Our time in Zurich was more like a 24 hour layover. After landing at the airport, we bought train tickets that would take us to the main Zurich station and then made our way to the train. It was a quick ride, but then we had to find out hotel. It was only a 15 minute walk, but in 90 degree heat and with three backpacks, it pretty much sucked. We arrived at the Xtra hotel and checked in. Before leaving Berlin, we did a little of research on the hotel and found some not-so-awesome reviews. There is some kind of club that is right below the hotel which had kept some people up at night and there is no air conditioning, although the latter was not surprising to us. We weren’t sure what to expect of this place, but ended up being pleasantly surprised. It was definitely very warm, but we were never bothered by any noise.We decided to walk around Zurich for the afternoon, and found a place to have some lunch, DaPizi. We had the 4-seasons pizza and the veggie pasta. It was way more food than we thought it would be, so we ate about half and decided to save the rest for later. The owner of the restaurant was very friendly to us and was as helpful as he could be, he didn’t speak English, so there was a real language barrier. We ended up taking a selfie with him, per his request. Haha!
After lunch we made our way toward Old Town. It is a small part of Zurich with cute shops and restaurants; there are narrow cobblestone streets and no cars. It was quaint and surrounded by old towering buildings. The whole city is beautiful, with the river running through and gorgeous views all around.
We went back to our hotel for a bit, to drink some water and just relax. We ate the leftover pizza and then went down to the bar next door to the hotel and had a drink – a mojito for Nic and a glass of Chardonnay for me. We wanted to walk around some more, so we went the other direction. We happened to stumble upon a large public swimming area called the Letten. It was like a swimming pool for grown ups, complete with sand volleyball and a bar. It’s basically just a section of the river, so when you jump in, the current just carries you along. It was still super warm, and although we didn’t have our swimsuits with us, Nic decided to jump in. After he swam a bit, we had a drink and hung out for a bit, people watching. We were disappointed we hadn’t found this place earlier in the day when we were sweating down the streets of Old Town. Can Omaha get something like this?
After a while, we made our way back to the hotel for the night so we could get some sleep before the next day. It was warm the whole night, but we had a fan in our room and we never heard any noise from the club, so we slept well. The next morning we grabbed some breakfast at a coffee shop across the street – I had a hexenbretzel, and it was awesome.
We should have allotted more time in Zurich. It is an absolutely gorgeous city and there is so much to do. I actually think we could plan an trip entirely dedicated to Switzerland.
Next stop: Interlaken!