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Interlaken & villages

Adorable Chick

SWITZERLAND Diary : Day 1 to Day 10 - 05th April 2014 to 14th April 2014

Interlaken is a small, beautiful town in central Switzerland. The place gets its name due to its geographical position between the lakes of Thun & Brienz. Transport in Switzerland is world class and one of the best. The town is therefore an ideal spot that connects all parts of the country. Any corner can be reached within a maximum journey of 3 hours. Self-Driving is another option that can be considered. The town offers many activities like many boat rides, funiculars, mountain hikes, view points, panoramic valleys and mountain spots, making it one of the most sought after tourist destinations in the world. So, whether you are out there to explore just the areas surrounding Interlaken or the whole of Switzerland, this town is the ideal base for your entire tour.

Undoubtedly, Interlaken by default became our place of choice, to stay put during our entire trip to Switzerland. For a quick snapshot of all what we did during our stay here read Switzerland under ITINERARIES (in the main menu bar). This portion of write-up will cover experiences around a few villages that occupy the mountainous terrain surrounding Interlaken & also includes a bit of Interlaken town.

Our first International trip as a GROUP, the thought of spending a good 10 days in this beautiful country was invigorating. The carefully prepared itinerary ( read Switzerland under INTINERARIES in the bar menu) aimed to cover as many parts as possible. The schedule each day was packed with action and like no other. The flight took off from Bangalore as scheduled and landed in Doha in 4 odd hours. The layover time was not much. Both legs of Qatar flights were highly comfortable. Aerial views of the Desert Land in Doha to the Green meadows above Zurich was fascinating. We reached Zurich Airport as scheduled. The "State-of-Art technology" airport never failed to leave us spell bound. The usage of underground fast train system to get to the main hall of the airport was an unparalleled experience. The airport has an inbuilt railway system that gets passengers to any part of the country once they land in Zurich. We boarded one such train to reach Interlaken by switching trains in Bern.

The train journey was more than comfortable except for the luggage part of it. Wish we had learnt to carry less. We couldn't stop awing the country's gifted natural beauty. Green meadows sleeping in the lap of snow cap mountains was the feature throughout. Each of us was glued to a separate window in the train. We let the journey soak in. The journey from the airport to Interlaken West lasted for about 2 and half hours. We reached the countryside railway station of Interlaken west in day light. A short walk of 600 metres, tugging our luggage along, brought us to the most beautiful cottage - THE CITY CHALET. We had the top floors of the CHALET entirely to ourselves. The more I reminisce it, the more emotional I get. It was so spacious and a dream vacation home.

Tidy Desk

The first and second floors were linked by stairs inside. Two families stayed on the top most floor with still a bedroom to spare. Our family and the kids occupied the room on the 1st floor. There were 5 rooms in all for the 10 of us with more rooms and beds to spare. The kitchen was so well kept. Apparently the owner was a CHEF himself doing T.V. shows and therefore catered to all our kitchen requirements. The house was perfect and had everything for a simple living. It was worth every penny we paid. Jaw dropping, "to die for" views flanked all four sides. Awesome residential Chalets popped up in the neighbourhood. River Aare flowed gently in a canal that gently hugged the side of this entire area. The silence was killing. Clean streets, meadows and pathways were a regular feature. People were hardly seen. Daily lives seemed like an ongoing vacation.

A basic grocery shop and a "Srilankan" shop for our basic Indian needs, at a stone's throw distance, was the icing on the cake. I regret we couldn't walk around the town much due to our tight schedule. Then again as usual, we hope to do a longer trip someday and explore all what we missed earlier. That is every traveller's dream I suppose.

Vision of the Alp ranges from any corner of the town was a regular, rewarding feature. The country is known for its transport connectivity. I can never get tired of re-iterating that fact. April- May is the season for Tulips. One can find bunches of these colourful buds arranged so neatly in almost every nook and corner of the town. The area is also known to be a paragliding haven. On a clear day it is easy to spot many enthusiasts trying this sport, gliding downward in their chutes from a great height, in the open sky while making their way past the clouds. It is just a pity that we couldn't try it ourselves. Interlaken was such a perfect base for our daily ventures. The farthest we travelled was our trip to Geneva which took us around 3 and half hours onward.

Like I mentioned earlier, our entire 10 day touring began each day, by branching out from Interlaken. Walking up to the Interlaken West station and taking relevant trains using our Swiss Passes is how we got around. Although we stayed the whole time in Interlaken, it is a pity we couldn't see much of the town centre.