Going Solo to Lucerne, Switzerland

Lucerne, Switzerland-3

Going Solo to Lucerne, Switzerland

Lucerne, Switzerland-4

On the 3 hour drive from Heidelberg to Lucerne I was incredibly nervous. I’d traveled solo for work a zillion times, but a solo leisure trip? Never.  I’m a classic extrovert that finds comfort in being around people and when given too much space, I get in a funk. It’s not that I need to be actively engaging with others, but just being around people. Are you the same?

I had packed my bags and took off for Switzerland straight from work. Cruising the autobahn I gave myself a little pep talk, listened to podcasts and after a quick 3 hours was driving slowly in the pedestrian zone of Lucerne’s Old Town to the gorgeous Hotel Des Balances. 

Settling in to a room all my own, I made an audible squeal. I realized that the weekend was absolutely whatever I wanted to make it, and that was so exciting.

But first, let me take a…

Lucerne, Switzerland

(Oh my gosh, I’m that girl.)

With the Friday afternoon sunlight streaming through the city, I grabbed my camera and made my way along the river towards the lake. 

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You know that point in the evening what it gets super quiet? This was then. The soft murmur of chattering locals lounging along the lake shore seemed to compliment the cloudless sky. Peaceful and calm, it was Swiss bliss.

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Meandering without a destination, I strolled slowly across the Kappelbrucke – Europe’s oldest covered bridge dating back to 1333 (!) while the swans paddled below.

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With the sun throwing color into the Spring sky, tables began to fill with hungry diners. Seeing the bright pinks and oranges, I shelved my appetite (an absolute no-no had Dan been with me!) and surveyed the scene along the river.

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The swans were in on the secret. Sundown in Lucerne was something special and we all grew quiet with anticipation of the moments to come. The city, with it’s crystal clear river and centuries of charm, is positively serene at dusk. And here I was, some gal all by herself from a continent away, lucky enough to get to embrace it too. 

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Opting out of a structured dinner, I grabbed street food (a yummy chicken schnitzel sandwich) and a mini-bottle of red wine from the grocery store and found a spot on a bench by the water. 

My curiosity and I took a stroll along the old walls of the city then tucked into clean white sheets before the clock hit 10PM.

It wasn’t wild or crazy but it was perfect.

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Cheers to solo travel.

…more to come.

  • A solo travel day or solo any day is a great way to unwind, gather your thoughts and just be peaceful… I love solo days here and there! Your post made me smile 🙂

    http://atstarfish.blogspot.com

  • Stunning photos! Solo travel is so therapeutic 🙂

  • LOVE your shots, Margo! The lighting is so moody and beautiful. Can’t wait to see more. And I haven’t traveled solo– ever. I’ve always been with friends or family, but every once in a while it’s fun to venture out alone!

  • I am also a total extrovert! I definitely feed off the energy of other people and don’t need as much time to myself as some of my friends do. I don’t mind being alone but I’d usually rather be around other people even if we aren’t doing much!

    Beautiful pictures!

  • So glad you enjoyed your first solo trip — congrats on taking the plunge — and happy you were able to do it in Lucerne. Whenever friends or family come to visit me in Zurich, I try to take them there.

  • lucerne looks beautiful!

  • Oh my, what a beautiful place! I went to Lucerne a few times as a little girl (can you imagine me back then? 😉 ) and I’d love to go back as an adult now! 🙂 Already curious to hear about your hike in Switzerland!! 🙂

  • Ashley

    It sounds like such a lovely and relaxing trip, just walking around taking photos sounds like the perfect day to me! Glad you had such a wonderful time! Your photos are gorgeous, as always!

    http://www.ashbam.com

  • So beautiful! I’m all about being by myself so I can’t really understand you extroverts 🙂

  • Erin B

    this sounds like a dream! and what beautiful photos!
    with love, erin | lifestyle & travel blog

  • Personally, I love solo travel and having that time to myself (I’m a total intro/extro combo!), but it can still be daunting right when I set out.

