The Dishma Valley


The village of Davos (on 1560m) is famous for it’s yearly event of the WEF. That is when the heads of many countries flock together for their summit. Davos is then turned into a fortress.

The village itself isn’t exactly a beauty. But the area around Davos is famous for it’s many skiing tracks in winter and hiking trails for the other seasons.

There are several valleys branching off from Davos. One of the nicest and quite undiscovered is the Dischma valley. By public bus or with your own car you can make it to the bottom of the valley and then hike further up or even hike back down to Davos.

As you enjoy the view the only sound you hear is that of rushing water from the creek and occasionally the shout of bird of prey or the whistle of a marmot.

The Dishma Valley 2018-11-16T10:05:53+00:00



In late fall the trees dress up. The beautiful colours are a feast to the eyes.

During this season I love to travel into the hills of the Jura, especially in the canton of Neuchâtel. The mountains in that area are glowing with colours.

This canton has a lake and across rolling hills the beautiful river Doubs. France starts on the other side of the river. On of the nicest destinations is called Biaufond. A bridge leads across the river to France.

In Biaufond it’s great to stop and enjoy a drink in the only house there, which happens to be a restaurant, called Maison Biaufond.

The river Doubs originates in France near the border of Switzerland and later flows into the Rhône, which eventually flows into the Mediterranean near Marseilles in France.

Biaufond 2018-11-09T14:01:04+00:00



On the 2nd weekend in September I joined a group of friends for an outing to the Rigi also called „the Queen of Mountains“.
The Rigi is a group of five mountain peaks between the lakes of Zug and Lucerne. Situated so close to Lucerne the Rigi was right from the beginnings of tourism one of the favourite destinations. 1871 the first mountain train of Europe was built on its slopes.

Many hiking trails lead travellers to splendid vistas of the Alps, the lakes and the rolling midland hills. There were trails for each taste and energy level of our group.

Rigi Kulm is the top peak and also a sister moutain to E Mei Mountain in China. Up on the top we enjoyed refreshments. Then we took the famous rack railway down the steep decent to Viznau. An hour long boat trip on the sparkling Lake Lucerne led us back to the middle age City of Lucerne.

Rigi 2018-09-13T14:32:34+00:00

Indian Summer


For the past two week we have just enjoyed the most gorgeous autumn weather: blue sky, sun and a swirl of increasingly beautiful colours. The leaf trees in the forests are gradually changing and turning from green into many different shades of yellow and red. Such a long period of stable beautiful weather after the high summer months is called Indian Summer!

So many people are out whenever they can and just soak in the warmth and the light. The days have grown shorter and in the night it is already quite cool (8°C) but then during the day temperatures rise up to 20°C.

The picture here depicts the oldest part of the city of Berne with the famous bear park on the slope above the Aare river on the right hand. Since the foundation of the city the bear has been the symbol of the city. Bears have been kept in this corner of the city for many centuries.

Indian Summer 2017-10-16T10:29:14+00:00



The view here is from the area of St. Croix on the Jura, high above the lake of Neuchâtel. Down below is the city of Yverdon and the fertile midlands. In the background are the alps rising up to 4000m. Yverdon is part of the canton of Vaud.

The canton of Vaud is french speaking. It is the fourth largest canton of Switzerland and joined the Swiss Federation only in 1803. Its main city is Lausanne, sitting on lake Geneva. The famous Lavaux area is also part of this canton. On the other end of the lake Geneva is the city Geneva itself, which forms another, smaller canton.

Yverdon  owns a castle. The counts of Savoy were running the castle from the 13th onwards. In the 15th century the Bernese took over the canton. They also introduced the reformation and protestantism. From 1805 to 1825 the Swiss German Pestalozzi, a famous educator, used the castle of Yeverdon for his purposes of raising delinquent children.

Yverdon has remains dating back to the period of the Romans. Already then the hot sulfur springs were known and used. Yverdon-les-Bain (the “les-Bains” meaning the baths) still points to the long period of the city with the hots springs, even in use still today with beautiful modern facilities.

Yverdon-les-Bains 2017-07-09T11:58:39+00:00

The Island of St. Peter


Three beautiful lakes are at the foot of the Jura mountain chains: the lake of Neuchâtel, the lake of Biel and the Lake of Murten. All of these lakes are called according to it’s the biggest city. They are all interconnected through a system of water channels. The wider area of these lakes is culturally interesting since it often switches from Swiss German to French and vice versa. The climate is moderate and on the slopes of the Jura nice vine is produced.

