mentioned above; he has some great photos. If you have the time, perhaps you would like to walk in one direction and return by boat ? There is also a CFF/SBB rail line right beside the lake with many trains running beween Bienne and Neuchâtel, although some do not stop at all the stations along the lake.

By the way, September is a wonderful time to visit the area. If you are in Neuchâtel between September 25 to 27, perhaps you might be interested in experiencing La Fête des Vendanges.

Last modified on Feb 19, 2020 - 7:22 AM by Peterli
Mageo
Mageo
60 posts
active member
Feb 19, 2020 - 8:37 AM in reply to rockoyster

Thanks Rockoyster for your report - very helpful, and great photos. We always appreciate and enjoy your contribution to the forum. Mageo

Arno
Arno
14382 posts
expert &
moderator
Feb 19, 2020 - 9:13 AM

Hi Mageo,

If you decide for the hike that Peterli mentioned, and want to have a quick view from higher up the mountain, then there's the Magglingen funicular from Biel at the start/end of the hike. It's free for Swiss Travel Pass holders, otherwise CHF 7 per adult.

Last modified on Feb 19, 2020 - 9:13 AM by Arno
Mageo
Mageo
60 posts
active member
Feb 19, 2020 - 9:44 AM

Hi Peterli, thanks also for your reply and all the info. We had been considering a hike, so the map is very helpful as well. Mageo

Mageo
Mageo
60 posts
active member
Feb 19, 2020 - 10:02 AM in reply to Arno

Hi Arno, thanks for the info re. the Magglingen funicular - will check it out. At this stage we're planning to use the STP, but will do the calculations after completing the homework. We really value the forum - thanks! Mageo

Peterli
Peterli
1192 posts
top member
Feb 20, 2020 - 7:10 PM

There are four funiculars in this region. One goes from La Coudre (not far from the train station in Neuchâtel, and easily reached by bus), up to Chaumont. There is an observation tower just beside the upper station which gives a great view of the lake below and, depending on the weather, right over to the Alps. Check out this Roundshot Webcam to see what the view is from up there: chaumont.roundshot.com/. The funicular ride itself is rather unspectacular, as the tracks are surrounded by trees almost all of the way. The only view is straight backwards going up and straight ahead going back down, and this is really just a narrow cut in the woods for the rail bed. This is also the case for the funicular Arno mentioned, the one that goes up from Bienne (Biel) to Macolin (Magglingen). As far as I know, there is no observation tower at or near the top of the Macolin funicular.

There are two other funiculars in the area. There is another one in Bienne, called the Funi Evilard (Leubringenbahn) which rises from the city-centre to Evilard (Leubringen). I have never been on this one. The fourth one goes from Gléresse (Ligerz) up through the vinyards and then some woods to Prèles (Prägelz). The view from the bottom part of this run is nice as it is in the vinyards. The drawback is that the windows have a dreadful orange tint. It's so much nicer being on foot, and as I said before, you don't have to do the full walk from La Neuveville to Bienne.

I could mention a fifth funicular, called the Fun'ambule, which goes from inside the Neuchâtel train station (lower level) down to near the Université. It is entirely underground, and so purely functional, mostly for students and people living in that area. There is also another funicular in Neuchâtel, the oldest one in the city (opened in 1890) called the Ecluse-Plan which runs from rue du Seyon/rue de l'Ecluse up to rue du Plan. There are two stops en route. So if you are tramping around Neuchâtel and want a break from all the staircases and steep roads linking the upper parts of the city with the area down by the lake, hop onto one of these funiculars.

Last modified on Feb 20, 2020 - 7:13 PM by Peterli
Peterli
Peterli
1192 posts
top member
Feb 20, 2020 - 7:18 PM

Just found this video about the Macolin (Magglingen) funicular. www.youtube.com/watch?v=lQgfrqD0q6c

And here is one showing the Evilard (Leubringen) funicular: youtu.be/5RygMBkcts0 You will hear that the announcements at the mid-station are in German and in French, as Bienne (Biel) is officially bilingual. Not a scenic ride, though.

Here's one I made of the funi that runs from Prèles down to the lake a few years ago. youtu.be/pDml2iRSTKk Nice view but horrible orange glass. Better to be walking up there.

I'll see if I can find any videos showing the three in the city of Neuchâtel.

Last modified on Feb 20, 2020 - 8:42 PM by Peterli
Peterli
Peterli
1192 posts
top member
Feb 20, 2020 - 9:00 PM

The Neuchâtel Funiculars

Here is a video I recorded in 2018 of the ascent from La Coudre to Chaumont. youtu.be/Z0viGtAeABc As you can see, it is a ride between rock and trees. But the view from the tower at the top is worth the visit.

