Super sleek, slick and cosmopolitan, Geneva is a rare breed of a city. Its people chatter in every language under the sun and it’s constantly thought of as the Swiss capital – which it isn’t. This gem of a city superbly strung around the sparkling shores of Europe’s largest Alpine lake is, in fact, only Switzerland’s third-largest city. Montreux is truly a potpourri world of art, history, scenic beauty, folklore, and elegant traditions. Immortalized by Byron in the 19th century, Montreux has been welcoming and enchanting guests for well over a hundred years. Ideally situated on Lake Geneva, Montreux enjoys a remarkably mild sunny climate where vine-clad terraced slopes and forests melt upwards to the soaring peaks of the Alps.
June 30, 2018: Depart Chicago or Washington, DC for Geneva, Switzerland on an overnight flight.
July 1, 2018: Arrive in Geneva in the afternoon. Upon arrival, we will transfer to our hotel with a bit of time to check in, relax and unpack at our home in Geneva for four nights – Hotel Royal.
This evening, we begin Switzerland experience with a welcome dinner in typical Suisse style. Fondue, please!
July 2, 2018: After breakfast, we will Discover Geneva. Embedded between nearby Alpine peaks and the hilly terrain of the Jura, the French-speaking city of Geneva lies in the bay where the Rhone leaves Lake Geneva. With its humanitarian tradition and cosmopolitan flair, the European seat of the UNO and headquarters of the Red Cross is known as the capital of peace.
The Old Town is full of cobbled alleys lined with café bars, restaurants and decorated boutiques showing local art ware, antiques, art galleries and much more.
We will have a 3-course lunch at a historic mansion that has been transformed into the gastronomic restaurant.
Enjoy the remainder of day and evening at your leisure.
July 3, 2018: Start your day with a hearty breakfast at our hotel before we ink another page of our journey of Switzerland – Chamonix and Mont Blanc.
Crossing the Switzerland-France border, you visit one of the most famous villages in the French Alps, Chamonix and Mont Blanc, the highest peak in both the Alps and Western Europe at 15,780 feet (4,800 meters).
Enjoy the scenic journey through the mountains (1:45-minute drive) and ride the cable car to Aiguille du Midi for breathtaking views of Mont Blanc and the surrounding Alps (20-minute ride). Look for the famous Swiss peak of Matterhorn, and relax on a terrace that boasts outstanding alpine views.
On the way back down to the village, we take you for a delicious French lunch followed by a bit of time at leisure.
We will return to Geneva for you to enjoy the balance of your day as you wish.
July 4, 2018: After enjoying the most important meal of the day, we will sweeten our journey with a Suisse Gourmet Experience. After all, you are in Switzerland and can’t miss this opportunity.
Mr. Pascoët was inspired by chocolate and its secret, some of these will be handed on to you today. Pascoët is located in Geneva and in its atelier, receive a briefing about the cacao coming from all around the world and then we will have the chance to taste a couple of Pascoët’s products. We will also be shown how they do their chocolates/pralines and some of us will have the chance to help.
Lunch will be held in a local restaurant before heading to Satigny for a wine tasting at the Domaine des Bossons.
After the wine tasting, we will transfer you back to the hotel.
July 5, 2018: After breakfast, we bid our farewell to Geneva and head to Montreux. The road to Montreux promises to be an adventure into the Swiss Riviera and the world of Charlie Chaplin.
Featuring over 3,000 square meters of discovery, experience, and emotion in a symbiosis of the scenic, cinematographic, multimedia and virtual world, this astonishing museum is dedicated to the life and times of Charlie Chaplin.
A three-hour tour through a history filled with sensitivity, revelation, excitement, and emotion showcasing Charlie Chaplin’s mythical mansion and a brand-new exhibition hall in the center of a fabulous 14-hectare domain graced with gardens, pathways, and terraces offering a spectacular lake view in the Alpine splendor that is Switzerland.
A unique, spectacular and overwhelming experience.
This evening you can enjoy the sweet sounds of jazz at the Montreux Jazz Festival. The jazz venue is within walking distance from the hotel.
Music can be enjoyed at various venues in Montreux with your ticket or some that are completely free. With the exception of Château de Chillon, all concert venues in Montreux are within a very easy walking distance of each other and public transportation hubs.
Free concerts are held daily in various venues including open-air Music in the Park, the famous Montreux Jazz Café and Studio 41. Various workshops, projects, and screening of archive material offer further attractions.
Montreux is truly a potpourri world of art, history, scenic beauty, folklore, and elegant traditions. Immortalized by Byron in the 19th century, Montreux has been welcoming and enchanting guests for well over a hundred years.
Ideally situated on Lake Geneva, Montreux enjoys a remarkably mild sunny climate where vine-clad terraced slopes and forests melt upwards to the soaring peaks of the Alps.
From the majestic setting of Chillon Castle along sheltered bays of roses, magnolias and palm trees, stately homes and excellent old world hotels grace the lakeshore.
Enticing shopping boutiques, sidewalk cafes, lakeside promenades, festivals, famous home-grown wines and spectacular views are only part of the pleasures.
July 6, 2018: Known as the Pays d’Enhaut, literally meaning the upper country, this region with its rich, flowering meadows, and its dark green pine forests, is a real-life postcard destination.
Here you board the scheduled train Panoramic train. Sit back relax and let the panorama unfold before your eyes. Green pastures, snow-capped mountains, and chalets are what await you today.
The train stops in Chateau d’Oex a typical Swiss village, a short walk and we arrive at the Fromagerie. Here they produce a full organic cheese, and the fun part is that you will view a live demonstration of the cheese making process.
Return to Montreux for a free evening to enjoy the Jazz Festival on your own.
July 7, 2018: After breakfast, we will experience the city of Montreux, its quaint old cobblestone town and beautiful lakeshore promenade. We’ll also visit the nearby and famous Chillon Castle, immortalized in Byron’s poem, “The Prisoner of Chillon”. Set like a gem in the rocky peninsular this classic medieval fortress houses an interesting collection of period furniture and objects.
Return to our hotel to unwind.
This evening we will be bittersweet as we come together for the last evening for a farewell dinner! Afterwards, enjoy free time to explore the Montreux Jazz Festival one last time.
July 8, 2018: This morning after breakfast, we will board our motor coach and head to Geneva for our flights home!
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Itinerary subject to change