790Kms away from office and not having to wake up early to cook and pack lunch to office? That sounds like heaven :). Sure! I did wake up early, but only to enjoy my morning walk in the pristine town. We (me and M) met in the hostel lobby to go on our morning walk. The hostel was serving free breakfast and since it was quite early in the day, there weren't many people in the dining hall. It seemed to be a good idea to eat our breakfast and then go on our walk. Mr and Mrs MK joined us at the breakfast table a little later.
We had cereal with strawberries (the cereal tasted delicious with strawberries and now, I always add strawberries to my breakfast cereal), 2 slices of bread with butter and jam, a cup of yoghurt and also coffee. We couldn't believe that we had eaten all that.
We waited for the couple (MK and his wife) in the reception who seemed to be taking unusually long time to finish their breakfast. I was impatient and told M I would go over to the guest room to pick up the tourist brochures. M informed the couple that he would be in the guest room too and joined me there. The telephone in the hostel guest room looked like an instrument from Einstein's era.
We picked up the brochures and took a tour of the hostel.The wooden chalet (hostel) is over 150 years old and was first a hotel called Meadow Lodge and later Hotel Quisisana. From 1932 - 1997 it was used as a old peole's home and was called "Alters- und Erholungsheim Sonnenhof". In the beginnig of the year 1998 it was renovated and opened up as Backpackers Villa Sonnenhof. It is a nice little warm hostel and the people at the reception were really very kind and friendly.
Finally the couple finished their breakfast and joined us in the guest room. They wanted to go back to their room and change into warm clothes before we left to Grindelwald. We (me and M) set out on our morning walk. The roads were deserted at 7:30 AM and made me wonder if the sand in the hourglass has stopped flowing.
"Landing place -- 0.2 Km" -- a sign outside the hostel!
Paragliding is a favourite "adventure sports" in Interlaken. This activity goes all year round depending on the weather conditions. The outdoor sports organisations offer different location choices from altitudes of 500 - 1400 mts. If you find the activity expensive, you could try trekking or mountain biking. We stuck to the most economic way of exploring the town -- walking ;)
The little town is at the foot of the imposing mountains Eiger, Mönch and Jungfrau. In a few hours, we would be atop Jungfrau. That was an exciting thought! If that didn't pump up the adrenaline in my blood, I don't know what else would ;)! We returned to the hostel to check on the couple and see if they were all "dressed up" to go to Jungfrau. Luckily, they "announced" they were and I was sure glad they were. Every minute that I spent in this town was a minute away from the snow that I had been waiting to play with. The very thought was frustrating.
"As in a dream!" Lord Byron apparently exclaimed on seeing the views of Interlaken and area. Felix Mendelssohn wrote to his mother:"Anyone who has not seen Interlaken's vistas does not know Switzerland.". This beautiful little town is nestled between the lakes of Thun ("toon" as in "cartoon") and Brienz and has managed to maintain the traditional charm of a Swiss village.
We walked to the Interlaken OST station that is just about 0.7 Km from the hostel, to take the train to "Grindelwald".