caravanning
Caravan Sites



Tipping
Service charges are automatically included on all hotel and restaurant bills, at hairdressers, and on taxi fares; it is not necessary to leave an extra tip.

Public Holidays
1 and 2 January: New Year
Good Friday
Easter Monday
1 May: Labour Day
Ascension Day
Whit Monday
1 August: National Day
24 Dec: Christmas Eve (afternoon only)
25 and 26 December: Christmas
31 Dec: New Year's Eve (afternoon only)

Travellers With Disabilities
Switzerland Tourism publishes a useful leaflet called Travel Tips, which gives information and tips on travel in Switzerland, for visitors with disabilities.

Transport
Metro, buses and trams
The bus, tram, and trolley-bus service in Swiss cities is very efficient. Tickets are available from machines at bus stops. In Zurich bus tickets are also valid for boats on the River Limmat. In many cities 24-hour, 1-day, 2-day, and 3-day passes are available from tourist offices. There is no metro service in Switzerland.

Ferries
Switzerland can be reached by boat from the Netherlands along the River Rhine, from Germany via Lake Constance, from Italy via Lake Maggiore, and from France via Lake Geneva. Within Switzerland there are efficient ferry services on the numerous lakes. Boats also run on the River Rhine and River Limmat. The leaflet Viel mehr aufs Schiff provides information on all boat services, and is available from Switzerland Tourism.

Roads, Tolls And Speed Limits
Motorways (Autobahnen, autoroute, autostrada) link all the major Swiss cities. An annual tax (vignette) of Sfr40 is levied on all vehicles using any stretch of motorway. The vignette can be bought at border crossings or from Switzerland Tourism. A fare is charged for the trains which carry cars across the Loetschberg, Furka, Oberalp, and Abula passes. A toll is charged to drive through many of the longer tunnels. Speed limits are 120 kilometres (75 miles) per hour on motorways; 80 kilometres (50 miles) per hour on other roads, unless otherwise marked; and 50 kilometres (30 miles) per hour in built-up areas and on secondary roads.

Driving Tips

Take care on the many hairpin bends in the mountainous areas. Stop to admire the views only at the designated stopping points. Note that in cities trams always have the right of way.

Assistance

In the event of a breakdown, place your red warning triangle behind the vehicle. For help dial 140. Emergency telephones are situated at regular intervals on motorways. You can arrange international breakdown and recovery insurance from the TCS (Touring Club der Schweiz) through your own motoring organisation before you go.

Electrical Devices

The electrical current in Switzerland is 220 volts AC. Round two- and three-pin plugs are used. An adapter is essential for UK and Irish appliances.

ADVICE AND INFORMATION


Your hosts:
Aline and Stephan Blatter
Lehnweg 6

CH-3800 Unterseen - Interlaken
Tel: +41-33 822 87 16
Fax: +41-33 823 19 20
email: info@lazyrancho.ch

Region Bernese Oberland 6.04, Member VSC
Stars ****
Open April to October
Site 90 tourist pitches
45 residential pitches
24 comfort pitches
5 motorhome pitches
Location
Beautiful, quiet family camping with a spectacular view of Eiger, M÷nch and Jungfrau.
Installations

New first-class sanitary buildings (2007)
Family- + handicapped room
Babyroom
Shop
Swimming-pool
Playground
Laundry room
Kitchen
Recreation room with TV
Internet Corner
Camperstation
Pitches with fresh and waste water connection "Comfortpitches"
Public barbeque
Activities Hiking, excursions to the surrounding mountains and valleys, golf, paragliding, biking, horseback-riding, watersports, adventure sports, inline-skating and of course relaxing

Landlocked and encompassed by jagged mountain ranges, Switzerland has since Roman times been the commercial as well as geographical centre of Europe. Ever since the 19th-century Romantics such as Byron, Shelley, and Goethe discovered its snow-capped peaks and the misty shores of its lakes, this small country has welcomed far more visitors than its size would suggest. From the undulating ridges of the Jura in the west to the jagged glaciers of the Engadine in the east, the mountains of Switzerland, more than any other feature of the country, have shaped its national identity. The slopes of the Swiss Alps are a major centre for skiing, and Switzerland still has the most spectacular and best organised (and most expensive) ski resorts in Europe. When the snows melt, the crisp, clear air, gushing waterfalls, wild flowers, and the tinkling of cowbells are a magical setting for hiking and mountaineering. But fresh air and dairy farming are only part of the Swiss way of life.

Switzerland has some of the wealthiest, most cosmopolitan cities in the world. Zurich is the epicentre of that other great Swiss industry, banking. Geneva, with its long tradition of internationalism and philanthropy, houses the European headquarters of the United Nations. Bern, with its medieval buildings of mellow golden stone, is the unspoiled epitome of a central European city. A confederation of cantons, each with a fair degree of autonomy, modern Switzerland makes a virtue of its insularity, having managed so far to hold out against the trend towards greater European unity. But the country's self-sufficient neutrality is of relatively recent origin; its boundaries were forged in the heat of the great dynastic struggles of the Burgundians, Savoyards, and the Habsburgs from the 14th century onwards.

