exploring Montreux

I promise to share a taste of Montreux in the next post. I’ve been distracted by the fascinating history and culture of this magical place. To be honest, the blog writes itself. I am only the conduit. 🙂

In last week’s post you read about Montreux’s connection to the music industry. I’d like to continue exploring Montreux–the small city on the Lake Geneva shoreline in the heart of the region known as the Montreux Riviera.

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We strolled along the shore of Lake Geneva from the heart of town to the Chillon Castle. It was sure worth the hike–to have the opportunity to explore the Chateau de Chillon.

You can’t visit Montreux and not be captivated by the omnipresence of the Chateau de Chillon, also known as Chillon Castle. You can see it from almost any view in Montreux. The massive castle was built over several centuries, with earliest mentions being from 1150 AD. There have been numerous additions, renovations, and restorations over the past 850 years that have changed, preserved, or enhanced what may have been. But regardless of whenever one may have visited the castle, there is no doubt that you would have been somewhat mystified by its incredible presence on Lake Geneva–known locally as Lac Léman.

exploring-montreux

The Chateau de Chillon really has an amazing presence as you draw near it and let yourself be transported to medieval times.

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The interior of the Chillon Castle is just as awe-inspiring as the exterior. I wish I’d had more time to explore!

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Chillon Castle hosts a wide range of special events including art shows and book launches.

It was kind of spooky to see a noose hanging in the lower level of the castle, but that was to remind us that Chillon Castle once contained a prison. On the bright side, Château de Chillon continues to host gala events at this incredible venue. Can you imagine enjoying a wedding or candlelight dinner here? Check out the website for photos of some of the events they have hosted. I’ll have to see if I can uncover a connection to chocolate …

Please join me back here next week when we’ll let our senses go wild as we taste the various delights that Montreux has to offer. And yes … that will include chocolate. 🙂

Doreen Pendgracs

Known throughout the Web as the "Wizard of Words", I've been a freelance writer since 1993. I'm currently researching and writing volume II of "Chocolatour: A Quest for the World's Best Chocolate". Volume I was published in September, 2013.

64 Responses

  1. Looks like another place I need to visit. I love castles–even with the noose! Love this photo of you–expansive grin in an expressing place!

  2. Erica says:

    Love the picture of you along Lake Geneva. The photo of the noose at Chillon Castle is a bit sobering. But it also serves as a reminder of the past which makes it a very powerful image.
    Erica recently posted…Health Trends: When It’s Better To Not Be TrendyMy Profile

  3. Chris
    Twitter:
    says:

    Thanks for some more insights into Montreaux.

    I must ask, have you found it difficult to grapple with the cost of visiting Switzerland?

    All I’ve met, including locals, have advised that it is exorbitantly expensive!
    Chris recently posted…The house at number six…My Profile

    • HI Chris. Yes, Switzerland is expensive. There’s no way to whitewash that. As a professional travel writer, I am very fortunate that most of the costs for the trips I take are covered by my hosts. But I am still cogniscent of the real costs of the destinations I visit and always include relevant links so that readers can check the costs for themselves.
      Doreen Pendgracs recently posted…exploring MontreuxMy Profile

  4. Ken Dowell
    Twitter:
    says:

    It’s amazing to think of the engineering that went into the construction of the castle in Montreaux, realizing that basically everything had to be done by hand.

    • Hi Ken and thanks for your comment. Yes, the medieval castles I have been in over in Europe really are amazing structures. Most of our modern-day buildings don’t make too to 100 years old. These structures are often in the area of 1000 years old and still looking good!

  5. Mar Pages
    Twitter:
    says:

    Wow! So much history in that castle. I love the mood it’s giving off, creepy yet regal. Looking forward to hearing about the taste sensations in the next post. Bring it on!

  6. Phoenicia
    Twitter:
    says:

    Is that a rope they hung people with in the 4th photograph – how chilling! No, I would not enjoy spending time in this castle. There is something eerie about it. Whilst the architecture is grand and extremely solid, I would be too busy thinking of the many happenings that took place here.
    Phoenicia recently posted…Savings: how much of a priority is it for you?My Profile

  7. TammyJo Eckhart
    Twitter:
    says:

    What is the noose thing in your one photo?
    TammyJo Eckhart recently posted…Color Your Candy DreamsMy Profile

  8. Linda
    Twitter:
    says:

    My gosh Doreen, these are gorgeous photos! I especially love the one of you with the lake and castle in the background!

