It’s Sunday so it must be time for a bit of calming Switzerland.
Last couple of weeks have found us replaying some wonderful memories from a family trip to the pyramid mountain. The Niesen.
I had a couple of lovely emails saying how much they had enjoyed the views and asked if I had any more photos from that trip. Thank you and here goes with round 3 then.
As with a number of Swiss mountains you can enjoy a hot drink, fine food and maybe something a little stronger at the top. The Niesen has a wonderful sun lounge that offers stunning views of The Alps.
And someone enjoyed himself.
Last week we left our Swiss Sunday trip travelling up the Funicular to the top of of the Niesen.
The Niesen is called Switzerland’s Pyramid.
If I remember correctly I promised you some stunning mountain top views. Well here goes.
It overlooks the beautiful Lake Thun.
With one of the Worlds most imposing mountain ranges, The Alps dominating in the opposite direction. Including breathtaking views of The Eiger.
Bizarrely the literal translation of Niesen is sneeze.
It’s also a favourite visiting spot for some very brave individuals.
On top our son had a blast of a time. So many dreams. And the first snow he had been able to touch in over a year.
It’s time for another slice of that wonderful country – Switzerland.
One mountain in particular towers over Spiez. Where our hotel base was. Beautiful Niesen. Son calls it the pyramid mountain.
It’s the northern edge of a spectacular mountain ridge and is 7749ft high (2362m). A short train journey takes you to the base of the mountain. As son was still quite young we were restricted on walking distances. Plus it was often a few steps of walking then more time to dream.
So we got off the train at Frutigen and walked along the lovely Kander River. Eventually arriving at the Mulenen and the Niesenbahn.
An old Funicular will carry you to the top. In places it is scarily steep. For the mad ones amongst us – once a year – you can enter the mountains stair run. A stairway follows the route of the Funicular to the top. Comprising of 11674 steps. It is the Worlds Longest Stairway. Really unfortunately the day we went up was one of the stairways closed days – that’s a shame….
As the Funicular moves above the tree line the views open out.
Next week we will continue the story on the summit. It is truly one of the great views. As good as I’ve had the privilege of seeing.
It’s Sunday so it must be a Swiss Sunday. It’s my little tribute to that beautiful country.
I had a completely different set of photos lined up. Proper high alpine ones. But this week I’ve had one image in my head. It’s featured in a few late night dreams. No mountain landscape here. Just one house balcony. The house is in Spiez. It’s on a lovely little street behind the towns Schloss (castle). At least once on every trip we would have to walk past the house. On the house balcony there are a couple of human size fantasy models. Son loves them.
Drag yourself away from fantasy Middle Earth and you quickly get views like these.
Then it’s a view across the Lake.
Spiez is such a beautiful town. Sandwiched between the mountains and Lake Thun.
It’s Sunday so it’s time for a bit of beautiful Switzerland.
Our family Aspergers holidays often heavily featured reassuring repetition. Sunday mornings would see a trip across Lake Thun to Interlaken. A walk round the beautiful town. Maybe even a game of crazy golf. Switzerland loves its crazy golf. Then the first hot chocolate of the trip while sat outside watching the Paragliders fly off the local mountain top.. Finally a trip to a wonderful Swiss gift shop. Clocks, Calendars and Schleich toy animals.
Only once did we vary the Sunday routine with a trip to Lenk. A stunning village set in a wide valley with picture postcard views of The Alps. Walking heaven and beautiful waterfalls.
How did we negotiate the change in routine. The promise of the finest ice cream on the planet with the added clause that on Monday he could buy three Schleich Toys.
Was it too soon to start him on wine….
Lenk is such a peaceful place to visit especially on a Sunday morning. Your not shopping, your not watching paragliding, your probably not playing crazy golf. Your chilling out, going for a walk, skiing in the winter, going to church, or sitting having drinks and tasty ice cream. What else do you need on Sunday.
It’s the end of the Halloween. The kids are back in school on Monday after a week away from purgatory. It’s also the week we would most often visit Switzerland. It’s quiet. Attractions like Lake Boats and Cable Cars are still operating full summer timetables. Winter hasn’t kicked in but snow has returned to the mountains. The colours are glorious and the skies are frequently so atmospheric. As ever photos don’t do it justice but here goes.
We left last Sunday having just arrived at the top of a little mountain which is special to me. The FIRST.
The First is a smallish mountain overlooking the beautiful Swiss Town of Grindelwald.
It is 7100 feet high and it takes about 25 minutes on the mini cable car to the top. You can just sit on the grass and drink in the the views.
At the top you can have fine Swiss food and drink
Or enjoy high level walks.
Or the brave can fly at breakneck speed.
Or you can do a number of platform walks across the cliff face or into space. Only for those with a great head for heights (or in this case drops).
The First is just a fun mountain. Every time you visit here you can do something different. So many memories available to be made. Just goes to show that you don’t need to be the biggest to be one of the best.
It’s Sunday. We are still clinging to our mad old planet. So it’s time to breathe and visit a place seemingly immune to the growing madness. A place of peace and beauty. It’s Switzerland.
I’ve been so fortunate to visit this wonderful country on a number of occasions. So many stunning locations. But I have a soft spot for one mountain. It’s called The First.
It’s not that big. It’s classed as a minor summit of the Schwarzhorn. But it would be massive if it was in the UK. It’s all relative.
The trip starts with a beautiful train journey to Grindelwald.
The First is special to me. It was the first Swiss Mountain I went up. It’s the one I’ve been on top the most. It’s the one I stood on top in a T-shirt and shorts in the middle of a massive snow drift. In fact it was the first adventure I ever had in this great country. On a Sunday 17 years ago.
So forgive me. Lots of photos.
Once in Grindelwald you take a small cable car to the top. The views are epic.
And they just keep on coming.
The higher you get The Alps slowly reveal themselves.
How can a country be this beautiful.
Eventually you arrive at the top of The First.
Next week the adventure will continue.
It’s time for another little bit of that wonderful country called Switzerland. For us it has so many memory gems. Every photo seems to yield another beautiful memory.
The damp Sunday morning boat trip across a Lake. All the passengers are outside in the drizzle just enjoying rainbows across the water.
The Gorge walk with the milky river.
The walk round a vineyard with views to die for.
The late evening stroll around the Lake and as the sun starts to set the mountains come alive.
The early morning coffee sat watching the sun rise above the Alps.
And we can’t leave out the cows and the hypnotic sound of the bells. Switzerland is one of the most precious gems of them all.
It’s Sunday and it’s time for a bit of Switzerland.
Just something about this wonderful place that is so uplifting for the soul.
Looking at the photos something occurred to me. How the varied architecture and buildings blends in perfectly with the stunning landscape. How many times these days do you see a potentially wonderful view ruined by an ugly inappropriate building. Not here in Switzerland.