Thankfully we were able to visit the UK for a few weeks to see family and friends, which was really lovely; but we are back now and we have been eager to go hiking and swimming again in Switzerland!
On a hot and sunny Saturday in August, we decided to head to Le Mont-Pèlerin for some hiking and incredible views.
Le Mont-Pèlerin is located above Vevey in Vaud. You can drive there, but we opted to take the train to Vevey, where we then took the funicular from Vevey-Funi to Mont-Pèlerin. The funicular runs every 20 minutes and for a single ticket it costs around 2-4 chf (depending on if you have a demi-tarif).
At the top of the funicular there are a couple of restaurants/cafes where you can enjoy the views. There are also public toilets and lots of maps/signs about the hiking footpaths, moutain biking routes and snow shoe routes for in the winter.
We had our pushchair with us, but we decided to leave it here (the cafe Couleurs Chocolat kindly let us leave it with them) while we went hiking. The hiking is very well sign posted, but it is important to remember that none of the routes are pushchair friendly. So, make sure you bring your baby carrier or backpack. We strapped Jack into the Ergobaby and followed the yellow hiking sign posts to Mont-Pèlerin.
This walk is nearly all uphill, gaining a further 200-300 metres in altitude to reach the summit. It takes approximately an hour to walk to the summit, but there are plenty of nice view spots and picnic benches along the way, so you may spend longer than this with stops.
The path takes you uphill very quickly and there are steps to help you gain height. Luckily a lot of the path is through forests, so there is shade on a hot day for the majority of the walk. It also takes you along some beautiful meadows that overlook Lac Leman and across into Canton Freiburg in the other direction.
You will know when you have reached the top because there is a huge television tower, and, for the price of 5 chf you can take the lift to the top and enjoy the spectacular panoramic view! NB – you cannot pay on card, so be sure to have some cash with you! The tower is open from Easter to October (but closes if there are high winds).
The views are really amazing and it is well worth going to the top!
There are many walking routes back down; you can make a circular loop or you can go back down the way you came, or you can hike even further in this beautiful area. This circular route is one example that you could follow.
We hiked back down, (which was a lot quicker than on the way up!), and Jack fell asleep in the carrier as we headed down. We picked up our pushchair and walked downhill to Chardonne, which is a beautiful village surrounded by vineyards, with stunning views over Lac Leman and the mountains.
There are many open vineyards in this village to stop at and sample wine. There are also a few pleasant restaurants. We stopped at À la Demi-Lune for some lunch and then we caught the funicular from Chardonne-Jongny down to Vevey-Funi.
We were very hot and it was about 3pm by this point, so when we reached Vevey-Funi, we walked straight to Piscine Corseaux-Plage Vevey (which is only a 5 minute walk from Vevey-Funi). The entrance was 5 chf for an adult and this beach gives you access to the lake, outdoor pools and indoor pools (so you can even swim there in the Autumn/Winter months). There was a great ‘Pataugeoire’ aka baby pool for Jack, which he loved!
We spent the rest of the afternoon here before heading back home.
Train Station: Vevey, Vevey-Funi, Chardonne, Mont-Pèlerin
Parking: SBB P+Rail Vevey
Toilets: Public toilets at the top of the funicular, also public toilets at the televison tower at the summit of Mont-Pèlerin and public toilets available at Piscine Corseaux.
Restaurants: A la Demi-Lune, Aigle gourmand, La Trattoria de Vevey-Corseaux Plage
Accessibilty: The hike is not pushchair friendly, but the pool and the funicular are both pushchair and wheelchair friendly.