Here’s One of Our Twitter Winners from “My Swiss” Trivia Twitter Contest!
Every Tuesday during the month of August, Rail Europe ran the “My Swiss Trivia” Twitter Contest. A question was asked about Swiss travel and the first person to answer correctly won the prize.
One of the winners, mother and 11-year-old daughter Cindy and Chloe Law, embarked on a 6-day Experience of Switzerland Tour with 1st Class, 3-day Swiss Flexi Passes in hand.
With this pass, Cindy and Chloe never had to wait in line at a ticket counter or fumble for Swiss Francs as their train entered the station. They received unlimited train travel on the Swiss Travel System including trains, buses and boats. All the bonuses. Free travel for Chloe – and all kids under 16. Entry into over 400 museums. Plus discounts on hotels, guided tours and more.
Switzerland is a country with endless possibilities. The Law’s trip took them to the cities of Lucerne, Bern, Montreux and Zurich, plus the scenic towns of Interlaken and Murren. And of course – they rode the scenic trains of Mt. Pilatus and Schilthorn.
Cindy and Chloe were kind enough to share their trip “diary.” We think it’s great inspiration for planning your own Switzerland adventure.
Day 1 – August 26 – Lucerne
We arrived in Lucerne August 26 (SUNNY!) and checked in to the Flora Hotel, after that we had lunch at an Italian restraint where we had spaghetti, curry chicken sandwich, and a swiss cheese burger L, the burger was not that good. After lunch we did a self guided walk of the old town, walked along the famous chapel bridge and also went to the sleeping lion and the nine towers (but we only climbed 2) and then I hurt my leg. Late in the afternoon we took a relaxing boat cruise to Weggis and came back and had a salty chicken dinner at Migros supermarket. Then we walked back to hotel for the night. ZZZZzzzzz
Day 2 – August 27 – Bern and Montreux
Change of plans. We were going to go to Mount Pilatus but it was raining and cloudy when we checked the web cam. So instead the lady said we should go to some museums, we were kinda bummed about it but then it hit us: We could go to Bern! So we checked when the train was leaving and we still had about 45 minutes so we still went to the art museum. We were there for about ten minutes, only looking at the paintings for about one second and then running off to the next room. Well at least we managed to kill some time while waiting for the train. We sat comfortably in our first class cabin thanks to our Swiss passes. When we arrived at Bern, we walked around and did a little window shopping. Then we watched the cuckoo clock at the hour while eating McDonald’s, 2 happy meals with sad toys and 1big Mac for my uncle and aunt. Yummy! We did another self guided walked (from the Rick Steves book) and went to a playground thingy, where there were a lot of go carts, air hockey tables and a great view.
After that we observed the bear family at Bear Park. CUTE! The cubs just stick to the mother and follow her around. Then we took a bus to the train station and hopped on a train to Montreux. At Montreux we took a boat (first classJ) to Chateau de Chillon. During the boat ride, I ordered a sandwich with chips because I was starving, but while I was happily eating my chips my aunt opened the door to get some fresh air. When she opened door, it was so windy that all my chips blew away and then my aunt and uncle laughed their heads off. The Castle has a lot of narrow claustrophobic steps leading to different rooms. The view at the top of the tower was gorgeous. We had many tower climbs in the last few days (we were in Munich and London before arriving in Switzerland) and I could feel the muscle pain in each step. After castle tour, we took the bus back to the train station and returned back to Lucerne. Montreux is a French speaking town whereas Lucerne is German speaking. While on the bus, we kept looking out for “Bahnhof” for our stop and missed 8 bus stops as train station in French is “De La Gare” instead. The very kind bus driver showed us the right bus stop to get off. The train ride was 2.5 hours so we bought food (ham sandwich and cheese sandwich, funny they don’t have ham and cheese sandwich) and ate on the train.
Day 3 – August 28 – Mt Pilatus and Interlaken
There was a Sunday farmer’s market along the lake, selling cheese, fresh flowers, jam, and antiques. We strolled along the lake, feeding very hungry pretty swans (swan lake!). Today is our last day in Lucerne. We went up to Mt Pilatus. There wasn’t much view up there because of clouds and rain. The ride in the steepest cogwheel train, gondola and 4 people smaller gondola were a lot of fun. After that we took the Golden Line Express to Interlaken. Luckily we got seats in the first panoramic car. The view was magnificent…waterfall, tunnel, lake, farm animals, and cute swiss cottages. Our stay in Interlaken was at Hotel Krebs. We checked with the hotel reception for a recommendation for fondue dinner but she recommended a traditional Swiss dinner with three course meal. She said not everyone likes fondue as it might be too salty and stinky. She said the steak in Interlaken is the best as the meat is tender and juicy. We strolled in town, sampling swiss chocolate before dinner. We had veal and beo rib eye steak for dinner. The steak was indeed very good.
Day 4 – August 29 – Murren, Schilthorn, Gimmelwald, and Trummelbach Fall
The hotel lady said we brought good weather to Interlaken…it was sunny which was rare in the last few days. We headed for Schilthorn, which was the highlight of the trip, was very beautiful and cold! We had lunch at the highest revolving restaurant and also where the 007 James Bond movie was filmed. We had James Bond spaghetti and a swiss meatball type of pasta too. After lunch we went out to check out the view, it was very pretty with some green and snow capped mountains and the blue sky! We put on our gloves and threw snowballs down the mountain, then we rode the cable cars down the mountain to Gimmelwald. On the way we saw a lot of people parasailing. We also stopped at the Trummelbach falls which we took a lift up the cave to watch rolling waterfall draining water from the three mountains. We rode the train back to our hotel and got Chinese take out!
Day 5 – August 30 – Lake Brienz and Ballenger
The weather was cloudy and rainy “again” so we decided to not go up to “Top of Europe – Jungfrajoch” as it was snowing up there and no view. We decided to go easy today and did a boat cruise to Brienz, enjoying the best hot chocolate recommended by the boat cruise diner. We then took a bus to Ballenger, an open air folk museum with swiss farm houses and many farm animals that we don’t see often…a Scottish highland goat with black fur top half of the body and white fur from waist to legs…very cute. After that we took the evening train to Zurich airport and stayed at the Hilton Apart Hotel.
Day 6 – August 31 – Zurich
We bid farewell to Switzerland and fly home today. Thanks for the Swiss Pass, rides for train, boat cruise, bus, and admissions to museums, Chateau de Chillion and Ballenger were all covered. Ride to Schilthorn was half off. Switzerland is so beautiful that we feel we were in a theme park except the park is opened all day long.
Written by Cindy and Chloe Law – mom and daughter (11 years old) experience of Switzerland