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lausanne day trips with kids

London
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lausanne day trips with kids

We will be in lausanne for 9 days with our kids age 5,6 and 8. What day trips can we make? We've planned one day for the 'chocolate train', one for boat trip with Chateau de Chillon. Can you recommend countryside, mountains, husky rides, swimming, horse-riding etc that isn't too far away (90mins max but pref less)? Thanks!

Garmisch-Partenkirch...
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1. Re: lausanne day trips with kids

Hi Londonmum35,

Here are some ideas to get you started; these are my favorite activites in the area:

Montreux old town

tripadvisor.com/ShowUserReviews-g188108-d546…

Lavaux

tripadvisor.com/ShowUserReviews-g188108-d669…

Promenade Fleuri

tripadvisor.com/ShowUserReviews-g188108-d546…

Morges

tripadvisor.com/ShowUserReviews-g198828-r408…

Gruyeres

tripadvisor.com/ShowUserReviews-g198820-r408…

Saanen

tripadvisor.com/ShowUserReviews-g188079-r408…

Gstaad

tripadvisor.com/ShowUserReviews-g188079-r408…

In addition, you may want to rent bikes from the train station -- your kids can let off steam (with careful supervision) riding on the lakeside promenade or through the vineyards. You may also be able to rent inline skates -- just ask at your hotel. Your kids may also be interested in the Toy Museum in La Tour-de-Peilz, between Montreux and Vevey. There's a military museum in the castle at Morges too.

Swimming is anywhere along the lake!

Good luck!

s

bern
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2. Re: lausanne day trips with kids

Which month are you going? Are you using public transport?

Some places you can visit from Lausanne:

The waterpark in Bouveret (good place for a rainy day) trip taks an hour by boat. http://www.aquaparc.ch/

Glacier 3000 in Les Diablerets mountain top with great view, a glacier and many actvities like a summer toboggan, husky rides, a snow bus,... www.diablerets.ch/web/article.php?sid=42970

cable car starts at the Col du Pillon, the scenc trip from Lausanne takes takes 2 hours by public transport (less by car), even it's a bit longer trip than you wanted, I woudn't miss it.

Nice mountain places are also Leysin, Villars sur Ollon and Gryon train trip takes 60-90 minutes. www.leysin.ch, www.villars.ch/

about 80minutes is the trip to the the largest underground lake in Europe. http://www.lac-souterrain.com/ (offical page, but in French), myswitzerland.com/en/offer-Activities_Excurs…

here an other post that might help you:

tripadvisor.com/…6271475

London
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3. Re: lausanne day trips with kids

Thanks mube and swandav.

We will be coming 31 July - what will we see in Lausanne for Swiss National Day? We were planning on using public transport (which pass do you recommend?) unless you think we should hire a car?

Swimming along the lake - are we allowed to swim in the lake? Is it safe? Or are there swimming pools around? I read that there is a sandy beach - is this true/worth it?

I checked the other websites and posts - Yvoire looked good - how long would that take to get to? Is it the best place to go and see on the French side, or Evian?

About the Glacier trip - I've been thinking about this for ages, I want the kids to experience something amazing but I thought there was first a 2 hour trip to Col du Pillon and then still a 90 min lift ride before you get to the good stuff. Or is there good stuff to do around the base of Col du Pillon?

The waterpark looked interesting too - is it best reached by boat then?

Is it better to do a vineyard/countryside walk from Ouchy, or to take a train first to one of those villages you recommended?

bern
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4. Re: lausanne day trips with kids

<We will be coming 31 July - what will we see in Lausanne for Swiss National Day?> Music, many fireworks in the evening, many local events.

<We were planning on using public transport (which pass do you recommend?) unless you think we should hire a car?> No, public transport is a very good choice. I think in your case the Half Fare Card will be the most econmical, if you don't want to care about Tickets you could also buy the Swiss Pass. With HFC and SP you can get a free familiy card, so all of your children will travel for free. For details see www.swisstravelsystem.ch You can get all timetables on www.sbb.ch/en

<Swimming along the lake - are we allowed to swim in the lake? Is it safe? Or are there swimming pools around? I read that there is a sandy beach - is this true/worth it?> Apart of some dangours places (ports or so) swimming is a allwowed. Swiss lakes are safe as much as a lake can be. Most communites have (small sandy) beaches or lidos (correct name?) that often have showers, a snak bar, and sometimes a swimming pool, where you can swimm for free or against a small fee. The lakes don't get very warm (currently lake Geneva is 19 C, might get 21 when you are there), but it's a great place to cool down on a sunny and hot day.

<Yvoire looked good - how long would that take to get to? Is it the best place to go and see on the French side, or Evian?> by train and boat it'a about an hour (see sbb.ch/en), by boat from Ouchy about 2 hours. I would prefer Yvoire, but they are very different. You could also visit both on the same boat trip.

<but I thought there was first a 2 hour trip to Col du Pillon and then still a 90 min lift ride before you get to the good stuff. Or is there good stuff to do around the base of Col du Pillon?> No, cable car never take some much time. It's 2 hours to the Col (20min. stop in les Diablerets) and then a short (maybe 15 minutes) cable car ride to the top. Cable cars don't have very fix timetables, usually they go every 30 min, if there are few people and every 15 minutes if there are more. I don't think the trip there will be a problem for your children. Timetable to the Col du Pillon on sbb.ch/en.

