From Grandson to Valangin via the shores of Lake Neuchâtel and the vineyards
In 1476 Grandson witnessed the famous battle between Charles the Bold, Duke of Burgundy and the Swiss Confederates. Start your exploration of the town at the castle, of course, the second largest one in Switzerland. Officially classed as a historic monument, the fortress dominates Lake Neuchâtel and contains an astonishing collection of arms, armour, cross-bows and ancient vehicles. Bolder visitors can walk round the ramparts and enter the torture chamber.
Even though hardly any of the booty seized from the Burgundians has survived, Grandson harbours many hidden treasures. Start with the town’s old centre which you can explore after climbing the Rue Haute where restoration of the heritage buildings has recently been completed after several years of extensive work. As you walk along the road the Maison des terroirs will tempt you to sample local wines and other products. The church of St John the Baptist, a jewel of Romanesque architecture, stands proudly between two fountains, one octagonal and the other with double basins. A little further away as you descend the slope towards the town hall you will take the delightful Ruelle de Montagny, reminiscent of a miniature Montmartre.
The city of Othon reveals different facets of its architectural heritage. Not counting the many festivals which take place here throughout the year including the medieval festivals and the Brandon festivals which make Brandon one of the most lively and busy villages in Switzerland.
The route continues towards Valangin following the shore of Lake Neuchâtel. The itinerary offers perfect scenery for anyone wanting to combine holidays spent enjoying nature as well as gracious living - scented meadows and vineyards as far as the eye can see.
Good to know
As you follow your route do not miss the vineyards of Bonvillars and the village’s famous truffle market, the castles of Vaumarcus and Boudry and the wine-making village of Auvernier.
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