  9. Janice Chung
    Twitter:
    says:

    When I was in Switzerland I visited Château de Chillon but I don’t remember the noose! I’m sure I would have remembered that. It’s definitely worth a visit and I think I walked there, along the shore, from Montreux.
    Janice Chung recently posted…Dealing With Stomach Problems When TravellingMy Profile

  10. Loved seeing Chillon Castle again. Thanks for bringing back the great memories.
    The GypsyNesters recently posted…Time to #LetHawaiiHappen (And support a good cause!)My Profile

  11. Esther
    Twitter:
    says:

    I sure hope they wafted that castle with plenty of sage smoke before using the venue for weddings, after knowing it was used for a prison. Wouldn’t want that kind of energy in a marriage. 😉
    Esther recently posted…The Self in Full BloomMy Profile

    • Interesting point, Esther! I have encountered some places in Switzerland where principles of Feng shui were used. I will check with the authorities of the Chillon Castle to see if they have done any kind of cleansing ceremony. Truly, the feeling you get at this site is uplifting and not negative, so I think that the negative energy must have been outed.
      Doreen Pendgracs recently posted…exploring MontreuxMy Profile

  12. Beverly says:

    What fabulous photos you took, Doreen! What fabulous places you have visited!

  13. Esther
    Twitter:
    says:

    As always Doreen, I love your photography, especially the first one with you by the lake.
    Esther recently posted…The Self in Full BloomMy Profile

  14. neha
    Twitter:
    says:

    That noose does send a little bit of chill down the spines. Otherwise, I love old castles and would love to visit here sometimes.
    neha recently posted…10 must visit spots in Chittorgarh fort RajasthanMy Profile

  15. Oh I just love things like this Doreen! I have always been an ancient history buff and look for places like this to explore whenever I travel – this would be a must for me. Thanks for sharing. 🙂
    Marquita Herald recently posted…The Reality We Must Accept Before We Can Improve Our LifeMy Profile

  16. Donna Janke
    Twitter:
    says:

    Chillon Castle is impressive! I love the picture with the water dividing the castle from the walkway/park. I can imagine feeling transported to medieval times.
    Donna Janke recently posted…New World Old FortMy Profile

  17. Sushmita
    Twitter:
    says:

    I love visiting Castles, by far I have visited 5 castles located in India. There are many more remaining 🙂

    Chillon Castle looks impressive of the images you shared. Will soon check out the website to view other images too!

    Thanks for sharing Doreen, looking forward to next week’s post!
    Sushmita recently posted…What is important to sell a product? It’s Marketing or its Quality?My Profile

  18. There aren’t many things more enchanting than a castle on the water! Chillon Castle looks lovely!
    Irene S. Levine recently posted…Tip to Avoid Falls When TravelingMy Profile

  19. Patti
    Twitter:
    says:

    I was enjoying your photos and then eeekk! a hangman’s noose caught me by surprise! But, I suppose the reality was shocking as well. Chillon Castle looks as if it has quite the story to tell and when we explore places such as the castle, it reminds me how young the US actually is.
    Patti recently posted…The Yellow Envelope Project ~My Profile

  20. Jeri
    Twitter:
    says:

    If and when I make it back to Switzerland, Montreux is certainly on my list of places to see now. The dangling noose is a nice touch and reminder that not all picture perfect things are picture perfect.

