This time last year, while visiting family in the French Alps, we visited the picturesque medieval walled town of Gruyères, famous for its delicious cheese, cream and meringues. Gruyères is located in the foothills of the Swiss alps a couple of hours or so east of Geneva. The night before we drove there it had snowed lightly in the area, which made it even more beautiful.
The day we were there, most of the shops were closed. Only a single restaurant, a souvenir shop and a deli were open. On the plus side, there was a mere handful of other tourists which was wonderful. There were no crowds or lineups and I didn’t have to worry about people obscuring the subjects I wanted to capture in my images. My brother in law was disappointed that his favorite restaurant was closed, but it worked out just fine. We had lunch in the one restaurant that was open, thoroughly enjoying a totally delicious cheese fondue in the style of the region and we all ate far too much! Afterwards I was able to buy meringues and a large tub of Gruyères cream to indulge in at home, lol! I did a whirlwind tour of the castle before we all headed off to nearby Broc for a tour of Maison Cailler, the factory that produces superbly yummy chocolate, where we were treated to decadently rich hot chocolate and far too many chocolate samples! Definitely NOT a diet day!! Afterwards I felt like a beached whale! 🙂 🙂
I’m going to split this post in two, the second post will be featured tomorrow. Today’s images will show the walled town, and tomorrow we’ll take a look at the 13th century castle.
1. The walled town and the castle (off to the left) with the Alps in the background
2, 3. Gruyères castle from the north. The main entrance to the town (not accessible to vehicles)
5. Looking west along the town’s only street, castle is behind me
6. Dog lounging outside one of the town’s shops
7. Seasonally-decorated window alcove
8. View of the church
9. View of the castle from the north side of the church
10. Looking the other way, the Chemin des Morts, whereby the dead were brought in from the surrounding area for burial in the town cemetery
11. The church from the castle’s easternmost ramparts
12. The archway leading from the castle to the rest of the town
13, 14, 15. Descending from the castle into the main part of town
Click on the images for larger view.