Our next stop on our journey to Rome was Interlaken, Switzerland. Upon entering Switzerland when driving there is a stop at the border where you are kindly informed that you need to purchase a sticker called a vignette in order to drive in the country. We were expecting that, but not that we would have to purchase one for the caravan as well, at 40 Euros each. However we could see that the money was put to good use as the roads are well maintained, the best on our trip and no litter in sight either. We learned to a appreciate those roads further into our journey in Italy! But for now we were welcomed very well at our campsite – Lazy Rancho. The owner had lived in Texas growing up and she and her husband ran the cleanest campsite you will ever see. She immediately gave us an introduction to the area and so many ideas of what to do we were well impressed. Weather dependent on many things but our first outing was to walk into Interlaken and see the town.
Interlaken is in a beautiful setting in the valley of the mountains and set between two lakes, Lake Thun and Lake Brienz in the Jungfrau Region of Switzerland.
We wandered through the town to the park where we were entertained by the early evening parasailers coming in for their landing in the park.
The next morning after the clouds had cleared slightly we drove up to the village of Lauterbrunnen where we parked our car and ventured on.
Lauterbrunnen means “many fountains” and below is just one of 72 waterfalls in the Lauterbrunnen Valley.
There are endless options for routes to take in the area, by bus, train, tram, and hiking. We decided to walk to the other end of Lauterbrunnen, then took the cable car up to the first stop. There we found a perfectly timed train to take us to the next stop at Murren. Here is the view as we first got off the train, still a little cloudy, but beautiful.
We then walked through to the other end of this charming little village.
This was the spot I had in mind for lunch from a picture I had seen. And it was just perfect. At the Hotel Alpenruh, sitting outside on the terrace with the peaks of the Eiger, the Mönch and Jungfrau in our view.
Our Canadian table neighbours let me take a picture of their fondue, because Switzerland! We ourselves had potatoes Rosti which was also delicious. Like fried potatoes with bacon and and egg on top, only the Swiss version. We had our own fondue back at the caravan which was equally enjoyable. I had picked up a small, barely used, cast iron fondue pot at a charity shop a while ago. I don’t know why I bought it, but I did and we have really enjoyed it nights in the caravan. I found a premade fondue cheese packet back at one of the many cheese booths in Lauterbrunnen and with the fresh baguettes at the campsite we were literally happy campers that night. Another night I recreated the potatoes rosti for a meal. I would say that was one of the parts of this trip that we really enjoyed was trying the local foods or recreating them back at the caravan. But I think that’s just part of any travel experience.
The Jungfrau Region is a World Heritage Site and often called the top of Europe. Jungfrau has the highest railway station. We had hopes of taking the train and cog railway to the top of Jungfrau but the weather did not make that possible. Because of a storm on the mountains any transport going higher than we were was closed and the other days it rained or was too cloudy. Still that is the chance you take when you travel and we were happy to have this one glorious day in the mountains.
This hotel is right by the cable car that goes down to Gimmewald. But there is also a nice mountain path that goes there too and that is the route we chose. Below right, the cows have a good view of the Lauterbrunnen Valley.
On the way wandering down the mountain.
You can see the cable car against the mountains.
This family was raking the hillside as it is too steep for a tractor.
The Honesty shop in Gimmewald where you pay on the honour system.
Waiting for the approaching cable car at Gimmelwald.
Down to the valley below where you can take a bus or walk the path back to Lauterbrunnen.
We took the path and almost back to the starting point for a great day in the Swiss Mountains. Whatever journey you take you can’t go wrong, everywhere is beautiful.