From the lake to the mountains and vineyards, Montreux Riviera offers a postcard landscape. It’s an authentic little piece of paradise that has attracted many artists, writers and travellers in search of beauty, tranquillity and… inspiration. From Villeneuve to Lutry, along the shores of Lake Geneva, Montreux Riviera enjoys a microclimate that gives it a Mediterranean flair. The atmosphere is perfect for relaxing, going on walks, discovering new areas, and the climate is ideal for a rich terroir, cultivated expertly by restaurateurs and winegrowers. Montreux Riviera is a land of contrasts. It’s a kind of miniature Switzerland where visitors and locals have been living together for three centuries. The region is especially rich in cultural events, including the unmissable Montreux Jazz Festival, and boasts some of the best hotel schools and private clinics in the world. It is also a business hub with infrastructure that is perfectly suited to organising international conferences.
Top Most Places to Visit
Chillon Castle is located on a rock on the banks of Lake Geneva. The water castle is the most visited historic building in Switzerland. For nearly four centuries Chillon was the residence and profitable toll station of the Counts of Savoy. More than 400,000 guests visit Chillon per year. They view the wall paintings from the 14th century, the subterranean vaults, parade halls and the bedroom (which has been preserved in its original form) dating to the time of Bernese rule. The entire complex consists of 25 buildings and three courtyards, protected by two circular walls.
The Golden Pass Panoramic
The Golden Pass Panoramic links the German- and French-speaking regions and allows insights into Switzerland’s diverse cultural heritage – piece by piece. From Zweisimmen, the premium panoramic train starts out towards Montreux. It feels almost as if the passing scenery had been created specifically for this panoramic journey – one lovely view follows the other: Cows grazing on lush, green pastures, traditional wooden chalet-style houses nestling in the gentle hills, all of it against the backdrop of magnificent Alpine peaks. And the best is saved for last: Shortly before Montreux, a fantastic view over glistening Lake Geneva opens up to the passengers. The train leisurely winds its way down the hill and puts guests in the perfect mood for the Geneva region and its Mediterranean flair. The Golden Pass Panoramic is part of the scenic Golden Pass Line and therefore also belongs to the Grand Train Tour of Switzerland.
Montreux Bernese Oberland-Train
The chocolate train
Embark on a journey of discovery through the home of exquisite alpine milk chocolate and famous Gruyère cheese. The trip runs on selected days of the week; passengers depart from Montreux in belle époque Pullman cars or panoramic carriages. After an individual tour of the historic small town of Gruyères and its castle, participants visit the Cailler/Nestlé chocolate factory in Broc.
Lavaux, Vineyard Terraces
St-Saphorin, Dézaley, Epesses – names which roll easily off the tongue of fans of fine wine. And the views from the Lavaux vineyards, set high above Lake Geneva, provide the perfect backdrop for winelovers. The natural, cultural and culinary highlights of this area are definitely well worth a visit. The steep vineyards, arranged in terraces, benefit from the sun and its warming rays three times over: from the rays coming straight from the sun, the ones bouncing off Lake Geneva, and those from the stored-up heat in the many stone walls. The blue-yellow “Train des Vignes” is a very convenient way to travel. In just twelve minutes it winds its way from Vevey through the lush green vineyards up to Puidoux-Chexbres. Here you can sample the local produce, as tasting is available at almost every cellar. Narrow alleyways and characteristic winegrowers’ houses are landmarks of villages such as St-Saphorin, with its Auberge de l’Onde, which can look back on a century of hospitality and serves up local delicacies on three floors.
At 2000 metres a.s.l., visitors enjoy delightful hikes, observe marmot species from three continents and look at hundreds of plants from around the world. A particular highlight is the chance to spend the night in an original Mongolian love yurt (nomad-type tent). The railway up to Rochers-de-Naye operates year-round – even during winter. Actually, Father Christmas himself resides on this 2000 metres mountain in December.
Old City of Vevey
The pedestrian zone of the old city, the lakeside, and the market (Tuesday and Saturday mornings) in the Grande Place (the heart of the old city), are well worth a browse. From the Place de la Gare, walk towards the lake to the Grande Place and the Vevey landing stage. Each Tuesday and Saturday morning in summer, the square belongs to the famous Vevey market, with its colourful, perfumed stands offering flowers, fruits, vegetables, cheeses, meats, fish and old objects. On Saturdays in July and August, these markets give way to folklore markets: thanks to a glass of wine – you pay for your first glass only – everyone can sample the various regional wine appellations in the company of their vintners! The atmosphere is assured with fanfares, alphorns and winegrowers in their traditional costumes!Via the Rue du Lac (on the east side of the Grande Place, after the Swiss Camera Museum), you come to the picturesque part of Vevey, intimate and pedestrians only.