The lake of Biel is split by a peninsula called the Island of St. Peter. Originally there used to be two smaller island. But because of frequent flooding the water level of the lake was lowered artificially by 1891 and so the peninsula came into existence. From the lovely small town of Erlach (in the picture) a leisurely walk of about 5km leads to the St. Peter’s island.

By 1127 the powerful order of Cluny set up a monastery. At the time of the reformation, in 1530 the island was passed on to the patricians of Berne who own it up to the present time. Today the monastery is a nice restaurant serving excellent fish.

Jean Jacques Rousseau, a famous french philosopher and writer from the 18th century lived on the island for a few weeks. He propagated the idea of „back to nature“ and „freedom of man“. His writings had a great influence on the French Revolution and all successive revolutions seeking to bring freedom to man.

The second picture shows the view from the island across the lake of the village of Ligerz.

The Island of St. Peter 2017-05-27T13:43:07+00:00

Oberhofen and it’s Castle


The village of Oberhofen dates back to at least 1133 when it was first mentioned in a historical document.

The village is situated on lake Thun and only about 5km away from the city of Thun or 20km away from Interlaken. Oberhofen has a small harbour where the regular boat coming from Thun oder Interlaken stops to take on passengers.

The castle of Oberhofen dates back to the 12th century. It changed hands quite a few times and on that occasion was often enlarged too.

The museum inside the castle shows the history of it’s previous inhabitants over the centuries. On the top is the ‚oriental smoking room‘ offering a spectacular view over the lake and the mountains. The beautiful English park surrounding the castle is accessed free of charge and is a great place to stop and take in the view. In summer this is our preferred site to venture out into the lake of Thun for a swim. Swimming right away from the shore and looking back to the castle and over to the mountains all around you is simply breathtaking!

Oberhofen and it’s Castle 2017-05-11T18:30:37+00:00

First Snow Bells


This year mid February temperatures are rising again. The last patches of snow are melting away. And today I discovered the first snow bells in our garden. Nature is again preparing for the amazing bursting forth of spring in all it’s colours and variety.

Higher up people are still enjoying winter sports. Skying and snow boarding are still very popular. But down in the lower areas people are happy for the sun to break through and to drive the fog away.

First Snow Bells 2017-02-22T19:52:39+00:00



When temperatures drop below 0 and stay often frost forms and turns nature into a beautiful canvas. This is not snow yet! It is just frozen humidity that causes this wonderful effect.

However the effect is often due to fog!

During the winter months along rivers and lakes fog settles sometimes for days or even weeks. Lucky are those who live higher up or away from waters. They see much more of the sun and often look down across a foggy sea.

This time winter is late. Temperatures have been untypically warm. Ski resorts haven’t been able to even produce artificial snow because of the warmth. So folks wanting to go skiing had to go higher up.

But now we are getting geared up for winter. The weather forecast finally predicts snow even for the lower areas!

Frost 2017-01-03T18:06:35+00:00



Switzerland has an abundance of springs, rivers and lakes. There are four main rivers that are all fed by countless smaller rivers mostly originating in the alps and hills of the country. In the end they all join the sea either in Germany, France or Italy, depending on which side of the alps they start.

Here in the picture is a small river, called the Sense (Canton of Fribourg). It is only about 35km long and at that point joins the Saane river. The Saane flows into the beautiful lake of Greyerz and past the pretty city of Fribourg until east of Berne it joins the Aare river.

The Aare is one of the main rivers of the country. It also leads more water than any other Swiss river and is fed by many other rivers and creeks such as those mentioned above. The Aare river reaches 288km until it joins the Rhein river (376km).

The Rhein is again fed from waters of the whole canton of Graubünden (southwestern part). Famous destinations are the cities of Basel, Schaffhausen (with the Rheinfall), lake of Constance and then finally the North Sea (in the very north of Germany).

The other big river system is the Rhone river, flowing through the Canton of Wallis, into lake Geneva, Lyon in France, Avignon, and finally into the Mediterranean sea near Arles (France).

The Ticino river is the name giver of the Canton of Ticino (Italian speaking). It flows through Italy and also ends in the Mediterranean sea in Italy.

Countless beautiful cities and villages with diverse language and cultures lie along those rivers spread across Switzerland, France, Germany and Italy.

Especially in Switzerland these rivers are still very natural and early on in their start rather wild yet very clean. People love to swim in them, boat down the rivers, bbq along them and just enjoy their special beauty.

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