Europe Trip 2023: Switzerland

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Next country in our tour, Switzerland! From France, we travelled to the Swiss Alps. The views on the way were astonishing especially upon crossing the France-Switzerland border. Left and right, the landscapes were breathtaking! 

We arrived at our hotel late in the afternoon after travelling for about 6 hours. We stayed at this quaint hotel called the Alpenrose Hotel and Gardens in Wilderswil. Again, the view from our hotel room is amazing. I think in Switzerland, everywhere you look, the views are stunning.

We had a group dinner at the hotel courtesy of the tour after checking in. Fun fact: our tour company, Expat Explore, owns the Alpenrose Hotel and Gardens. 

We had a packed schedule the following day. We joined the group tour to Jungfraujoch (pronounced as yoong-fraw-yok), which is the highest point in Europe that's why it's also called "Top of Europe". It's winter all year long in this place. I was extremely excited about this because it will be my first time seeing and holding snow. I have lived in tropical countries my entire life so this is considered a milestone for me. Haha! Anyway, we started our journey to Jungfraujoch by riding Eiger Express cable car. Afterwards, we continued our ascent by boarding the Jungfrau Railway from Eigergletscher. And no, I do not know how to read and pronounce that. Haha! 

By the way, I am not able to share the costs of the train and cable car because all these were part of our tour. You can visit their website for more information.

Going back to my story -- while we were waiting for the train, we mesmerised by the sight of the mountain peak filled with white snow. It was breathtaking. 

During the ascent, you will really feel the difference in altitude. Since the ascent was not gradual, we may experience altitude sickness. We were reminded by our tour guide about this so some of our tour mates, especially, the older ones skipped this tour.

At the top, we went straight to the Sphinx Observation Deck where we saw the panoramic view of the mountains. We also saw the Great Aletsch Glacier which is the longest glacier in Switzerland. It was extremely cold when we were there. I think it was about 1°C to 2°C, even though we visited in early October. You really need to layer up when you visit here no matter the season. 


The Aletsch Glacier

We went to the Glacier Plateau afterwards to see the snow up close, and of course, to take a photo with the Swiss flag. There are a couple of activities you can do here, and you can even hike to Mönchsjochhütte. We did not do any activities and we just took photos and enjoyed the sight of snow. If I remember correctly, around this time where I started feeling the altitude sickness. I had a headache and I was feeling a bit woozy. Haha!

It was freezing here especially with the wind. My camera acted up due to the cold. The result? Our photo came out distorted and funny. Haha! By the way, wear sunscreen and eyeglasses to protect your screen and eyes as the UV index is quite high in high altitudes. 

The next area we went to was the Ice Palace. It is an ice tunnel where you can see ice sculptures. It was very cold in this area as it is always kept at -3°C. It was also slippery! Even the floor is made of ice. I was wearing sneakers while my husband was wearing boots, and both of our shoes didn't have any grip! 

Before leaving, my husband bought a Tissot watch from here. He said it's a nice story for his new watch: he bought it at the top of Europe. Haha!

We boarded the Jungfrau Railway again on the way down to Kleine Scheidegg. Then at Klein Scheidegg we boarded another train that that took us to Lauterbrunnen. Once again, the views did not disappoint. 

At Lauterbrunnen, we had our lunch, and of course took lots of photos and bought some souvenirs. This place is quite famous for its waterfall but we did not go because I was not feeling well. Haha. I actually regret not seeing it; I should have forced myself to go!

In the afternoon, our coach fetched us from Lauterbrunnen to bring us to Interlaken Ost. My husband and I were planning to do paragliding but I was not really feeling well. This is regret #2. We missed seeing the views of the Swiss Alps from the sky. We will definitely do this next time!

Anyway, in Interlaken, there was really nothing much to do but to eat and shop. After my husband has bought his watch, I was kind of jealous so when we saw a watch store (which there are lots in Interlaken), I gave in and bought the same Tissot watch. Even our tour mates, who were just initially curious of what we were buying, also gave in and bought watches themselves. Haha!

Before going back to Wilderswil, we ate dinner with our group at an Italian restaurant (LOL I also don't know why we chose this place when Italy was our next stop). From Interlaken we took the train to Wilderswil, and back to our hotel.

The next day, as all other days, we had an early call time to our coach. We left the beautiful country of Switzerland full of amazing views to head to our next country, Italy! We will definitely go back to Switzerland and visit other cities!

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