Erika determined this morning that the best weather for sight-seeing would be to the far West of Zurich so we set out to Neuchâtel. It is on the largest lake entirely located in Switzerland and the country’s longest waterway. The train follows the lake from Biel/Bienne. This is a grape growing area and the yellows of the Autumn leaves were quite stunning. Until the beginning of the 19th century, the Port at Neuchâtel was essentially for transportation by ship of both goods and travellers and fishery.
La Fontaine du Banneret
The Banneret Fountain was at first a small fountain for livestock and is the oldest fountain situated outside the former town wall. In 1581 it was embellished and later restored, as it now stands.
The Collegiate Church
This was begun at the end of the 12th century and was consecrated in 1276. The Collegiate Church was Catholic until the time of the Reformation and is now one of the places of worship of the Protestant Parish of Neuchâtel.
Hotel de Ville (Town Hall) was built between 1784 and 1790.
The Market Square (Place des Halles) is a charming square framed by 18th century house fronts. The Maison des Halles (covered Market) is a most striking building. Originally built as a grain and cloth market between 1569 and 1575, it is adorned with a wealth of Renaissance ornamentation.
This is a truly charming town and my report gives only a sample of the places we saw and enjoyed as we walked the cobbled streets and climbed to the ramparts where we had spectacular views of lake and town. What a difference it makes when sharing with somebody who speaks the language – so much more is achieved in the time one has, and what’s more, the weather was perfect.
(Too tired to finish this last night)