Well I’m obviously not the most prolific of ‘blogers’ around and I don’t even know if anybody is actually reading anything I do post but what the hell, I’ll post something anyway!

Lauterbrunnen

A view looking along the Lauterbrunnen valley in Switzerland

The Beanari occupants recently had a few days away. Was a bit of a drive but after 12+

hours in the car, a Channel Tunnel crossing and 7+hrs driving through France we arrived at Lauterbrunnen in Switzerland, a wonderful location!

The drive was worth every second.  This was our second visit to this area of Switzerland and it certainly won’t be our last.

We were soon installed in our accommodation and for the next 2 weeks we explored on foot, train, car and cable car many parts of the Swiss Alps.  Whilst every day was a wonderful experience the most memorable were:
Oberhofen Castle

Oberhofen, Thunersee

Thunersee and Thun – We caught the train to Interlaken and then a boat from Interlaken to Thun which criss-crossed Thunersee several times and provided excellent vistas in all directions.  The photo Shows Oberhofen on Thunersee, an almost fairy tale castle and one of several castles around the Lake.  After arriving in Thun, one of the most enjoyable visits to a large town/small city we had, even in the rain, we wandered up to the Castle which gives great views over Thun and in all directions.

 

Matterhorn

The Matterhorn from Zermatt

Zermatt, home of the Matterhorn – Wow!  This is a wonderful, car free, metropolis with some good eateries and fantastic views.  We opted to take the cable car all the way up to the Kleine Matterhorn, just a hint of disappointment because we couldn’t walk to the Italian border, but the views were still out of this world, although a little disrupted by some cables running out onto the mountain from the visitor centre/Cafe area.  On the ride down we stopped off at a couple if the cable car stations to have lunch, a little wander and some more viewing of the spectacular scenery.

Hiking in higher country!  Anyone who has visited here before will know that I like nothing better than a good stroll through the higher parts of the UK, particularly the Lake District, but Switzerland takes this to a whole new level!  We set out to climb from a mere 2500ft (ish) upto around 7000ft with 2 x 2000+ft climbs and about 10miles in distance.  What we didn’t plan on was a hot day and full sun!  So our ‘epic’ walk ended up not quite so ‘epic’ but still an excellent days meandering with a good stiff climb and spectacular views.  Our destination was Rockstockhutt which sits in a valley just below the Schilthorn of James bond “On Her Majesty’s Secret Service” fame.  The walk was also a good way to discover the high alpine meadows so typical of the Alpine country and the flowers were in full bloom.

 

One of the highlights of the entire 2 weeks was the ride on a steam train up to the Rothorn.  This was preceded by another cruise on Brienzsee, another spectacular lake and the one opposite Thunersee making Interlaken, well Interlaken (between lakes)!  More great views looking across the lake but the weather was proving excellent so the panoramas from the top of the Rothorn were second to none.  Almost all directions had great mountains rising ever higher and offering vistas I don’t think we exceeded!

 

Passes!  Our penultimate day was spent driving around the Sustens, Furka and Grimsel mountain passes – pity it was in a Ford Focus and not as exhilarating as I’d anticipated but great fun none the less and even more spectacular scenary.  Furka Pass was the most rugged, with Sustens being the longest and most varied. Even the passengers agreed that it was a good day even if they did cramp my style a little!!  Next time I need to hire a Ferrari or Aston!!

 

So this was a flavour of our few days away in Switzerland and we will return in teh not too distant future.  in the meantime it’ll be the Lake District for my hill fixes!

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