  21. David, my other half, spent three weeks at school in Montreux learning French when he was in high school. He took me there not long after we met and showed me around. Chateau Chillon is stunning.
    Lyn aka The Travelling Lindfields recently posted…Cycling in Victoria: The High Country Rail TrailMy Profile

  22. Anda
    Twitter:
    says:

    Visiting Lake Geneva and exploring the Montreux Riviera is my dream too, Doreen. There is so much beauty and a great deal of history in this place. Switzerland is one of those countries that you could never get bored of. Ah, and all that chocolate….
    Anda recently posted…Christmas in Romania – Celebrations, Customs and TraditionsMy Profile

  23. Sue Reddel
    Twitter:
    says:

    That noose is really scary. I’m enjoying all the history and beauty of Montreux but I have to admit that I really can’t wait to hear more about the food and of course the chocolate!
    Sue Reddel recently posted…Christmastime in ChicagoMy Profile

  24. Susan cooper
    Twitter:
    says:

    Hi Doreen, castles are fascinating to visit, aren’t they? This one looks beautiful. The noose is a bit ominous. Glad you thought to capture that image. 🙂
    Susan cooper recently posted…Peanut Butter Fudge: #RecipeMy Profile

  25. Montreux is a magical place. Chateau Chillon is beautiful and has that eerie allure of Old Europe. Maybe you can find a chocolate recreation of the castle.
    The Travel Ninjas recently posted…Vietnamese Food Spotlight – Is “Banh Duc Nong” Better Than Pho?My Profile

  26. That noose definitely is a bit chilling. I hope they remove it before a wedding reception or the groom may think it’s for him if he misbehaves! The castle is another highlight that makes this area fabulous to visit
    Jenny Freedman recently posted…A Walking Tour Through Prague’s Early HistoryMy Profile

  27. W.A.Rusho says:

    What great pictures. Now I am completely jealous of you, you get to visit places and eat chocolate, and visit medieval castles.
    W.A.Rusho recently posted…Presents and Politics for a Medieval ChristmasMy Profile

  28. I’m down with any castle – noose or no noose! And we’ve been trying to get to Switzerland for a while now, so this is one to put on that future itinerary.
    jane canapini recently posted…Kissimmee: There’s Magic in the AirMy Profile

  29. Wonderful to see that the chateau has survived the elements over the centuries. I wonder if it’s ever been used in a movie set?
    Jeannette Paladino recently posted…Does the President-Elect Possess the Qualities of a Global Leader?My Profile

  30. Ami
    Twitter:
    says:

    The interiors of the castle look amazing. I would love to know more about the prisons and other stories of this castle. And maybe spend half a day here too 🙂
    Ami recently posted…Delights of the Junagarh Fort Bikaner in RajasthanMy Profile

  31. Vyjay
    Twitter:
    says:

    The castle looks mysterious and the noose and the narrow passaged do look scary. Wandering in the castle, probably you never know if you would bump into a strange medieval character from the past.
    Vyjay recently posted…Le Petit Elephant, Kochi – A ReviewMy Profile

  32. Rachel Heller
    Twitter:
    says:

    The noose strikes me as a great reminder that, although we romanticize the Middle Ages in TV shows and films, in fact it was a brutal period in Europe’s history. Nevertheless, I’d love to explore that castle in Montreux!
    Rachel Heller recently posted…A Last-Minute Christmas Gift for Travelers!My Profile

  33. I love old castles – so atmospheric. And this one has a wonderful setting too…
    Karen Warren recently posted…The Ancient Burial Sites of GotlandMy Profile

  34. It indeed is spooky to see a noose hanging , the view of The Chateau de Chillon is simply stunning.

  35. I love seeing the “bones” of these ancient places: the high arched ceilings, the pillars and rock work. It’s fun to try and imagine what drew people long ago to a place and the lives of those who lived in around the shadows of Chatau de Chillon. Lovely photos!
    Anita recently posted…Part Two – Figuring It Out Along The Way – Life In PortugalMy Profile

  36. Looks like another place I need to visit! Love this photo of you–-expansive grin in an expressing place!

    Thank you

  37. It is definitely a place that I would love to visit!I love castles, that is why it is my type of place!

  38. Bola
    Twitter:
    says:

    I’ve not been to Switzerland but hope to get there one day. The noose does look spooky though

    • Hi Bola and welcome back to my site. Yes, Switzerland definitely has something for everyone. I did really enjoy the Montreux Riviera, as each city along the shoreline of Lake Geneva has its own history and personality. Including the photo of the noose reminded us that those chalets and castles weren’t just for parties and opulence! They had other purposes, and in the case of Castle Chillon, it contained a prison.
      Doreen Pendgracs recently posted…best swiss chocolate of LucerneMy Profile

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