swissfinds

Old Aug 19th, 2001, 01:18 AM
  #1  
TerryL
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swissfinds

Anyone been to Switzerland? specifically Geneva? Would love to hear rants/raves, travel tips, must sees/do, cheap, great finds, etc. I'm possibly going in mid=October. Many thanks to any response(s)!
 
Old Aug 19th, 2001, 03:44 PM
  #2  
Russell
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Been to Geneva many times. A pretty city, though the people can be a bit cool. The lake is attractive and you may find a cruise to Lausanne or Montreux of interest. Also consider a drive to Annecy, which is about 40 minutes away. Great lake and terrific setting with the mountains above.
 
Old Aug 20th, 2001, 05:50 AM
  #3  
s
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TerryL,
If you haven't found my Montreux recommendations yet by a text search, I'm including them here. Missed your post because I was . . . in Montreux. BTW, Montreux is on Lake Geneva just about 90 minutes by train. E-mail me if you have specific questions.

Spend a morning walking along the 11km flowered lakeside promenade from Clarens to Villeneuve, passing the Chateau Chillon along the way; there are plenty of cafes to stop and have a coffee & snack along the way to replenish your strength. There are also plenty of benches to sit and read, watch other walkers, or simply stare at the majesty of the lake and the mountains in the distance. This is a favorite and necessary activity.

Every few months, the city gardeners construct witty and elaborate sculptures along the promenade. The first one I saw used colorful flowers to represent paint spilling from large cans, with large straw brooms to represent paint brushes; another year there were six-foot spiders in the trees and nine-foot ants along the way; one year there were large cows; last November I saw the gardeners working on six-foot godzillas and lizard monsters. Each time I return, I look forward to seeing their latest efforts!

Top off your long walk with a wonderful pizza & beer lunch at a lakeside café in Villeneuve, then take the ferry back to Montreux (I think the ferry stops in late Sep/Oct).

Spend the morning in Vevey hunting down the antiques shops in the old town. Then have lunch at the Hostellerie de Geneve on the Pl. Marche (reviewed -- sort of-- in NY Times Travel section. Go to www.nytimes.com, then to the archives of "What's Doing," then find "What's Doing in Vevey" from summer '99).

Take the train (the “wine train”) from Vevey to Chexbres, then spend a morning walking the vineyards down to the lake, hitting Rivaz & St. Saphorin. For lunch, find the Auberge du Rivaz (in Rivaz . . . ) with a terrace lake view or see if any of the cellars are having a cheese/wine tasting.

Cully (esp. the Auberge du Raisin) and Lutry's well-posted tour of ancient sites are worth a trip as well.

Spend a day in the mountains, taking the train to the resort of Gstaad. On the way back, stop at Chateaux d'Oex, where the only successful round-the-world-by-hot-air-balloon trip was launched. Or stop at Glion for lunch at the Hotel Victoria with its panoramic views of the lake; then walk the rest of the way down to Montreux on a stair-step path through the forest (or take the train or the funicular to Territet).

Spend an afternoon in the medieval village of Gruyeres, making sure to sample the berries in creme-double.

Spend an afteroon in Nyon at the Roman museum and the Caesar's columns nearby.

Spend a morning walking up to Montreux's old city & the museum & the old church. Fantastic views from the old church (can't remember the name -- but it's prominent in the old city). Have lunch at the restaurant at the museum.

Here are the websites:
www.montreux.ch (find their picture gallery)
www.vevey.ch
www.lake-geneva-region.ch
www.gruyeres.ch
www.nyon.ch
www. lutry.ch
www.concierge.com (type in "Switzerland" as a
destination, then go to "Lausanne & the Alps").
www.myswitzerland.com

s
 
Old Aug 20th, 2001, 09:35 AM
  #4  
Christine
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Hi Terry,
If you intend on bringing home gifts of chocolate I would suggest bringing home some champagne truffles, from a shop called Tuescher. I've been to the shop in Zurich but I know they have a location in Geneva. (I used to work at the store in Toronto...NEVER got sick of their chocolate.)
You can check out their web site, tuescher.com and find the exact address in Geneva.
 
