Switzerland: home to the best chocolate, cheese, and beautiful Swiss Alps. It is a destination we will hold close to our memories. Just because it is a small country, that does not mean that you will see everything at once. Considering its mountainous terrain, it takes time to get from one place to another. If you happen to be visiting here, make sure to check out the places below!
If you love chocolate especially Toblerone, this mountain should not be new to you. It is one of the most visited places in Switzerland and is an adventure to get to. Make sure to park and leave your car at a town Tasch, and then take a quick 20 min train ride to the city of Zermatt. We parked right at the train station and it was very affordable. You will be able to see mountain from Zermatt, but if you want to get closer, make sure to jump on the lift to take you up higher. You cannot visit Switzerland without stopping here!
On your way to Tasch (if you are coming from the North), you may come across Nufenen Pass. It is the highest mountain pass in Switzerland and also super scenic. We were so high up, that we were essentially driving through the clouds at one point. Keep in mind, this is a paradise for motorcycle drivers, so be extra careful when driving through these windy roads. At one point it was so foggy we did not see anything in front of us, so be mindful of the weather potentially changing quite quickly.
Once you are done driving around Nufenen, now there is time to check out (free of charge) Goms Bridge which is one of many suspension bridges in Switzerland. It connects two hiking areas and spans over 280 meters in length. Great stop for a quick photo opp!
South of Switzerland, you will find it's Italian neighbor. No wonder that this city makes you feel like you are in Italy, and it is so different than the Swiss North. If you are in this area, make sure to take a train up to Monte Bre and enjoy the views from Vetta Monte Bre restaurant. Incredible staff and the views are worth the price of the drinks :) Note: Most of the people here speak Italian rather than German.
While in Lugano, make sure to take a stroll to the last city before the Italian border. There is no way of getting there but by foot or by a boat. We parked right above the city on Str. di Gandria and walked bellow to the city. Gandria really felt like a hidden gem since it was quiet and untouched. On other sites we read that is a 1.5 hour walk, but after parking, we were in Gandria within 30 minutes; maybe we found a shortcut, who knows!
Zurich is certainly a well known city to tourists, but Lucerne really captures the Swiss charm. From outdoor restaurants, to mountain views, it has it all. If you stop by here, make sure to swing by the Chapel Bridge, probably one of the most photographed places in this city. Bonus info: if you happen to stay around the area, make sure to stay at Seerausch Swiss Quality Hotel. The photo of me on the dock is essentially the view we had from our hotel room. Even if you don't stay here, they have a full bar and restaurant, so you can stop by for the views without spending the night here.
Not even an hour away from Lucerne, you will find this amazing Gorge which takes you to a icy blue water that runs through rock walls. It gets very crowded, so try to avoid weekends or peak hours. Note there are two entrances and plenty of free parking. Worth stopping by if you are in the area.
When I thought of how Switzerland looks like, this valley is exactly what I had pictured: waterfalls coming from the mountains, with green hills everywhere, and a small church or chapel in the distance. This valley has so much to do, and you can easily spend an entire day here. There are lots of hikes, and 72 waterfalls worth exploring! Highly recommend stopping by here and even staying overnight.
Susten Pass is a mountainous road that is certainly one amazing, scenic drive. Unfortunately, we were unable to drive through all of it (probably due to snow), but it is so worth driving it and enjoying the views on these windy roads. One hike that is on this pass that has amazing views and we highly recommend is located right by the Gorezmettlen parking lot. Also, make sure to stop by Sustenbrüggli for a beer with a view! You will NOT be disappointed.
Since we were only in Switzerland for 5 days there are some more places we would like to share with you that we believe are worth seeing based on our research, but we did not have a chance to get there:
-Gelmer Funlicular to Gelmersee Lake
-Ruinaulta (Swiss Grand Canyon)
-Trift Bridge in Gadmen
Switzerland was exactly what it thought it would be! We were quite surprised to find out that everyone there speaks Italian, German, French, and English. Overall communicating in English was not hard, but in smaller cities we struggled a bit. Also if you plan on driving, make sure to have coins for parking meters. A lot of the cities there accept coins or a parking app which did not work for us in couple cities. Additionally, in most of Europe, you have to pay for using a bathroom, make sure to have coins for that too :) it is usually 1 euro/1 swiss franc. If you are staying closer to the Italian border, many restaurants won't be open for dining between 3-6pm. We learned it the hard way haha. Also, we have been to many dog friendly places, but Switzerland definitely gets an A for this! We saw pups everywhere with their owners, and they were extremely welcomed everywhere we went. So, if you are looking for a dog friendly road trip country, you found it right here! Most of all, have fun and take your time exploring!
Adri, Kam, and yet again our special guest my mom <3