Saturday, April 25, 2015

Play: Journey down memory lane (Day 6-16 March 2015)

Day 6

Today marks our last day in England. We will be taking a 2 hour short flight to Basel, Switzerland. We reluctantly woke at 5.45am, the bed in Hilton is really soft and comfy, beckoning us to snooze a little longer but we have a flight to catch.

The hotel helped us booked a cab the night before at a flat rate of 30 pounds to London City Airport which is 20-30 minutes away. We were surprised that instead of a normal cab, a Mercedes Benz is waiting for us outside the hotel.

It was drizzling outside and it was a nice ride to the airport. London City Airport is the only airport that is situated in London City itself. I would say a great choice for travellers like us to connect to Europe as we do not need to spend much time travelling out of London just to catch our flight. The airport is easily accessible with DLR which connects to London Underground!

London City Airport
Travellers checking out their flights details
To departure!
Flight was delayed for half an hour and we depart at 9am local time after having a warm breakfast at the airport. We reached Basel at 11.15 am local time (Swiss is one hour faster than UK).
Exit to Switzerland, France or Germany?
We had pre-booked our SBB Swiss Travel Pass before our trip so most train, buses and even ferry is included. We took bus number 50 to the train station (alight at the last stop) and went to catch our train at Platform 5. We had to run in order not to miss the train as the train ON TIME!

Tips: Travel light is essential as there are quite a number of stairs you need to walk at the train station etc...  We carry a small bag each and share a 24 inches luggage bag. If you do need to bring huge luggage bags to Europe, do allow extra time for travelling especially when taking trains, buses etc.

SBB Train
Happy me :)
Map of the snow mountain area on the train itself
Scenery along the way
We had to travel by train from Basel to Interlaken and then change to another train for Wengen. For the train connections, the SBB website offers good information. We just need to input the starting point and destination and they will work out the rest. Thus, a reliable 3G connection is essential so that we can check the train timing on the go.

By the way, did I mention that the 3G Sim Card that we bought off the wending machine on our first day in UK works in Switzerland. Apparently, Swiss is one of their "Feel at Home Zone" thus no additional charges for 3G network. We actually did not know this until we received an SMS upon reaching Switzerland airport stating that we could use the 3G network without additional charge. Really a good deal and we did not have to purchase additional sim card in Swiss! Happy us :)

Wengen is a car free town thus besides a few special car (own by hotel and some residents), tourists are not allowed to drive to Wengen. If you are considering to rent car, you have to park your car at Lauterbrunnen and take a train to Wengen. We thought it was a hassle so decided to take train for our entire trip in Switzerland.

A picture with our hotel
We reached our hotel at about 3pm. Wengen is a small town and our hotel is within walking distance from the train station. We do need to go down a small slope to reach the hotel. 

We booked for a mountain view room and were not disappointed.

Amazing view from room- I could just stay in whole day and look at the snow mountains!
Little bear
The cute teddy on our bed :)

Love the bedsheet design, pretty flowery
Close up of the flower bedsheets
We chill in our room, enjoying the view and went to explore this little town before dinner starts at 6pm. We choose half board accommodation for the first night as the food in Switzerland is generally pricey plus we read many good reviews on the food served in our hotel's restaurant. We paid addition CHF 20 per person for a 4 courses meal.

Wengen is indeed a charming little town and the fact that it is a car free town, one can walk around the town without much need to look for cars. There are still occasional electric car around so do look out for those!

Indeed, snow capped mountain is everywhere... a picture tells a thousand words.. Check out our photos below :)

Although it is snow mountain everywhere, the weather is actually quite nice and cooling (as compared to windy England). Probably the mountain blocks most of the wind, it is really comfortable strolling around without the need to find indoor sheltered all the time (like what we did in England)

Cute pinecorn...

Pick up some pine corn on the floor for my kiddos back home!
The train station at Wengen...
There is a Co-op in the town, selling some essentials and food item. We bought some titbits to munch!
Food from Co-op
We had our dinner at 6.30pm and a table is already reserved for us...

Nice ambience to dine in
Snow mountain view
The meal is really as good as reviewed and totally worth the CHF 20 that we paid for... I could not find fault with any of the courses. It is all perfectly executed.. Thumbs up!

We had wine as well as recommended by the waitress and it was good. Do note that the wine is not included in the meal, we had to pay additional for it...
Yummy soup
Beetroot salad housed in red cabbage
Roast lamb

Panna Cotta for dessert
After a hearty meal, we went back to our room, showered and rest!

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