Category Archives: Switzerland

3 Day Zurich Itinerary

September 30 Helsinki-Riga-Zurich

From the airport, we take the Swiss train directly to Zurich HB Main Station. The beer room in the station hall is prepared for the beer festival.

This is a TGV train, the French high-speed railway system.

After dinner, we go out and see the night in Zurich street. Tramcars shuttle in front of Zurich HB Main Station, and tourists dragged their luggage become the majority in front of Zurich HB Main Station.

Bahnhofstrasse is no noisy and no traffic in the twilight, we walk and chat along the way, in the roadside shop Windows are displayed a great variety of sneakers and other commodities attracting the passersby.

Johann Heinrich Pestalozzi was a pedagogue and educational reformer in Switzerland in the 19th century. In his early years, he received France influence of enlightenment thought, especially Rousseau’s thought, and benefited from some progressive professors teaching at the college. He determined to give up theological studies, at the age of 38, he began a programme to educate poor children, allowing the schoolchildren to learn by spinning and weaving in order to develop their self-reliance ability. He was convinced that everyone has an inherent developmental function and equal rights to education. His dedication to education, his persistent pursuit of educational innovation, he had many originality discourses in educational theory. He had not only made important contributions to the development of the world education, but also established a very respectable image for all educators.

The Limat River flows quietly, passing through Zurich from south to north, splitting Zurich into two areas and eventually slowly flows into Lake Zurich. Frauenkirche Church towers up towards the sky in the night.

October 1st Zurich

Located in the north-central part of the Swiss Confederation, Zurich is the largest city in the Swiss Confederation, the capital of the canton of Zurich, the political, economic, cultural and transportation center of the country, and the richest city in Europe. The city has been rated as one of the most livable cities in the world by United Nations Human Settlement Programme for many years. Zurich is the representative city of Swiss banking and one of the largest financial centres in the world. Because the headquarters of more than 120 banks around the world are concentrated here, more than half of them are foreign banks, so it is also known as the “European Billionaire City”.

Standing on the banks of the Limat River, looking at the scenery on both sides of the river under the blue sky and white clouds, we can see Zurich’s three most important cathedrals.

Church of St. Peter is one of the three main churches in the Old Town of Zurich, Switzerland. The other two are Grossmünster and Fraumünster. Church of St. Peter is also the oldest church in Switzerland. Its name can be found in historical documents dating from 857 AD. Before Swiss Reformation, St. Peter Church was the only parish church in Zurich, and the rest church were attached to the monastery.

The church bell tower, built in 1534, has the largest church clock dial in Europe. The clock dial has a diameter of 8.7 meters, the hour hand is 3 meters long, and the minute hand is 4 meters long. This church bell tower is used to monitor the fire disaster. It is said that once fire alarm occurs, someone will put a flag in the direction of the fire to tell people the exact location of fire.

Frauenkirche is a Reformed Church, one of the 34 parishes of the Swiss Reformed Church in Zurich. The Reformed Churches formed one branch of the Protestant churches that broke from the Roman Catholic Church of that day. They began in the sixteenth century in Switzerland under the leadership of Ulrich Zwingli and John Calvin. Calvin’s teachings became the dominant and leading force in these churches as they spread across Europe, particularly to France, the Netherlands, Scotland, and, by the eighteenth century, to North America, Africa, Hungary, Indonesia, and many other parts of the globe.

Frauenkirche with a green roof and a slender bell tower is a representative Gothic architecture. The main architectural features of the church include Romanesque choir seats and a high-value transept. In addition to the largest pipe organ in the canton of Zurich (5793 pipes), the most worth seeing place is the stained glass windows in the church: including the glass windows on the north side of the nave painted by Giacometti’s cousin Auguste and the rose window on the south side of the nave painted by Chagall(Marc Chagall, 1978).

The predecessor of Frauenkirche Church was a monastery established in 853 AD. At that time, the monastery’s power was large enough to appoint mayors and was in fact the city administrator. The power of the monastery gradually diminished in the 14th century. In front of the church, a statue of a man on horseback is Hans Waldmann (1435-1489) who served as the mayor of Zurich for many years. Standing in front of Frauenkirche Church, we can see the landmark building the twin towers of Grossmunster church on the other side of the river.

