A Week in the Swiss Alps

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Laura’s parents came to join us for a few weeks and wanted to spend one of them in Switzerland, which worked out great because we were looking for an excuse to go! We chose Interlaken as our homebase to explore the surrounding region.

Instead of museums or monuments, the main attractions in Interlaken are the turquoise lakes, beautiful mountains, and small chalet-filled villages. We got a three day pass for the area’s trains, cog railways, and cable cars, which made it easy to get up into the mountains for the best views.

Two of many trains we took throughout the region.
The view from Schynige Platte
The view from Männlichen
Jungfraujoch is the highest railway station in Europe.

Of course the best views of the lake are from the water, so we jumped on board a paddlewheel ferry to cruise around lake Brienz. And yes - the water really is that color. The coloring is due to “glacial flour” or silt particles that make the water milky colored. You can read more about it here.

On a break from the countryside, we decided to take a day trip to the nearby capital of Bern. After a few pleasant hours wandering the old town and waiting for the clock tower’s dance, we found the real attraction: bears! The city has several large brown bears inside a huge bear pit along the river, which dates back to the 1500s. The bear is a prominent symbol on flags throughout the city and region.

Over the Aare River
Bern's Federal Palace
Bern has many intricately designed fountains.
The Zytglogge is Bern's famous clock tower.

Our last day in Interlaken we went paragliding. This was easily one of the coolest things we have ever done! Our pilots gave us a chance to steer while we were up there, and we each did some fun tricks and spins on the way down before landing. It was a bit pricey but we can’t recommend it enough. We’ll have to try hang gliding next!

Vesper taking off!
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