Friday 7th August – Saturday 8th August 2020
We have arrived safely in Geneva.
I had been dreading this plane journey but surprisingly (or possibly not actually) we had arrived to an empty Edinburgh airport, got on a very quiet plane (lucky if there were 50 people on it) then entered a quiet Geneva airport…if only travelling was like this all of the time – minus COVID-19 of course!
We headed from the airport to catch our first train of the day which would take us to Visp. From here we would catch our next train to Spiez. Our third train would then take us to Interlaken and finally we would catch our fourth and final train to Lauterbrunnen.
Seems like a lot of trains but the journey was smooth and scenic. From the plane we got the most amazing views of the Alps and Mont Blanc and what a beauty she is.
We had visited Chamonix in 2015 but had came by car so to fly over the Alps was a first for us and extra stunning too seeing it from above…and now we could experience these views by train.
We finally arrived in Lauterbrunnen…and within the first 5 minutes I can tell you I love it.
From it’s placement in the Swiss Alps, situated in one of the most impressive trough valleys, surrounded by mountain peaks and giant rock faces, then there’s the roaring Staubbach Falls and it doesn’t even stop at that.
There’s also colourful alpine meadows, lonely mountain huts, lovely idyllic houses decorated lovingly with flowers and ornaments…and cows with massive bells around their necks that ring across the valley.
Nearby, the glacial waters of Trümmelbach Falls gush through mountain crevices past viewing platforms. A cable car runs from Stechelberg village to Schilthorn mountain, for views over the Bernese Alps…it goes on and on.
We are staying in Camping Jungfrau, a mountain holiday park, same place where my family stayed when they visited here. As I wondered around I found myself thinking about them and what their time here must have been like.
We are staying in a little cabin style hut. The campsite is beautifully situated and well equipped.
We are only in Lauterbrunnen for 3 days, it’s never going to be enough time, however we’ve planned our ‘hit list” intensly to try and fit in as much as we can without rushing things as I want to enjoy this as much as I can…I’ll be back, once I buy that much sought after campervan we’ve been meaning to purchase for several years now so we can travel easily around these lands.
But for now, I had made that promise to visit here sooner rather than later!
We wandered through Lauterbrunnen in awe.
We decided to do a short hike from the village in the dark up to the waterfall as there is a platform in which you can stand underneath and feel and hear it’s power. We got slightly wet.
Next day we were up bright and early to catch the cablecar then train up to Mürren, the most beautiful of places.
This traditional mountain village sits at an elevation of 1,650 m (5,413ft) above sea level and is unreachable by public road.
As we travelled here by cablecar which took us up through the mountains literally we were then welcomed by this perfect idyllic village that I couldn’t quite believe was here or how they even thought to begin building it up here in the first place.
Mürren has done it for me. This is a place I could escape to…even live in. It’s scenic, it’s got massive views, it has loads of outdoor activities going on and it appears to be cut off from everything, but not quite which appeals to me….waking up every morning to these towering mountains which include the most close up perfect views of the Eiger, Mönch, and Jungfrau would be something else!
I think I could start to enjoy and appreciate morning times better. And reaching this top, well let’s just say if only all my mountain journeys could be as easy as this!
It’s so charming and sets the scene with typical wooden chalets and an authentic ambiance. It’s a special and genuine place I feel.
Mürren was made famous in a James Bond film, the Piz Gloria which featured the revolving restaurant Piz Gloria, located on top of Schilthorn, a 2,970 metre high summit which has views over to Mont Blanc.
So we caught another cablecar up to the top and it was certainly worth a visit. Not only is it a major Bond location, but it has the longest aerial cableway in the Alps…it was pretty cool.
This was the World’s first revolving mountaintop restaurant which slowly turns as you wine and dine. I had also heard it sells the famous “Martini, shaken not stirred”, I was tempted to ask for it in my best Bond interpretation but refrained myself from doing so!
The Schilthorn/Piz Gloria provides stunning panoramic views over Switzerland. Over 200 mountain peaks can easily be seen in a spectacular landscape.
The view was immense…we had clear skies and we could see for miles…but one thing was missing…we had no wind for a change and it was warm, now that was bliss. We stayed for a while admiring the mountain tops surrounding us.
Before heading down I persuaded Andy that we undertake the famous Skyline Walk which opens up new perspectives. This platform is situated over a vertical precipice, offering stunning and exhilarating panoramic views into the abyss!
I say persuaded Andy as he is afraid of heights or should I say has vertigo but I got a laugh at his expense anyway which definitely added to the walk…result!
Not before long we were back on solid ground in the village of Mürren wandering once again and admiring everything before deciding to walk back down to Lauterbrunnen.
I had just heard by text message that my family had undertaken this same walk on a very hot day (supposedly), halfway down they stopped at a ‘restaurant’ for beer to refresh before continuing the walk which didn’t happen as they then decided to get the cablecar the rest of the way down, and had regretted that decision.
So I had agreed that we would finish that walk for them on this very hot day and not be distracted by the beer! However I’m sure my mum said it rained that day!!!
After arriving back at Lauterbrunnen after a beautiful walk down we then decided to catch the train to Interlaken which we had passed on the way here by train.
This is a traditional resort town, built in a narrow valley, between the emerald- coloured waters of Lake Thun and Lake Brienz. It’s appears a nice town surrounded by parkland, forests, meadows and glaciers, with numerous hiking trails.
From here we decided to take another cablecar this time to ascend Harder Kulm, Interlakens very own mountain to reach – the ‘Top of Interlaken’.
From here there is a viewing platform at 1,323 metres above sea level whereby you can admire the Eiger, Mönch and Jungfrau as well as the lakes…you can never tire of these views and any opportunity to see them from a different angle is a must…they mesmerise me.
There is also a restaurant up here, albeit not revolving, but one similar to that of a castle.
So as we leave the ‘Top of Interlaken’ we plan to visit another top tomorrow!