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The Vineyard Terraces of Switzerland


There’s inherent beauty evident across Switzerland, but the region around Lac Léman has a unique individual charm that is further amplified by the terraced vineyards that border it.

The entire region of the Swiss Riviera is in dramatic contrast with each other. The snow-covered Alps are to the south of the lake – on the opposite side of the vineyards. The deep blue of Lake Geneva changes colour with the movement of the sun, occasionally dotted by a boat passing through with the bright red Swiss flag fluttering in the wind. And then there is the endless green of the vineyards in the North. It’s majestic, it’s romantic, and it’ll make you feel drunk with splendour much before you taste the wine that’s on offer here.

This 30-kilometre region of Lavaux stretches from the city of Lausanne all the way to Chateau de Chillon in Montreaux, and because of its cultural importance, the locality has been given the distinction of being a UNESCO World Heritage site.

I had the pleasure of spending a few weeks bang in the middle of this belt, staying amidst the vineyards, exploring the tiny Swiss-French villages that showcase a very different side of Switzerland as compared to some of the famous – more mountainous – provinces.


Wine growing is a particularly personal and passionate characteristic that impacts this territory and all the people who live in it. Strict building regulations, wine associations that are 100 years old and promote working together, and healthy competition between different wine producers make this a hidden gem that is often overlooked by visitors.

California with Napa and Australia with its Yarra valley have romanticised wine culture to an extreme, but it’s the subtleness and non-commercial, more personal, aspects of the Swiss wine growers that makes it characteristic and praiseworthy. There’s no hullabaloo over wine resorts or mansions here. Instead, it’s only about manufacturing good wine and working together as a community to achieve that.

pullyThere are enough touristy attractions such as the Lavaux Vinorama, or Toy Train rides through the Vineyards that help promote the wine culturally, but what attracted me was discovering cute sounding and looking villages – Pully (pronounced Pu-yee), Cully (pronounced Ku-yee), Lutry,  Chexbres (pronounced Shebre), Rivaz… that makes Lavaux such a beautiful detour.

Now, technically the small roads that serpent through the Vineyards are private, and you cannot take your own car on them – the wine growers use them for their day to day work. However, the best way to be among the vines is to either walk/hike on these roads or take one of the small toy train rides that usually include wine tasting.

The best season to be here is obviously around or just before harvest time (October-ish), but when we visited in June, the grapes had started to show and the leaves were already a beautiful shade of green. Being among the vineyards and appreciating wine is an activity that suits all ages, and as for the tasting part, most places have grape juice for kids.


Reading and researching about Switzerland has led me to believe that unfortunately most travellers skip this area either limiting their visit to some of the nearby bigger towns – Montreux, Vevey, Lausanne, Geneva – or else going higher up in the mountains to popular and well-known places like Gstaad and Gruyere.

Here are a few photographs (and a few videos), that should convince you of the beauty that the region bestows upon us all. Taken at various different places in this stretch, these ought to tempt you, to explore this spectacular province of Switzerland, the next time you’re there.

















  • Sharon Janssens
    Posted 15 February, 17 at 3:32 PM

    Love it!! It so reminds me of my time I have spend there as an exchange student. It was one of the best times of my life, still miss it everyday.

  • plaidshirtdiaries
    Posted 15 February, 17 at 4:45 PM

    Absolutely lovely photos! You sold me 🙂

    • Post Author
      Ticker Eats The World
      Posted 15 February, 17 at 4:55 PM

      Now only to tell Switzerland Tourism that I’m helping promote the country 😜 Thank you

  • arv!
    Posted 15 February, 17 at 4:47 PM

    No matter which region you visit in Switzerland, you’ll always find picture perfect scenery. Lovely pictures Raghav!

  • Global Girl Travels
    Posted 16 February, 17 at 12:30 PM

    Switzerland is a beauty it seems. I agree with Arv above – it seems that every spot in Switzerland is as picturesque as your photos show here. I love exploring vineyards because it is always nice to get a glimpse of how our favorite wines are produced.

  • ramie1970
    Posted 16 February, 17 at 7:31 PM

    I am convinced! Switzerland looks/sounds/reads great! I was reading another post recently that inspired me to make a goal about Switzerland and your post has just strengthened that goal – good post!

  • The Tales of a Traveler
    Posted 16 February, 17 at 9:03 PM

    Switzerland is a gorgeous country. Though never associated it with Wine apart from snow clad mountains and chocolates. Would love to visit vineyard some day and take the toy train ride 🙂

  • Natalie @ Passport Out Asia
    Posted 16 February, 17 at 9:15 PM

    Your photos are so dreamy! Makes me want to visit Switzerland and see the vineyards!

