Tuesday, July 17, 2018

Lakeside Lucerne

Lucerne is lucky enough to have it all: a beautiful lake ringed with mountains, a river crossed by medieval bridges, and a chocolate-box cute old town filled with historic decorated houses. We got to enjoy all of this, albeit the mountains only at a distance and only a tiny portion of the lake front - got to leave a reason to return to the area.

The Bakers' Guildhouse, now a restaurant - but you can still join the guild if you are a baker and buy a 1000 CHF share

The Jesuit church
Hotels on the river - the building on the hill on the left is our hotel

The Old Suidtersche pharmacy, the oldest pharmacy in Lucerne. It still operates as a modern pharmacy, but you can peep in at this wonderful window display reminiscent of ye olde days. I don't know why, but I read online that you can only see this display at night, so I'm very glad we stumbled upon it at the right time!

We tore ourselves away from the beautiful scenery outside to spend a morning at the Rosengart Collection, which has a large amount of works by Picasso and Klee, amongst other modern artists.

A minimalist Kandinsky sketch

Although we were there during the week, it must have been school holidays or some sort of special occasion, as the area around the lake closest to the city was taken up by a fair and packed with families. We walked a little further around the lake to find some peace and quiet and pretty views of the city and mountains. One old guy was brave enough to take a dip, but despite the beautiful blue skies we were in mid-October by this time, so I'm sure it was chilly!



Wonderfully clear lake water

Sunday, July 15, 2018

Château Gütsch, Lucerne

Finally, we approach the very last leg of our epic honeymoon month. Ravenna was our last stop in Italy, and we headed home via Lucerne/Luzern, Switzerland. Of course, I've heard and seen good things about Switzerland over the years, but my only prior experience was a pretty gloomy and miserable day in Geneva which did not impress me much. Between that and the rumoured high prices (although oddly, I see in my blog from that day that I considered my Swiss shopping a "bargain" - maybe I was calculating the exchange rate wrong), I had never had a burning desire to return in the intervening years.

Well, enter Lucerne to prove me wrong. It's crazy beautiful. Let's start with the view from our hotel. We splashed out on the Château Gütsch, a Belle Epoque "castle" perched up on a hill overlooking the city. Any inconvenience of being up on a hill is balanced out by the funicular that stops right outside the hotel and takes you down to the city, which you can ride for free as a hotel guest.

A suitably honeymoonish bed

View from inside the funicular

Gütsch station
View from the hotel
Morning mist over the city

Sitting on the balcony at night, we could see the stars - something that doesn't really happen in Brussels, sadly
Night view of Lucerne from our hotel

Everything in Lucerne is so picturesque, I took a million photos as you can imagine. So I'll break my posts into mini-episodes to share them with you, stay tuned!