Zermatt to Home

9th June, 1995
10th June, 1995
11th June, 1995
12th June, 1995
13th June, 1995
14th June, 1995

Friday, 9th June, 1995

Drop Cap t was pouring rain this morning after our lovely day yesterday and we got a little damp on the walk to the station. Someone had left a station luggage trolley at the hotel so we took it back. Very handy.

Gornergrat railway and Matterhorn postcard

Postcard of Gornergrat railway and Matterhorn, Switzerland

Drop Cap hree trains to get to Zermatt. Interlaken Ost to Spiez, Spiez to Brig, then cog railway to Zermatt. Even in the rain the trip from Brig to Zermatt was spectacular, falls, gorges, gushing rivers, dripping forests. We got to Zermatt about midday, left the luggage to be picked up, found the hotel - very small room but a good new bathroom. The proprietor told us he had quoted the price for dinner bed and breakfast so we decided we would take dinner rather than be bothered with change. Then we went to the bank to change some money and found it closed for lunch. They had a cash machine inside a locked door, so I swiped my card in the lock, it opened, I got my cash and went out again. Isn't it great to have power like that? Then we spent some of it on a trip up the Gornergrat.

Gornergrat photograph

Mountain tops, summit of the Gornergrat, Switzerland

Drop Cap his is on a tiny cog railway up to a hotel some 10,000 ft. up. Although we went through cloud on the way up, when we got there it was dazzlingly clear, snowfields, glaciers and snowy peaks, including the Matterhorn. It was gorgeous and then it actually began to snow. It was not cold at all, in the sun it was very hot. We were sweating up to the hotel, being snowed on! We had some lunch and came down again. Picked up the luggage and collapsed in the Alphubel.

Gornergrat photograph

Kulm Hotel, Gornergrat, Switzerland


Drop Cap e were offered the set 4 course meal for dinner; cabbage and potato soup, very tasty actually, omelette with mushrooms, fillet of salmon in white wine sauce and vegs, icecream and chocolate sauce. We passed on the salmon but the rest was quite good. We saw a black and white cat in the garden, catching a mouse! We went for a walk after dinner. Zermatt is very small but a charming resort, incredibly picturesquely sited among towering peaks. I loved it.

Saturday, 10th June, 1995

Matterhorn photograph

The Matterhorn, Zermatt, Switzerland

Drop Cap oday dawned clear and bright and straight after breakfast we walked down to see if the Matterhorn was visible, it was completely obscured last night. Happily it was clear and spectacular this morning and I am glad we took the time. Our landlord drove us and the bags to the station in his little electric cart (the only traffic apart from foot in Zermatt).

Drop Cap e found the Glacier Express had baggage racks so dumped them there for the day. The Glacier Express trip was absolutely lovely. It has been a marvellous day. The scenery has alternated between peaceful and pastoral to grim and gorge ridden. Rapid filled rivers (the Rhone starts here) crossed by spectacular viaducts. It was great! One of the highest parts was traversed while we had a three course meal with wine in the restaurant car. It was good - but Mac inadvertently left his tweed cap in there and didn't remember it until long after the restaurant car had been uncoupled.

Glacier Express photograph

View from the Glacier Express, Switzerland

Glacier Express photograph

View from the Glacier Express, Switzerland

St.Moritz photograph

View from our hotel balcony, St.Moritz, Switzerland

Drop Cap e reached St.Moritz about six p.m. and decided to book the luggage through to Lucerne tonight so packed toilet bags and night things in the hand luggage and caught a cab to the Languard hotel hoping they were expecting us. They were. We were greeted by name as we came in, our draft had arrived, no worries and she had put us in a more expensive room because they had only opened today for their summer season and were not full. The hotel is lovely! The room is just great, a corner overlooking the lake with snow topped mountains behind it and a balcony. Beautifully appointed in light coloured wood with a new modern bathroom. We felt really at home and wish we could stay longer.

St. Moritz photograph

View from our hotel balcony, St.Moritz, Switzerland

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Sunday, 11th June, 1995

Celerina photograph

Snow at Celerina, near St.Moritz, Switzerland

Drop Cap his morning we woke up to snow! The mountains opposite had a new coating and as we went to breakfast the rain turned to quite large snowflakes! St. Moritz is at 6000 ft. We headed off to the station and when the train reached Celerina and Samedan, somewhat higher up the mountains, the snow was thick on the ground, rails and pine trees. It looked like Christmas! We were here yesterday afternoon and it has completely changed overnight. It was quite marvellous.

Lucerne photograph

Kapellbrucke, Lucerne, Switzerland

Drop Cap t was a lovely run via Chur and Thalwill to Lucerne, unfortunately raining , but we found our hotel, five minutes from the station, the Continental + Park, four stars, very modern but not as nice as last night's though. We picked up the bags which seemed to arrive at much the same time as us and then went out to explore Old Lucerne.

