There are two major arteries leading to Lac Léman, one entering from the north via Bern and Fribourg (A12), the other arcing over the north shore of Lac Léman from Geneva to Lausanne (A1), then to Montreux and on south through the Alpes Vaudoises toward the Col du Grand St-Bernard (A9) in Canton Valais. They are swift and often scenic expressways, and the north-shore artery (A1 and A9) traces a route that has been followed since before Roman times.
Secondary highways parallel the expressways, but this is one case where, as the larger road sits higher on the lakeside slopes, the views from the expressway are often better than those from the highway. Be sure, however, to detour for the Corniche road views between Lausanne and Vevey.
Rent the smallest car your physique and luggage will allow, as narrow lanes in wine villages and parking in cities are headaches. Although expensive, opt for public garages that are clearly signed whenever possible. Take the ticket with you after entry, as payment is made via automated machines at the pedestrian entrance; many locations accept credit cards. The ticket returned after payment is your access card to exit.
80° BY THE SEA
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