Although 2020 was a complicated year to travel, as you can read in my blog post, I did manage to go out and about. I went to the Netherlands once, for my mum's birthday. And, in September, I was lucky enough to do a men's roadtrip in Switzerland with my brother and father. Initially, I booked a flight to Vienna for this week. I planned a solo trip. My brother decided he would come there by car, to see me and hang out, Austria tightened restrictions. I started thinking, and checking what countries were open for travelers from Bulgaria (where I live) and the Netherlands. My eye fell on Switzerland. No restrictions for us, and it's closer to the Netherlands by car. Let's say six hours instead of ten to Austria. So, I booked a flight there and just forgot about the one I booked to Austria. My brother convinced my father to come as well. It was a fantastic plan.
And so the weeks passed, and we prepared a roadtrip. I kept paying attention to the restrictions and whether any of them would tighten. But nothing much changed. It was open for us. So, we booked an AirBNB in Luzern. I would fly to Basel, spend a few days in France, the Alsace region. Then, my brother and father would come by car and pick me up. I went to Freibourg in Germany on a day trip, from France, and met up with them there. We drove straight to Luzern. The apartment was good, and affordable since we shared the cost. We had two bedrooms and a sleeping couch so it was good.
I planned the roadtrip by myself. Basically, it follows the itinerary you can see in the pictures. Divided into three full days. On the first day, we drove south, to the Aare Gorge. Then straight through the mountains to the Rhone glacier. Unfortunately, it is melting fast. Almost nothing of the once massive ice cave remains.. We drove the Furka Pass, and got back home. The second day we went to Bern, the underrated Swiss capital. The weather was perfect. We made a stop on the way there, in the Emental region. Where the cheese is from. In Bern we had a few drinks, walked around, through the old town and past the crystal clear river. It looked brilliant. I could totally live there, although I guess it gets boring quickly. There's a lack of young crowds in Switzerland. It's a paradise if you're above 50 and with a big wallet. Otherwise, travel and living opportunities are limited to the high income classes. We traveled quite low budget, just doing dinner and getting lunch from the stores. We drove back past Thun, which was a pleasant surprise. It is one of the most beautiful towns I have seen in my life. Interlaken, where we had dinner, has good views but is not worth visiting for the town itself. Visit Thun instead, you will not regret it.
The third day, we drove around Lake Lucerne. There's several peaks that can be visited by cable car. We had already been here once and did that, in 2002. We went on Pilatus and Rigi. Expensive but stunning. Some of Europe's best places to visit if you ask me. My dad used to live in this area for a few years, so he was happy to come back and visit some places he used to go to. After this short week, I took a train to Zurich to walk a few hours, and then took another train to Basel. From there, I flew back to Bulgaria in the evening. Meanwhile, my brother and father drove back home and got there safely. It was one of the best trips of my life. Especially in this year, I am truly happy I got the chance to hop across borders. I realize many were stuck and 2020 was tough.. But make the best of what you have nonetheless. There are always opportunities!
I was lucky enough to go back to Switzerland a second time, in the same month. Check out the trip here.