Grossmunster is a monastery church located on the banks of the Limmat River. It was built in 1100. Its architectural style is famous for its romanesque twin towers, and has therefore become a recognized landmark in Zurich. This church is across the Limmat River from Frauenkirche, both played a pivotal role in the Swiss Reformation in the 16th century. There is a Reformation Museum in the church. The Theological Seminary of the University of Zurich is also established here.

The stained glass and the portrait of Julius Caesar in the church are masterpieces of the Swiss modern art master Giacometti. On the south side of the cathedral, there is a glaring statue of Charlemagne.

Leaving Grossmunster , we walk along the river freely.

On the east bank of the Limmat River, an old man sits on a pillar and feeds the seagulls. A few white swans and a group of ducklings float quietly in the water and enjoy themselves. This scene is particularly harmonious.

The Polybahn, also known as the UBS Polybahn, is a funicular railway in the city of Zürich, Switzerland. The line links the Central square with the terrace by the main building of ETH Zürich.

The funicular takes the passengers to the University of Zurich. We follow the tram lines and enter a teaching building. The exterior color of this building is very modern, and The huge exhibition hall shows a aircraft engine.

Different trams

This is the most beautiful teaching building in the University of Zurich, and the appearance of the building highlights European classical charm.

When we arrive at the University of Zurich, classes are over. So it is after school. Groups of students gather in the square in front of the teaching building. They sit on the ground and enjoy lunch and sunshine. The atmosphere is really happy!

In the square in front of the teaching building, there is a area that offers two sets of fitness equipments, organizers encourages onlookers to join, and the students are eager to try.

In front of the teaching building, the modern minimalist style sculptures is in sharp contrast with the exquisite relievos and floral designs carved on the outer wall of the teaching building. Thus harmoniously blends the classical and modern features.

We walk into the teaching building and are really surprised by the scene in front of us. Here is like a huge palace. The Roman columns, statues, etc. are so exquisite. here is actually a school. Reading here is very happy!

The University of Zurich is a state university in Switzerland, Founded in 1833, it has 7 colleges, more than 140 research institutes, 12 museums, 4 hospitals, and public libraries such as the Zurich University Main Library and Zurich Central Library and so on, it is the largest comprehensive university in Switzerland. Today, the University of Zurich has three campuses, City Campus, Oerlikon and Irchel Campus, of which City Campus is the closest to the city center.
The University of Zurich enjoys a worldwide reputation in molecular biology, neuroscience, anthropology and other fields, and has produced 12 Nobel Prize winners such as Roentgen, Einstein, and Schrödinger and so on.

The colors are lively and modern facilities are all available in terrace classroom. The students enter the classroom one by one, the course has not yet started! In addition, we come out of the terrace classroom to go into a conference hall or lecture hall, take our time, and don’t think about it, feel into it.

The corridor is brilliantly lit up, with tables and chairs around the outer perimeter, it can become a learning and reading place at any time. The learning environment is also extremely quiet and comfortable.

The circular corridor supported by the tall Roman pillars is a place for students to rest and chat.

This door is very old and delicate, I really like the beautiful pattern on the skylights.

We are reluctantly walk out of the University of Zurich, we are deeply shocked by its beautiful architectural style and unique charming environment. The next goal, Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zurich is not far from the University of Zurich, so we can go there on foot.

Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich can also be translated as “Zurich Federal University of Technology” in Chinese, ETH for short. The Swiss Federal Institute of Technology was established in 1855 by the Swiss Federal Government for the needs of the country’s industrialization. It was the first federal university. The university started with a few disciplines such as industrial and civil construction, forest science, mechanical engineering and chemistry, and later humanities, society and politics were included. The school currently has 26,000 teachers and students from more than 100 countries distributed in 16 departments. The teaching and research fields cover architecture, engineering, mathematics, natural sciences, social sciences and management sciences. By 2006, 30 Nobel Prize winners including Einstein were born here. The school is also a member of International Alliance of Research Universities, the IDEA League and other international university cooperation organizations.

