Proscht from Zürich!

As we arrived in Switzerland it was hard to believe this was our final destination in Europe. We had been gone for well over a month and at this point it just felt like we were nomads, running from the world police. We got lucky not needing an Airbnb here. One of Megan’s friend’s parents let us stay in their wonderful apartment overlooking the picturesque Lake Zürich free of charge, making it feel even more like we were bandits hiding from the law. But I swear I didn’t touch anything! And it would’ve been terribly difficult to do any criminal activity now that we were in one of the cleanest and most expensive cities in the world.

Somehow we were lucky enough to stay at this place!

A glimpse of Lake Zurich from our spectacular historical apartment!

An even closer look at the picturesque Lake Zurich.

Zurich at night!

Somehow we were lucky enough to stay at this place!

A glimpse of Lake Zurich from our spectacular historical apartment!

An even closer look at the picturesque Lake Zurich.

Zurich at night!

Day 1

The apartment itself was amazing as it was in a beautiful historical building and it was a fantastic jump off point to reach most of the city by walking. We spent the afternoon exploring the northern part of the lake and the city’s Old Town area. We also spent some time laughing at the window price tags on Bahnhofstrasse, one of the most expensive shopping avenues in the world. But it wasn’t just here that prices were jacked up. Throughout the city, goods and services cost 2-4x more than what we experienced anywhere else. Even the beer at El Lokal was double the price! But this was a fun and quirky bar, set up with live music and a waterfront terrace so we kind of paid for the environment as well. What we weren’t prepared for was the cost of dinner. We were in Switzerland! So, what better than to partake in their cheese, and better yet, their melted cheese? We sought out the fondue restaurant Swiss Chuchi thinking that they’d have reasonable prices. Wrong. While the shared cheese fondue and bread alone were good, we didn’t even get drinks as our bill already topped the equivalent of $60!

One of the most expensive shopping streets in the world!

Swiss Chuchi: we had to get fondue while in Switzerland!

One of the most expensive shopping streets in the world!

Swiss Chuchi: we had to get fondue while in Switzerland!

Day 2

Early the next morning we trained an hour down to Lucerne to get a taste of the Swiss Mountains! When we got there, we self-toured around the city a bit, strolling across the Chapel Bridge and visiting the Lion of Lucerne Monument. But we were here for more. Getting on a ferry boat in Lucerne we floated on the lake over to Alpnachtstad, the railway station at the base of Mount Pilatus. Here you can take a cogwheel train all the way up to the top of Pilatus at 7,000 ft. But why would you take a cogwheel up when you can hike up the mountain?! After nearly getting lost at least five times on the Lütoldsmatt Trail and possibly passing out twice on our way up this beautiful peak, we made it to the Tomlishorn summit! And there’s a freaking hotel and restaurant up there! What the heck!

Chapel Bridge

The Lion of Lucerne

Lütoldsmatt Trail

Saw some wildlife on the way up!

A fun, somewhat strenuous trail!

The end in sight!

Tomlishorn Summit!

Mount Pilatus

Enjoying views…

…while listening to a Swiss horn!

Chapel Bridge

The Lion of Lucerne

Lütoldsmatt Trail

Saw some wildlife on the way up!

A fun, somewhat strenuous trail!

The end in sight!

Tomlishorn Summit!

Mount Pilatus

Enjoying views…

…while listening to a Swiss horn!

There was no way we were hiking back down this mountain, so we bought a ticket for the cable car ride down the backside heading into town and it was very worth it! We were caught up in the peak clouds for the first part but then we burst through the coverage to get some spectacular aerial views of the wilderness and lake below. Halfway down the slopes you can stop at Fräkmüntegg, a mountain sports facility that is home to Switzerland’s longest summer alpine toboggan run Fräkigaudi! Of course we were hopping on this! We were slightly disappointed by our alpine sledding experience in Germany, but this made up for it! We went way faster! Megan won again but I’ll let her have this one. The gondola finally brought us back down to Kriens, which is the small town right next to Lucerne. Grabbing a bite to eat at Coop Restaurant we trained back to Zürich to spend the evening at Bauschänzli- a man-made island near our apartment that has a wonderful beer garden and great live music!

Adam holding on tight in the cable car…

…where we were stuck in the clouds for the first half…

…and then emerged for a beautiful view!

Fräkmüntegg: an alpine toboggan run with a view!

Adam holding on tight in the cable car…

…where we were stuck in the clouds for the first half…

…and then emerged for a beautiful view!

Fräkmüntegg: an alpine toboggan run with a view!

Day 3

Today was all about tours! We started the day Megan style and went on an Old Town chocolate tour. The highlight here was the dreamiest, thickest cup of hot chocolate that had ever been conceived at Conditorei Schober. I don’t think Megan wanted to leave. She might’ve wanted to live in the chocolate shop for all I could tell through her lit up eyes. After coming down from her high we were finally educated on how to find cheap eats in Zürich! You have to eat day-old food! Discovering Äss-Bar in Old Town was the best thing that happened to us. This place takes unused items from the day before at different restaurants and bakeries across Zürich and resells them for cheap the following day! It’s brilliant.

Old Town Chocolate Tour!

We had our fair share of decadent chocolates!

And even hot chocolate!

Old Town Chocolate Tour!

We had our fair share of decadent chocolates!

And even hot chocolate!

The next tour was over in Zürich West, the old industrial part of the city now turned into a trendy, art district full of bars and concerts. This is definitely where the younger crowd hangs out. Our favorite spot was Frau Gerolds Garten, an urban garden complete with multiple food shacks and a bar. There was even a surfing wave you could get in line for to hang out and test your skills!

Zurich West

Frau Gerolds Garten

Zurich West

Frau Gerolds Garten

We traveled back to Old Town for dinner at the Raclette Factory which was way cheaper than the fondue melted cheese and just as good! We enjoyed some dark craft beer at Cabaret Voltaire for dessert and then walked over to Zürich’s “Red Light District” for our final tour of the day- a pub crawl!

Raclette Factory

Day 4

Our final moments in Europe were very chill. We adventured as far down the west and east sides of Lake Zürich as we wanted to. On the west side we watched a SUP (stand up paddleboard) racing competition. On the east side we caught glimpses of the Chinese Garden without going in and found Allianz Cinema Zürich, a lakefront outdoor theater that shows newly released movies. We had lunch in between at Holy Cow! Burger Company to adjust our stomachs back to American eating. The day finished with drinking some wine on our apartment balcony while watching the sun set over the lake. It was a peaceful and serene moment at the end of all our frantic city-hopping. The following morning, we would be on our last train up to Amsterdam so that we could fly back home!

Stumbled across a SUP competition on Lake Zurich!

Had to get some Swiss chocolate in ice cream form!

One last glimpse of Lake Zurich!

Stumbled across a SUP competition on Lake Zurich!

Had to get some Swiss chocolate in ice cream form!

One last glimpse of Lake Zurich!

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