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  • Writer's pictureSarina Harper

Summertime In The French Alps

Updated: Apr 11, 2022

After an incredibly packed month travelling around Indonesia, Adam and I headed west to spend some time with family and friends in Europe.

From China to London to Geneva I flew, psyched to reunite with my mom who’d traded the humidity in NYC for the comfort of the Alps. Before heading to our Alpine cabin, we circumnavigated Lake Geneva, which was sparkling under the August sunshine. Vineyards dotted the landscape surrounding the lake, and I shook off my culture shock having just spent 6 months in Asia. We enjoyed a lunch of fresh fish overlooking the majestic lake before having a mosey around the Chillon Castle. Proudly jutting out onto the lake, this majestic build demanded admiration. So we did just that.

Heading south, I reacquainted myself with driving a four-wheeled vehicle after the mopeds I’d driven in the East, enjoying navigating us through the twisting Alps. As our car climbed higher with each hairpin turn, some of the incredible mountains that towered over us initially were now just as impressive at eye level. Hugging the border of Switzerland and France, the chalets dotting the mountainsides were decidedly Swiss. Nearing our destination of Chatel, we passed through picturesque mountain villages comprised of the standard alpine offerings: ski shops, patisseries, gourmet cheese shops - and world-class restaurants offering some of the best food on the planet!

Perched mountainside with sweeping views over the valley below, our wooden chalet was charming. My second time there and just as perfect as I remembered, I settled in quickly before heading out to the village shops for the essentials: local meats, alpine cheeses, and Swiss chocolates!

French Alps

As this was a family reunion (my family was spread across 3 continents, so we compromised with meeting points every 6 months or so), Adam and my brother made their way from London to join in. Can you think of a better way to celebrate family reuniting than over gooey raclette? For this trip, I exclusively wore stretchy pants.

And to burn off the raclette, we spent a few glorious days hiking through the mountainous paradise dividing France and Switzerland.

We explored the Alps, hiking to glaciers amid cheerful wildflowers, grazing sheep and mountain goats. We rode cable cars to let us embark on higher alpine hikes, replenishing at mountain huts for hot drinks, fresh cheeses and meats. Crossing icy paths and climbing rocky trails made for a challenging hike; at times we had to cling to the granite mountains in order to safely pass.

The evenings were spent relaxing with homemade fondue while watching the sunset over the mountains from our deck, or indulging at the famous Les Cornettes.

Next up: road trip to Switzerland!

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