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Family Living in Switzerland for One Summer Month

Raleigh, North...
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Family Living in Switzerland for One Summer Month

My family will be traveling to Switzerland next July. We will have a 2 year old and a seven year old with us - both experienced travelers. We typically make our stays of this length in order to become familiar with an area and feel like we have really lived there! We are looking for a town to base ourselves in for the month and need advice.

We generally prefer towns with a population between 5000-12000 people. We have found that is a good size to get to know people and still have tons to keep us busy for the month. We like to be able to walk everywhere: groceries, entertainment, restaurants, to see the beautiful views, etc. We also enjoy hiking in the mountains.

We have lived in St Andrews, Scotland; Vail, Colorado; Canmore, Alberta, Canada; Port Douglas, FN Queensland, Australia to name a few that were perfect for us.

Of course we will want to travel around by train a bit, so somewhere with a convenient train station would also be nice.

I have considered Interlaken, Spiez, and a few others, but need advice. PLEASE send any information and opinions to help with this decision. A good home base makes all the difference for a longer trip.

Thanks so much!

bern
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1. Re: Family Living in Switzerland for One Summer Month

Spiez is very centrally located, specially for visits to the Berner Oberland and Valais. It feels smaller as the community consist of serveral small towns and villages. On the other side Thun is very close and they have a lot to entertain you and your kids. Spiez has some very differnt parts, very nice is it at the lake and in front of the train station with a great view. Places dirctly at the main road can be load. thunersee.ch/en/…spiez.html

Brienz has 3000 inhabitants. It's in a very scenic spot with a compact and picturesque town. It's on the train line between Interlaken and Lucerne with possible trips to both areas. Nearby are the Ballenberg Open Air museum (no problem to be entertained there for two days, specially with small kids), the Brienzer Rothhorn, boats on the lake and some great waterfalls and canyons nearby. www.brienz-tourismus.ch

On the same train line, but much closer to Lucerne is Sarnen at a lake. It's less touristy than other towns and a nice place to live in. It has good connections to Lucerne (and so all central Switzerland and other places), the train to the Berner Oberland and some bus connections eg. to Stans

www.sarnen-tourism.ch

Brunnen has 8000 inhabitants, it's a nice town at lake Lucerne and has very good transport links. Even in the closer surrounding options for things to do are endless. It's a great base to visit central Switzerland, the Zurich area and the Ticino. http://www.brunnentourismus.ch/

Southport UK
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2. Re: Family Living in Switzerland for One Summer Month

I suggest Meiringen a small working town. Good transport links 40 minutes Interlaken 80 minutes to Lucern, 15 minutes to Brienz. Post buses up the Susten pass, the Grimsel Pass, another up the Rosenlaui valley and another to a beautiful lake called Englestensee.

The town itself has Reichenbach Falls, Aareschluct, a cable car to Reuti on the Hasliberg and then inwards by Gondolabahn to Magisalp and then another to Planplatten. There are 2 laid out walks up on the Hasliberg telling the stories of some dwarves - (Muggestutz). On the Hasliberg as well as the 2 special children's trails with play items all the way down, there is a swimming lake Badesee at Wasserwendi. Meiringen has an indoor and outdoor swimming pool. It's handy to get to Brienz and Ballenberg.

www.haslital.ch

Gibel

Edited: 3:21 pm, September 13, 2010
Dubai
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3. Re: Family Living in Switzerland for One Summer Month

I think Spiez would be a better option also due to its Central location:

Spiez to Geneva : around 2.30 hrs

Spiez to Montreux : around 2.00 hrs

Spiez to Zermatt : less than 2 hrs

Spiez to Lauterbrunnen : less than 1 hr

Spiez to Luzern : around 2 hrs

Spiez to Zurich : less than 2 hrs

So based in Spiez you can cover major part of Switzerland during your one month stay.

swisstravelsystem.com/download_sts/uebersich…

Chicago,IL
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4. Re: Family Living in Switzerland for One Summer Month

Consider Lauterbrunnen, if you want to spend time in the mountains. You can get a 2 bedroom apartment at Hotel Oberland. We stayed there for 5 days. It was lovely.

Raleigh, North...
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5. Re: Family Living in Switzerland for One Summer Month

Thanks so much to all of you who have replied. I'm still leaning toward Spiez. I see that there are a number of villages there (Spiez, Einigen, Hondrich, Faulensee and Spiezwiler). Can anyone tell me: (1) is it easy to walk to all 5 villages, and (2) in which town/area would you recommend to find an apartment. We would like to be centrally located to markets, parks, sites, etc.

Schwyz, Switzerland
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6. Re: Family Living in Switzerland for One Summer Month

If I was you, I would check the holiday appartements on this site, fill in your number of people and your days you want to stay and choose the place after the appartement you like the most

thunersee.ch/en/…holiday-apartments.html

Good luck

mum47

bern
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7. Re: Family Living in Switzerland for One Summer Month

Distances between those towns are mostly to long to walk to the train station. They have busses or regional trains to the train station to Spiez, but by having to use them you loose your perfect transport hub situation. Spiez is not very compact even in the town it can easily be a 20minutes walk to the train station. To locate addresses on maps use http://map.search.ch if you are used to good hiking maps you will get more details out of the maps of www.mapplus.ch

Southport UK
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8. Re: Family Living in Switzerland for One Summer Month

It's also worth remembering that the station is uphill from the lake and quite steep at that.

Gibel

Raleigh, North...
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9. Re: Family Living in Switzerland for One Summer Month

Good information! Thank you both. I will certainly take these issues into consideration.

Edited: 9:18 pm, September 24, 2010
10. Re: Family Living in Switzerland for One Summer Month

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