Bernese Oberland – far from the madding crowd

PanoramaThe beauty of the Bernese Oberland is undeniable, wide open skies, meadows filled with flowers, the sounds of cow bells and buzzing insects, and other than that silence. The pass road is closed to private motorized traffic, so if you want to get up to the top of the pass you need to cycle, get the bus or of course walk. Peace, pure and simple, and though it’s only a short drive from where we are based it feels so far away that it’s almost as if you traveled back in time to a different, more ancient world. A place where life still follows a rhythm in tune with the seasons. Where it is suddenly possible to remember that life can be more, and  indeed in this place it feels as though it is meant to be more, than  a one-dimensional daily struggle as a warrior-inhabitant of the noisy, concrete jungle,  living as an extension of cellphones, and laptops.  Surrounded by the mountains, breathing in the fresh, cool mountain air and munching a piece of salami, with baked bread from a local farm and tangy mountain cheeses, all washed down with a cold beer, you experience the truth of the saying: the best things in life are free.

  The meadows are full of flowers:

Meadow grindelwaldIMG_0353 Picturesque buildings complete with cedar shingles on the roof are occupied for the summer grazing season,  and in the absence of electricity the drinking troughs serve as a fridge: Milk pailAnd piglets nap in the afternoon sun, in pens with a view:

IMG_0351IMG_0409And there are meadows and flowers  and mountains as far as the eye can see.

This is a place where your soul can rest and where a weekend away from it all has a more rejuvenating effect than a week in many other places.

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4 thoughts on “Bernese Oberland – far from the madding crowd

  1. Love these pictures– My grandmother’s (born 1903) family immigrated from Bern to the U.S. and when we lived in Spain (and once since) we’ve taken several trips there. Hike out of Grindewald up the lift and down the mountain. So tranquil and green below the snowy mountains. thanks for the reminder.

  2. Hi Rhonda – you are welcome, I thought of you when I was posting as you had shared your vivid memories of small wooden houses and window-boxes full of geraniums with me. Your grandmother’s family left Bern from the US – lovely to know about the history, and must have been special to visit and imagine how things would have turned out had they stayed. Love family stories. So do you ever make the famous Berner Angge Züpfe? I might have to post a recipe of one for you – eaten on Sundays with honey and good butter and a nice coffee. Our traditional Sunday breakfast bread apart from the imported and adapted croissants! But of course if you were here a lot you will have come across it in Bern. One of my most vivid childhood memories is sitting in my grandmothers kitchen in pretty Zofingen and eating soft luscious Butterzopf, Swiss honey from the forests, dark and tangy, and fresh creamy butter. Tastes stay with us.

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