Drop Cap e went across the Kappellbrucke, now restored after the fire two years ago , but it will never be the same, really, the paintings in the gables were nearly all unrestorable and have been replaced by photoreproductions.

Bridge photograph

Spreuerbrucke, Lucerne, Switzerland

Drop Cap hen we walked along the quays to the other covered bridge which has highly graphic paintings of a "Danse Macabre" which shows Death taking everyone, regardless of age and status; apparently it commemorates a plague during the Middle Ages. We walked down to the Lake and found out where the boats to Pilatus leave from tomorrow morning since we intend to do that trip, then came back to the hotel. Mac is still not feeling 100%. Hope he'll be OK for getting home. Not long now.

Lucerne photograph

Upriver from the Rathausquai, Lucerne, Switzerland


Drop Cap ad a very pleasant Italian style meal in the hotel restaurant which is Italian, I think the owners of the hotel are Italians. It was good, finishing with coffee and amaretto. The waiter and maitre d' reminded us both of Manuel and Basil Fawlty, service however was a little better than that.

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Monday 12th June, 1995

Jesuit Church photograph

Jesuit Church, Lucerne, Switzerland

Drop Cap ouring with rain this morning which rather spoils any thoughts we had of boat trips to Pilatus or walking tours of the old town. Consulting my Frommer I found the Swiss Transport Museum to which we could catch a lake boat and the Swiss Pass gave us a reduction as well. So we spent the day (or several hours of it anyway) at the huge collection of real and model trains, cars, aeroplanes, you name it. We didn't have the time or the energy to try to see everything but we saw the trains and the cars. There was an enormous model railway which only proved my theory that model railways generally are based on Switzerland. They don't look as though they could be true but that is what the country is like. We had lunch at the museum on an old side wheel paddle boat and caught another lake ferry boat back to Lucerne at about 4.

Drop Cap e had our flights confirmed by the hotel reception who say that KLM couldn't guarantee non-smoking, they were fully booked. They had better get their act together or I might throw a tantrum in the air. Never again will we use an airline that permits smoking! I have had enough passive smoking in Europe to last a lifetime! At least in Australia and America there is some idea of non-smokers' rights, but not here, not anywhere!


Drop Cap e went out to find a meal and ended up on the Rathausquai in the Restaurant of the Hotel des Alpes, a very folksy looking place right on the river overlooking the Kappellbrucke. We had fondue, swiss speciality, very nice and filling with a glass of white wine and I had a lovely coffee ice cream. We had OJ as well and it came to 57SF, not too bad by Swiss standards. They put more wine and spirit in the cheese than I do, but it wasn't bad at all.

Tuesday 13th June, 1995

Drop Cap t was still raining this morning but not as hard as yesterday so we pinched a trolley from the Railway Station and took the bags down to the train for Zurich. Arrived about midday and tried to find the hotel, eventually resorting to a taxi, the driver of which was so decrepit that Mac had to load the bags and then he took us to the wrong hotel! I thought we had spoken quite clearly but no, it seems not. However, the Arc Royal Comfort Inn, when we finally got there, seems nice, small but cosy and the people seem concerned to help us.

Zurichsee photograph

Mac on board, on the Zurichsee, Zurich, Switzerland

Drop Cap e went out to walk down Limmatquai beside the river in the Old Town and bought some sandwiches and cake for lunch which we ate on a bench. When we reached the last bridge we caught a boat and took a two and a half hour cruise on the Zurichsee. It started to pour on our return and we got quite soaked walking up the Bahnhofstrasse. But I bought a Lord Peter Wimsey murder mystery in English for the flight and a new camera case to replace the one I lost, although I couldn't find anything for Neil and Pat. Maybe at the airport or in Amsterdam.

Drop Cap e came back to the hotel and reorganised the luggage then had dinner in a pleasant Chinese restaurant close to the hotel. Home to bed for a horrendously early start tomorrow. We have organised an early call and a cab to the airport. Hope all goes well.

Wednesday, 14th June, 1995

Drop Cap ur last day. Everything was organised, eventually. KLM had split us up! I never did get the full strength of it but we made a fuss and Zurich faxed Amsterdam and they asked the man who was sitting in Mac's seat if he would mind moving and he didn't (mind I mean) Nice of him, but it shouldn't have been necessary. It spoiled our stopover in Amsterdam as I couldn't concentrate on anything else. It wasn't sorted until boarding time.

Drop Cap owever we were in the non-smoking section, thank God, and by dint of eating very little and reading my book while listening to a folk concert from Nova Scotia on the headphones, I felt quite reasonable all trip.

Aeroplane image

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