Hey guys! How you have all been? Glad to see you guys after a month of interning and some world traveling.
Welcome to part 2 of my one-woman adventure series.
So I just returned from a wonderful vacation to Switzerland
I will not be posting my Switzerland blogs continuously. I shall post them over a period of time.
My blog’s draft list is as long as a housewife’s grocery shopping bill.
So in today’s blog episode of one woman adventure we have Geneva-Switzerland.
Geneva was not my first stop on this trip but I was contemplating for a week on what to write about in my blog.
Should I publish Switzerland posts? Naa people will get bored and I need time to edit the pictures.
Should I publish one of those travel tips posts? Naa doesn’t make sense.
Should I do some itinerary posts? Naa.
Why don’t I just do something instead of wasting time overthinking?
So I decided that I will do Geneva on the spur of the moment because I woke up this morning to stylized google photos of Geneva created by my phone.
In fact, throughout my Swiss trip, Geneva was the place I looked forward to visiting the most.
Why?I am an International Affairs student and Geneva has some prominent United Nations Offices and the Geneva Convention of course.
I can speak French a little and I wanted to talk to native French speakers for the first time.I have only been conversing in French that has an Indian accent.
As soon as I reached the Geneva main station, I did not feel like I was in Switzerland at all.
I felt like I was in a newly renovated Indian railway station.I then went to the information center(which is all over Western Europe with an i symbol).
I stood there in the queue and I did not realize that an Indian uncle was before me.I got shouted at by him.
I wanted to speak French with the official at the tourist information desk but was hesitant and conscious so I spoke in English.
The first place I wanted to visit was obviously the United Nations Office. The name of the stop was Nations in the tram.
The streets on the way looked very dull and boring, like Chinatown in Kuala Lumpur.
I was probably the worst dressed person on the whole tram. I was dressed in a beach like an outfit(a casual one piece)as it was burning hot. While I saw several United Nations employees dressed in sarees, formal outfits like formal dresses, the men all suited up with ties. I felt so embarrassed that I sat in the last seat away from everyone.
Then when I got off at United Nations I was really disappointed. It was just a series of buildings and I saw some tourists clicking pictures there. So I just clicked some pictures of the buildings spent some time looking around the place and left within 20 minutes as the heat was getting too much to handle.
Then I got into the same tram I had come in and I saw a beautiful lake and had to get off there. That is the Lake Geneve, which is the French-Swiss border. I walked for more than an hour around the lake clicking pictures and enjoying the views. Every city in Switzerland has a lake in the city center which makes it look aesthetic and provides world-class views.
I did not feel very safe in some parts as I found too many hawkers and beggars there.
A beggar playing music stopped me since I was alone and started asking me for money in French, ‘Bonjour ma belle fille!Est-ce-que tu me donne l’argent ?'(Good day pretty girl, could you give me some money)
I replied Je n’ai pas l’argent(I do not have money)and left. I know I shouldn’t have said anything but I wanted to try out French.
I then walked to the Jet d’eau(jet fountain)in Lake Geneva which is a popular tourist attraction.
I had carried packed lunch this time since I could not find affordable vegetarian food anywhere I went in Switzerland before Geneva.
I was surviving on ice creams, gelatos, desserts, and coffee(those were the only items I could afford). I ate so much ice cream there that I had not slept for several nights due to throat irritation.
The best part about Switzerland is any restaurant or cafe you go to has an indoor and outdoor. The latter was what I always chose so that I can get the double benefit of a meal and a good view.
I found a cafe by the jet fountain where I sat and started having my rice meal(staple Indian food). Then the waiter told me in English that I cannot sit here unless I ordered something(what a polite way to greet the customer 😑).
I did not find anything on the menu interesting so I ordered the most basic and cheapest thing on the menu cafe latte.
Then came a beggar and this time I was stuck. I had no choice but to give him money so I gave him a 0.50 coin.
After my lunch and coffee. I took a small boat ride which barely lasted for 10 minutes around Lake Geneve. The boat was a small closed boat. Even though I felt like I was trapped in a hot car I got great views. I took a walk another around the Old town by the lake. I was slowly starting to like the place now.
I then went to Monument Brunswick which was a small monument surrounded by a garden and a beautiful pond with a lion statue.
I walked under a bridge that reminded me of the time I got wanderlost in Putrajaya, Malaysia
I saw the name Mont Blanc with an arrow pointing towards a cruise ticket counter.For a second, I got so excited as I thought I will get to see Mont Blanc(a white mountain which covers France, Italy, and Switzerland)by cruise. My excitement turned into disappointment within a few seconds. Mont Blanc was the name of the area from where the cruises were to take off.
I had planned Lausanne for the latter half of the day.Lausanne is a fifty minutes to one hour train ride from Geneva.There was a cruise to Lausanne but it was for five hours.So I decided not to take it.
During the last few days,I had messed up big time due to not having an itinerary and list of places to cover.So on that day I had decided that I would stay in Geneva until 3 pm and then go to Lausanne to spend the rest of the day.
It was only 1 pm and I wanted to something to do for another two hours.I had reached Geneva at around 9.45 that morning.Switzerland is an expensive country so I did slow travel there in order to make the best use of every minute I had and every penny I had spent.
I wanted to soak myself into Swiss culture completely.
I then walked on Rue du Mont Blanc to see if there was anything interesting but my efforts were in vain.I had already covered everything I had planned to cover since I spent lesser time than expected at Nations.
I found a tram stop and stood there.I saw a board with La Plage Genève(Geneva Beach).So I took the tram which went there.
It was my sixth day in Switzerland and I had never visited a beach there so far.I was curious to know what a beach in Switzerland looked like since there isnt much coverage given to them.So I went there and was gravely dissapointed.It was a sea port and I could not see sand anywhere.I dont know why they called it a beach.
So I spent around 15-20 minutes there and boarded the next tram to the railway station(Gare Corbin in French).Please note that the trams in Switzerland have screens which state all points where the tram stops and the number of minutes left to each stop.
But in Geneva only the tram I had taken from the station to the United Nations building had it.None of the other trams did.This made me realize how much Switzerland had spoiled me already as I was facing difficulty.
I spent more time waiting for the tram than I did at the beach.I finally got a tram to Gare Corbin.After a seemingly long ride I was dropped off at a creepy old tunnel.
I looked everywhere around me I could not find the railway station.This made me think I might have been mislead by the name Gare Corbin just as I was by Mont Blanc.
The train I had boarded was going to Geneva Airport(Gèneve Aeroport).Since I was getting impatient I boarded the next tram which was to the airport.
I was hesitant to ask people for some reason that day.I guess it was the cold attitude of the people there which put me off.
In the tram I scolded myself internally for not searching properly and got off at the next stop after the tunnel.
I waited for the next tram back to Gare Corbin and boarded it.This tram luckily dropped me off at the opposite side of the same tunnel from where I could see a train crossing.
I then realized that I had got down at the right place the previous time and wished i had spent more time looking.The station entrance at Geneva unlike the other cities I had visited is located in an isolated corner and isnt easily visible.I just walked in the direction everyone else was walking and within seconds I was at the station by 2 pm(before my intended time).
I will post about Lausanne very soon.So stay tuned !
My next post will be out this Friday.It may nor may not be about Switzerland.
To see what I have been upto this summer and the rest of my adventures.
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If you have any interesting stories to share or anything to comment below.You can leave links to your blogs too if you have some intetesting stories to share I promise I will read them.
Have a great week ahead bye !