    And holy cow, that bridge is amazing!! Is it just me or does it seem insane that anything wooden from 1333 is still around (even with restorations and such… still)? Such a cool bit of history!

  • Solo travel for the win! Despite the fun, it’s always daunting at first! Lucerne looks so quaint! And that bridge!!! O.M.G.!

  • such beautiful pictures!!

  • I’ve taken plenty of solo day trips but I’ve always wanted to do a weekend away solo! Beautiful pictures, I love that scarf!

  • Diana Maria

    This place honestly looks like a dream! I love solo travel I take plenty of solo trips- I think they teach you so much about yourself which is why they can be so life changing! Great photos!

    My Lovelier Days

  • emilygrapes

    I am so impressed by your solo travels!! Curious: does your cellular plan work in Switzerland as well? Or do you connect to wifi. That’s my only “fear” when traveling alone (here in Japan). I don’t have service and its very hard finding wifi around here. The photo of that family is so priceless. That’s one of those where I’d want to hunt them down to give it to them blown up. Captures such a real loving moment with them.

  • I live your solo trip! Lucerne was my first ever solo trip to! It’s such an easy city to see and fall in love with! I need that swan pic (seriously, I want a print!)

  • Gorgeous photographs! What a stunning town.

  • What a beautiful town and what an awesome solo trip! I’ve never taken a true solo (overnight) trip anywhere and this is making me itch to do it. There’s something about doing whatever you want!

  • Leah Frederic

    Going to Lucerne at the end of June! This makes me that much more excited to see this beautiful little town!!

  • Cheers to solo travel! I just had my first semi solo travel trip and it was scary and wonderful all at the same time!

  • I love meandering without a destination. The light and composition of these photographs are pure magic. What a glorious day!
    xxx

    http://www.threadandbones.com

  • I’m glad to you did a solo pleasure trip! It can be so much fun!

  • This is absolutely breathtaking! I’m such a wuss and am terrified at the idea of solo travel, but I’m putting it in the bucket list. I think I’ll love it so much more than I ever could have thought 🙂 Also, I just discovered your blog and I’m in la-la-love 🙂 I was studying abroad in Europe last year for a few months, fell completely in loveeee, and am going back this summer for a couple of months. You’re getting me so excited!
    http://www.perpetuallycaroline.com

  • I loooove your photos! Lucerne certainly looks so picturesque, even at night. And kudos to you on solo travel! For how long are staying there? More Lucerne posts please 🙂

    Paola // Resuscitate

  • Stunning, stunning photos!! You make me homesick for Switzerland. I get nervous travelling on my own too – but I love how you ended up making the most of it and just having a blast! xxx

  • Right on, girl! Travelling alone means it can be all about YOU! We’ve been trying to convince my mother of this. My father recently passed away and he and she were avid travellers. Mom is nervous to do it on her own. I’m going to send her this link and let her in on the solo travel secrets!

  • I travel alone most of the time – I find I can get more done that way, too. How did you feel at the end of it? Did you feel awkward at all?
    As always, gorgeous photos.

  • Julia

    I have been really wanting to take a solo trip for a while now, because it’s you and only you who decides everything! This day does look like pure bliss, and as always, stunning photos!!

    Julia

    ExploresMore.com

  • This post kinda hit home for me! I studied in Switzerland (sans boyfriend, for once) during my last semester of college and so much of what I did there was me alone and independent. There was this particular moment that I got upgraded and was staying in a schmancy $400/night hotel room in Montreaux where I was there *by myself* to see a concert. I always associate CH with personal independence and feeling OK about doing things solo, so I really loved this post. And that photo of the wine and sandwich and being in bed by 10pm. Yes, yes and yes! Looks like you enjoyed yourself 🙂

  • Almost all of my trips are solo… you get used to it.

    Traveling with other people is lots of fun, though.