May in Switzerland - Do or Don't?

Oct 23rd, 2007, 06:12 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 1,190
May in Switzerland - Do or Don't?

May is a good month for my husband to travel. For the past couple of years, we've used that time to explore Italy & France. He has expressed interest in going to Switzerland. Primary interests would be train travel for photo ops, small towns to relax, relishing postcard-worthy views. We only have a week, towards the end of May.

Where we live, May is a/c weather. While I realize it's not that way in Switzerland, what would the pros and cons be to travel then?

More questions to follow - many thanks for offering your thoughts.
dorkforcemom is offline  
Oct 23rd, 2007, 07:36 PM
Join Date: May 2003
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Hi dorkforcemom,

My mother and I travelled to switzerland last May and it was nice pleasant weather(mid 60's during the day) especially in Lucerne, Bern etc. I'd say weather was near perfect. When we went up to the Jungfrau region, it was definitely cooler but not unbearable. It was slightly rainy however during certain parts of the trip. Where in Switzerland were you planning on visiting? Please let me know if you would like photos of our vacation...
hopalongmay is offline  
Oct 23rd, 2007, 07:40 PM
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Oh I also forgot to say that in the Jungfrau it was sometimes extremely quiet as there not a lot of people since we were there midweek. Some areas still have snow and were not hikable. If you aren't into crowds then it may be the perfect time to go.
hopalongmay is offline  
Oct 24th, 2007, 12:57 AM
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In my previous expriences, May has been a wonderful time to visit with fewer crowds and generally pleasant weather.
Dukey is offline  
Oct 24th, 2007, 02:30 AM
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Hi dorkforcemom,

As hopalongmay notes, different areas of Switzerland will have different weather in May. In the high mountains, the ski season will have just ended, and it will still be too early for flowers. There may be a lot of mud or melting snow on the ground and on the walking trails.

But there are other areas that are at a lower altitude and will be more pleasant. The flowers along Lake Geneva, for example, will be blooming. And in fact, the tulip festival in Morges will already be over -- but still lots of blooms in the park next to the lake. May is also an excellent time to see the Saanenland -- the towns of Gstaad and Chateau d'Oex and Zweisimmen. The Saanenland is characterized by beautiful green rolling hills dotted with brown-wood chalets.

Here are my "reviews" of these areas, w/photos:

Montreux old town


Promenade Fleuri





Good luck making this tough decision!

swandav2000 is offline  
Oct 24th, 2007, 02:38 AM
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Air condition in May? Ask for proper heating instead. In the mountains the nights can still be chilly.

May is a great season to travel. It's late spring in the lowlands and along the lakes with flowers and fresh green while the mountains will still have a lot of snow (depending on how much they get this winter). May is too early, though, for the mountain spring flowers and hiking at high altitudes.

If you want something warmer and more Mediterranean, have a closer look at the South of the country: Ticino with its lakes and its rough mountain valleys. Ticino in May will be just perfect.

quokka is offline  
Oct 24th, 2007, 06:23 AM
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May would be a great time to go to Switzerland imo! Weather will vary depending mostly on altitude, and the particular year (my friend in Montreux has mentioned real crazy weather patterns these last few years, freak hail storms, etc.)

suze is offline  
Oct 24th, 2007, 10:07 AM
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May is a great time - not too crowded - and the weather is very pleasant for touring and walking. Really cold only if you ascend the highest mountains (that have snow/glaciers all year round).
nytraveler is offline  
Oct 24th, 2007, 10:35 AM
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I love these encouraging reports from those of you who have vacationed to Switzerland during the month of May. I may just proceed with this idea, and it sounds like I should explore the lower elevations if flowers with mild temps are desirable. I'll post with more questions...
dorkforcemom is offline  

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