Atms

The easiest and best way to get cash away from home is from an ATM (automated teller machine), sometimes referred to as a cash machine, or a cashpoint. The Cirrus (& 800 424-7787 www.master card.com) and PLUS (& 800 843-7587 www.visa.com) networks span the globe. Go to your bank card's website to find ATM locations at your destination. Be sure you know your Personal Identification Number (PIN) and your daily withdrawal limit before you depart. Note Many banks impose a fee every time you...

The Glacier Express

The most famous of Switzerland's railway lines, the Glacier Express -k-k-k connects the highest peaks and glaciers of the southeastern Alps with those of the southwestern Alps. When the train link opened in 1928, the danger of winter blizzards and snowdrifts required that many of the most isolated mountain bridges be dismantled every October and then reassembled the following May. As a result, in the winter trains were rerouted on a lengthy detour through Zurich and northern Switzerland. In...

On The Right Bank Very Expensive

Haus Zum Ruden f S SWISS FRENCH The Gothic room in this historic guild house dating from 1295 contains one of the best restaurants in the city. It's especially popular with foreign visitors, even though they often get a somewhat stuffy greeting from the staff. The spacious yet intimate dining room has a hardwood ceiling and stone walls decorated with medieval halberds and stag horns. The chef specializes in cuisine du march (market-fresh cuisine). Foie gras saut ed with a salad makes a stunning...

Shopping

True to its role as the nerve center of the entire Oberland region, Interlaken stocks an ample supply of souvenirs and sports equipment. You'll find all the handicrafts and art objects you could possibly need beside the resort's main street, H heweg, and around the Interlaken West railway station. One of the best shops, which has been a fixture for tourists since the turn of the 20th century, is Heimatwerk Interlaken, H heweg 115 (& 033 822-16-53). It stocks only goods manufactured in...

Essentials

GETTING THERE Montreux not only lies on the famous Orient Express line linking Paris to Milan, but it's also connected to the link between Geneva and the Simplon Tunnel. Dozens of trains stop at Montreux every day headed in both directions. The most famous is the Train Panoramique, a big-windowed train with a transparent roof that links Montreux to Interlaken. Passengers who take this conveyance often continue, after a change of train, on to Lucerne in a conventional railway car. For bookings,...

Exploring The Area

The Engadine provides a wealth of hiking tours that combine rides on cable cars or gondolas with sometimes-strenuous hikes across rocky or, in some cases, glacial terrain. The most spectacular of these is the Diavolezza tour *-, which reaches a maximum height of 2,723m (8,931 ft.), and which includes views of and if you opt for it, hikes over as many as two separate glaciers. To access it, travel by road 7km (4V2 miles) south of Pontresina, following the signs to the Bernina Pass until you...

Escorted General Interest Tours

Escorted tours are structured group tours, with a group leader. The price usually includes everything airfare, hotels, meals, tours, admission costs, and local transportation. There are many escorted-tour companies to choose from, each offering transportation to and within Switzerland, prearranged hotel space, and such extras as bilingual tour guides and lectures. U.S. TOUR OPERATORS There are many different tour operators eager for a share of your business, but one of the most unusual is...

Where To Stay

Lucerne is one of the most visited cities of Switzerland, with a wide range of hotels. But they're mostly expensive and moderate there's a shortage of good budget hotels. Reservations are very important in the summer, when hordes of Europeans and North Americans pour into this town. Grand Hotel National This is a monumental landmark and the former home base of Cesar Ritz. Although tourist officials rank it behind the Schweizerhof, we appreciate its lack of stiffness. Built in the style of the...

On The Right Bank Expensive

Hotel Ambassador One of our favorite hotels in Zurich is a small-scale gem with a lot of charm and pizzazz. It was originally built late in the 19th century as the Falkenschloss, a then-private villa whose distinguished Beaux-Arts facade complements the Opera House immediately across the street, near the important tramway junction at Bellevue Platz. In 1940, it began accepting long-term residents, and in the 1950s, it became an upscale hotel, a role it has fulfilled ever since. After the turn...

Kirchner The Tormented Genius

Ernst Ludwig Kirchner was born in Aschaffenburg, Germany, in 1880. He studied architecture in Dresden and in 1905 was a cofounder of an expressionist group, Die Br cke, which was disbanded in 1913. The artist moved to Berlin in 1911, and it was there that his body of work reached its zenith. His highly personal paintings were noted for their sharp, vivid colors, their eroticism, and their psychological tension. Physically and mentally scarred by his confrontation with Berlin and his experiences...

