Monday, October 05, 2009

Lucerne, Switzerland

We just had a fabulous long weekend in Lucerne, Switzerland.  We originally planned this trip two years ago.  Exactly 2 years ago we went to Legoland.  We had a blast but Carter came down with a fever.  We had plans to continue on to Switzerland (including Lucerne) but ended up cancelling the rest of the trip.  Two years later, we finally were able to make it a reality.

We stayed right in the heart of the Old Town.  It's mainly a pedestrian only area with lots of restaurants and shops.   The famous Chapel Bridge was just a two minute walk.  The first night in town, we ate at a touristy fondue restaurant.  We thought Carter would love it.  Turns out he wasn't a huge fan of the cheese fondue (wasn't cheddar cheese or cream cheese...the only two that matter). But no surprise, he devoured the chocolate fondue and bananas.  Of course, Carter was bouncing off the walls the rest of the evening.

On Saturday morning there was a beautiful Farmer's Market along the river.  I could have spent all morning there wandering the stalls and seeing all the fresh food and flowers. 

Carter was not the least bit interested in the Farmer's Market but was rather OBSESSED with the swans.  There were easily 30 swans on the river right at the bridge and Carter could not get enough of them.  Especially exciting were the "kid" swans.  There were two light gray colored swans that were clearly still young-uns.

On Sunday, we visited Mount Pilatus.  We did the Golden Round Trip which involves taking a boat from Lucerne across Lake Lucerne to Alpnachstad, going up on the cogwheel railway, coming down on the aerial cableways and panorama gondolas, and taking a bus back to Lucerne (this is all depicted on the graphic below but it's really hard to read).  This was an all day excursion.

The views were absolutely amazing. Mt. Pilatus has it's highest peak at about 7000 feet. There were clouds below the peak. What amazed me is how quickly the clouds came in and then disappeared just as quickly. Since I am somewhat afraid of heights, there were several uncomfortable moments for me. The gondola ride was especially bad for me because it was also extremely crowded. There were probably 40 people crammed in (standing room only style) onto a gondola the size of a small bus. Not only do I have a fear of heights, I'm somewhat claustrophobic...especially when it comes to proximity of people. Fortunately, it was a super fast leg of the trip, lasting only about 5 minutes. Good thing, too, because I'm not sure I breathed during that whole leg of the trip.

Half way down the mountain, we stopped at the sommer-rodelbahn (summer toboggan run).  Think of luge with a sled on wheels and a metal, half-pipe run.  This particular one is 1.4 km long and was soooo much fun.  Carter had a blast and absolutely loved it. We could have spent all day doing it if it was his choice.  Of course we finished with some ice cream.

1 comment:

Ree said...

Oh, I'd love to go to Switzerland. What a beautiful country - and thank you for sharing your photos!

Carter is a cutie-pie.