Go Back  Fodor's Travel Talk Forums > Destinations > Europe
Reload this Page >

Am I Crazy!? Is this a doable stay in Switzerland?

Am I Crazy!? Is this a doable stay in Switzerland?

Jan 23rd, 2008, 10:11 AM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Posts: 169
Am I Crazy!? Is this a doable stay in Switzerland?

Hello,

We have been playing with our itinerary for this region mercilessly....just cant quite settle on an itinerary that suits us.

This is our plan as it stands:

Paris x 7
Stein am Rhein x 4
Lake Como x 4
Venice x 6

We had 5 days in Switzerland, but have moved a day to Venice because that is a priority and we really want to relax in that particular city.

As for Switzerland - I've had us based in Bern, in Lucern and now in Stein am Rhein. The things we want to see are very spread out. We are focused on architecture not mountains (though mountains are nice). I thought we'd try this:

1. Trian Paris Stein am Rhein
2. Luzern
3. Meersberg
4. Bern

We figure we will have half a day plus evenings to look around Stein am Rhein itself.

We don't want to see any museums in Luzern but want to have time to look around Old Town slowly and are hoping to maybe to the cog-train up Pilatus - do you think there is time for this in a day trip. We will arrive in Lucern around 9:30am.

One reason we are thinking of Stein am Rhein is we want to see Meersberg....appropriate for a day trip? Or too stretched?

Bern has always been on our itinerary and we want to spend a day, but don't feel we'll need more.

Any thoughts? Is this just crazy-making? Should we cut Meersberg, stay in Lucern and just day trip to Stein am Rhein?

Any opinons welcome!

MollyB
MollyBrown is offline  
Jan 23rd, 2008, 01:39 PM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 7,678
Hi MollyBrown,

Goodness, if you don't want to see mountains, the whole trip to Switzerland might well be spent elsewhere!

If you like architecture and since Venice is your goal, why go to the northern part of Switzerland? Just take the TGV to Lake Geneva and stop off in Montreux for a day or so, then continue on your route right into Italy. Or you could make Brig your stop, a sweet little town surrounded by mountains. Brig is right on your route into Italy.

Anyway, if you don't want to dawdle in the mountains, then this would be a more direct route.

s
swandav2000 is online now  
Jan 23rd, 2008, 02:40 PM
  #3  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Posts: 169
Hi swandav,

I hear where you are coming from and I've considered this to be honest....how did we end up in Switzerland? We like the mountains, but live near the Rockies so ....its not our main focus. I don't know what happened - we were supposed to go to Strasbourg, but then we wanted to see Bern....now we are in Stein am Rhein. Its all a bit of a fog really lol! In truth we would like to see everything.

We have a bought and paid for ticket into Paris and out of Venice.

I think I'm just being hysterical really - there must be some lovely cities in Switzerland that stand alone asode from the charm of the mountains....right? Medievel, stone, archways...architecture?

I don't know why I am in such a funk about it. Hm.

Molly
MollyBrown is offline  
Jan 23rd, 2008, 03:13 PM
  #4  
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 506
Molly

It sounds like you need some focus. Since you mentioned you have the three weeks and you like architecture more than mountains. consider this trip. since you are leaving from Venice, consider going directly to the Veneto from Paris. Either fly or train. Try an Andrea Palladio excursion. Several of his villas are open to the public for tours. You would also visit Vicenza where there are lots of public buildings including the Teatro Olympico. Palladio was probably one of the most influential architects of the 1500's. Google Palladio for lots of links. This could be done by train or you could rent a car for a week.
notbob is offline  
Jan 23rd, 2008, 04:00 PM
  #5  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 91,353
I'd also suggest just a few days in the Lac Leman region while passing thru between Paris and Venice. I'm also a fan of Montreux and Vevey. They've got stone, they've got architecture...
;-)
suze is offline  
Jan 23rd, 2008, 06:13 PM
  #6  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Posts: 169
Hi Suze,

We've considered this area...but when I google pictures of the area I don't get a good sense of the architectue of the cities. My first impression isn't stone, although Chillion does look very good.

How would you rank the old towns of the area?

Yes, we definately need focus. We are actually considering ditching this Como and Switzerland in favor of flying to Florence to explore the mountain towns of Tuscany for 8 days. But then....missing out on Como+Ticino would be a shame. Yeup. Unfocused is a good word.

Molly

MollyBrown is offline  
Jan 24th, 2008, 12:14 AM
  #7  
 
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 9,312
> We are focused on architecture not mountains (though mountains are nice). I thought we'd try this:

1. Trian Paris Stein am Rhein
2. Luzern
3. Meersberg
4. Bern

We don't want to see any museums in Luzern but want to have time to look around Old Town slowly and are hoping to maybe to the cog-train up Pilatus - do you think there is time for this in a day trip. We will arrive in Lucern around 9:30am.