In the display cabinets at the door, the prototype for school buildings of all time tells its historical stories across the centuries.

There is nothing special on the outside of the teaching building, we walk in there, it give us unprecedented shock, we feel as if we walk into a palace in the Roman Empire in Italy. We are so excited.

The students are studying or discussing here, the whole hall is still quiet.

In a corner of the hall, there is an exhibit that looks like a bed. I don’t know its origin.

Many students sit on the windowsill and study on their own, they give us a novel feeling.

We visit this teaching building floor by floor as if we visit a museum, and each floor gives us a different but beautiful feeling!

Leaving the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich, we arrive in another funicular station by tram. We take the funicular and get off at the second stop, which is the final destination. This is a wealthy area on the Lindenhof, overlooking Zurich. Various high-end villas have been built on the mountain, and the environment is elegant and tranquil. Let us also take this opportunity to enjoy the beautiful mountains and lakes.

We come down from Lindenhof mountain, we should go to the most beautiful Lake Zurich, we take the tram directly to the lake area. The blue sky, white clouds, sunshine, sailing boats, seagulls, green trees, lawns, everything is so beautiful! Locals take exercise and enjoy the sunshine with their children and pets.

October 2 Zurich-Freudenstadt

At Zurich HB Main Station, I remember seeing a similar elevator in Stockholm, but I didn’t notice anything special about it at that time.

Today we are going to go back to Germany, our trip is coming to an end.

Top of Europe, get our own Jungfrau Passport

Today, we are going to climb Jungfrau.

Interlaken is a Swiss town about a two-hour drive from Mulhouse in French.

As soon as we enter Switzerland, a beautiful plateau mountain scenery opens out before us.

Interlaken takes its name from its geographical position between the lakes (in Latin inter lacus). The Aare flows through the town from one to the other lake, whilst the Lutschine flows from the southern mountains into Lake Brienz however not running through the municipality of Interlaken. The town located at the foot of Jungfrau is very beautiful.

The Hoheweg is Interlaken’s main street which runs between Interlaken West and Interlaken Ost Railway Stations. On this street you will find many souvenir shops. Have a look at Hoehe Matte Park, the 150-year old Victoria Jungfrau Grand Hotel, and don’t miss the beautiful view of the famous snow-covered Jungfrau from Hoehe Matte Park.

Today, the weather is wonderful, paragliders land on the Great Lawn of Hoehe Matte Park from time to time. I really wanna play this paraglider, unfortunately, time does not permit.

Casino Kursaal is even more for cultural activity purposes. It was built in 1859 and rebuilt in 1968. A variety of public activities, cultural entertainment activities such as elegant dance, annual music week, folk song and dance performances, local exhibitions, trade fairs, etc are held here.

We go by train from Interlaken to Lauterbrunen and start our journey.

The left red train is for Lucerne, we are waiting for a train on the right railway platform.

When I see the ice mountain, I may be a bit excited.

The total one-way traveling time from Interlaken Ost to Jungfraujoch-Top of Europe station is just over two hours.

The Jungfrau at 4,158 metres (13,642 ft) is one of the main summits of the Bernese Alps, together with the Eiger and Monch, the Jungfrau forms a massive wall overlooking the Bernese Oberland and the Swiss Plateau, one of the most distinctive sights of the Swiss Alps.

From Interlaken Ost (567 m / 1,860 ft), two routings are available to Jungfraujoch-Top of Europe station – either travel via Lauterbrunnen (796 m / 2,612 ft) or via Grindelwald (1,034 m / 3,094 ft). The time needed and the price of tickets are the same for both routes and it is possible to travel up via the one route and return via the other.

Railway journeys from Interlaken to the Jungfraujoch start on the Berner Oberland Bahn (BOB) trains from Interlaken Ost station. Enter the correct carriage as the train splits in Zweilutschinen with different wagons traveling to Lauterbrunnen (20 minutes) and Grindelwald (35 minutes).

Lauterbrunnen and Grindelwald are famous as the best spots to watch Jungfrau, the tourists can see Jungfrau in their hotel rooms.

