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We finished up the Rick Steves portion of our tour of Switzerland Thursday evening in Bern. Bern was a bit of a surprise to me based upon my image of the city as a modern steel and glass urban area. Instead we enjoyed a walking tour of an old town surrounded on three sides by a swiftly flowing river. In fact, a summertime pleasure of Bern residents is to jump into the river, float around the city, and hop out on the other side. A short walk through the city in your swim suit and you’re back where you started!

Friday, we hopped a train to Zurich where we strolled the city for many hours, finishing up with a pleasant dinner on the sidewalk in the “Old Town.” Much to our surprise, a small orchestra came along and set up shop in the street just a few feet away. Instant concert! It was an absolutely great way to finish our Swiss adventure.

Avenches, Switzerland, 6/2/16

Avenches, Switzerland, 6/2/16

On the way to Bern we stopped in the town of Avenches for a quick (and rainy) peek at a lovely Roman amphitheater. They were setting up for a performance of the opera Madama Butterfly. That would have been something to see.

Avenches, Switzerland, 6/2/16

Avenches, Switzerland, 6/2/16

Bern, Switzerland, 6/2/16

Bern, Switzerland, 6/2/16

It is said that when there are no bears in Bern then Bern will fall. Three bears are kept in an enclosure occupying some prime real estate that happens to be right next to a micro-brewery. They’ve got it pretty cushy.

Zurich, Switzerland, 6/3/16

Zurich, Switzerland, 6/3/16

A serenade on our last night in Switzerland.

Zurich, Switzerland, 6/3/16

Zurich, Switzerland, 6/3/16

 

 

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We just wrapped up our visit to Lausanne in the French speaking portion of Switzerland. We had a great time getting here via the extremely quaint village of Gruyere (cheese!) where we saw a bizarre museum and had a good lunch. We started our time here in Lausanne with a walking tour last evening and a fondue dinner. Today was a wander through the town, a lovely two-hour boat ride on Lake Geneva, and a guided tour of Chillon Castle (a very cool medieval castle).

I'm not going to be long winded because I'm fairly beat, but I will toss some photos in from the last few days. I'm doing this from my iPad, so they're pretty much as they came straight out of the camera.

Tomorrow: off to Bern and our last night of the tour.

Gruyere, Switzerland, 5/31/16

Outside the Giger Museum. H.R. Giger was a surrealist artist who won an Oscar for his designs for the movie “Alien.” His museum is in the very quaint village of Gruyere and is a very strange place. We're glad we went.

Gruyere, Switzerland, 5/31/16

Lausanne, Switzerland, 6/1/16

Lausanne, Switzerland, 6/1/16

Chillon Castle, Switzerland, 6/1/16

Lausanne, Switzerland, 5/31/16