And here is the Fun'ambule, riding down from la gare on Maxime (the red car), as Léa, the yellow one goes up. youtu.be/akwhY6qbQuE. No scenery at all !

Lastly, a descent on the Funi Ecluse-Plan, with one stop on each side of the mid-point. youtu.be/5C_aQjeIiNU

If you are really into Swiss funiculars, go to this site: www.standseilbahnen.ch/

Last modified on Feb 20, 2020 - 9:03 PM by Peterli
Anna
Anna
957 posts
top member &
moderator
Feb 21, 2020 - 7:15 AM in reply to Peterli

Hi Peterli,

Thanks for sharing the links, and all that information.

I have been to Neuchatel, Biel and Magglingen a few times but never knew there are numerous funiculars and observation towers in the area. That Vine Path is on my summer hike list! Am also planning to do the Areuse Gorge trail. It certainly looks beautiful from the pictures: www.j3l.ch/en/V1571/areuse-gorges

Regards,

Anna

Mageo
Mageo
60 posts
active member
Feb 21, 2020 - 9:38 AM in reply to Peterli

Hi Peterli,

Thanks for all the information and links - tremendous and very interesting. Seems like we'll need to allow more time in the area. The Areuse Gorge area suggested by Anna also looks beautiful. Appreciate all the input - thanks!

Mageo

Peterli
Peterli
1192 posts
top member
Feb 22, 2020 - 2:49 AM in reply to Mageo

Hello again,

If you decide to do les Gorges de l'Areuse, please note that the narrow section with the old stone bridge is on the upper part of the walk, at le Saut de Brot, between Champ-du-Moulin and Noiraigue.

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Peterli
Peterli
1192 posts
top member
Feb 22, 2020 - 4:33 AM

Another nice walk in the same area is from the Col de la Tourne up to a couple of lookouts called Les Tablettes. I attach a map showing Col de la Tourne and Tablettes in red, with a thin red line indicating the path from the col to the lookout. If you come by car, there is a free parking area directly across from the hotel and there is also a bus stop in the same place. See attached oblique photo of this parking area and bus stop. From there you will see signs for "Tablettes". You will go through some fields at first and then through a woods. You will even see the remains of a military bunker just off to the right of the trail. At the top, there are two lookouts. The one on the left affords a view straight down to Rochefort (it is very steep around here, as you will have noticed coming up the hairpin road to the col) and further off, the lake (Neuchâtel) and the Alps, and the one on the right a view to the west towards France, with the Val de Travers below. I will also attach two oblique views (courtesy of Google Maps).

Last modified on Feb 22, 2020 - 5:45 AM by Peterli
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Mageo
Mageo
60 posts
active member
Feb 22, 2020 - 10:13 AM

Hi Peterli,

We do appreciate all the info, photos and maps you are providing. It is helping us understand how much there is to explore in the region.

As we are seniors, we would be doing relatively easy hikes, so we're thinking we could do half of les Gorges de l'Areuse from Champ-du-Moulin to Noiraigue. It's helpful to know the location of the old stone bridge as we were wondering. The area looks very beautiful.

Thanks again

Mageo

Peterli
Peterli
1192 posts
top member
Feb 23, 2020 - 6:38 AM in reply to Mageo

Hello again,

Here is one more map, on which I have circled the train stations in Champ-de-Moulin and Noiraigue in blue. You may have already figured out this from the contour lines, but in case it is important to you, the train stop at Champ-de-Moulin is at quite a bit higher elevation than the Areuse below. There is a steep road down to the Areuse and then it is quite flat along towards the Saut de Brot. Stick to that road (orange dashed line) rather than crossing the bridge at Champ-de-Moulin and attempting to walk upstream on that side.

Last modified on Feb 23, 2020 - 6:41 AM by Peterli
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Peterli
Peterli
1192 posts
top member
Mar 5, 2020 - 2:06 AM

Update on the Bienne-Macolin funicular (from RJB): The public transport authority of Bienne will carry out the annual overhaul as well as checking the integrity of the Funi Macolin. Operations will be interrupted from Monday March 9, 2020 to Friday March 27, 2020. Users are requested to take the detour via the Funi Evilard and the shuttle bus which will connect Evilard to Macolin. Note that the transport of bicycles is not permitted on the replacement bus.

Ildiko
Ildiko
1022 posts
top member &
moderator
Mar 5, 2020 - 6:15 AM in reply to Peterli

Thank you, Peterli! :)

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