<The waterpark looked interesting too - is it best reached by boat then?> Yes, the boat trip is the shortest and best way to get there.

London
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5. Re: lausanne day trips with kids

Hi,

I would recommend swimming from the pebble and grass beach at the right of the base of Chateau de Chillon. It's lovely to swim there and look up at the castle.

Another good pool can be found in Vevey. You can read directions to get there in this thread:

tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g188057-i389-k1301…

This would also be a very useful thread for you to look at:

tripadvisor.com/…7690435

As a little child I used to find this walk (the one which I've called Easy) adventurous without being hard. It takes about 30 minutes from the start point. You walk up through woods by a stream, ford the stream and pop out on a road close to an inn with a little lake and cows with cowbells:

tripadvisor.com/Travel-g644345-c57835/Les-Pa…

Details of how to reach this walk can be found here:

tripadvisor.com/Travel-g644345-c57837/Les-Pa…

(you would get off the bus as Les Rosalys Place)

This was the walk of my childhood - up and down through the woods we used to go when on holiday!

Your children will have a lovely time wherever you end up.

London
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6. Re: lausanne day trips with kids

Also very fun is hiring a pedallo on a hot summer's day and taking it out onto the lake. Some of them even have slides. I would imagine you can hire them from Lausanne, but I know you can hire them from the lake front in Vevey (the next biggish town along from Lausanne). If you exit the station and head down to the left, heading slightly to the left you will get to the market square and the pedallos are hired at the lake's edge there. This is also a good spot to feed swans as they know which side their bread is buttered and tend to hang around waiting for a snack.

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7. Re: lausanne day trips with kids

So you can see what it's like swimming by Chateau de Chillon on a hot day, I've posted some photos:

tripadvisor.com/ShowUserReviews-g188108-d246…

London
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8. Re: lausanne day trips with kids

Hi NorthWestLondoner, I wondered when you would join my post!

In response to everyone, thank you for your help, some more advice please:

the chateau de chillon swimming looks amazing, from your photo it looks family friendly. I know lake swimming can only be as safe as the supervision, but our 5 yr old cannot swim but is confident in water. As long as everyone is sensible, is it safe - in other words is it shallow reasonably far out for them to play?

The chocolate train - is it worth doing the journey on the special panoramic trains etc as part of a package, or should we just do it ourselves? If ourselves, still visit choc factory after Gruyere or elsewehere ?(someone mentioned Rocher de Naye in a thread - is this a mountain area?)

Rick Steves suggest we turn left along the lakeside at Ouchy for good walk/scenery/vineyards, have any of you done this walk?

Swiss National Day - I'm guessing as it's our first day there we should stay in Lausanne and explore. Will most things be open or closed - shops in old town, amusements along waterfront etc

Will make two boat trips - one to Chateau de Chillon and one to Yvoire.

Am persuaded to visit Les Diablerets, but think we may hire a car for a day as bus connections etc look awkward. Or, we hire a car for two days and visit local countryside on second day. (Perhaps the place NWLondoner suggested- Les Paccots). Is parking generally reasonable around Lausanne?

If no car, Les Paccots sounds lovely but seems a bit far to go for an alpine walk, is there nothing as nice nearer to Lausanne? Will make the effort if you think it's worth it, just worried about the kids making long journeys everyday. Any closer nice alpine walks?

The underground lake looked really impressive in the first round of photos, but on viewing the photo gallery it looks less nice, have any of you been?

I'd like to buy all my travel passes in advance. From the above itinery, shall I get a Swiss Pass or is there are more regional pass that will cover me?

Thanks for everyone's help.

Garmisch-Partenkirch...
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9. Re: lausanne day trips with kids

Hi again,

I'll try to help with what I know.

The swimming area next to Chillon has a nice beach, and I've seen scuba divers coming ashore there. I don't know how far it is shallow, though.

Of course, no one can tell you if the Chocolate Train or its elements will be "worth it" for you. I can tell you that I didn't get to Gruyeres until my 4th or 5th trip to Montreux, and still haven't gotten to Broc.

I still haven't gotten to Rochers-de-Naye myself.

The vineyards are between Lausanne & Vevey -- those are the Lavaux that I posted about above. Yes, it would be a left at Ouchy; head for the town of Cully or Lutry. There is a map at www.lavaux.ch. I've done this on foot and by bike a few times (starting at Chexbres).

In order to find the most economical pass, you have to do the math -- price out each of the train trips and then compare to the pass prices. I usually find that the Half Fare Card is the best for my travels.

Good luck!

s

Mannheim, Germany
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10. Re: lausanne day trips with kids

>The chocolate train - is it worth doing the journey on the special panoramic trains etc as part of a package, or should we just do it ourselves? If ourselves, still visit choc factory after Gruyere or elsewehere ?

For entertainment value the Chocolate train is nice - Belle Epoque carriages, sometimes steam loco etc. Just to see the countryside, there is no need to book the special train.

>(someone mentioned Rocher de Naye in a thread - is this a mountain area?)

It´s a summit high above the lake, connected by a cog railway to Montreux station.

>Swiss National Day - I'm guessing as it's our first day there we should stay in Lausanne and explore. Will most things be open or closed - shops in old town, amusements along waterfront etc

Shops will be closed as the National day is an official holiday, otherwise it is just like a sunday concerning closures.