Special Events

The Lucerne Festival of Music is held from the second week of August to the second week of September. For more information, contact the Festival of Music, which also sponsors the Festival Easter Lucerne, another popular event (& 041 226-44-00 http e.lucernefestival.ch). There's also the Lucerne Piano Festival, which focuses more on classical piano music, conducted every year during a week-long period in November. 354 CHAPTER 12 . LUCERNE & CENTRAL SWITZERLAND LUCERNE Worst Times Rush...

Montreux fifi

3km (2 miles) E of Vevey 24km (15 miles) E of Lausanne 100km (62 miles) E of Geneva The chief resort of the Swiss Riviera, Montreux rises in the shape of an amphitheater from the shores of Lac L man. An Edwardian town with a distinct French accent, it has long been a refuge for expatriates, including the novelist Vladimir Nabokov. Known for its balmy climate, it sports a profusion of Mediterranean vegetation, which grows lushly in the town's many lakeside parks. The mountains at the town's back...

Weggis ft ft

The lakeside resort of Weggis is on the sunny side of Mount Rigi, one of three holiday centers (Vitznau and Gersau are the others) that offer the kind of mild climate found in favored parts of Italy. Weggis and the other resorts are about an hour's walk or a 5-minute drive apart. Well-tended garden promenades stretch for several miles along the lakeshore. Mark Twain stayed here in 1897. Of the three resorts, Weggis is preferred by most. It's usually the first port of call for steamers from...

Impressions

Once people have been to Basel, they keep coming back. The only difficulty we have is in getting them to come for the first time. A tapestry resembling a Gobelin tapestry hangs in the wood-paneled lobby the bar area is accented with pin lights and brass detail. Some of the traditional guest rooms have their original ornamentation on the ceilings. Even the stables and old servants' quarters have been converted into comfortable rooms. Most units are spacious, and all are up-to-date with soft...

Geneva After Dark

Geneva has a more diverse and varied nightlife than any other city in Switzerland. At least some of the activities are centered around place du Bourg-de-Four, a stagecoach stop during the 19th century, and today one of the spiritual centerpieces of Geneva's Old Town. In summer, outdoor cafes, each with an almost obligatory collection of flowering shrubs and plants, seem to thrive both in the Old Town and along the banks of the river and lake. For a listing of nightlife and cultural activities,...

The Grisons the Engadine Ticino

Summer visitors to the mountain beauty of the Engadine (you've left the Grisons at this point). After lunch in St. Moritz, you can visit the Engadine Museum (p. 419) to view artifacts of the history of the region. Part of the fun of a summer visit is selecting from an array of summer sports (p. 421) that include windsurfing on the lakes, golfing, tennis, hiking, and even fishing. Plan an activity that fits your interest or just spend the day walking around the streets of this posh resort...

Where To Dine

Lucerne has some of the finest restaurants in Switzerland, in a wide range of prices, so don't confine yourself to your hotel at mealtime. China Restaurant Li-Tai-Pe tf BEIJING CHINESE This long-standing Chinese restaurant was founded in 1965 by grande dame Margaret Chi Tsun, whose late husband was once an aide to General Chiang Kai-shek. After Chi Tsun's death in 2002, the restaurant is now run by her daughter, Greta Chi. Although fickle fame has passed on, the restaurant is still here and...

Dramatic Ascent to Les Diablerets

For a high-alpine view of Switzerland's highest heights, consider a day trip from Lausanne to the high-alpine village of Les Diablerets, which is rather confusingly designated as the geographical and spiritual centerpiece of a high-altitude and rocky Les Diablerets region + *. To reach Les Diablerets, visitors take a conventional train from Lausanne to the town of Aigle a 30-minute, relatively high-speed ride, priced at 30F ( 25 13) per person round-trip. In Aigle they transfer onto a...

Spectacular Waterfall

The Rheinfall (or Rhine Falls) is the most celebrated waterfall in central Europe. It's also the most powerful 700 cubic meters of water per second rush over a width of 137m (449 ft.). The water falls 21m (69 ft.), a sight that inspired Goethe to liken it to the source of the ocean. This natural wonder is most spectacular in early summer when it's fed by mountain snows. From the bus station at Schaffhausen, take bus no. 1. There are frequent departures for the 10-minute ride. A train runs every...

Exploring The Area In Samedan

The village (1,548m 5,077 ft.) has its own ski lift and ice-skating rink, plus a ski school. In the summer it's ideal for mountain walks and for climbing. The tourist office will provide maps. Visitors can fish or play tennis and golf. When there's snow, it's possible to take a horse-drawn sleigh to St. Moritz in less than an hour, and all mountain transportation can be reached in a short time. Celerina has an old Romanesque church, St. John's (San Gian), with a painted ceiling dating from...