  • onlybyland
    Posted 17 February, 17 at 12:32 AM

    Lavaux is a huge UNESCO world heritage site! I guess you get to see a lot of it passing through in the toy train. I agree, more people should visit Lavaux, maybe they will after reading your post and seeing that it is a UNESCO site.

  • usfman
    Posted 17 February, 17 at 12:44 AM

    My wife and I base in Lausanne and have visited several of these lakeshore towns. Did you see the statue for the late Freddie Mercury of Queen? Across the lake from Montreal, Deep Purple wrote Smoke on the Water.

    • Post Author
      Ticker Eats The World
      Posted 17 February, 17 at 8:26 AM

      Yes! Was based in Corseaux so Chaplin in Vevey and Freddie in Montreux, saw them all. Thanks

      • Jeanne Delapraz
        Posted 20 February, 17 at 1:57 AM

        And the song, ‘Smoke on the Water’ is based on the fire at the Casino (overlooking the lake)…

  • Gemma
    Posted 17 February, 17 at 3:15 AM

    I was just in Switzerland and I had no idea about this place! Although, from your photographs it appears you visited when there was better weather. Would you recommend the wine?

    • Post Author
      Ticker Eats The World
      Posted 17 February, 17 at 8:25 AM

      It’s one of the best wines I’ve ever had. That’s why I’m surprised why not many people know about it. I’m doing a special post on one of the Associations there so that will cover some of the issues they face.

  • Janine Good
    Posted 17 February, 17 at 5:31 AM

    How gorgeous. I never would have considered a winery in Switzerland as you are right – California and Australia truly romanticize the winery experience and culture. The industry does shape a region and it is nice to read that this Swiss region has made itself unique from the norm with its personal and non-commercial aspects. The scenery looks quite pristine and I do agree that it should not be overlooked when a trip is planned to Switzerland.

  • Jackie Taylor
    Posted 17 February, 17 at 10:35 AM

    I used to live in Switzerland, so I loved reading this post! 🙂 I am happy to hear that you had a nice experience there. I quite enjoyed watching your time lapse driving videos… and your photos are all so lovely! Thank you for sharing your experience!

  • Linger Abroad
    Posted 17 February, 17 at 12:25 PM

    First, your photos of Lavaux are beautiful. The landscapes look amazing and I think any photographer would love to visit just for that. I also love the little villages and towns; it really looks secluded and charming.

    Now, I’m not a wine person so I’m not sure what I’d be talking about, but it is pretty cool to see the vineyards to see them solely dedicated to their craft of making great wine. It was kind of when we were visiting Italy, we went to some places producing olive oil, and there’s nothing fancy about those places, they were just dedicated to producing a good product. Lovely post and will have to keep this region in mind.

  • christie sultemeier (@ckanani)
    Posted 18 February, 17 at 9:38 AM

    Ok I hate to leave the most cliche compliment but honestly Switzerland is my favorite so I just love these photos! I too am guilty of visiting Switzerland but overlooking wine country so this was really interesting to read. I am always looking for excuses to head back! Good to know that while October is the best time to go it would be sufficient to go outside of that window also. Thanks for sharing!

  • Foodie Flashpacker
    Posted 18 February, 17 at 2:34 PM

    I love touring wineries! I never would have thought of Switzerland as a wine producing country. Now l’m interested to try their wines!

  • Beerandcroissants
    Posted 18 February, 17 at 2:37 PM

    We love spending time in the wine regions of the world and Switzerland is no different. I’m pretty happy to make the most of whatever the region has to offer and don’t compare it necessarily to others, but take each on it’s own merits. This area looks wonderful.

  • vishalgmr1971
    Posted 18 February, 17 at 11:29 PM

    We enjoy vineyards when we visit British Columbia, however, never been to Switzerland. It’s hard for me to compare. But I loved the vineyards of Switzerland from the lens of your camera and videos.

  • Jenna Kvidt
    Posted 19 February, 17 at 3:16 PM

    We always love visiting vineyards! Would love to check out this area in Switzerland. Your photos definitely convinced us that we need to add it to our itinerary. The villages in the Lavaux area do look super cute!

  • Samantha Sparrow
    Posted 20 February, 17 at 12:32 PM

    I had no idea that Switzerland has vineyards, and how right you are that the subleties of their wine culture add to the experience of this. Such great photos – want to visit now!