Old Aug 26th, 2001, 07:02 AM
  #5  
jw
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(Trying to get this back to the top) TerryL, perhaps you'll give us an idea of your interests. Like s, I crave the aesthetics of the landscape, the little corners, and the ambiance, so to speak. (s!! So that's why I have not read anything of yours lately -- my envy is great; what did you discover this time?) But if you're looking for excitement, then our beloved villages and vineyard walks may leave you yawning. I can't believe I'm saying this. I found Russell's suggestion about a drive to Annecy, France a dandy. While we're including France, let me add the little (much touristed) French village of Yvoire just above Geneva on the lake. If you can spend some time there early or late, it's a treat. If you're a garden person, there's a pretty one -- something about the four seasons. If you're a castle person, Aigle is nearby (along with s's Chillon). If you are interested in Roman stuff, include Nyon and take a train ride to Avenches (north of Lausanne) -- it'll take all day, but I found it really fascinating. I don't suppose you like folk art, but if you do, then be sure to visit the Folk Art Museum when you follow s's route to Chateau-d'oex. I don't know if anyone has made mention of the weather in October; I have not a clue -- it is possible that some of our recommendations may not be as flowered in October? If it turns out that cities are more interesting to you, or less dependent on summer weather for their interest, then please give Lausanne a good visit and take a train to Berne for the day -- great collection of painted fountains. I forgot to ask if you are an art person? If so, there are good art museums in Geneva and Berne. Do the lakeboats still run in October, anyone? I'm rambling, but it doesn't take much to get me started on Lac Leman and environs. I'll look forward to reading your impressions upon your return. jw
 
Old Aug 26th, 2001, 07:06 AM
  #6  
jw
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p.s. Be sure to taste one of every pastry sold in the train stations of Vevey or Montreaux. Especially that little flaky (flakey?) one of croissant-like pastry with bits of chocolate tucked inside. sigh.
 
Old Aug 29th, 2001, 12:38 PM
  #7  
Ursula
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Topping for Souther.

Sorry, cannot find your original post.

Maybe, this one helps a little bit, too.
 
Old Aug 29th, 2001, 02:05 PM
  #8  
staatz
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I am a Swiss resident living near Lausanne.

I wouldn't spend too much time in Geneve. A day should suffice to see the shopping areas, UN museum, the fountain on Lac Leman and perhaps the crypt to the church in Vieux Ville. Use it as base for side trips into the Savoie and certainly don't miss Annecy. Lovely town.

Nothing is cheap in Switzerland but you will also never be ripped off. Honesty is a national obsession although do be careful as always around any train station. However compared to the US or other parts of Europe, Switzerland is virtually crime free.

If you're into skiing, it is possible to do some glacier skiing in Zermatt in October. Just be aware that Europeans don't know the meaning of a queue and the lifts are excrutiating T-bars. The train ride up the pass from Visp/Brig is spectacular.

I would also recommend a few days in the Grindelwald/Lauterbrunnen/Murren area. Although you'll change trains there, avoid Interlaken, it's a tourist trap. A trip up to either Jungfraujoch or Schiltorn is not to be missed. When finished in that area, a train ride on the MOB train from Zweissemen to Montreux via Gstaad and Chateau-D'Oex.

Lucerne is a jewel of a city and worth a couple of days. Great museums, great sights (Mt. Pilatus and the Lake amongst others), and a nice jumping off point for the rest of Switzerland. It remains my favorite.

Basel, often overshadowed by Zurich, Bern, and Geneve, is an eclectic city with a great nightlife. The Kundstmuseum is arguably Switzerland's best art museum.

One of my favorite places for relaxation is Leukerbad/Loeche Les Bains. The spas here are legendary and one of these days I'll make the hike across the Gemmi Pass from Kanderstag. The weather may be somewhat dicey in October but it may still be open.

Lac Neuchatel is often overlooked by the guide books but there are lot of castles and medieval towns around the lake. Morat, Neuchatel, Vaumarcus, and Grandson are some of the more notable towns.

Good luck on your trip.
 
Old Aug 29th, 2001, 02:09 PM
  #9  
Ursula
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staatz hello from Zurich.
Basel is my home town, grew up in Riehen. It's the city of museums, some 40 places around.

Did you ever go to the "Fondation Beyeler" in Riehen, suburb of Basel?
Next to the Kunstmuseum, one of the finest collections in Switzerland.
www.beyeler.com
 

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