One reason we are thinking of Stein am Rhein is we want to see Meersberg....appropriate for a day trip? Or too stretched?

Bern has always been on our itinerary and we want to spend a day, but don't feel we'll need more.

Any thoughts? Is this just crazy-making? Should we cut Meersberg, stay in Lucern and just day trip to Stein am Rhein?<

I like your destinations but I don't like your home base. Staying in Stein am Rhein is fine if you want to see Insel Mainau, Meersburg, Lindau and Schaffhausen but Bern is definitely too out of the way. Cross Bern off your list this time and go to Appenzell instead. You could even go to the Hohe Kasten with the cable car for some nice views. You can see Constance, Meersburg and Lindau in one day if you use the ferry.

Lucerne is doable but will involve train time.

I don't find the architecture around Lac Leman interesting at all. I like the feel of the mountains, lake and vinyards of that area but that's it. I was in Schloss Chillon last summer and found it interesting if you've never been in a castle. However, if you've already seen a few castles, then it's not a must.

I think Lugano, Locarno and Ascona have more interesting architecture and the food is better too. However, I can't decide which area is more beautiful to look at: Lac Leman or Tessin. For me, it's a toss up.

You've chosen some quaint towns for interesting architecture. I find Appenzell for this reason also very interesting.

If you're really interested in seeing different styles of houses in Switzerland and don't have much time, the open air in Ballenberg (near Brienz) is a MUST.

kleeblatt is offline  
Jan 24th, 2008, 01:16 AM
  #8  
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 3,070
First of all, I think you are talking about MeersBURG, because there is no "Meersberg" around afaik.

With 4 nights in Stein am Rhein, I'd focus on the Bodensee/Untersee region instead of planning such long day trips as Luzern, there is more than enough to do and see. Besides Meersburg, which is doable but quite a way, there is Konstanz, the island of Mainau with its wonderful park, the island of Reichenau with its 3 Romanesque monasteries, the Rhine falls and Schaffhausen, which is much less crowded and IMHO more romantic than Luzern, Arenenberg, the palace of Napoleon's relatives on the Swiss side of the Untersee, the Säntis mountain... The landscape around the Bodensee is absolutely lovely, and you'll bite, ahem, the lower end of your back if you have only one day to see it.
quokka is offline  
Jan 24th, 2008, 02:42 AM
  #9  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 7,678
Hi again,

Well, yes, the architecture around Lake Geneva isn't really *spectacular.* It is Belle Epoque & Edwardian, very much like the French Riviera; in fact, Montreux calls itself the Pearl of the Swiss Riviera! I was only thinking that this routing might be more convenient for you. Plus, it would take you by Brig, a mountain town from which you could see the Aletsch Glacier.

And I'm happy that you didn't think I was being snide or rude -- I kept thinking my tone was off but had trouble correcting it.

I do think you would enjoy seeing the Swiss mountains, even for a short time. I haven't seen the Rockies, but I do think that the Alps are far different just from the photos I've seen. With so many American ski resorts imitating that "Alpine village" notion, it might be interesting to see the original -- immerse yourself in an Alpine ambiance.

Anyway, the good thing is that you can't go far wrong with any destination in Switzerland!

s
swandav2000 is online now  
Jan 24th, 2008, 07:04 AM
  #10  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 91,353
Montreux has an Old Town, as does Vevey. I don't think the architecture is anything spectacular, as mentioned above, but yes alot of it is made of stone, if that's the question.

It's the overall setting I find so appealing in these two towns... the lakeside promonade, with the Alps in the background.

I've yet to go to Bern (5 trips to Switzerland) because my friends who live there are always making fun of it for the bears and for being boring.
suze is offline  
Jan 26th, 2008, 03:21 AM
  #11  
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 140
Hi all.

I'm intrigued by this wish list and have been known to make long daytrips myself. I notice that the travel distance to Bern is only ten minutes or so longer than to Lucerne. So, if you love riding on trains (as I do), you could stick to your original plan. Lindau is a delightful town, too, and about the same time . . . . all three just a bit under 2.5 hours away.

You might play a bit at the sbb.ch site, though, to see how many trains there are in and out of Stein. It is indeed a lovely little place to return to in the evening. Good luck with your tweeking. Hi, S and schuler.
J.
jmw444 is offline  
Jan 26th, 2008, 03:24 AM
  #12  
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 140
or is that 'tweaking'.

No matter, I think your total itinerary contains some marvelous contrasts. It should be a wonderful adventure, not to mention an extraordinary sensory experience.
J.
jmw444 is offline  
Jan 26th, 2008, 03:47 AM
  #13  
 
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 697
Make sure you get out to Burano while in Venice. The coloured houses are lovely and it's far less crowded than central venice.

Also take a vaporetto ride all around the grand canal.
speckles is offline  

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy -

FODOR'S VIDEO

All times are GMT -8. The time now is 10:21 AM.