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Switzerland - Day 15 (Zurich)
Woke up really early to make sure that we had time to do Zurich in a day. We went to a help desk to order an unlimited pass for transportation. We thought we had it figured out on the computer, but wanted to make sure. The nice thing about an unlimited pass is that it counts for all types of transportation...buses, trams, trains, and water taxis.
Took the train to Zurich HB and started the day by walking along the Sihl River toward the Mattensteg bridge. This is where the Limmat River and Sihl meet. We walked toward the next bridge, WalcheBruke. This walk is beautiful as it winds through a park and heads toward the city center. Around this area, it is possible to catch a water taxi and cruise the river and the first portion of the lake. We stopped at Muhlesteg bridge, which is covered in locks. Really cool and quirky. Some locks are bike locks. No better way to show love and affection for someone than a clunky bike lock!
Just after Rudolf Brun-Bruke bridge, we veered off toward Lindenhof Park for sweeping views of the city. Everyone talked in blogs about the crazy flight of stairs up, but these stairs were nothing compared to what we had climbed in some of the churches. The park was sparse, but the views were stunning. Zurich is a beautiful city! We sat on the swings for some time and chatted with a woman who was from the states. We continued along the river and crossed the Munster Bruke bridge. The prettiest bridge of them all with an award winning view of the lake.
Grossmunster is the main church in Zurich. The church is different than most we have seen with two towers rather than one. We paid to ascend one of the towers and it was well worth the 5 euro. You could see in all directions and appreciate how beautiful Zurich is in all aspects. Zurich has a cool, historic feel yet it wraps around large bodies of water and is surrounded by mountains. So unique!
We started to get hungry about this time, so we went in search of lunch. Downside of Zurich, nothing opened until after 11 am. We killed some time, paid money to use the bathroom, and then roamed back to a place that had a wide variety of food. No surprise that we ordered hamburgers. After lunch, we walked the Belleriverstrasse. Awesome walk along the lake with a lot of swimming spots or grassy areas to enjoy views of the lake.
We were also looking for the botanical gardens, but couldn't find them after much searching. One guy, a drunk, even tried to join us on our quest. He was rambling about how hard it was to find a "joint" to smoke and that was when we hastily made our exit from that awkward situation by turning sharply into a park. We took a fast boat back up river. So cool to see the town from the water. We actually wished that we had rented one of the paddle boats we passed on the lake...they had slides into the water and everything!
We continued searching for the gardens but were told to go to the succulent gardens on the other side of town instead. It was supposed to be a lot better. We hopped the bus to Enge which was supposed to get us close. There was a total weirdo with his pants falling off and a creepy dog. We wanted off that bus so bad! We jumped off and even when we realized we were on the stop, there was no way we were going to get back on that bus. We caught the tram instead. The succulent garden was a little off the beaten path, but it was worth it. They had varieties that were so unique and from all over the world. Really cool collection.
We were pretty wiped after the long day on our feet, so we jumped. The train back to Zurich HB, quickly walked Bahnhofstrasse ( famous one mile shopping location), and then then caught the train to the hotel. On our return, we saw so many people in soccer jerseys. Switzerland was playing in the World Cup that evening and it felt as though the whole town was turning out for it. We even got free bags! Dinner and packing awaited us back at the hotel.
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Ben, Julie, and Amelia