Mt Titlis needs no introduction .Located in the Swiss Alps at 3239 mt above sea level , it is one of the most popular destinations in Switzerland. Switzerland is a traveller’s dream destination and as such, the entire group was looking forward to this.
We were driven down from Lucerne by bus to the Alpine village of Engelberg. This quaint village surrounded by snow capped mountains is like some of the picture postcards we see of Switzerland. Founded in 1120 by a monk who called it “mountain of Angels”; Engelberg is a great base to explore the Swiss Alps.
Some pictures of Engelberg…
Engelberg…(note the typical swiss wooden homes called chalets )
Engerlberg from the hotel balcony…Titlis lies on the snow covered slope behind
Engelberg at night
We were put up at the Hotel Terrace which was on a small hill and afforded great views of Engelberg town and Mount Titlis. Another unique feature of this hotel was the entrance which was at the foot of the hillock and guests pass through a small underground tunnel before entering the lift which takes you to the topof the hillock.
The Hotel Terrace on the top of the hill…..the orange block is the entrance to the tunnel!
After an enjoyable evening at the hotel premises, we rested for the night and woke up to this beautiful view of Titlis at dawn….
Titlis at dawn….
The big day had arrived and we were all mighty excited….
We had a real surprise here when we found hot idli sambar on the breakfast menu!!This may seem a rather trivial thing but for many people on the tour group who were from south India, it was a welcome change to have their traditional breakfast after more than a week of continental breakfast!! The idlis were welcomed with some loud oohs and aahs!!
After a sumptuous breakfast, we headed to Mt Titlis.
From Engelberg town we boarded the first stage cable car to Mt Titlis. This cable car could take 8 passengers and moved pretty fast. The ride was smooth and afforded some beautiful views of the valley and Engelberg . Being summer, this level did not have much snow and was green. We passed a cable car station where we did not get down as advised by our guide. The ascent continued and the views got better; although we had some low lying clouds. We were asked to alight at the next station called The Stand.
Level 1 Cable Car.
View of Engelberg from the cable car as we ascended
Another beautiful view of the lake and clouds from the cable car
We alighted from this cable car at the station called The Stand and looked around as more members from the group arrived in their cable cars. As we waited here we could see the Rotair gondolas coming down with tourists from Titlis. We patiently waited for our turn to get on to the Rotair.
Waiting at The Stand for the Titlis Rotair
From The Stand station, we boarded the Titlis Rotair or rotating cable car . This cable car took almost 80 people in and moved slowly upwards towards Titlis. The slow rotational movement of the gondola gave us 360 degrees views . I don’t have to tell you…the views were incredible!! Engelberg town and the lake below and the challenging mountain peaks ahead of us. It is important to get as close to sides of this gondola to get the best views. The Rotair finally stopped at the Titlis station in a building that had shops and restaurants.
The Titlis Rotair
View at higher level from the Rotair
Finally we reached the top of Mt Titlis…
We alighted there and were advised to proceed for lunch to the restaurant. The tour company had arranged Indian lunch at the restaurant. So we all proceeded to have lunch. The restaurant aptly named Panorama provides panoramic views of the Alps .We sat cosily by the window enjoying the mountain views and the food.
The complex which houses the restaurant, shops and other amenities.
The inside of the restaurant where one can enjoy food looking out at the Alps
After lunch we stepped out of the enclosure and the scenery around with multiple snow covered peaks was mesmerising! With a few ecstatic shouts from our fellow tour members, we walked around enjoying the scenery. We were above the clouds and it gave us a feeling of being “On Top of the World”…..Carpenter’s style!
Walking around required lot of effort as the feet tend to slip on the ice. Making ice balls was another fun activity. But the fingers got numb after some time. Some of the kids in the group were sliding on the ice and nearly toppled an elderly lady. But it was real fun…
View of Titlis from the landing platform
At the sheltered area of the platform
View of the lake from Titlis….note the ascending Rotair in the foreground
Playing with the snow
The Telecommunication tower on Mt Titlis
We also visited the Glacier Cave which is 150 mts long ice tunnel and is probably 5000 years old where the ice never melts. It was slippery and felt like walking on a skating rink without skates. The cave is lit with a bluish light ( due to refraction)and has supportive railings to hold and walk.
The walk in the cave was fun….but the numbness of the limbs due to cold was an issue! Tiny sparkling ice crystals added to the charm of the cave.
The Glacier cave
Europe’s highest suspension bridge provides the thrill of walking on a partially wobbling bridge and looking down to no where…..can be daunting for the weak hearted!! We took a short walk on this bridge but unfortunately it started snowing and we had to huddle into the enclosure for protection.
The Cliff Walk
Snowing at Titlis
With a lot of reluctance we all came back into the enclosure .
We walked around inside the enclosure and explored the Chocolate shop and the souvenir shop. We did not realise the time pass by and were soon called by the guide to the Rotair platform to catch the Rotair down.
Descending from Titlis also offered great views and we returned to our hotel with great memories of this awesome destination.
Next day we had planned a trip to Interlaken and Jungfrau . So see you next week at Jungfrau….again on ice!!
Till then, keep your comments coming, subscribe and give me a feedback….