Hello from western Switzerland! We went to the dazzling Gruyere Castle yesterday. First, we drove up to the castle with our Swiss friends. The regal old landmark was on a very big hill surrounded with pastures of grazing cows. Gruyere is famous for its cheese and the sound of the cowbells that are around every cow’s neck. As we parked our car and walked up, we got a beautiful view of all the farmland and hills around us.
Then we hiked into the medieval village of Gruyere. The cobblestone village has a little hotel and a restaurant or two. The town now makes all of its money from tourism. We continued through the main square (and only square) and bought the tickets for the castle. The intro video would happen in 10 minutes, so we enjoyed the view as we waited. We saw lots of mountains and quite a few small towns. A lot of the mountains were covered in fog.
Then we went into the castle and watched the video. We learned all about the history of Gruyere. For instance, we learned that women, seeing the approaching army, brought their goats into the castle. One of them had the bright idea of tying torches to the goat’s horns, lighting them, then making them run towards the enemy. The enemy, seeing the huge amount of torches approaching, thought a giant army was approaching and ran. That was one of the great victories of Gruyere. After the video finished, we strolled into the castle. We saw bedrooms, lookout rooms, and beautiful tapestries and paintings. Then we went walking around the rampart. We spotted the gardens and walked through them. The gardens were full of hedges, flowers, and fountains.
After that, we went to the little village to eat a late lunch. I had Macaroni and Gruyere cheese with some ham. It was a delicious, yet rich and filling, meal. We tried some tasty cheese fondue as well. After that, I had a great meringue and cream dessert that was famous around there. Somehow I got an extra dessert that Elio and I split. Then we headed back to the car, content with our visit.
The fresh and tangy cheese was wonderful, and I thought about how much you both would enjoy it if you were here. And Gruyere castle is a very interesting castle to learn about.