Saturday, April 30, 2016

Europe Trip - Mount Titlis, Snow All The Way

Sunday morning, time to explore Mount Titlis!

We checked with the receptionist about the weather on top of the mountain. She told us, partly sunny partly cloudy, -3 degree celcius. We were quite scared to hear the minus but we kept our chin up and proceeded with the plan. What a shame visiting Switzerland without stepping on to Mount Titlis?

So, we took a stroll back to the station and purchased our pass there. The pass the we got included two-way train ticket to Engelberg, two-way cable car rides, and Ice Flyer and it cost CHF 84.3 (~SGD 120). It was way cheaper than online booking. In the website, cable car rides from Engelberg cost CHF 89, without the train tickets and Ice Flyer. 

The train to Engelberg only run hourly. We catched 9:00 am train and reached Engelberg about 40 minutes later.

The train

The town of Engelberg is a town surrounded by mountains, a beautiful one. We walked from the station to the cable car terminus. But beware, there is another cable car here other than Titlis and we initially walked towards the wrong one. It took us almost half an hour circling the town before finally got the terminus.

The view when stepping out of the station
So European
While we lost our way
Finally on the right track, what a view
Ow yeah this is it
The entrance

After entering the building, we changed our ticket at the ticket box before proceeding to the cable car. The queue was not that long and there were many counters operating. Not long, we had our tickets in hands and we proceeded to the cable car.

The first ride was a normal cable car sending us to the middle station. After that we were transported by TITLIS ROTAIR, a huge rotating cable car that could accommodate 80-100 people. We were supposed to be be able to enjoy the 360 degree panoramic view in the Rotair. But the reality, we could not even move inside since the Rotair was loaded fully. I could only see the back of the person in front of me.

Start to enjoy the view
White snow carpet
Going higher
Transfer station

After reaching the top, we walked out of the cable car and found ourselves inside a multi-storey buildings. Each floor serves different purpose, i.e. restaurant, lounge, photo studio, souvenir shop, etc. It was rather suffocating inside with the volume of people inside the small building.

The view at the top
Taking the view

Our first activity was the ice tunnel called Glacier Cave. It is one of the highlight here. I find it was more fun walking along the side of the mountain like what we did in Pilatus the day before.

The supported section near the entrance
The unsupported part, it's so slippery
Ice wall
The Glacier Cave, must be built by Elsa

We then prepared ourselves before going out to the snow field. And of course, we ate. I find eating is the most important thing to keep the body warm, especially for us who are not so cold-resistant since we are living in everlasting summer country. So, we stuffed ourselves and out we went!

Sunny weather, lucky us!
People were playing with the snow

Mount Titlis stands gracefully at 3,238m above the sea level and it is the highest summit of the range north of the Susten Pass. The everlasting snow here makes Titlis one of the most crowded attractions in Switzerland. Titlis is the place for people to ski or just to walk around, your choice.

A piece of snow ice
Another bucket list: eating the snow!

We climbed to the viewing gallery at the top. It was not easy but it was fun. We were not used to walking atop the fluffy snow but it was surely a cool experience.

On top of the world
My footprints are here
The Alps
A swan on top of titlis, my muscles are all tight and hard 
A giant white Hershey chocolate?
Relaxing on top of the world
I finally lay on a bed of snow

We walked down from the viewing gallery to the Cliff Walk, which is another attraction in Mount Titlis. Titlis Cliff Walk is a 1m wide 100m long suspension bridge that is hanging 3,041m above the sea level. 150 steps and you can reach the other side.

We tried to walk here but after a few steps, the winds blew so hard and it was getting foggy. We did not want to sabotage the rest of the journey so we decided to back off.

The Cliff Walk, fog started to come
It was so foggy!!!

We then proceeded to Ice Flyer station besides this bridge. Our pass included the Ice Lift and what we needed to do was just sit while the Ice Lift did its work. We rode it. The Ice Flyer was just nice for 6 people and it looked scary at first. We sat and we looked down, our feet hanging in the air and there was some part of the track sloping down quite steeply. However, it was a great experience, but maybe not for acrophobias.

Ice Flyer
Thrilled and happy
The ride is suspended on steel rope
The view

After that, we realised it was past noon and we needed to be back. We were lucky because we spent the sunny time up there. When we finished with all the activities, clouds and winds surrounded the area already.

We took the cable car rides back to Engelberg and walked to the station, this time not losing our way. But, we missed our train and we were required to wait for the next train. So, we had our late lunch and than back to Lucerne, walked back to the hotel to get our luggage, and we proceeded to Zurich with train. The ticket to Zurich cost CHF 25 (~SGD 35) one way per person.

Back to Engelberg
Engelberg small train station
Engelberg train station from across the road

Next - Wandering in Zurich

Love is in the air,
Little Feet

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