Hello, my loves. It feels so good to be finally over the Paris leg of the trip! It actually makes me feel that I’m getting over the backlog bit by bit.
I know the updates have been slow in this space (as well as the YouTube channel) but I’ve been so busy, there are days when I just don’t know where my day went. It’s bound to let up by the second week of March – hopefully.
For now, let me share with you some photos from our day-trip to Geneva last August. We took a high speed train from Paris to Geneva early in the morning. The TGV Lyria takes about 3 hours and 5 minutes from Gare de Lyon to Geneva’s Central Station.
Since it was still too early for my brain to function, I slept most of the way. But every time I opened my eyes in between naps, I was treated to a beautiful view. It is common knowledge that the French country side is gorgeous but that is quite an understatement and the photos I have here do not give it justice. My excuses would have to be we were moving too fast and that the glass keeps reflecting the train’s interior.
The main reason for us making a side trip to Geneva is our friend Anne. She’s Alvin’s colleague from our Foreign Ministry and is currently assigned there. We missed her, obviously. 😉
Geneva has that well-preserved old European town feel. You can actually imagine Belle suddenly coming out of the narrow, winding alleys singing
Little town, it’s a quiet villaaaage…
Yes, I know she’s from the French countryside but the vibe is there. Might as well jump on it and put it out there.
We walked around the old city in the cool weather that day and we heard about daily life in Geneva from Anne who has been enjoying her time in this expat hub.
Tip: If you’re a tourist looking for advice on where to go and what to do in Geneva, look for the Tourist Angels. They wear bright orange shirts and hats so they’re quite hard to miss.
Best find that day? A used condom on one of the side streets of the St Pierre Cathedral.
One of the stops that I most enjoyed was the Maison Tavel. It’s the oldest house in Geneva, built in the 12th century. There’s an impressive 3D map of Geneva showing how it looked like in the 1800s – complete with its fortifications.
Anne brought us to Restaurant Les Armures where we had fondue and air dried meat plus more cheese, of course. (When in Geneva…) Oh, and there was also my favourite – raclette. Alvin, meanwhile, ordered the perch fillets dish if I remember correctly. He didn’t like it much.
I love fondue. To be honest, I love cheese in general so that lunch with Anne was purely superb. Anne says the restaurant (as well as the hotel it belongs to) was featured in a Paulo Coelho novel. I haven’t read anything of Coelho’s. I guess I lost interest right away because of the hype. I promise to give him a try one of these days though.
The newer part of the city is vibrant with quite a bustling crowd. We were there on a weekend and people were out shopping with their tots in tow. I won’t say that it’s as busy as Amsterdam but I think it’s more comparable to Copenhagen.
Another thing to love about Geneva are the parks and the lush greenery surrounding the city. Ah, to lounge around on a park bench with a book during summer – divine. For a place that houses United Nations offices and other related agencies as well as consulates and permanent missions, you’d think it can feel too crowded. But it’s quite the contrary. It’s quite a relaxing place.
I was told, however, that people who live in Geneva often venture out of the city on weekends. They go hiking or exploring in neighbouring France or in other Swiss cities. I can imagine that the small town does tend to look too familiar after a while. But what’s good is for travellers like us, it’s quite an easy city to explore. We only had a day and Anne says we’ve pretty much seen most of it.
Is it worth the trip from Paris, you might ask? Unless you have something in particular that you really want to see, I must say that you can skip it and save it for your next trip back to Europe or in the area. However, if you have the luxury of time or if like us, you have a friend that you’ve missed quite a lot, go for it.
We’re also quite lucky to have someone who is practically a local to show us around. Thank you for the awesome hospitality, Anne! 😉
That’s all for now, my loves. Thanks for reading this quickie entry. Will be back again soon for more!
*Trip is not sponsored by any country’s tourism department, company, or brand. Although almost all of our expenses were shouldered by my side of the family who want to see me more often. Thanks, fam!????