SWITZERLAND

“Switzerland is a small, steep country, much more up and down than sideways, and is all stuck over with large brown hotels built on the cuckoo style of architecture.” – Ernest Hemingway

So Swiss: A Day at the Streets of Zurich

At around 6 in the morning at Nyon train station, we took the inter-regional train that headed to the direction of Brig. After 15 minutes, we got off at Lausanne and took another that would send us to Zurich. Two hours more, we finally arrived.

There we stood at one of the busiest railway stations in Switzerland. Zurich Hauptbahnhof is a major railway hub not only for Switzerland but also for neighboring European countries like Germany, Italy, Austria and France. The train station is already located at the Alstadt or central Zurich’s old town. A few more steps from there we found ourselves in Zurich’s main downtown street, Bahnhofstrasse. Known as one of the most expensive avenues for shopping in the world, Bahnhofstrasse is also where we started exploring this fancy Swiss city.

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So Swiss: Crossing Creux du Van

The Creux du Van is a natural rocky cirque of approximately 1,400 metres of width and 150 metres of depth on the north side of Le Soliat. It is located in the Val de Travers district, in the Swiss canton of Neuchâtel. A very well known, amphitheatre-shaped natural attraction of the area, it is located at the heart of a nature reservation area of 15.5 km².

It’s over a year ago when I started to join in group camping and hiking hence enjoying the natural beauties of Switzerland. One of my earliest stints would be the visit to Creux du Van in Neuchâtel. We liked the excursion so much that a few weeks after our first we went up again, taking a different route nonetheless. In our second trip, I tagged a few more friends with me.

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So Swiss: Tulips in Morges

Source: morges-tourisme.ch

Every spring, Morges hosts the Tulip Festival at Parc de l’Indépendance on the shore of Lake Geneva. An eagerly awaited date in an exceptional site opposite the Alps.

The Tulip Festival (no admission charge) lasts six weeks and presents 150,000 tulips of 250 varieties in Parc de l’Indépendance in Morges. The diversity of these banks of flowers remind fans of the tulip’s huge range of shapes and colours.

The first varieties are in bloom in mid-April. They are a great attraction for families who thus inaugurate the first lakeside outgoing of the year. Small animations are regularly organised at the Parc de l’Indépendance. Drinks and snacks are available on site.

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So Swiss: Nice Nyon

Nyon is another one lucky town situated on Lake Geneva. It is between Geneva and Lausanne, amid the vineyards of La Côte. Nyon derived its name from one of the Roman towns, Noviodunum or Noiodunum. In the 13th Century the Counts of Savoy built a castle and nowadays this castle, towering over the old town, houses the Museum of History and Porcelain, containing valuable items from the former porcelain manufacturing industry in the town.

I was able to see beautiful arcades dating from the 13th century.

We frequently visit Nyon for the flea market that happens every last Sunday of the month. Here you’ll find interesting artifacts and secondhand items for sale, as well as open shops and restaurants (on a Sunday, because most stores in Switzerland are closed).

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So Swiss: Paléo Festival 2011

I hope my memory serves me right. I think I told myself before that my presence at the UP Fair and at the Eraserheads reunion concert, which both occurred two years ago (in separate dates and venues, of course), would be the last straw for me to be sort of "teen-spirited" and ignite the punk rock in me (despite the girly outfits I was wearing at those times). But boy oh boy, was I wrong! Because just three months ago, I attended one of Europe's most important musical events of the year.

It's the Paléo Festival, baby.