Tick Tock the Land of the Clocks

The land of the tick tock tick tock – watches and clocks……… AND the Alps and Snow

Oh my – here we have been in Interlaken and then Lucerne for two nights each.  And from each of these amazing places, we went up a different part of the Alps.  What an AMAZING experience.  We are so privileged to see all of this in our lifetime.  It is like NZ on steroids! It is hard to explain on paper / electronic how amazing this is.  The size, snow, Alps, people, smell, colours………. The feel of the place. Incredible.  We cannot beleive the number of wathc shops……. phew!! 

First: Interlaken.  Which means town between lakes. 

Main Street Interlaken

It is in the Alps, but lower down.  We had a lovely refurbished hotel that had great staff. 

View from hotel room, Interlaken

First day we did a lot of walking to get a feel of the town…….. and then dinner at the hotel. 

Typical building, Interlaken

 It was magic. 

River in middle of Interlaken

The local ravioli was ……… mmmmmmmm.  And then breakfast was lovely.  Breads like we have never eaten before, cold meats, cheeses, yoghurt, cereal, hot bacon, eggs etc.  And juice and bubbly wine! Then coffee, hot chocolate………  

We were meant to go up the mountains to Mt Jungfrau BUT low cloud and no sights meant we couldn’t go. So we meandered the town, went sightseeing up the lake to a few townships, and then came back.  The light, smell and colours were amazing.  Like being in Central Otago on the most perfect autumn day. Wonderful.  Mmmmmmmmmm. The place we had lunch happened to be having a festival that day so lots to see and hear. 

Lake and hills on day trip - Lake Thon

 

Lake Thon

Thun castle and autumn trees

 

Thun loch in city centre

Then the next day it was a bit clearer.  So on the train and up we went to Mt Jungfrau – the highest mountain in Europe accessible by train and 1,000 meters higher than Mt Cook.  Oh my goodness!!!!!!!!!!!!!! We had to change trains 4 times to get on steeper and steeper tracks.  Finally on to a cog train.  Oh my – the scenery was truly something. 

Glacier up Jungfrau

Icicles up mountain - and only autumn!

Leaving on train to go to Jungfrau

At the top it was amazing – we saw all we could including the ice palace – ice sculptures in an ice cave really. A young man slipped and broke his leg on the snow outside so we were extra careful on the ice / snow.  The photos show the beauty of the area.

one view from up top

Ice Eagles carvings in ice cave

views on way up mountain

Cog railway line - look closely......

the track includes the cogs in teh middle as the gradient is so steep!

Ha - Ice Ages Critter stuck in Ice Cave. Made us laugh!

 

Jo and Ice Bears!

PS: Note new purple handbag!

Jo and Mountain Cow in Jungfrau!

Cheeky Bird! Top of Mountain.......

These birds up top of the mountain were so cheeky – I am sure they are feed regularly by the people! This one was posing for photos by us tourists!

One of the trains we went up Jungfrau on

It was minus 8.4 degrees...........

View from top of Europe - Sigh............

 

Back down and off to our next port of call, Lucerne.  Only 2 hours drive point to point. Peter is now a natural at driving on teh right side – not tat either of us yet know teh road rules here.  Uh oh……….

Lucerne – well it was setting up for a big festival – but true to form we seem to miss all major events in towns…….. We went to an English bar where they had 3 sky channels playing three different football matches.  Peter loved it J It was so busy and buzzy……… and we met and sat with two lovely young ladies who were “busking” but were exceptionally good. Such a pretty city.  Ohhhhhhhh

Lake Lucerne

Lucerne church and Me!

Lucerne from our hotel side of Lake

Lucerne at night - original bridge still in use

It was also a “fair” set up time and here are a couple of photos of the rides……

Merry go round cars...

Merry go round tractor

 

The next day we went on the boat to catch the “Steepest cog train in the world” up to Mt Pilatus. Oh my goodness – what a day.  Honestly I think the pictures can tell the story.  It was magic.  We were breath taken – literally.

Lucerne and lake on way to train

The train goes at 45 degrees most of the way up and 47 some of the way.  Unfortunately (for him) there was an English man who was literally terrified of the trip but we loved it.  It was magic.

Mt Pilatus - on our way up in train - backwards facing view

Mt Pilatus loud and view

Mt Pilatus and track out back of train

Get this cafe - only Ice Coffees here 🙂

After exploring and looking around we had lunch up there.  What an amazing experience – the views the food……….. Then………………………….GULP! Time to come down – on the cable car – not like one we’ve ever seen! But I did well…….. and Peter was great talking me down.  Can you imagine yourself on this one………….

Oh before I do cable car down here is train we came up on........

Yessssssss..... this is how we got down from the mountain

Look for that tiny cable car…………

and a closer view of the cable car............. gulp! up to 20 people standing inside

You do understand you cannot see the mountain it is attached to……. 🙂

Switzerland was so beautiful.  Also had amazing linen – I couldn’t quite help myself especially with the Christmas pieces……….  Hard to explain the difference of the country and exactly why it affected us so much ………… maybe the change in seasons to smell the autumn, maybe the colours, the snow, maybe the reminder of Queenstown / Fiordland…………….. who knows but by golly, we have LOVED it!

Cow in building...........

Interlaken river Peter on left and autumn tree

Chocolate Hotel!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

us two up Jungfrau

Yes,,, it is minus 8 plus wind chill here.

Hope all is well with you all in NZ.

 Oh and by the way we have a plan to come home in December  – be careful …………… we have thousands of photos to bore you with 🙂

Lots of love, Jo and Peter

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One Response to “Tick Tock the Land of the Clocks”

  1. Toddy & Sheila Says:

    Hi Jo and Peter …

    What an amazing experience. That’s really something you’ll never forget isn’t it. You’ve seen so much and done so much during your tour. Good on you both. You only live once so give it heaps.

    We’ll miss your blogs Jo and hearing all about the succulent grub and exquisite places you take us to. It’s all bloody go here with Sheila taking off for Denmark next Wednesday and leaving lots of instructions for me to adhere to which I never seem to do. Ho, hum par for the course I suppose. Once she’s out of the way it’s all man style living, recreation and bollocks to the rest of the world.

    Lots of Love

    Toddy and Sheila xx

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