  • Claire
    Posted 20 February, 17 at 4:20 PM

    I swear there is no part of Switzerland that isn’t pure photography perfection! Have never thought about visiting vineyards out there though. May have to now!

  • travelwith2ofus
    Posted 20 February, 17 at 9:49 PM

    Lac Léman and it surrounding areas as well as the vineyards are indeed beautiful as detailed by your photos and videos. I visited Switzerland a couple of years ago and I honestly did not know about Lac Léman. It is definitely worth a visit. Just beautiful.

  • authenticfoodquest
    Posted 22 February, 17 at 3:09 PM

    These are great pics and videos and they bring me back to when I was overwhelmed by the splendor of Lac Lemon. I spent one short afternoon in the area and would have loved to explored more. Thanks for allowing me to relive that moment, and also see it from a different point of view.

  • Jenn Brown
    Posted 23 February, 17 at 2:50 PM

    You’re right… the photos and videos did convince me! I had never even heard of Lavaux before! What a beautiful part of the world. I’ve only been to Napa so it’s about time I explore another wine region 🙂 Thanks for sharing!

  • nickymackenzie
    Posted 24 February, 17 at 2:12 AM

    We’ve spent a lot of time visiting vineyards in France and Italy, but never thought of Switzerland! Beautifully written, definitely food for thought!

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  • marchandlaurencelittlewomen
    Posted 1 March, 17 at 9:55 AM

    Absolutely stunning photos!! Thanks so much for sharing 🙂

  • Traveling Well For Less
    Posted 4 March, 17 at 11:19 PM

    Wow, who knew Switzerland had wineries. Love the emphasis on quality vs quantity. I’ll have to make a point to stop by this area the next time I make it to Switzerland.

  • Nathan
    Posted 5 March, 17 at 11:56 AM

    I’ve never been to Switzerland but your photos are really making me want to go! I also never realized Switzerland produced wines. I would love to try their wines.

  • Jetsettera
    Posted 5 March, 17 at 4:09 PM

    I loved the pictures. especially the one with the cat! It s new to me that Switzerland makes great wine. I am going back in 2 weeks. I am gonna have to try some!

  • MakeTime2SeeTheWorld (@VickiLouise86)
    Posted 6 March, 17 at 11:12 AM

    We lived in Switzerland for a couple months a few years ago and got to try a few Swiss Wines. I don’t see many of them now I live in Australia – I don’t think they have the distribution networks of some of the neighboring countries like France and Italy, which is a shame.

  • Baskets Life Travel
    Posted 7 March, 17 at 3:19 PM

    Wow it looks beautiful and I had no idea Switzerland had wineries. I am currently living in Germany at the moment we might need to run down and check these out!

  • Anita Hendrieka
    Posted 7 March, 17 at 4:05 PM

    Wow I never actually thought of Switzerland producing wines. I don’t see them in New Zealand unfortunately. Will have to plan another trip there just to visit the vineyards I think!

  • Carmen's Luxury Travel
    Posted 8 March, 17 at 5:49 PM

    I absolutely love traveling to Europe in the fall so I’d definitely visit in early October! Thanks for that tip. I had never thought of visiting vineyards in Switzerland before but it looks so lovely! Thanks for sharing your wonderful experience. I’m bookmarking this for the future.

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  • Jonathan Wood
    Posted 6 May, 17 at 10:38 PM

    Wow great photos!

  • Scott Storick
    Posted 6 June, 17 at 7:02 PM

    Stunning photographs! I’d love to have the chance to visit someday.

    • Post Author
      Ticker Eats The World
      Posted 6 June, 17 at 7:28 PM

      I sure do hope so. Give me a shout if you want contacts for some really nice wine tasting in Corseaux.

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  • Eric
    Posted 26 July, 18 at 12:21 PM

    Switzerland is one of those countries that surprises must when it comes to learning that they do in fact produce wine. We’ve only learned about Swiss wine, especially around Lucerne in the past couple of years and have plans to visit in the Fall.

    • Post Author
      Ticker Eats The World
      Posted 26 July, 18 at 1:11 PM

      Since my best friend is from there, I knew for a while, but didn’t know how big it was till I visited. Every region is really proud of what they produce and you have to try the ones around Vevey.

  • Kamila Pala
    Posted 11 December, 18 at 12:15 PM

    It looks beautiful! Interesting post. bye. K

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