From Venice to Lucerne

I am officially in love with Switzerland.

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This whole country looks like it is right out of a postcard.

From Venice to Switzerland

After showering and blow drying my hair with a vacuum-looking hair dryer in Venice yesterday morning, my family and I joined our tour group for a quick breakfast before making the drive to Lucerne, Switzerland.

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Yes, that is the hair dryer. Crazy, huh? It had a tube attached to it and everything! Thank goodness it didn’t suck up any hair because as thin as my hair is, I’d be bald.

Fun at Rest Stops

During all of our drives to new European cities with our tour group, our big bus makes a few pit stops for those who need to use the bathroom and want to pick up a bite to eat. We’ve been so impressed with the quality of the rest stops. They are totally different than the scuzzy American rest stops and offer gourmet foods and fun trinkets. My sister and I have a blast looking around at all the goodies at each one.

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A bar of chocolate the size of an adolescent? Don’t mind if I do!

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Diet Coke is Coca-Cola light!

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Common Swiss names on mugs! Loving Hildegard. I think I just named my first born. Winking smile

The stuff at rest stops is seriously so cool. Yes, I am easily amused.


During our drive from Venice to Lucerne, our tour took a break for lunch in Lugano, Switzerland where my family and I sat down at an outdoor café and ordered some pizza and grilled vegetables with cheese to share.

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We stuck to ordering Italian fare because our tour guide told us that Lugano is largely influenced by Italy and the Italian food is still perfectly Italian.

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Check out the ooey gooey cheese!

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The cheese tasted like a mix between Swiss and brie cheese. I wish I could remember exactly what it was called because it was delicious. In fact, this whole meal was fantastic. It was great to finally sneak some vegetables into my belly again!

First Day in Lucerne, Switzerland

After another short while on the bus, our group made it to Lucerne. I think everyone on the bus was in awe as we gazed upon the beautiful Alps.

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Once we checked into our hotel, my family and I wasted no time and changed clothes quickly before heading out to walk around Lucerne and explore some hot spots and shops before dinner.

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We made sure to stop by Bucherer, the company that makes watches such as the oh-so-spiffy Rolex.

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Of course we weren’t there to by a expensive watch. We were there to pick up some free tea spoons that we received as a gift through our tour group.

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You just may see this little spoon pop up on the blog in the future in some breakfast posts!

Once we had our free gifts in hand, we headed out and walked down the cobblestone streets in search of a restaurant for dinner.

We knew we wanted to try traditional Swiss fondue and after stumbling upon a cute place with outdoor seating, we knew we found our place.

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My family and I ordered fondue, raclette and pork sausage with rotsi, making sure to hit the trifecta of traditional Swiss dishes.

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This meal was super cheesy which meant it was right up my alley. I was quite a fan! Through I’ve heard more than one joke about the lack of cookbooks that come out of Switzerland during our tour on this vacation, I must say I’ve loved every single meal I’ve had here so far!

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And on that note, I’ve gotta go get ready for tonight’s dinner! I’ll be sure to be back soon with a recap of today’s fun.

P.S. The Fashion page was updated today!


  1. says

    Looks like so much fun! My best friend lived in Switzerland for two years, and she’s said nothing but good things about it. I can’t wait until I get to visit it too!


  2. says

    I am so glad you are having such a fabulous time with your family. Speaking of which…your family is gorgeous. Every. Single. One. Of. You. GORGEOUS!


  3. Elizabeth says

    That pic of you and your dad is lovely. So great that you’re visiting all these wonderful places with your family.


  4. Holly @ The Runny Egg says

    I hope to visit Europe with Jason sometime. Those pictures of Switzerland are beyond gorgeous!!!


  5. Jayme @ Runner and Spice says

    BEAUTIFUL photos!! You and your family look like you are having a blast! Have fun and safe travels 🙂


  6. says

    Raclette and rosti! Such awesome memories for me! I *heart* Switzerland! Great pictures 🙂 I am having a great time reading you posts as you travel to and through some of my favorite places! Thanks so much for sharing your travels with us 🙂


  7. says

    Oh wow, this is all too much! The food, the sights…just lovely. I love Switzerland so much, but it’s been ages since I’ve been. I know I’ve used a funny hairdryer like that somewhere, but can’t remember where. So space age. 😉 Keep enjoying yourself; you and your family members look so happy, and I can see why–what a fabulous trip!!


  8. says

    My faaaaavorite thing about Switzerland was their salads! Crazy, but true. They are just simple salads with little piles of different vegetables (carrots, beets, corn) and the most delicious dressing. I ate one every day.


  9. Linda says

    I have been loving your pictures! I saw many of the same places in 2001 when I was there….oh I wish I could do that 3 week tour again. Keep the pictures coming!!


  10. Colleen @ Jimmy Choos on the Treadmill says

    All of your pictures look like they could be post cards! I’m jealous!


  11. says

    Yep, Switzerland is the best 🙂 I did mention that before ya know. haha 🙂 SO glad you love it! It is true, it comes right out of a postcard<—I lived there when I was little, and my momma is Swiss, so it is MY country. he.

    Love FONDUE!! Was the Cheese at lunch Gruyere? Or Muetschlie? Or Alpkaese? Just wondering 😉


  12. Shelby says

    Switzerland is gorgeous! It looks like you are having so much fun 🙂 And I’m loving those Swiss names on the mugs! I have a great aunt Hildegard and Helga…yep, you can tell my family isn’t German at all 😉


  13. says

    The rest stops there are pretty cool! I remember learning about that when I went to Ireland. They’re pretty spiffy there too. 🙂

    I loved Lucerne!! It’s the birthplace of hospitality. I have definitely been in that square before too, where you had lunch.


