Blog posts about Switzerland

Switzerland, a quadrilingual country in the middle of Europe, has been my home since 2001.

Big old hill

One of the most challenging hikes I've done: up the steep and winding path through the forest from Beatenberg to the summit of the Niederhorn.

Big old hill

Oberberghorn

I've been looking at the tooth-like promontory in the distance quite regularly, ever since we moved to Faulensee. It's a very distinct peak on the eastern side of the Schynige Platte and one which begs to be explored.

Oberberghorn

The Swiss Pyramid

The triangular Niesen towers over the Lower Simmen Valley and the towns of Spiez and Faulensee, on the shores of Lake Thun in Switzerland. The glowing clouds behind the mountains in the distance aren’t illuminated by towns, but by lightning storms above (respectively) Lenk and Gruyères.

The Swiss Pyramid

Aare You Safe?

Swimming in the river Aare is a regular summer pastime of the Bernese in Switzerland. But there are occasionally mishaps. The campaign “Aare You Safe?” is intended to remind the public of the dangers of swimming in the river: not with a wagging finger but with a “cheeky wink”. Keep an eye on yourself and on others The…

Aare You Safe?

Jemima’s Journey Through Switzerland

British Pathé was a leading news service in the earlier part of the twentieth century, when people would visit a picture house (or cinema) to see the latest news reels, instead of seeing them in the comfort of their own homes. British Pathé completed their YouTube channel this week and amongst around 85,000 films now online for free, there…

Jemima’s Journey Through Switzerland

At the heart of the Léman

Léman is the original (some would say “correct”) name for what most of the rest of the world knows as Lake Geneva. It’s one of the most varying beautiful and vibrant regions of Switzerland, with a seemingly endless range of castles, vineyards, lakes and mountains. The local tourism organizations certainly had a lot to work with, when they put this…

At the heart of the Léman

Winter street parades

If standing around in the street and drinking far too much whilst being bombarded with confetti, to the accompaniment of popular tunes being played by an inebriated brass band in eyeball-searing fancy dress doesn’t appeal, then there’s always an alternative to the traditional winter Fasnacht carnivals: the Fire Parade in Liestal. I wrote about Chienbäse (the Fire Parade) when I…

Winter street parades

Thunersee nature reserves

The Swiss aren’t generally as keen on nature reserves as the British. Despite the stupidly beautiful countryside, there are comparatively few places like RSPB reserves (over 200 in the U.K.) and the National Trust (who is the U.K.’s largest individual land owner). We’re lucky enough to live near two of the small Swiss reserves at Lake Thun: both easy to…

Thunersee nature reserves