Editor’s Note: On the Expedia UK blog, we love to highlight the voices of Expedia customers and avid travellers, people who love travelling as much as we do, people like Kristin Addis. Today, we’re sharing Be My Travel Muse‘s story, all about why Switzerland is so special to her. Read on for what travelling through Switzerland meant to her.
When I think about the most special places in the world my mind wanders back to the summer of 2015 in Switzerland with my mother.
We had started our journey in Germany, following the travel journal of my late grandmother. She is the original travel muse, going on journeys that took her through Asia, Europe and North America. When I told her that I was moving to Taiwan at 21 to study abroad, she surprised me by whipping out a photo album with photos from a trip there. She has always been inspiring to me, while growing up even today.
When we discovered in some of her old boxes that that she had documented one of her trips in a journal, it was a real treat.
My mother and I set a goal to re-create some of the experiences that she had, following in her footsteps to Switzerland.
The trip took us all through the Alps, exploring Austria and Italy, and finishing in the beautiful town of Zermatt, Switzerland.
We stayed at a quaint little hut called Silvana at the top of one of the gondolas in Furi. It’s not that Zermatt is full of hustle and bustle, but for some true peace and quiet, and a gorgeous view, that was just perfect for us. They had delicious meals each night and a cozy Alpine feel.
I had heard before that Switzerland is beautiful but nothing can quite prepare you for how incredible those mountains are in person, covered in glaciers and surrounded by wildflowers at the lower altitudes. It’s the kind of place where you just want to go twirl in a field constantly because in every direction, it looks so perfect and pristine.
The water is crystal clear there – in a pinch I drank it without a filter without any issues. Every little blade of grass and colourful wildflower appears to have been lovingly watered by mother nature, and even the sheep seem particularly happy, if sheep can seem happy, with the real estate they’re standing on.
We decided the best way to see it was on foot, and took her journal with us along the Edelweissweg, a moderate trail departing from Furi that can be cut shorter or made longer depending on the route. We did about 12 miles roundtrip.
We caught ourselves laughing at some of the funny anecdotes and pouring over her descriptions of the things that she had seen. We were looking at the very same mountains, eating the same kind of food, and taking the same trains as she had. Not much had changed in that regard!
The trail took the better part of the day, most of it taking place right across from the Matterhorn. It truly is an impressive mountain, both in shape and in size. I could just imagine attempting to climb it myself, but I would save that for another day, or lifetime.
On that day, it was about enjoying the panorama, the little villages that we passed along the way, and the apfelschorle (apple juice mixed with sparkling water) and soup halfway at one of the mountain huts to keep us fuelled.
The day came to a close and I felt delighted to have gone on a little trip 30 years into the past with my grandmother again, even if only through her words.
Yet I came to find throughout my trip that the places that we saw, the things that we felt about it, and the experiences that we had were not all that different.
It’s just the way that we document it that has changed. She did so with a pen and paper, and I with a camera and a keyboard.