  14. says

    Oh my daze, look at the size of that Toberlone! I’m obsessed the white choc Toblerone! Gorgeous views! Be sure to have bircher muesli for breakfast at least once- to.die.for.!


  15. says

    I am sooo jealous at you right now! My boyfriend is in Zurich, working. Switzerland really is wonderful. I hope you tried ice cream in Lugano, it tastes heavenyl!
    Oh and yeah, if you find huge soft pretzels somewhere on the street, make sure you try them. Also delicious 🙂


  16. Megan@Dirty Dishes Daily says

    That food looks amazing. I kept scrolling down thinking…I want to eat that, and that, and that…


  17. says

    Oh Julie, I’m living vicariously through you! Switzerland is near and dear to my heart, and Lucerne is probably my favorite city in the country! I’m so glad you were able to enjoy fondue and raclette! I actually bought a raclette maker while I was there, and have had a blast throwing raclette parties for friends every since! 🙂

    I’m loving the pictures of you and your family! You’re all glowing!


  18. Julia says

    Haha, Hildegard. Too funny.
    Here in Germany, mostly great-grandmothers carry that name.

    Glad you have fun!
    On your next trip to Europe, you have to visit Germany as well!


  19. Laura says

    Julie I live in Zurich! Just moved here in January with my husband for his job. If you are in Lucerne you should take the ferry over to Weggis. It’s so small and beautiful and only a very short ferry ride. If you do, go to the Hotel Beau Rivage. It’s right on the water. I was just there with friends this past weekend because my one friend’s parents own it! How long will you be in Lucerne? Because I may be going back to Weggis this weekend!


  20. says

    Yum! All of that food looks good to me!!! 😀
    Oh and Diet Coke is called Coke Light here, too! Except Brazilians pronounce it “Coca Light-y”.


  21. Katja says

    I just moved back to Boston about a month ago after living in lucerne for three years and I miss it so much already! I love seeing your pictures, i can picture exactly where you are in each one. enjoy your time there it’s an amazing place.. You have to try a schoggibrotli from the pink bakery bachmann- there’s one right in schwanenplatz right next to the bucherer – it’s so good!


  22. says

    Switzerland is beautiful! I had no idea that it looked like that there! The food looks absolutely wonderful too! You took really beautiful pictures! I really love the picture of you and your dad. That is such a cute picture. You should definitely frame it 🙂


  23. says

    That 4th picture down from the “lion in the stone” water picture, (where you and Leslie are infront of a ‘fence” by the water- in front of the lake with buildings behind) is absolutely stunning. Frame it! I wish I had memories like that with my sister. I am lucky enough to be relatively well traveled in Europe, and Switzerland is incredible- I was blessed enough to stay there for over 2 weeks! I can’t remember where exactly you will be passing through and if you are going near Austria, but if you are going to either Salzburg or Strassburg, make sure your camera is charged. One is the ‘City of Mozart’ and the other on the border, and has the most AMAZING Cathedral I have ever seen. I highly recommend checking them out on Google images! Thank you so much for the beautiful images Julie!
    Ps- I love the way your dad looks at whomever is taking the picture- so full of love!


  24. says

    I’m loving your tour through Europe! I did this exact same tour (only we started in London and continued to Naples and Greece after Rome) in 2008. Every day, it’s reminding me of everything my parents, my sister, and I did! I even have that exact same spoon you got in Lucerne!


  25. Becky says

    What tour group are you with in Europe? I went a couple times but it was through my college and I would love to take my husband sometime soon and I swear tour groups would be the way to go because you get to see so much more!

    I would love more information on that!

    Have so much fun!! I traveled to all the places you have been and it is amazing! Drink the water from the fountains in Switzerland… mmmm I swear the best water I have ever had!!


  26. Melanie @ Trial By Trail says

    Looks like so much fun! My mom’s name is Hildegard! She’s from Germany and she goes by Hillie in the US. 🙂


  27. Kate @ NaturaStride says

    Everything looks amazing! I visited Lucerne about 10 years ago and all sorts of memories came back while looking through your pictures. That cheesy ooey-gooey-goodness looked amazing. You look like you’re having a blast with your family! Enjoy!


  28. says

    Julie, I’m so glad you’re still blogging even while you’re on vacation! I would have really missed your posts if you didn’t blog!! 🙂 P.S. I would have totally bought that toblerone bar if I was there! Hehe!


  29. Marie-Sophie says

    😀 All those names on the mugs are actually names that my a German/Swiss/Austrian woman in her sixties would have!!!

    I’m German and I just love to read what you guys are experiencing because it’s fun to see what people from the US think about Europe!


  30. says

    Oh man, I’m so glad you guys are loving your time. The blow dryers are so funny there. ANd it’s fun to see what alcohol/soda mixed products they sell in the stores. Lucerne is such a cute little town. I liked walking along the gate and up into the lookouts over the city. And man, the raclette there, I will never forget my spendy $40 dinner made of cheesey, potato, fruit and bread goodness!


  31. laura says

    It looks like you are having so much fun! Where did you get the sweater/wrap that you are wearing in the picture with the giant toblerone? I LOVE IT!


  32. Amelia says

    I’m so impressed with your blogging while on a truly gorgeous European va-ca, Julie! Your pictures and descriptions make me want to hop on over and join you. Lucky girl! If you get a chance, a giant Toblerrone is on my want list – I’m sure you’ll have room in your luggage. 😉


  33. Amy says

    My grandma’s name is Hildegard but her family is German. My great-grandma (her mom) remembers coming to America on a boat from Germany, how freakin’ cool is that?!



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