Dear Geneva Road Trips
Being in the heart of Europe we are only a matter of hours away from so many amazing destinations. Over the last few weeks we have been packing the car and heading off on the great open road to some of the magical places surrounding us.
Dear Geneva road trips, is a list of the places we have visited already that are easily accessible by car.
Sometimes it is nice to set off, explore and enjoy our beautiful surrounds… If you are looking for a change of scenery then maybe one of these destinations might be perfect.
The quintessential Swiss village, pretty sure Gruyères covers all the stereotypes, stunning postcard perfect surrounds, cows with bells scattered on the mountains, cobble stoned streets and a beautiful Swiss Chalet in the centre filling the main square with a rich smell of cheese.
Gruyères is truly beautiful, and the journey is just as magical. Home to Gruyère cheese, you are more then welcome to check out the cheese factories to see the art of cheese making at its best, also near by is the Cailler Chocolate Factory (I told you all the stereotypes were covered… cheese and chocolate) where you can take a tour of the factory.
Sci-fi fans will also have their fix. Gruyères is home to the H.R. Giger museum and bar, a must do when in Gruyere (even if you just take a drink in the bar, it is an amazing experience, see here).
If you are interested in hiking, then take your walking shoes as there are many mapped walks around the area.
Where: Gruyères is about 120km from Geneva (around 1hour and 20minutes driving time), the drive is stunning, follow the lake all the way to Montreux, then follow exit 14 heading towards Bern/Fribourg. The last part of the journey is on secondary roads winding you through some spectacular scenery.
What to do/see:
- H.R. Giger museum and bar is a must, the interior is based on the movie Alien
- Gruyères Cheese Factory
- Cailler Chocolate Factory
- Take a fondue (we went for dinner in Gruyères, ate fondue as the sun set, It is safe to say no matter where you go the fondue will be good, the chalet is very popular but make sure you don’t mind smelling of cheese when you leave. We went to Hotel de Ville, because it has a nice terrace on the street and the staff were fantastic and very generous)
- Make sure you save room for a Meringue and Gruyère cream a local specialty
Sadly we arrived late in the day, so we missed a lot of the weekend activities, but lovers of beer and chocolate get excited! Fribourg is the home of Cardinal Beer and also the Cardinal Museum and brewery tour, here you can learn about the history of this iconic Swiss beer. A little further down the road is the Villars Chocolate Factory, where sweet smells of chocolate fill the air, grab a hot chocolate and just relax in the café.
Home to the famous Pont du Berne, take a wander through the old town, it is from here you can see the many bridges surrounding Fribourg.
Where: Fribourg is about an hour and half away from Geneva by car
What to see/do:
- Cardinal Brewery and Museum
- Villars Chocolate in the red brick building
- Lovers of music keen an eye on Fri-Son (and if you are near there check out the awesome art all over the building), always a good line up of bands.
- Wander the “old town” and check out the historic Pont du Berne
A beautiful medieval city built around an impressive lake and small canal system that snakes through the old streets. In the summer it is a hive of activity, with boats for hire and all sorts of water based activities. In the winter it is a little quieter, but by no means any less beautiful.
Rich in history, it is worth doing some reading before you arrive (click here for a list of downloadable brochures and walking tours). You can eailsy spend the whole day walking and taking in the sights and beautiful views.
Why Go? Annecy is stunning city build around a beautiful lake with canals winding through the old town. It is regularly mention as being one of the prettiest cities in France.
Where: Anncey is about 40 minutes drive from Geneva, there are also bus tours that head to Annecy if you don’t have a car.
What to see/do:
- We simply spent the day wandering, click here for brochures and maps with all the historic information you will need.
- Have Ice-Cream at Glacier des Alpes, a well known establishment serving Ice-Cream for over 30 years.
- In the summer take a small boat on the lake, there are some pretty spectacular houses scattered along the lakes edge.
There are a huge number of stunning places surrounding us, as our adventures take place we will share them with you… Stay tuned for more Dear Geneva Road Trips.
Please feel free to send us some of your favourite day trips and for more photos from our adventures please check our facebook page.