Schaan

Located on the Arlberg railway line, at the foot of the Drei Schwestern, 3km (2 miles) west of Vaduz, Schaan is the country's main communications center. The Carolingian land registry (ca. A.D. 831) lists Liechtenstein's second-largest parish under the name Scana. Archaeologists have discovered the remains of a Roman fort, two Roman legionnaires' helmets from the 1st century A.D., and an Alemannic decorative shield from the 6th or 7th century. The 12th-century Romanesque church is worth a...

Exploring the Bernese Oberland

To compensate for the region's almost impossible geography, Swiss engineers have crisscrossed the Oberland with cogwheel railways (some of them still driven by steam), aerial cableways, and sinuous mountain roads. Though often a confusing experience, getting to a particular resort can be part of the fun. The region's busiest railroad junction, and the point where most travelers change trains for local railways, is Interlaken. You can buy a transportation pass for the Bernese Oberland from the...

The Great Outdoors

For details about the tours below, including seasonal changes, consult the tourist office (see above). GLACIER TOURS The town maintains a sheltered observation gallery, adjacent to the base of the Lower Grindelwald Glacier (Untere Gletscher), that offers a close look at the glacier's ravine. The half-mile gallery stretches past the deeply striated rocks, which include formations of colored marble worn smooth by the glacier's powers of erosion. The gallery is easy to reach on foot or by car....

Easy Excursions From Lucerne

Lake Lucerne is known for its scenery and the many old-world villages along its shores. Many poets have praised the area's beauty. You may be lucky enough to stay in a hotel room that commands a view of the lake. Lake steamers and mountain railways can get you to most points of interest around Lake Lucerne. Boat cruises are free if you have the Swiss Card, or a Eurail or InterRail pass. Mountain railways can whisk you to elevations of 3,000m (9,840 ft.) or more in a very short time. Our first...

Lucerne After Dark

Flashy lights and spinning wheels of fortune are found at the Grand Casino (also known as Casineum), Haldenstrasse 6 (& 041 418-56-56). You can try your luck at 140 slot machines. Poker, roulette, and blackjack are also available. On a more cultural note, if you speak German, you can enjoy performances at the Stadttheater, Theaterstrasse 2 (& 041 228-14-14). Directly on the lake on the rail station side of town, it's the home of Luzern's major theater group. Operas in their original...

Lausanne After Dark

Few other cities in Switzerland manage to remain as cosmopolitan but relentlessly conservative as Lausanne. Consequently, you'll find lots to do, often with a Gallic insouciance, after dark. You may begin your evening hanging out in any of the cafes and bars ringing the Espace Flon, a cluster of restaurants and shops at place Flon. Lots of hideaways, frequented by strollers of all ages, will be here to tempt you, but one of the most appealing is Le Grand Caf , all e Ernest-Ansermet 3 (& 021...

The Club Music Scene

Adagio In a city building frequently used for public meetings (the Kongresshaus), this nightclub sets strict standards of respectability for its relatively conservative clientele, generally attracting an over-35 crowd. Adagio is a dance club mainly ballroom stuff in a big hall decorated like a church, replete with baroque-style ceiling frescoes with a chorus of chubby cherubs gazing down from above. The staff wears medieval costumes, and fresh flowers and burning candles abound. The club is...

Lugano After Dark

Lugano reigns as the center of the Ticino's nightlife circuit, with options that attract local residents from quieter towns throughout the district. Two of the most obvious options involve visits to either of the two casinos described below. Casino Lugano This casino features 350 slots, 26 table games, two elegant restaurants, and five bars. Games of chance include American roulette, blackjack, French roulette, Caribbean stud poker, punto banco, poker, and wheel-of-fortune. Entrance is free but...

Especially For Kids

D hlh lzli Tierpark, Tierparkweg (& 031 357-15-15), is one of the most interesting zoos in Europe. It offers a complete range of European creatures, from the tiny harvest mouse to the mighty musk oxen. You can admire more than 2,000 animals, including exotic birds, reptiles, and fish in the vivarium. Admission is 8F ( 6.55 3.40) for adults, 4F ( 3.30 1.70) for children 6 to 16, free for children 5 and under. The zoo is open April through September daily from 8am to 6 30pm offseason daily 9am...

Skiing Other Outdoor

Some of the finest downhill skiing in the world is here, with slopes for beginners as well as for the most advanced skiers. A kindergarten will look after the very young while you hit the slopes. The most populous part of Klosters, centered around the railway station, is called Klosters-Platz (Klosters Square). A smaller, less populated neighborhood site of the resort's excellent ski school lies about a mile to the north and at a slightly lower altitude. Set near the departure point for the...

Shopping In Carouge

Shopping in Carouge is more whimsical and lighthearted than what you're likely to find in haute Gen ve, and often with garments or objects that aren't easily duplicated anywhere else. Here's a selection of some of the most intriguing all of them centered within a relatively small area of less than three square blocks. Anne-Claude Virchaux < fi f She's a one-woman show, a locally born artiste who designs and weaves her own textiles before cutting them into the kind of artfully bohemian garment...

