After discovering the sheer level of fucking expense in this place, I absolutely rammed my plate full at breakfast. Lots of toast and scrambled eggs and, of course, sausages. I then grabbed some bananas and pastries and put them in my bag for lunch – CLEVER CRONIN. When I’m somewhere for a quick weekend and it’s also a place that isn’t known for its local cuisine, I don’t make food a priority so ma very happy just to make-do if it means it leaves me with more money for more fun things*
The big plan for today was to go up Mont Saleve. This is a mountain TECHNICALLY in France, just past the border, but it’s only about 30 mins away from the old town. I hopped on the bus and rode the 20 mins to the edge of Geneva. There were lots of other people on the bus in walking shoes and adorned with rucksacks, so I knew I wouldn’t be alone on this little expedition! We hopped off the bus at Veyrier Douane and walked the ten minutes to the base of the mountain. On this walk, you cross the border into France, past the unmanned checkpoint. Pretty cool!
I decided I wasn’t going to hike the entire way up because a) who can be arsed and b) who’s got the time?!…so I bought a cable car ticket. In fluent french I might add, at which point the dude serving me responded in super- quick french and I was like WOAH NELLY JE SUIS ANGLAIS.
The cable car ride was a swift 4 minutes and felt rather precarious! I then decided to hike the remaining 30 minutes up to the very top, where apparently you could see Mont Blanc. Erm, well, that was not a fun experience. It was almost a vertical climb through overgrown foliage and it was 27 degrees with no cloud so I was fucking shattered mate. I don’t think I even made it to the very top, but managed to glimpse the top of Mont Blanc.
I then head back down to where the cable car dropped us off and went to the various viewing points. Breakthtaking, really.
I settled down to eat my lunch (second breakfast) and just….absorbed the view, and watched the paragliders. And got burnt in the process because I was naughty and had forgotten my sunscreen. Ooopsy!
I head back to Geneva and decided I really needed a bit of a rest. So I wound my way back down the mountain, through the cute little sleepy French village and back across the border to the bus.
I had read about the Eaux Vives part of Geneva which was only a 30 minute walk from my hotel so I wandered there, and discovered a few cool things:
Baby Plage, which is a little manmade beach for kiddies, and Park De Eaux Vives, which is kind of like Greenwich park. It had lovely flowers in bloom and beautiful old buildings inside. This is also where the harbour is, so there are shitloads of boats.
I needed a goddamn REST though so had to force myself to stop getting distracted and I sat down along the lake side at Glacier Lago, for a nice cold local beer. I sat here for 3 hours, reading my book and supping my one beer and for the first time in week, I was SUPER relaxed. (I mean, like, I obviously relax at home but I never feel more relaxed than when I am abroad. I dunno why!)
It was dinner time now, and my perennial dilemma was back – where to grab dinner? Well folks, this photo says it all:
Yep, that’s right, I got a Maccy D’s, took it to the roof terrace, and sat there for 3 hours reading my book. Next, I went to a cute bar just outside my hotel and had a couple of quiet wines and watched the sunset. It being a Sunday night, it was way more chilled than the night before, which I actually kinda liked.
And, of course, I went for one final walk by the lake. And that, my friends, is how I spent my last night in Geneva.
I had a great time. It’s a very pretty place. But I have been to places that feel more special and unique (Venice, for one) that aren’t anywhere near as pricey. Basically what I’m saying is, I feel like its attractions are inversely proportional to its cost. Luckily, when you’re rolling solo, you can do pikey things on the cheap to keep food costs down so I didn’t go over budget and therefore had a lovely old weekend exploring a new country. I probably wouldn’t go back, but would like to try Zurich next, in the more Germanic part of the country…just to see how it differs!
Speaking of Germany…that’s my next trip, so stay tuned in a couple of weeks for sausage-related travel anecdotes!