Switzerland, Part 5: Swimming Holes and Alpine Thrills

Time always seems to go so quickly when you’re traveling. It’s heightened living at its best, and fate seems to rush it while I do my best to try to slow things down. In this case, I wanted to draw out the feeling of the sun’s warmth on my face, the cold rush of the streams against my hot skin, and the refreshing sensation of breathing in the mountain air.

Still, it was our last full day in Switzerland, and the question loomed: What to do? There was one valley nearby that we had yet to explore, but that valley did not promise Alpine peaks, and so the Alps called and we heeded their invitation. We returned to the Val Bovona, the Basodino Glacier, and the cable car ride that both took our breath away and delivered us into the heart of that glacier.

First, however, lunch was in order, and with fantastic Italian food all around you, you do not substitute with a protein bar. We stopped again in Foroglio, the enchanting stone village, and the Ristorante la Froda, a farm-to-table dream in the middle of a fairy tale. The lentil dish was astoundingly good, and the white Merlot a perfect match.

We followed up the long leisurely lunch with a return visit to Foroglio’s waterfall. Watching water spill over the side of a mountain is nothing short of mesmerizing — maybe too mesmerizing, as we checked the time and suddenly needed to rush to make the cable car if we wanted enough time to explore up in the clouds before the last descent at 4:45. With some mad driving skills by my sweetie that can only be described as impressive, we flew, just making the cable car. The Alpine thrills would be ours today after all.

Today we decided to go a different route, and began climbing up. It can’t be that far up, can it? So we climbed and climbed, up, up, up. We are almost there, we have to be almost there, but where is there? “There” is the magnificent view that surely awaited us at the top. “So how long do you think we have been climbing UP?” my love asked. “Oh, about 45 minutes,” I said. “Try an hour and 45,” he replied. We had to turn around and go back. In a battle between me and Mother Nature, I am keenly aware she will always win, and stranded on an Alpine glacier for the evening is not my idea of fun.

I took a moment to take it all in and was reminded of a favorite childhood book, “Heidi,” and for a moment, I knew the happiness that that character felt living on the mountain. Simply majestic. Moments in time to be deeply absorbed before reality whisks you away to your real life, that, while treasured, is not here. “Enjoy,” whispered the universe, and so I did.

It was a warm day, and we were more than a little … err … sticky. The river was looking very inviting, gushing over the boulders, creating those magical swimming pools that were begging us to visit, almost pleading — and who were we to argue? It was the highlight of our day, jumping all hot and sweaty into that swimming pool at the bottom of a valley teeming with waterfalls. Can someone please pinch me? This cannot be real. Immersed and looking up at the water spilling down the ragged, jagged crevices of this mountain valley. Sigh. Heaven.

How to top off a last night and a perfect day? Ask a local for a dinner recommendation! DaVino restaurant on the lake in Locarno it was, and with homemade ravioli stuffed with spinach, veal and beef, we were anything but disappointed.

Planning our next adventure is tempting, but no, not tonight. Tonight is for savoring where we are and not letting this adventure end too soon.

2017-05-08T13:12:37+00:00 July 31st, 2014|Inspirations, Switzerland: Summer 2014, Travel|0 Comments

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