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An attempt to get out of the Rhône valley, Geneva

Home -> Europe -> Switzerland -> Travelogue Switzerland -> 02 & 03 October 2000

Monday 02 October, an attempt to get out of the Rhône valley, Geneva

View on the Rhône valley The Rhône valleyWe have a simple plan for today: a long trip, leaving the Rhône-valley at the Grimsel-pass and then maybe to Italy and back. And along the way we will take as many small roads and side valleys as we encounter.
The beginning is easy, through Sion (to the right) onto the mountainside north of Sion, towards Anzere. The roads are very good and we have a nice view on the south side of the valley.
Anzere SionSion lies at the bottom of the Rhône valley but the castle is situated on the northern slopes. We don't see many traffic or tourists. In the summer and when the winter sports season starts that can be quite different.
Sion castle The Rhône valleyIt is a beautiful landscape, especially when you, like we do, continue on this road until Montana and there turn in the direction of Sierre.
Near Sierre we take the minor road to Leuk and then to Leukerbad; the clouds seem to return and without the sun shining the landscape can look very frightening.
Waterfall in the Saas valley LötschentalWhen we are a long way past Brig, we are halted by a police car: a road accident has happened in the road tunnel before us and it will be closed off for the rest of the day. The Simplon-pass is closed as well (due to an accident a year before) and we are not able to reach Italy in any way.
So we decide to explore more side valleys, like Saastal, a valley which leads to Saas Fee. To the right one of the many waterfalls we see.
Val de Annivers Haute NendazThere are some chilling steep parts on this road and Elisabeth is glad to be back in the Rhône-valley, but then we go into the Lötschental, north of the Rhône-valley which also has some hair-raising ravines just beside the road. At Guppenstein we look at the railroad station where one can take the car train to Bern, over the Alps. We drive to the end of the valley, to Fafleralp at a height of 1700 metres.
The Lötschen-valley is one of the most beautiful valleys of the Rhône-valley in our opinion. But after that we drive through the Val d'Anniviers, a valley to the south (from Sierre) and that valley also has some splendid sceneries. On the map it looks like a short road, but it takes us two hours to drive to the end of the valley and back again.
A nice cup of coffeeAll in all, we have driven more than 400 kilometers through Switzerland and we conclude the day with a meal in Haute Nendaz, a very touristic village that is deserted now. When you look at the overwhelming and luxurious hotels you can imagine being on any, very touristic place, Mallorca, Salou or just name another touristic hotspot. Well, we don't like it and look out for a small and cosy hotel to have dinner.
A nice beerAt night the temperature drops very quickly and we have to put the heater on in our apartment. But soon it becomes very pleasant in our room, accompanied by a drink and a book.
It has been a very nice day: we have seen a lot of beautiful things and driven on exciting roads. We are really mountain-lovers, we can't see enough of them. It is the majestic view that attracts us so much. Very content we fall asleep.

Tuesday 03 October 2000, to Geneva

View from our balconyThis morning we have a gloomy view from our balcony and decide to visit Geneva instead of the Matterhorn; tomorrow will already be our last day, so we hope to have better weather then.
But even with this weather we have to make a picture of the valley from our balcony. The fast changing weather conditions give very spectaculair panoramic views.
Lake Geneva Castle at GenevaWe drive to the west, out of the Rhône-valley, and follow the south bank of Lake Geneva, so we have to pass the French and Swiss border four times. We don't like Geneva too much and after a few hours of walking we are ready to go back. Geneva is an important city, but not spectaculair and there is not much too see or visit. Well, that is the way we experience it.
There are some nice buildings and it is a vivid place, but we miss something, something in the atmosphere, in ints character. Well, one way or another, it doesn't please us. We are glad we have seen it, but also glad to leave again.
View from our balconyWe are back in our apartment quite early and enjoy the view from the balcony over the valley. Te sky is cloudy at first but becomes very bright and clear just before dusk. The temperature is so pleasant we can sit on the balcony for hours after dark.


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