Chateau de Chillon / Montreux

This is a part of my semi-backpacking trip around Europe at Fall 2009 ( i will blog about it later, i promise ) Thanks again to Cessy, Hedi & Family, that allow me to stay in their place during my visit to Geneva and bring me around! (;

Chateau of Chillon is the place that i always see in any Switzerland travel guide books / website. After seeing the photos and hearing their reputation as “Switzerland’s most visited historic monument” ( written as tagline in their official website http://www.chillon.ch/en/ ) i begged Cessy to bring me there (;

Located about 4km from Montreux, at the side of lake Geneva, the castle is actually quite accessible by public transport, you just need to go to Montreux by train ( http://sbb.ch/en/index.htm ) from Geneva ( The nearest city with international airport i believe ) from there you can take local train / bus or even a cruise boat to reach the castle. But that time i’m actually lucky enough to have her drive me there, it’s about 1.5 hours scenic ride from Geneva and it’s 1.5 hours full of fabulous view!

So oldest written document about this castle dates from 1150, so the age of the castle itself is older than that, maybe nearly 1000 years from now. Going through many times of renovation / alteration until it become as it is at the current state. Was functioned as fortress, arsenal, prison before, served as a historic monument now. ( more complete history can be found here )

You can play with your imagination when you see the buildings ( just imagine that you’re a poor farmer that summoned by the duke and suddenly being told to married his sexy daughter), or just sitting on the garden while enjoying the view to the Swiss Alps across the lake Geneva, you can also enter the castle and see underground prison, great halls, most of the interior space, and even see the defensive mechanism of the castle.

Aside the great architecture of the castle, nicely preserved interior, some exhibitions, and events ( they have scary evening, medieval market, treasure hunter, wow! ), you can also held a banquet at the castle. So you can actually rent the great hall of a 1000 years old castle for your wedding reception, how amazing is that!! ( that will be my dream wedding venue, if i manage to strike $5 mils Toto ) You can check the rates here.

Too bad during my visit there, i only manage to cover the exterior of the castle. I don’t know what made me so cheapskate that time that I’m didn’t want to pay the 12 CHF entry fee ); so regret about it… but I’m already so happy to see and just walk around the castle. ( and take hundreds of photos like usual )

Photos time! (;

View from the main road, the parking space and railways is just beside the castle…

View of the castle, as i walk to the main entrance… i feel like I’m transported to 500 years ago…

The castle with the lake Geneva at the background, across the lake you can see the Swiss Alps…

We moving a bit farther from the castle to take the view of it with the lake and mountain, you can see my friend Cessy was taking photo…

By the command of the duke, you are not allowed to swim in this atas water area…

A rare photo of myself!!! i hardly have any self photo during my trip, except if the place is really awesome (;

Castle’s garden, nice place to just sit around and enjoying the ambiance….

The cruise boat from Montreux is passing, they will stop just about 100m from the castle… i think the boat ride will be great, with the view and all…

Photo from the small jetty just beside the castle, the Alps in the front… what a nice view (;

A group of students just having their study trip to the castle, how come last time i never have this kind of study trip, all we visit only boring museums, never a cool castle… );

The castle with outskirt of the Montreux behind, seems like they have another Chateau in the peak of the hill…

The next destination is Montreux, around 10 mins drive away only. Montreux is quite a small city ( approx. 25k population ), famous for its annual Jazz festival and Golden award, also being known to has a lot of good hospitality management school.

The city feels really “warm” and welcoming, really a great city to relax i think. We will going around to find a place to park and have a lunch.

In the middle of Montreux, Cessy told me that the yellow flag / fabric roof shows that the building is a hotel…

After having a lunch in a random Italian restaurant by the side of the lake, we walked to nearby park to do some sightseeing… so i use it as a chance to shoot some people photos (;

A bicycler resting on bench facing the lake…

2 old ladies on their daily gossip session… what a pleasant place for retirement >_<

People waiting for the yacht to pick them up…

They have some kind of observation deck cum seating area on the lake side, people seems to like it and spends time there… what an amazing public space…

Nearer view of the deck… i think during summer this place will be full of chicks in bikini doing sunbathing…

Not faraway from the deck, we will find the Freddie Mercury Memorial Statue.. they said Freddie called Montreux as his 2nd home, there are still a lot of people putting flower in his memorial, they even have a annual Freddie Mercury Montreux Memorial Day every 1st week of September.

Freddie Mercury statue, overlooking Montreux.. Being a fans of Queen, i feel guilty that i didn’t offer anything to the statue… ( need offering meh? you think tuapekkong ah… )

Last photos for this posts, still Freddie…

After that day, I decided that Montreux is one of my dream place to retired..

this could be heaven for everyone (;

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