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My delightful sampling of Switzerland’s gems, with many thanks

My delightful sampling of Switzerland’s gems, with many thanks

Old Jan 14th, 2017, 05:04 PM
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Kja, I just now caught on to this thread and I'm so glad I did. Having lived in Switzerland for the first 3 decades of my life, and visiting very often since becoming an expat (Auslandschweizer) I recognize many of the places you highlight so astutely. Then again, there are many that I have not visited, and I'm not sure I'll ever catch up... You did a wonderful job of planning, and executing, and reporting.

Just a detail to fill in: You couldn't find booze to buy and take with you after shop hours because nobody had told you that only certain restaurants are licensed to sell to passers-by once the shops have closed (typically 18:30 or 19:00 or thereabouts): You have to look for the sign (in the German-dialect speaking cantons) "Verkauf über die Gasse". (Literally "sale across the street".)

It is not uniformly available, some local laws forbid it in places and especially after 10PM.

Proscht - Santé - Salute - Viva! (How great is it to be able to raise a glass and say Cheers in four languages in such a small place!)
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Old Jan 14th, 2017, 05:38 PM
  #82  
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@ michelhuebeli: Thanks for your kind words! I couldn't have formed, let alone executed, my plan without the generous and informative help I received from many, many Fodorites -- I remain grateful! (Merci, danke, grazie, grazia.) I wish I had known those laws about the selling of wine before I went, but I appreciate the information after-the-fact, and who knows, maybe I'll get back to delightful Switzerland again one day. And if I do, I'll be sure to raise a glass to you.
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Old Apr 19th, 2017, 08:25 PM
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Cow in Alpine meadows are often kept in areas fenced with a mildly energized electric wire that they learn not to touch. The wooden poles had small plastic isolators?
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Old Apr 19th, 2017, 11:02 PM
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@ asps: I surely wish that I had known what you know during those scary moments! All I know is that I did NOT know WHAT, if anything, would separate me from those big, trotting beasts. But it all worked out, even if I was a bit (or sometimes more than a bit!) frightened every time I saw cows nearby during the rest of my trip.
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Old Jul 22nd, 2017, 05:54 AM
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Bookmarking
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Old Jul 22nd, 2017, 03:53 PM
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@ kelsey22: Thanks for your interest! Don't hesitate to let me know if you have any questions.
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Old Aug 6th, 2017, 01:51 PM
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Hi kja,
This is an AMAZING trip report! Thank you so much--I'm sure it will inform us tremendously. A few questions:

1) Do you know when the best time for wildflowers is? We usually don't like traveling in high season, but after the wildflowers we saw in Wyoming and Montana in early July, I would seriously consider going when flowers are peaking. (trip report a work in progress)

2) If you had to choose between Switzerland and Nepal (yes, I know apples and oranges) and either might be a last major trek, which would you choose?

3) What guidebooks did you find useful besides Fodors?
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Old Aug 6th, 2017, 02:21 PM
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@ cmstraf: Thank you for the compliment! I’m glad to think that this report might prove of help to you.

1) If my timing was NOT perfect for the wildflowers in the Lower Engadine, Val Bregaglia, or Bernese Oberland, well, you can’t prove it by me! I was in those locations on June 7-8, 10, and 15-17 of 2013, respectively. BUT it was a year with some weird weather, including snowfall and temperatures below freezing in Geneva in very late May…. I can tell you that I had planned for the Bernese Oberland in mid-June in part because of what I had read about peak wildflower season there.

2) What a choice! Unfortunately, I haven’t been to Nepal yet. I can assure you that traveling in Switzerland is incredibly easy – extremely comfortable and convenient public transportation; no need to learn another language, as English is widely spoken (though, of course, I recommend learning at least the civilities); and LOTS of jaw-dropping walks that are nearly level, as one is often walking across hills, not up or down them. I could be mistaken, but I think Nepal would be a bit more difficult. And while I take many factors into consideration when I decide on a trip, one of those considerations is my expectation of how easily I might be able to manage it in the future. So all else being equal, and faced with Switzerland or Nepal as an opportunity for a major trek, I’d probably give some very serious consideration to Nepal, with the (potentially mistaken) assumption that I would be less able to manage it in the future than to be able to manage Switzerland. JMO.

3) The two guidebooks I found most useful for Switzerland were the Rough Guide and the Michelin Green Guide. None of my guidebooks (I had six) provided good coverage of Graubünden; for that, our fellow Fodorite Ingo was invaluable. (Thanks again, Ingo!)

Good luck with your choice!
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Old Apr 9th, 2019, 07:53 AM
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kja, thanks for taking the time to post in such detail. We are planning 11 nights in September, starting in Zurich and ending someplace with an airport where we can fly to Porto, Portugal. Now working on filling in all the rest!
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Old Apr 9th, 2019, 05:16 PM
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@ GinnyJo: Thanks for your kind words! I'm glad you found some of the details I posted helpful. IME, Switzerland can be a truly wonderful destination. The difficult part (as with so many parts of the world) is figuring out what to skip. Let me know if you have any questions and have fun with your trip!
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Old Jun 23rd, 2022, 02:50 PM
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Originally Posted by kja View Post
@ kelsey22: Thanks for your interest! Don't hesitate to let me know if you have any questions.
I had bookmarked this years ago and HERE I AM! Thank you so much for all this wonderful information. It is as relevant now. 😀
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Old Jun 23rd, 2022, 08:29 PM
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Wow, kelsey -- I'm surprised to see a revival of this trip report! I'm so glad you are finding useful information in it. I loved my time in Switzerland -- I found it an absolutely delightful place to experience different cultures in settings that are nothing short of spectacular. I'm sure you will find some very rewarding travel moments if you choose to go to Switzerland.

If you (or anyone else) has questions about my experience, please feel free to add them to this thread.
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Old Jun 23rd, 2022, 09:00 PM
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Great to see you posting again kja! Seems you've been gone since 2020. Glad to see that you are (apparently) well, and hope to see you travelling again soon.

s
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Old Jun 24th, 2022, 12:05 AM
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Originally Posted by kja View Post
Wow, kelsey -- I'm surprised to see a revival of this trip report! I'm so glad you are finding useful information in it. I loved my time in Switzerland -- I found it an absolutely delightful place to experience different cultures in settings that are nothing short of spectacular. I'm sure you will find some very rewarding travel moments if you choose to go to Switzerland.

If you (or anyone else) has questions about my experience, please feel free to add them to this thread.
off to Murren! Then Ascona! Thanks for replying ! Wishing you many more travels!
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Old Jun 24th, 2022, 09:07 PM
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@ swandav: How nice of you to greet me! I'm fine -- thanks for asking! -- and hope that you are, too.

@ Kelsey: Mürren and Ascona should give you two very different kinds of experiences, each quite special. While in Ascona, if you like gardens, I strongly recommend visiting the Isole di Brissago. I'll also recommend Levertezzo in the Val Verazsca. Whether you make it to those places or not, I'm sure you'll have a fantastic trip. Bon voyage!
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