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First taste of Switzerland
By Amy Wyatt
1 October 2010

Finally arrived in Zurich today after a long flight from Bangkok. My first glimpse of Switzerland from the plane window was so beautiful...rolling green hills with rivers snaking their way through town and twinkling lights of the city below. The airport struck me as being very clean and efficient, with a certain Swiss precision. Once through customs we boarded our first train that had us in the city within 12 minutes. From here we all boarded a tram in the middle of peak hour with all our suitcases, much to the amusement of the good natured Swiss. My first taste of the Swiss transport system was certainly positive...Melbourne could learn a thing or two from the Swiss.
The Crowne Plaza is located just outside the city centre, but this was no issue as a short tram ride away had us at the shores of Lake Zurich. With hungry bellies we boarded a boat for a lunch cruise. The scenery was magnificent- crystal clear water with lots of fairytale houses dotted along the banks and majestic mountains rising in the distance. After an hour we cruised back into the harbour and commenced our walking tour through the old town. WOW! Some of the buildings date back to the twelfth or thirteenth century, which is fairly mind blowing coming from a country as young as Australia.
The architecture is stunning with each cobble stoned street bringing a new surprise. Gorgeous boutiques, patisseries & coffee shops, traditional barber shops, majestic churches and huge clock towers were just some of the amazing sights.
The rest of the afternoon was spent perusing the shops and enjoying a delicious hot chocolate with tiny macaroons, known in Zurich as Luxemburgeli. The most amazing flavours from champagne to chocolate banana, raspberry, egg nog and choc mint. Divine! If only they would keep long enough for me to bring a few boxes home!
Dinner this evening was out in Zurich West, the new hip and happening area of Zurich with underground clubs and trendy restaurants. Our restaurant was housed in an old converted railway building and had a trendy underground bunker feel, like something out of World War II. Dinner was a traditional Swiss meal starting with a salad, followed by a main of veal and creamy mushrooms with a shredded potato pancake or rosti, followed by a light creme caramel for dessert. Food is certainly amazing here and the Swiss are wanting to impress...good job I am doing a lot of walking.
Overall my time in Zurich has left me with an overwhelming sense of how much pride the Swiss have for their city. From the amazing architecture, to the efficient public transport system and clean streets, and even to the people themselves who dress with such poise and elegance, Zurich is a stunning city and one I hope to visit again very soon.


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Trish Smith
Those macarons look delicious! Being so light and fluffy, surely it's possible to eat several in one sitting?? It looks like you were there at the perfect time to see the autumn leaves... what a gorgeous city. I'll add it to my wish list.
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