15 JUN 2023
One of the most attractive areas to visit in Switzerland with our Ducato-based motorhome is the one that hosts the lakes Thun and Brienz,
in the Bernese Highlands, framed by majestic mountains. In the city of Thun, you can admire the old town centre, complete with its Town Hall, square and castle. Descending southwards, we come across Spiez, with its medieval castle. Even further south, but on the opposite side of the lake, the St. Beatus Caves reveal an astonishing set of caves offering a guided tour through stalactites and stalagmites, small lakes and waterfalls.
Interlaken and the spectacular peaks
The popular town of Interlaken is located on the strip of land that divides the lakes of Thun and Brienz. Here, too, there is no shortage of historic buildings, including the former Augustinian monastery from the 12th century, and it is pleasant to stroll through the Höhematte park, which affords a splendid view of the Jungfrau summit. And if we want to climb the Jungfrau, we can also do it... by train! From Kleine Scheidegg station, a quaint narrow-gauge train takes you to Jungfraujoch, Europe's highest railway station, at 3,454 metres above sea level, and very close to the panoramic terrace lodged in among the glaciers. But there are also other ways to get to higher altitudes, such as the historic cogwheel train from Widerswil to Schynige Platte, 2,076 metres above sea level.
If we want to delve into the valleys on the sides, we can reach Stechelberg in a short time (also by train), where a cable car takes us up to the Schilthorn, at an altitude of 2,970 metres. The Piz Gloria revolving panoramic restaurant can be found here, with its breathtaking views of the Eiger, Mönch and Jungfrau peaks: it is famous because it was the location for scenes from the James Bond film 'On Her Majesty's Secret Service'.
Moving and stopping
Motorhomes may only stop free of charge at certain locations. A better bet are the area’s few motorhome parks and its campsites, having checked that they are open and available in advance. A word of advice: given the largely mountainous terrain and the locations of the rest stops, which are not always strategic, it is a good idea to combine the motor home with an agile means of transport, such as a bicycle, especially if your vehicle is not a compact van. But you can also take advantage of the proverbial Swiss railways for small local journeys.
Remember that by purchasing the special adhesive 'Vignette' to stick on the windscreen, you can drive on all Swiss motorways for one year or, to be more precise, from 1 December to 31 January of the following year. For vehicles over 3.5 tonnes, a flat fee is payable. The speed limit on motorways is 120 km/h (for vehicles up to 3.5 tonnes) or 100 km/h (over 3.5 tonnes).
Ready to set off, then? Between enchanting lakes and breathtaking peaks, you can be sure to enjoy all the charms of Switzerland on board your Ducato-based motorhome.