The most amazing thing about travelling within Switzerland is that just within 2 hours driving away, you get a completely different vibe and atmosphere, so it’s easily to switch into full-holiday mode without even leaving the country. Swiss Riviera is one of the most amazing destinations for a weekend escape – we spent a spring weekend here and I am sharing our itinerary together with some more details on what we did and tips that will help you plan your perfect getaway.
Arrival and relax at the Le Mirador Resort & Spa
Le Mirador Resort & Spa is a beautiful 5* hotel, located right in the heart of the UNESCO’s vineyards and overlooking Lac Leman. It is really a beautiful place, where the original “old world” vibe is matched with modern rooms, world class restaurants and fabulous spa with pools overlooking the snow-capped mountains. The hotel also has a fabulous Givenchy, where you can pamper yourself with beauty treatments or a massage.
Plus, what I liked the most is that Le Mirador is located in a calm area, away from the busy town which makes it a perfect spot for a relaxing and romantic weekend. (best if you arrive by car). The hotel is family-friendly (they have high chairs at the restaurants and offer baby-cots and kids are allowed at the pool as well – but if you’re on a romantic weekend – don’t worry – the pool and lounge area are big and it’s still possible to relax :)). Dogs are welcome too – we had a dog bed and a bowl in the room waiting for Maya. Overall – highly recommended for all 🙂
Dinner at Le Patio
This restaurant serves international dishes prepared from bio-farmed local products. We had a 3-course menu paired with local wine and the dessert was served right in time for some amazing sunset-views. A real dream. It was a bit too chilly to sit outdoor but I could only imagine how romantic and epic it must be to dine on the terrace in the summer.
Paragliding above Lac Leman
I did it! I went paragliding! It has been on my bucket list for a while already and I was so happy to finally tick it off. I got really lucky – I think the location was just perfect for the first time (lake + mountains + castle seen from the flight) and I had the most amazing pilot I could imagine. I met my pilot at the train station in Villeneuve and together we drove to Sonchaux – our take off spot. He explained me everything and also calmed me down (oh God, how nervous I was!) and after a short preparation, we finally got in the air from a steep hillside and glided off the mountain. It was just wow. I am so happy I did it and I already know I want to do it again. If you guys want to do it or want to gift someone with the opportunity of paragliding – I can only recommend you Baptiste and his team of Flyxperience.
My tips if you do it:
– don’t stress much (saying that won’t help much, I know),
– wear comfy shoes (oh guys I was so afraid of landing! – I thought I will fall with my face down on the ground – but surprisingly it’s very smooth and you just go from drifting in the air into standing on the ground :D)
– don’t forget to take a windproof jacket and sunglasses since it can be windy up there. And just do it – so worth it!
Montreux is a really lovely town and an absolute must visit if you guys are in this part of Switzerland. It has the “holiday vibe”. Beautiful old houses, charming terraces from its restaurants and cafes and it probably has the most beautiful promenade in all of Switzerland. Especially in the springtime – it’s a real treat for the eye. We spent some time soaking up the sun on a bench and just enjoyed the views. The town has a real riviera feels – no rush, relax and enjoy the atmosphere.
Walk to Chillon Castle and cruise on the lake
We first made a stop at the famous Bakery Zuercher (Avenue du Casino 45) and got some treats for lunch. Afterwards we walked along the flower lined lakeside in the direction of Chillon Castle. The walk is really nice, easy and stroller friendly (approx 4km).
Chillon Castle is one of the most beautiful castles in Switzerland and definitely a must-visit. I would recommend reserving some time for visiting the castle inside – we haven’t done that since dogs are not allowed, so I guess we’ll have to come back :). Linking the website with info about visiting HERE. There’s a Cafe and a snack bar on the permises, but I would suggest bringing your own picnic and taking a break by the lake with the castle view. We did so (with the treats from the bakery I mentioned above) and it was really lovely.
Aferwards we took a 1h30 cruise over Lake Geneva. Taking a Belle Époque Steamboat on a sunny warm day is a really dreamy thing to do. I really recommend planning it in advance and checking the timetable to know how much time you can reserve for the visit at the castle. I am linking the website where you can check the timetables and purchase the tickets HERE. Also, keep in mind that due to the current restrictions – bar and restaurants on the boats are temporary closed – something we forgot about and didn’t bring anything to drink with us.
Dinner at Hinata
We had a very nice culinary experience. I am a big fan of Japanese cuisine and it was cool to see the chef prepare our food on a Teppanyaki and to try their sushi and sashimi. The service was amazing – given we were with our baby – they were very understanding and also preheated the food we brought with us.
Visit in Vevey
I loved Sunday the most – we took it easy and didn’t have much planned for this day. We spent some time at the pool, checked out late and headed to Vevey around lunchtime. I love Vevey – it’s one of the most charming towns of the Swiss Riviera and from its lakeside promenade you can enjoy beautiful views of the French Alps on the opposite side of Lac Léman. Vevey makes a perfect destination for relaxing getaways and is also a great starting point for many adventures.
Hike from Chexbres to St. Saphorin
We planned a walk from Chexbres to St. Saphorin, that is a part of the Swiss Wine Trail in the UNESCO Lavaux region. (The whole trail is 12 km long and really scenic, linking more info HERE). We took a train from Vevey up to Chexbres (such a scenic ride!), made a stop at Bidlingmeyer bakery near the train station and walked down in the direction of St. Saphorin (with a small detour at Domaine Bovy to stock up on some Chasselas wine and have a break in the sun).
After a short, 40 minutes walk we arrived in Saint-Saphorin. This wine-growing and sun-drenched village clings too the steep Lavaux hillsides between the vineyards and the lake and opposites the grandiose Alpine peaks. After a short stroll we headed to a small beach, where we had a picnic with local wine and stuff we bought at the bakery earlier and it was a hit. A perfect ending to the perfect trip.
My tips if you guys plan a visit in Lavaux:
– wear a hat and bring sunscreen – we totally forgot and since the sun shines bright in the vineyards and there’s no shadow – we ended up with a good tan (aka sunburn :P).
– PLAN AHEAD – check which wineries are open on what day and check the timetables – trains usually go once per hour so it’s important to know the schedule to be time-efficient.
– buy wine to bring home – because it’s the best souvenir and once you pop the bottle, it will bring you nice memories of the trip 🙂
I hope you guys found this post useful. If you have any questions, you can send them to me via DM on Instagram. For more information about planning your perfect stay in the region check the official website of the Montreux Riviera Tourism.
This blopost was written in collaboration with Montreux Riviera Tourism. All opinions are authentically my own.