At either Grindelwald or Lauterbrunnen (via Wengen), change to a WAB cogwheel train heading towards Kleine Scheidegg. The train from Grindelwald takes just over half an hour while the trains from Lauterbrunnen need around 45 minutes to reach Kleine Scheidegg.

From Kleine Scheidegg, the Jungfraubahn trains go through the mountain to Jungfraujoch-Top of Europe station. This last section of the route takes 50 minutes – up-bound trains stop twice at special viewing points inside the tunnel to allow passengers to get off for a few minutes of sightseeing.

On the way to Jungfrau, At Lauterbrunnen we transfer to another train.

Lauterbrunnen is a mountain town, the scenery of Lauterbrunnen is very beautiful. This is one of the best four towns to watch Jungfrau. The other three are Grindelwald, Wengen, and Mirren.

If you are independent travel, staying in these small towns is a good choice, especially in Grindelwald and Lauterbrunnen, changing trains is particularly convenient.

From Lauterbrunnen to Kleine Scheidegg, the cogwheel train send the tourists up the mountain.

Several workers are cleaning the fallen leaves near Kleine Scheidegg.

Several workers are providing the maintenance of the railway track and guarantee the security of railway traffic.

Kleine Scheidegg railway station is coming, we have to change here for a train to Jungfrau.

There is a coffee shop sell coffee drinks at the station, we can get some calories here.

While we are waiting for the train, at half-past two in the afternoon, mountain snow is shining in the sun.

From Kleine Scheidegg, the Jungfraubahn trains go through the mountain to Jungfraujoch-Top of Europe station.

Going out of Jungfrau railway station, we take a high-speed elevator to the Sphinx Observation Deck at an altitude of 3,571 meters.

The Observation Deck was built on a vast ice surface and was surrounded by handrails guardrail.

The Observation Deck offers 360 views of Jungfrau, Moench and Eiger within many kilometers, the panorama of snow mountain is very spectacular.

In good weather, I feel Jungfrau in front.

Two or thirty meters below the Observation Deck, there is an ice palace, which is an ice cave caved out of the million-year-old ice layer. Many ice sculptures are crystal clear.

The tour guide sends us a Jungfrau railway centennial passport in the break room of the Observation Deck, Jungfraujoch-Top of Europe station manager imprints the passport with a seal and gives us the passport as a keepsake.

Stamped by Jungfrau railway station, I keep mementos.

We get an up-close view of the beautiful snow and ice world.

The Aletsch Glacier has been listed as World Natural Heritages.

On the return trip, we see the snow mountain of sunrise.

Dorint hotel is a true mountain hotel, from which hotel guests can almost reach out and touch the 2,000m high Niederhorn, or the legendary Eiger North Face.

Lucerne is a must-see place in Switzerland

Yesterday, we slept overnight in Doring Hotel.

We stand on the balcony, overlooking Lake Thun in the morning, the scenery is very beautiful.

At noon today we will go to Lucerne by the Golden Pass panoramic train. We go shopping in the morning.

Interlaken is the central town in the Bernese Oberland, It is surrounded by the Alps, but it’s not actually in the mountains. The town is situated in between two beautiful lakes. Interlaken is one of foreign cities that have established sister city ties with Huangshan City in China. The city has horse-drawn buggies, gardens, shopping streets, upscale hotels, dining rooms and so on, each with its own characteristics.

There are many expensive Swiss watch stores, upscale fashion shops and featured souvenir shops in Hoheweg street interlaken.

In the souvenir shop, we can see different kinds of cowbells.

The brand-new Golden Pass panoramic train is the most famous scenic train in Switzerland. The train route between Lucerne (Luzern) and Interlaken is one of the loveliest scenic rail trips in Switzerland and shorter than some of the other branded scenic trains, a part of the path of the Golden Pass train route.

We are required to book tickets for the Golden Pass panoramic train in advance, but the travel agency help us make ticket reservations, we don’t worry about that.

The train stations are clean, scenic and masterfully efficient. They all offer basic amenities, vending machines, and occasionally a store at which to stock up on supplies.

