I’m writing this when I am meant to be asleep. We arrived home at 11pm last night, unpacked quickly, showered and a few hours of sleep later… I’m up.
The day after arriving in Zurich was good, I actually woke up feeling pretty good after the half marathon, which was surprising considering how yuk I felt after it. We got ready, had an okay breakfast at the hotel (it was included) and went for a walk into town. Zurich is pretty posh, people dress nicely here. We were early for the free walking tour so we found this large courtyard outside a church and shops, they have seats in the sun. So we found a nice pair, had a seat, people watched and enjoyed the sun.
When it was close to 11am, we wandered back to where the tour would start. We saw other people milling around waiting too so we were confident we wer in the right spot. Our tour was led by one of the cofounders, born in Paris and been here for the last few years. His lack of knowledge did come across a fair bit, but we got to see some lovely areas around Zurich and had a nice walk around for 1.5-2hrs.
After the tour was done, it was around 2pm, we found a pub and went in for lunch and a drink. Expensive (as Switzerland is), but the food was fantastic and the service was impeccable. After lunch we were tired and decided to slowly wander back to the hotel… we got lost a few times – the main train station is massive!
We rested our legs (not feeling so fresh now) for a few hours before we went out and grabbed some dinner. One of the Co-op’s in the station had some hot pasta and a chicken korma. So we grabbed them and took them back to our room to eat.
The next day we got up and went downstairs for breakfast, then back up to repack the bags. It was home time day. After getting ready and all packed, we chilled out till check-out time in the room and then made our way to the station.
Bought our tickets and then found a train going to the airport – pretty easy. Took 15 minutes and we were at the airport. Super easy. It’s a big airport but we found the right terminal and row to check-in. Bypassed the small line and got our tickets and bags checked. I asked the guy if there was anyone sitting next to me on the flights – he said yes but he could move us to a 2-seater on the first flight… I was like sure. He said he’d wave the cost for moving to those seats. The long 13 hour flight was a full flight so couldn’t do anything there.
We went through a painless security and immigration checkpoints and off to the Emirates lounge. It was lovely, the food was good, the little cheeses they had were delicious. We ate a bit and had a few drinks before off to find the gate. We got there a few minutes late but they were delayed – it ended up being 30-45 minutes later till we got to board. I was confused as there wasn’t many people at the gate – turns out there is another gate for economy… which we then merged into because although we had status – no business or first class for us.
So the seats I booked ages ago would have been better… we had emergency row seats, so good leg space but we were all the way at the back of the plane… instead of being up the front. You also couldn’t hold your phone or tablet for the take-off or landing… and you got to stare awkwardly to the attendants who were sitting facing you… the flight itself was okay. Cindy had 3 vodkas … food was good. I watched some movies. We made it to Dubai in good time… just after midnight local time, it took ages to get off the plane and to the lounge.
The food wasn’t as good as I remembered or as good as the lounge in Zurich. But I had a whisky and some food before finding our gate and back on the plane, we took off on time around 3am.
I finished off a movie that I didnt get to finish on the last flight, then went to sleep watching Guardians of the galaxy. We missed the breakfast service and said no to the pizza service. It didn’t smell nice. Drank a fair bit of water. I played a lot of games on the flight entertainment consol. The lunch service was good, we were starving by that point. I had to wake up the guy on the aisle twice during the flight, so we could go to the bathroom. He slept alot! We waited hours both times to see if would wake up, but no… so I had to wake him up. He took it well both times.
Before arriving, the lady who had come to introduce herself to me before takeoff came back and gave me an express card and I got a second for Cindy. Whèn we arrived, grabbed our alcohol allotment- breezed through immigration, our bags were one of the first out and into customs. The express line waa closed, but there was no queue… we didn’t need to declare anything but they sent us to get our bags screened – probably to give the other people something to do.
I had organised our lift home before going with my taxi driver, he wasn’t there but I saw another chap in the uniform and loudly said I couldn’t see *insert name*. This guy perked up and walked over and asked if I was Kathleen. I said I was, and sorry if he had messaged me – I don’t take my phone on holidays.
The heat hit us as we left the airport, 22 degrees at 1030 at night.
Overall, our holiday was fun. I didn’t enjoy the running so much but all good. I loved Nuremburg, Oktoberfest was super fun! Lindau surprised me. Lichtenstein was a little underwhelming but we didn’t give it much time. Lucerne was fantastic! Going up Mt Pilatus and Jungfraujoch was expensive but well worth it. Switzerland is definitely a cross between New Zealand and Scotland. I loved drinking the tap water there, also incredibly beautiful. Switzerland has amazing infrastructure as well.
It was interesting going back to Berlin and Munich after travelling to many other cities in the world. Berlin used to be my favourite city, although still good, I think Tokyo has taken its place.
I think the next time we come back to Europe, we want to explore Ireland better and also Wales. We also want to spend time exploring Sweden, Norway and Finland. It will no doubt coincide with London marathon one year who knows when.
Until next trip.
Ps. Will try to get Cindy to finish adding photos.