Switzerland Diaries: Weekend Getaway to Zurich

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Guten tag from Basel! After 12 days of being in Basel, my family and I decided to take the day off and head to Zurich, Switzerland. Stay tuned to a day full of excitement, adventure plus tips on what to expect.

An impromptu trip to Zurich

A tiring Friday later, we slept off with no plans – plans are important to me. An early morning and we were out the door by 8 am, looking forward to the iconic views of Zurich lake. But first, breakfast.

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We headed to Confiseri Bachman and ordered a couple of baked breads, short cakes, and coffee. While their baking is on-point, what’s disappointing are the hot beverages. While CB is very famous for the coffee it serves, I guess my native palette hasn’t quite sprung a balance yet.

As a blogger, I am looking for that one perfect coffee house, which lets you be, serves great coffee/tea and has free Wi-Fi. I haven’t found the perfect combination yet, till then Starbucks serves the purpose.

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Getting to Zurich

We headed for tram no. 8 and were at Basel SBB. An early morning train that didn’t last for more than an hour, we were in Zurich. In India, when we discuss travelling to Switzerland- Zurich features on top of the travel list. It’s quite commercial to say the least, almost like Ooty or Nainital, but you obviously never get tired of the Swiss view.

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Lake Zurich

We did what most tourists do, and headed straight to Zurich lake. A grey day with light sprinkles were cured by a carnival like atmosphere. We took a beautiful walk down the lakeside and made most of a river cruise to get acquainted with Zurich city.

How to get around in Zurich

The ZürichCARD 24 or 72 hour is an ideal ticket for short stay travellers. It includes unlimited 2nd class travel on all forms of public transport within Zurich and the surrounding areas alongside the river cruise, cable car, museum visits and various other discounts on other culture and leisure activities. I strongly recommend this card to gain maximum advantage.

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Weather toll in Zurich

A beautiful walk and boat ride later, it was early afternoon, and the onset of our own little Zurich adventure.

The light sprinkles turned into heavy showers, the comfortable temperature just went down a couple of more degrees and the winds were now chilly. One umbrella, and denim jackets weren’t going to save us for long. TIP: Please carry extra layers, especially when travelling with children. The weather in Switzerland is unpredictable, to say the least.

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While this weather seemed to be a buzz kill for the us, it was next to normalcy for the locals. The party continued, and frankly the atmosphere just got a little bit more livelier.

We took shelter in a bar, and did what everybody else seemed to be enjoying. We drank whiskey.

The rain soon turned into a drizzle, our tummies were rumbling. My poor Toms were now soaking wet, I could have as well walked bare foot.  I was cold, and so was my daughter. What we needed today was comfort food. Yup, you guessed it, it was time to savour some Indian food.

Hotel Malabar, Zurich

As it continued to rain for hours,  we stepped inside a popular Indian restaurant called Malabar.After stepping into it, we realised that this was a cozy “not-as-little” as we thought place. The restaurant decor reminds you of South India but they served all kinds of Indian food. We ordered chicken malabar curry, paneer butter masala and garlic naans. After 2 weeks, I tasted food which was as familiar as it can be.

The staff at Malabar, was courteous and helpful, the food was decent and the service was good.

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The accompaniments that an Indian food lover desires – water, pickle, sliced onions etc. will definitely add to the appeal. The poppadoms, in the beginning, were a good idea, but there could be additions. Another good thing in the ladies restrooms were the sanitary napkins – now that’s being thoughtful!  Sure, it’s a bit pricey, but for us, the experience of good food had made up for it.

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Back to Basel

We were definitely not done roaming the streets of Zurich but the rain gods weren’t going to calm down. Since we had not booked a hotel and the IBIS was full, we decided to head back home. 

Did I just call Basel home?

Oh well.

Stay tuned to this space for more updates on Swiss life, travel and food. Follow me on Instagram for more updates.

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