Now you might be thinking, and you won't be the first, when you stumble upon this World Heritage Site; Switzerland wine? There are surprisingly over 15,000 hectares of vineyards in the country. So why haven't you ever heard about Swiss wine? The reason for the secret is not because they are good at keeping secrets but because only 2% of wine production is exported. For wine and travel lovers you just hit the wanderlust jackpot when traveling in Switzerland. First a UNESCO site to cross off your list and then a Swiss wine you will never find anywhere else. We will be sure to have a glass of their Pinot Noir the next time we visit.
You can explore the terrace by bike on the Swiss wine route from St. Saphorin to Lutry. You will need to be in pretty good shape for the uphill parts of this trip. For those less adventurous you can simply hike or walk through the terraced areas or take an easy panoramic train tour. The road tour train has two routes that you can explore. Check the link for the times it is available.
You will not regret making this trip as you find yourself walking through one of the most interesting balances of sustainable life on the shore of Lake Geneva. Imagine yourself caressing the rock wall terrace from the shore built over the centuries. Walk among a tradtion of winemaking that has been passed down through the generations of families for hundreds of years. The views and experience would make any food and wine lover happy and is a perfect spot to capture some excellent photography.
Spectacular Scenery at Lavaux Vineyards
Lavaux Vineyards Lake Train
For those passing through without time to enjoy a walk among the terraces there is the Lavaux Wine Center called "VINORAMA". This facility is right along Lake Geneva where you can sample wine from most of the vintners from the Lavaux appellations. Here you can enjoy tastings through the guidance of knowledgeable staff. The experience could be considered joining the membership of the few that have enjoyed Swiss wines. Take an extra bottle or two to enjoy on the slopes of the Alps with some cheese and bread, and don't forget Swiss chocolate. Can you picture that? Keep the dreams alive and someday you will be there. Lastly, the center has cultural information and a film on Lavaux that runs about every 30 minutes. There is a proposal for a museum that looks absolutely stunning but no news yet on when this will be available.
Swiss architects Mauro Turin
Still can't decide if you can squeeze the vineyards into your visit? One reviewer on Trip Advisor said the following "One of the most stunning experiences you can live in your life ! GO ! GO ! GO!" Read the full review here.
Other points of interest nearby:
Chateaux Chillon situated on Lake Geneva has over 1000 years of history to explore. Built by the Dukes of Savoy, its origins go back to the 11th century but the current structure is said to be 13th century. During the summer it is open from 09:00 to 19:00.
photo credit: Switzerland Tourism
Wine lovers might also want to explore Aigle Castle (Chateau d'Aigle) that is now the home to the museum of wine and winemaking. It is in the town of Aigle to the south of the region.
photo credit: Wikipedia - Roland Zumbühl
Lavaux Vineyards Photo Gallery
Photo Credits: Switzerland Tourism