As I am writing this I am already in Italy! However, the rest of our stay in Switzerland was unforgettable so it can’t be left out!
As a day trip between schooling my mom planned a little excursion to Cardada, the little town above Orselina. We took a seilbahn (train dangling on a rope) up above the treetops and into Cardada. From Cardada we hiked along a trail always downward. First we came to a platform that jutted out of the mountain and engraved in the bridge were symbols of life and evolution, starting with DNA and ending with the universe… and a view! It was gorgeous; you could see Italy, all of the cities surrounding us, and the rivers in the valleys. We walked on and soon were in a birch tree forest where the white tree trunks and light made the trail feel like a fairy tale. By the time we ate on a small bench we were pretty tired down but amazed at the sight. We walked on into a steep, declining forest where we zigzagged back and forth and back and forth. The side of the mountain felt enclosed, like it’s own little world where the orange ground is covered with fallen leaves and huge trees create complete shade. We walked past small, empty villages with tiny huts made of rocks and a small church where we left a candle burn. Every single time we saw a chestnut throughout the hike my sisters stopped to collect them! Every single time! Soon enough though we were exhausted and ready to get back home. We walked on and on and on and on and on and on. The constant sight of the city didn’t help.. Audrey exclaimed “We are almost there!! I can see it!! Well, only down and down and down…” What was meant to be a small excursion turned into a 4 hour 20 minute hike where Josephine said “Mama, I feel bad for my toes!” at the end.. We did roast chestnuts that night though… On an open fire of course!
A schooling day! Everybody was marked as “here” and we worked on our assignments, a break from our “small” excursions.
On Day 9 we were ready for some more adventure! The river Maggia flows into the Lago Maggiore so we took a train to Ponta Brolla from Locarno. As soon as we got there we could see the massive, white boulders and deep torquoise water flowing around the corner where a pebbly beach resided. Unfortunately, we never got to that pebbly beach but that was fine because instead we found our own miniature one among the boulders. From the street we took a tiny little trail that was questionable trail-wise. After scouting ahead we found it leads to nothing… except huge white boulders that were formed by years of rushing water… they were like glaciers and just as smooth. After climbing among them we found a little spot on a boulder which was great for picture taking, but the water was extremely deep in some places. We headed back and took a different way through the boulders and found a tiny pebble beach.. the rest of the day was amazing!