Laax, Graubunden Holiday Switzerland, July 2014

We had such a fabulous holiday in February, courtesy of Graubunden Tourism, that we decided to come back again. We had got a good deal on the hotel Signina because we were booking just outside the Summer season. The advantages of this were that there were very few other people so we had an even more personalised service and it was cheaper however the disadvantages were that not everything was fully open and the weather was still very unpredictable.

Hotel Signina upgraded us to a suite, so we had a huge room, a lounge area and two balconies. It was lovely to have the spa and sauna to ourselves. The service was exquisite and they could not do enough for us.

Amanda on the Balcony of Hotel Signina

Amanda on the Balcony of Hotel Signina

On this trip, we took the car. We crossed from Dover to Calais with P & O Ferries and booked places in the First Class Lounge. I am really glad we did that because the afternoon tea and champagne was gorgeous. We stayed overnight in a hostel type place in Reims in France and then drove down to Laax the following day.

To me, some of the best parts of Switzerland really start south of Lucerne, where the mountains start to rise quite steeply upwards. We took the turning up through Andermatt village and the winding Andermatt Pass, with hairpin bends and sheer drops.

Swiss Road Pass © Gregory Goldston

Swiss Road Pass © Gregory Goldston

Several years ago, when Greg was working in Lugano (Italian part of Switzerland), we had come along this pass from the other direction.  We eventually got to Laax at about 4pm, after numerous stops for taking photographs of the mountains.

I really could live here!

We walked quite a bit, including over the Fil de Cassons (see this blog post), along the Rhine Gorge (see this blog post) and up to Crap Mesegne, at one of the highest points (see this blog post).

On the way back, we went via Lucerne, which was a bit of a disappointment. In the 25 years since I was last there, it has become very touristy. It rained very heavily that day, so that did not help either.

We travelled back via Strasbourg and stayed in this fabulous little hotel, where the man on the reception was totally passionate about the area and encouraged us to take an evening stroll into the city.

It was an awesome experience because there are two places in the city where there is a light show that takes place. One place is over one of the bridges and the light show illustrates the history of the City of Strasbourg. It was very well done and you could understand everything that was going on, even without any words.

Strasbourg Cathedral © Gregory Goldston

Strasbourg Cathedral © Gregory Goldston

The other place was on the front of the Cathedral itself.

After munching our way through our obligatory Coffee and Chocolate Crepe (well, it is France, after all!) at an outdoor cafe, we took our places on the ground in the square outside the Cathedral.

Coffee and Crepes in Strasbourg

Coffee and Crepes in Strasbourg

The light show told the story of the history of the Cathedral and it was absolutely fascinating. As the lights changed, you could see how the structure had changed over time, from what was there originally, through various phases of destruction and rebuild, to what is there now. Awesome! It was well worth making the effort to go to see that.

It was a long journey back the next day. We left just after 8am to drive to Calais and it is a lot further than it looks on the map and eventually got home at about 8pm that evening. What a fabulous trip!

Amanda

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