Our home from home for a few days was the pretty little town of Spiez, Switzerland. Set on a little inlet leading off Lake Thun, with an impressive castle perched on the hill and boats bobbing around on the marina waters, we couldn’t have asked for a better setting for our first foray into the world of Airbnb.
Our little chalet was part of an apartment block adjacent to the boardwalk that skirts round the marina. With the start of the summer season just getting underway (we were there in May), it was still a quiet and sleepy place – the perfect spot for a relaxing getaway. Compact and cosy, our apartment hosts (we communicated by email) had done everything possible to create a welcoming homely space. Our daughter, Mlle, who loves cooking, prepared some delicious meals for us. The little balcony off the living room was the ideal place to admire the stunning scenery and watch the world go by.
We were so close to the boardwalk it felt as if we could almost reach out and touch the boats. The near perfect pyramid shape of the Mt Niesen peak (part of the Bernese Alps) dominated the skyline above Spiez (you can take a funicular from Muelenen up to the viewing platform). The light over the Alps, especially as the sun was starting to set, was amazing. If you were a painter you would have a field day here with soft purple, lilac, and gold hues forming as the sun set over the mountains . Not surprisingly the area has indeed attracted many artists including the Swiss born artist Paul Klee, who did a number of paintings of the landscape including Mt Niesen.
There are a few cafes and restaurants around the boardwalk area but we preferred to eat out during the day and self cater at night. The shops, including a Migros supermarket, are up in the main town about a 10 to 15 minute walk away (and close to the station). There was also a fine looking vineyard just up the road – we didn’t actually go round but still managed to sample plenty of the delicious local wines!
The boat quay was a couple of minutes walk away – from here regular ferries take you down to Interlaken in one direction and up to the city of Thun in the other. We could easily have spent all day lounging on the balcony, reading and just enjoying the tranquility, but we managed to get out and about and do some fabulous day trips. More to follow!
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