This route is very beautiful, Lake Thun, Lake Brienz and Lake Lucerne attracts our eyes. The train is running between mountains and lakes, lakes and mountains add radiance and beauty to each other, I find myself in wonderland.

Lucerne, lying on the Reuss River, used to be the capital of Switzerland, now is the sixth-largest city in Switzerland. As beautiful scenery, Lucerne is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Switzerland.

The Lion of Lucerne was designed by Bertel Thorvaldsen, a famous Danish sculptor who lived between the 18th and 19th centuries. The purpose of the Lion of Lucerne was to commemorate the mercenary soldiers from central Switzerland who lost their lives while serving the French king Louis XVI during the French Revolution.

The highlight of the monument, however, is undoubtedly the statue of the lion itself. At first glance, the most noticeable feature of the lion is that it is dying. Upon closer inspection, one may notice the head of a spear sticking out from the side of the lion – the cause of its suffering and its eventual death. In addition, the lion is portrayed partially covering a shield bearing the fleur-de-lis. This is an obvious symbol of the French monarchy, as well as a representation of the cause that the Swiss Guards fought and gave up their lives for.

One of the most well-known descriptions of the Lion of Lucerne comes from Mark Twain’s 1880 travelogue,  A Tramp Abroad , in which the American author wrote that the memorial was “the most mournful and moving piece of stone in the world.”

Chapel Bridge is a wooden pedestrian bridge that spans Reuss River in the city Lucerene in Switzerland. It was built in 1333 and is one of the oldest wooden bridges in Europe.

One of the characteristics of Chapel Bridge is that it has painting hanged bellow its roof. They are triangular and depict events from the history and Legends of Lucerene, from painting that present life and death of Lucerne’s patron saint St. Leger to legends of city’s other patron saint St. Maurice. They were painted in 17th century by a local Catholic painter Hans Heinrich Wägmann.

On August 18th, 1993, shortly after midnight, about two thirds of the wooden Chapel Bridge were destroyed by fire. Only the pillars, the bridgeheads and the Water Tower could be saved. Within a year, Chapel Bridge was completly restored.

However, 85 of the 110 pictures under the roof, dating back to 1611, were destroyed by the 1993 fire, only 25 could be saved or restored. The others have been replaced by pictures from the second part of the bridge that had been safely stored since 1834.

Water Tower is older that the bridge by some 30 years and was used as a prison and also as archive. Although it is a part of bridge complex it is now not opened for public.

Hof Church, main cathedral for the city, as well as the St. Leodegar and St. Maurice religious center. A Benedictine monastery was founded here in the 8th century. In 1633, a fire destroyed the church; it was rebuilt in 1645. It is the most important Renaissance church in Switzerland. Especially noteworthy are the façade, Mary’s alter(with a relief panel dating from 1500), and the souls’ altar.

Schwanenplatz is a major shopping place for tourists visiting lucerne. there are numerous shops here, cafes, restaurants,etc. The shops of ‘bucherer’ and the ‘gubelin’ watchmakers are very famous for swiss watches and mostly high end watches. A rolex watch factory is also present in this area. Other shops around sell local swiss handicrafts, Some shops sell souvenirs such as swiss army knives-victorinox, chocolates, jewellery etc.

Coffee shops can be seen everywhere, on the streets of Lucerne, lakeside. If fatigue overtakes you, it is nice to sit down, relax, and have some coffee.

Swiss chocolate is famous aross the world, with good reason. The nation has a long history of excellence in the field, and many of today’s chocolatiers still use traditional recipes and make every sweet treat by hand. We visit here and do not ignore it. Hey, and ice cream too.

Lake Lucerne is a lake in central Switzerland and the fourth largest in the country. There are many high mountains by the lake, such as Pilatus Mountain, Rigi Mountain etc. Swan swims on the surface of Lake Lucerne. Beautiful lakes and mountains are the typical Swiss landscapes, beautiful.

Dozens of tourist boats are tied up alongside the lakeshore, they are symbols of wealth.

Lucerne, transportation convenient, easy and comfortable life, picturesque mountains and lakes, is a well-deserved livable city.

The Grand Hotel Europe in suburban Lucerne in which we live is near the lake.