Europe

Day Trip to Lucerne and Interlaken, Switzerland

On the first full day of our “holiday” (as the Brits say) in Switzerland, it was cold and rainy. We decided to save the skiing for the next day and take a little road trip in our rental car instead. We drove from Engelberg to Lucerne, a nearby city that we had heard was pretty.

It was a nice drive to Lucerne. I think my favorite part about Switzerland was seeing all the beautiful old Swiss chalets as we drove along. They just looked so cozy and snug tucked into the sides of the green, rolling hills, with the enormous, snowy mountains towering behind them. I felt like we were in the movie Heidi!!

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This picture wasn’t taken on the same day (notice the blue sky??), but it’s just to give you an idea of the views during our drives. See all the Swiss houses tucked into the hill? 🙂

When we got to Lucerne, we found a cafe where we planned on grabbing a cup of coffee and a quick breakfast. After spending about 10 minutes trying to read the German parking meter signs and find an ATM, we gave up and decided we’d just keep an eye on the car while we ran into the cafe. While we ate, we planned out which parts of the city we wanted to see. We found a parking garage near the old part of the city and headed there next.

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We parked the car and walked over the pedestrian bridge to the old part of the city. There were cute little shops and restaurants everywhere, but we quickly realized we could hardly afford anything there. The Swiss Franc is much stronger than the US dollar right now, so we’d have to pay about $35 for a hamburger. (…I am ashamed to admit that we did buy a hamburger later… but from the McDonald’s value menu…)

We walked around the city for a bit, exploring the area and stopping to look at the unique architecture and the old wooden bridges. We made a quick stop at the Lion Monument we had heard about from some friends. It was pretty impressive!

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Eventually, we figured we should get back on the road. We decided to drive through Interlaken on our way back to Engelberg! It was an easy and pretty hour-long drive. We drove through mountains along the way and stopped at one point to look out over a town called Lungern that was situated at one end of a glacial lake.

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Silly Swiss constructing spaghetti roads – aka a corkscrew tunnel followed by a double switchback to gain altitude in a small space

The name Interlaken, means “between lakes,” so we drove along Lake Brienze along the way to the town. Unfortunately, due to the rain and clouds, we couldn’t see what should’ve been a beautiful view!

We arrived in Interlaken and looked around as we drove through the town. It was still rainy and cold and we wanted to be back in Engelberg for dinner, so we didn’t actually stop anywhere. It was nice to drive through though! Exhausted after a late night, an early morning, and a day full of exploring Switzerland, I nodded off to sleep as Chris drove us back to our AirBnB. (Thanks for driving, Chris!!)

P.s. You can read all about our Ski Trip to Engelberg, Switzerland here!

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