City Layout

Zurich lies situated on both shores of the Limmat River, which flows from the northern end of Lake Zurich. The Sihl River, a tributary of the Limmat, also flows through the city, and quays line the riverbanks and the lake. The city spreads across a ravine in the eastern hills between the wooded slopes of the Z richberg and K ferberg hills into the Glatt River Valley. The hamlet that became Zurich began at the Lindenhof, which is where you, too, may begin your orientation to the city. This...

Easy Excursions From Interlaken

By making the mountains of the Bernese Oberland accessible by train and cable car, Swiss engineers paved the way for visitors to this popular region to explore some of the most scenic and enjoyable spots in the country. There are many organized excursions, as adventurous as they are varied, and Interlaken is the most sensible starting point. A train trip to Jungfraujoch, at 3,400m (11,152 ft.), is often considered a trip highlight by visitors. For more than a century, it's been the highest...

Frommers Favorite Geneva Experiences

Wine Tasting in the Countryside Winding your way through the rolling vineyards just outside Geneva makes for an enjoyable day's outing. Many of the best Swiss wines never leave the country, and grapes grow on slopes overlooking Lake Geneva and the Rh ne. Pick up a brochure called Discover Geneva and Its Vineyards from the tourist office and set out. Sailing Lake Geneva The crescent-shaped lake, called Lac L man locally, gives Geneva a resortlike ambience, stretching for 72km (45 miles). In the...

Fast Facts Bern

The following is a quick-reference guide to Bern. For more information, see Fast Facts Switzerland, in chapter 2. Babysitters Babysitting can be arranged through most hotels. Try to make arrangements as far in advance as possible. Bern Card This is one of those touristic grace notes which, while not essential, can certainly enrich a stopover in Bern and render it more economical. Sold at any branch of the Bern Tourist Office, it entitles its holder to free admission to the permanent exhibitions...

BY CAR

Driving is not recommended parking is difficult and the many one-way streets make navigation complicated. However, should you wish to rent a car and tour Lake Geneva see chapter 10 , you'll find many car-rental companies represented in the arrivals hall of the airport and in the center of the city. Major car-rental companies in Geneva include Avis, 44, rue de Lausanne amp 022 731-90-00, or at the airport 022 929-03-30 Budget, at the airport amp 022 717-86-75 Hertz, at the airport amp 022...

General Index

Gallen , 126 Abercrombie amp Kent International, 41-42 Above and Beyond Tours, 36 Access-Able Travel Source, 35 Accessible Journeys, 35 Accommodations, 53-55 Basel, 151-157 Bern, 177-182 best, 14-16 Geneva, 303-313 Interlaken, 203-205 Lausanne, 274-277 Lucerne, 360-366 St. Moritz, 422-426 Zurich, 78-86 Adagio Zurich , 118 Addison Geneva , 340 Aelplerchilbi, 25 Aer Lingus, 26 Air Canada, 26 Air Tickets Direct, 27 Air travel, 25-27, 52 Albrecht Schl pfer Zurich , 115 Allmend Fluntern Zurich ,...

Exploring The Region By

The Lower Engadine is reached from Davos over the Fluela Pass 2,345m 7,692 ft. and the Ofen Pass 2,115m 6,937 ft. . Four major passes lead into the Upper Engadine Maloja 1,786m 5,858 ft. , Julier 2,248m 7,373 ft. , Albula 2,275m 7,462 ft. , and Bernina 2,286m 7,498 ft. . The upper valley contains several lakes, including that of St. Moritz. If you have time to drive only one of these passes, and weather conditions are right, make it the Bernina Pass , a 2-hour, 55km 34-mile drive between St....

Chef Of Chadafo Grill In The Chesa Veglia

Although meals may be included in the cost of your hotel room, you may want to sample the selections at other hotels and restaurants. There are also dozens of fashionable konditoreien coffeehouses . Chadafo Grill, in the Chesa Veglia MS FRENCH This is one of the most upscale restaurants in a resort that's loaded with almost-comparable equivalents. Owned and operated by the also-recommended Badrutt's Palace Hotel, whose mock-fortified bulk rises a short walk away, it's housed within one of the...

Mont Saleve

The limestone ridge of Mont Sal ve House Mountain is 6.4km 4 miles south of Geneva, in France. Its peak is at 1,200m 3,936 ft. , but you'll need a passport to get near it. If you have a car, you can take a road that goes up the mountain, which is popular with rock climbers. Bus no. 8 will take you to Veyrier-Douane, on the French border, where there's a passport and Customs control. A 6-minute cable-car ride will take you to a height of 1,125m 3,690 ft. on Mont Sal ve. From there, you'll have a...