For a country with four languages (French, German, Italian, and Romansh), a tangle of ethnic origins, and more than a million foreign residents, it is perhaps odd that the concept of Swissness is of such all-pervading importance. Yet for all the superficial differences between the chic piazza-dwellers of Locarno, the farmers of Appenzell, and the bankers of Zurich, the country still has a cohesive identity that continues to attract visitors.

Zurich
Zurich (Zürich) is not only Switzerland's business centre, it is also the world centre for gold trading and the fourth most important stock exchange in the world. Although it is Switzerland's largest metropolis (with a population of 400,000), it is compact and offers plenty of diversions to the foreign visitor. The old town straddles the River Limmat which runs through the city from Lake Zurich. Handsome guildhouses and monumental churches punctuate the warren of cobbled streets. Its heart after dark is Niederdorfstraße with its lively beer-halls and jazz pubs. Zurich is home to some of the best museums in the country. The Museum of Fine Arts is world-class, the Swiss National Museum houses a fine display of Swiss history, and the Asian collection of the Museum Rietberg is outstanding.

Geneva
With its history of acting as international referee, it is not surprising that Geneva (Genève) is Switzerland's most cosmopolitan city (a third of its inhabitants are foreigners). North of the River Rhône is the international zone where the United Nations European Headquarters (Palais des Nations), and many other august organisations are located. A visit to the acclaimed International Red Cross Museum can be a harrowing experience. South of the river is the flower-lined lakeside promenade, featuring the world-famous Jet d'Eau fountain, which shoots water more than 140 metres (460 feet) into the air. Alongside is the old town and the Cathédrale de St Pierre, which was the scene of much of Calvin's work in the Swiss Reformation. He and fellow reformers are honoured by the massive Reformation Monument in the leafy Bastion Park. In and around the old town are many fine museums including the Maison Tavel (city history), the Petit Palais (modern art) and the Museum of Art and History.

Locarno
Basking on the shore of Lake Maggiore, Locarno has long been an important resort town with its mellow Mediterranean climate and lakeside flora. Sightseeing attractions include the Madonna del Sasso sanctuary, a funicular ride offering splendid views of the town, and the 15th-century Castle Visconti housing the Town and Archaeological Museum. A maze of narrow streets leads to the Piazza Grande, the hub of the old town. Here can be found the Pinacoteca Casa Rusca, a museum displaying contemporary works of art.


Before you go get covered for all events

Entry Requirements
Citizens of the European Union (EU) may enter Switzerland with a national identity card and stay for a period of 90 days. However, citizens of the United Kingdom and Ireland, where there is no national identity card system, must carry a valid passport. Other nationals should contact the Swiss embassy or consulate in their country of residence before departure, for any visa requirements.

Emergency Phone Numbers
Ambulance: 144
Fire brigade: 118
Police: 117
Alternative pan-European emergency number for all services: 112

Time Zones

Central European Time (GMT plus one hour). Clocks are put forward one hour from the last Sunday in March to the Saturday before the end of October.

Driving

Vehicle documents
Check with your motor vehicle insurance company regarding any insurance documents you will need and whether additional motor insurance is required. The international registration letter(s) of your home country must be displayed at the rear of the car. A red warning triangle is obligatory in the event of breakdown.

Foreign nationals may drive in Switzerland for up to one year with an International Driving Permit or their own driving licences. A Green Card is not compulsory if you already have third-party insurance, but is recommended if you are driving through Europe to get to Switzerland.

Rules of the road

Carry your full valid driving licence (or International Driving Permit, if necessary), vehicle registration documents, and insurance documents with you at all times. Drivers and passengers over seven years old must wear seat belts. Children under 12 are not allowed to travel in the front seat. Traffic drives on the right and priority is generally given to the driver coming from the right at all junctions. On narrow mountain roads always give priority to the yellow Postbuses and any vehicle ascending. The highest level of alcohol permitted in the bloodstream when driving is 80 mg per 100 ml (8g/l). Using a hand-held mobile phone while driving is illegal.

Bern

As European capitals go, Bern (Berne) is tiny, almost provincial in atmosphere and ridiculously pretty. The roots of its power go back to the 16th century when it was the predominant Swiss city state. The present city centre was built during this golden age, on a hill in a spectacular bend above the River Aare.

Little has changed, and it is now designated as a UNESCO World Landmark. Simply wander along the main east–west cobbled street to see the principal sights: 11 flamboyant 16th-century fountains; the picturesque and intriguing Clock Tower; six kilometres (3.5 miles) of medieval shopping arcades; and Bern's famous Bärengraben bear pits. Just off the main street is the parliament building and the Gothic Münster with its elaborately gilded Last Judgement.