Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Mount Rigi & Lucerne, Switzerland

On Sunday we took an all day tour that started with a bus ride through the Swiss countryside. It was dreary & rainy but still beautiful - I can only imagine how pretty it would be on a sunny day!

Adorable little Swiss town
Rape seed field...aka Canola oil
Giant rock left from the ice age

We arrived at the base of Mount Rigi and took a cable car halfway up the mountain.

Once we got to the top of the cable car ride we hopped off and took a cog railway to the top of the mountain.

Crazy optical illusion - these houses looked tilted!
Top of Mount Rigi when we got up there - it was soo foggy
Justin, my dad, and I walked up to the was steep and COLD..Elevation 5,896 Feet

Quick pic before we ran back down and left my dad in the dust...tooo cold!
It cleared up before we went back down the mountain
We were hiding inside from the wind :)
Snapped a few pictures after the fog cleared

After about an hour on top of the mountain we took the cog railway all the way to the bottom to catch a paddle steamer boat to take across Lake Lucerne to the town of Lucerne. More pretty views on the way down the mountain.

Check out the gorgeous weather - Hard to believe it was the same day as that rainy bus ride!

Let's go back and stay in this hotel!

Justin sat inside and watched the steam paddles almost the whole boat ride...boys!

We had a couple of hours of free time in Lucerne  - since it was Sunday almost everything was closed but we managed to find an adorable fondue restaurant and had cheese fondue for lunch. It was a great afternoon! We ended the tour with rain in the last 30 minutes but took cover in McDonalds - Justin and I split a McFlurry with Toblerone...even their McDonalds menu is better!

Our fondue restaurant
So good!
Pretty church & ominous sky
Pedestrian bridge
Lots of people just hanging out on a Sunday 

Pretty flowers
Such a pretty city!
We got back to Zurich Sunday evening and ended up going to bed early with no dinner since we were still full from the fondue. I had a horrible time getting to sleep - I guess I had the full effect of jet lag. It ended up taking me over 4 hours to fall asleep only to wake up early to catch our flight to Copenhagen. Luckily I wasn't tired the next day because we only had a day to explore Copenhagen...only the most expensive city in Europe!

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Our Journey to Zurich, Switzerland!

I can't believe that we have already been home over almost 3 weeks...the jetlag is gone (even though I didn't really have any) and summer is in full swing...too bad there's still that little thing called work we have to tend to! We planned this Baltic cruise back in March of 2012 so it's hard to believe that it has come and gone. We had a fantastic time and I'm going to split up each location into separate blog posts because I have entirely too many pictures...but I wouldn't have it any other way!

We started our journey from ATX on Friday morning and flew to Atlanta. We had a quick lunch in Atlanta and then boarded our flight to Zurich. It was about a 10 hour flight and after dinner and 2 glasses of wine (Justin had 2 beers) we took a unisom and ended up sleeping most of the flight - it was great!! I'm never able to sleep so this flight didn't seem any worse than the flight to NY! 

Waiting in Austin before our very long day!
Dad is passed out in Austin...
Beautiful sunset
View of Zurich & the Swiss Alps while landing
After we got our luggage we headed over to the train station. We had detailed instructions how to take the train into the city and get to our hotel. It was not as easy as we thought but luckily we ran into a nice man that spoke English and told us exactly what we needed to do. *Turns out they speak mostly German in this part of Switzerland. We went to Geneva when I was in middle school and they spoke mostly French so this was a surprise!* Taking the train with carry-on luggage and your checked bags was NOT an easy task. Once we made it to the main train station downtown we navigated to find the city bus we needed. Luckily the bus dropped us off directly across the street from our hotel. Our rooms weren't ready (since it was only 10am) so we decided to leave our luggage and explore the city.

I love all these European cities because they are so walkable.

Pretty park
Swiss National Museum 
Adorable little Swiss street - I didn't notice all the Swiss flags until I saw the pictures!
St. Peter's Church - the oldest church in Zurich...said to have largest clock face in continental Europe
Mom & Dad
Fancy sports car...which had a carseat in the passenger seat! NBD
Pretty view of the Swiss Alps!
Lake Zurich runs through the city
Grossmunster Church...built in the 12th Century
We stopped at a local grocery store to check out all the unique foods...and this is what we found!
Texas BBQ Sauce we even have these here??
When we got back to the hotel Justin, mom & dad were all ready to pass out and our rooms still weren't ready (2:30pm-ish). They told us we could wait in the internet room so as I'm on the computer I look over and find this!

Seriously?! I'm not even tired...something isn't right here! Our rooms were ready about 15 minutes later and since the ones we booked were full we were upgraded to suites! They were so nice...on the top floor, 2 rooms, and what a view!

Our living room
Bathroom with skylight
View from our room
We were right on the river
After our my 4 nap we headed out to dinner. Since we had walked all over town and were still tired from jet lag we decided to try the pizza place just down the street. Luckily they had one menu in English so we didn't have to guess or just order Pizza Margherita.

Yummy pizza place we had dinner
After dinner we went back to our rooms to relax and try to get some sleep since we had a full day on Sunday visiting Mount Rigi & Lucerne!