Published: June 6th 2012June 6th 2012
Deep into the land of fondue, chocolate and absolutely stunning scenery.....
We wake up to rain. Go down and do breakfast at Lausanne (in the hotel) and head off towards Interlaken (via Berne - the capital of Switzerland). A quick chat to Stephanie via Viber (it is back and very pleased to have it again - even if it drops out every so often).
On the road and the rain has eased. Stella takes us up the hill from where we were staying on ordinary roads (read 80kmh here) but as it turned out, not too bad. Scenery was to kill for. Eventually back onto the motorway and 120kmh and still the scenery to kill for.....
More roadworks and slow speeds but no hassle here - able to check out the sights again. Deviate into Berne and upset Stella but mange to re-route and she is happy to tell us where to go....
Berne is a small city as far as capital cities and their spread goes, but a really nice place to drive into. We found a park really quickly and went to the information centre which was also part of Bear Park (Berne is famous for its brown bears). They have several enclosures which house bears and we watched them for a while. Did azombie show of the town and then as it was raining decided to go back to the car to get our jackets. As we got to the car there was a dude leaning up against it. I pressed the open button and then we both noticed that the passenger door was slightly open. Not too sure if that was because we had hit the button or if the door wasn't shut properly and he had noticed that and was doing the leand and open bit. Whatever it put the windupmus a bit and we decided to move on. As he also did very quickly so maybe our luck was in and our timing was very good - and lucky. Whatever, we did have the backpack with the iPad and camera so no real valuables in the car anyway.... A bit more vigilant about ensuring the caris locked properly now.........
Anyway, drive up town and find another park and go for a walk. Really old town with lots of modern shops, buses (withntram wires) and trams everywhere (as I can attest to nearly getting run over by a bloody quiet electric bus).
Back to the car and up to a rose garden on top of the town with great views back down to the old part of the city. Have something to eat and then get a weather forecast from the waiter and decide that the weather sounds good enough for Jungfraujoch tomorrow (called the top of Europe at 3500 metres).
Get wifi at the rose garden restaurant so find B&B for tonight just out of interlaken. Drive to interlaken and stop in town to have a look around the station area for tomorrow. Find out information on times, cost, etc. and have a look around the town. Real tourist town - bit like Queenstown in NZ...
Drive to Brienze where our B&B is situated - Stella has GPS latitude and longitude and we get directed to the spot - alas, we find a car park for our B&B but can't find the actual house. Walk, drive, and up and down the hill asking a lady out walking but no place found.
Oh dear, where to now. Into the town and we ask 2 men - no luck so into the chemist. This time we luck out big time. Map with drawings and even a place suggested for our tea. Back we go to the place we parked and up to the house the chemist suggested. Knock knock and yes, right place, hadn't checked their fax so weren't expecting us. Luckily the room was ours and made up. Nice people who apologized for not welcoming us better and then showed us our room.
What a view. Over the lake and onto the mountains. Bloody hell, and we are paying much less than last night for a view and bigger room. They also recommended the same restaurant which happened to be above where we are staying (short walk up the hill). Unpack and off we go.
Into the restaurant (a bit under dressed but bugger it) and sit at a window seat admiring (ogling) the scenery we were given. Lake below us, mountains all around and lots of other bits to cast our eyes over.
Found out that this part of Switzerland is more German than French somwe are now really stuffed for any chance of conversation. Luckily the head waitress spent 3 months in Brisbane 10 years ago learning English.
Menu looked really interesting and turned out to be even better (once bits were translated for us). This was the best meal we have had in all of Europe so far...... Service was fantastic (we had an Austrian who was having his first night at this restaurant who was very good and spoke reasonable English - said he wanted to spend time in either Scotland or Australia to improve his English next year).
Food was to die for (even if it was 4 courses). And over all of this were the views. We had an older couple behind us and Chris suggested the guy looked a bit like Juan Antonio Samarich. She was right. Eventually something happened and the waitress mentioned to them taht we were from Oz. Next thing we are in animated conversation with him (turns out he spent 45 years in the US of A). Really nice couple - she didn't speak English much but when they left she offered us a nice holiday in broken English which was very brave for her I think.
A short WLAN down the hill after dinner and off to a very satisfied day of our Switzerland experience.