Road Trip stop one! Switzerland with Canvas, as breath-taking as you would expect… Find out what we got up to during our stay at Camping Manor Farm, Interlaken, Switzerland with Canvas Holidays.
After a very long journey, leaving Ashford at 6.15am, we arrived exhausted in Interlaken around 7pm. Our hosts, Canvas Holidays couldn’t have had more welcoming reps, something which continued throughout our short stay. Tony and team were always on hand during our 4 nights with tips for where to visit with our little ones and were amazing when a freak storm hit, on their day off, helping not only us but other campers. (Our tent stood firm I should add at this point which seemed nothing short of a miracle.)
The family feel of Manor Farm is great, with amenities which are fairly basic but clean and we have had no problems in accessing. The site its self is busy with families from around the world (in the majority European,) however, despite this, the overriding feeling is one of calm, family fun and tranquillity in the lap of the mountains. A local kids club is available providing activities such as beach volleyball, mini golf, arts and crafts for younger guests and of course a mini disco. We didn’t use this due to long days out, favouring playing French boules and badminton like many others on site. This seemed to be the norm where we were camping by the lake, a walker’s paradise the site was quiet by 10.30pm with many up and out early doors.
Location wise this is absolutely perfect. Situated on the Thunersee lake, the site is surrounded by stunning vistas of mountains and snow covered peaks which you never tire of. The option of using neighbouring Neuhaus facilities is also a bonus; (Charged locally) it includes a range of water sports and activities catering for all levels of adrenalin from paragliding to pedalos! The tourist cards we were provided with on arrival following payment of the tourist tax, gave us free access to buses and the boat which was a fun way to travel the short distance to and from the town. It also included the local municipal swimming pool which was immaculate, we spent a full afternoon there and a variety of discounts for other local attractions and activities.
For us the main draw was the alps. Charlie had been learning about them in school and delighted in telling us all about the different layers as we travelled to the various summits. Lots of places here are geared for children, ours particularly enjoyed Mannlichen, recommended by Canvas rep Tracey, where a wooden adventure park was the treat at the end of a mountain walk which lead to breath taking views of the Jungfrau. Sadly, we didn’t have the time, clothing, or honestly the required 708 Francs for our family of 5 (we got 1.20 Francs to £1) to travel to the very top on this occasion although it is something we would certainly plan for when returning. The chorus chimes of cow bells and warm hot chocolate are memories we will treasure and the experience is something that simply can not be recreated.
Our stay at Camping Manor Farm was in a maxi tent. Eye brow raising is not unusual when I mention this but they are kitted out with everything you need for a basic stay, with the obvious exception of your own toilet and shower facilities. Camping in its self tends to lead you to make friends with your neighbours and here was no exception. We liked the fact that we were mixed in with a variety of tents and camper vans with people who had travelled here many times before and who were more than willing to share their stories and ideas with us. When the rain came, and boy it did one night, we were cosy and warm with a gas hob, electric and a happily boiling kettle! On hot sunny days (most of our stay) we reached for ice lollies from the freezer and chilled beers from the fridge.
Our Top Tips for your Switzerland stop with Canvas…
- If you can, make an overnight stop or break the
journey on route in France. (Our children were fine but it is a long, long
drive which takes most of the day and there are loads of options.)
- Alternatively, as we did, make sure you’ve got plenty of in car entertainment!
- Plan in advance and pack appropriately! –
Obvious we know but we hadn’t really considered the terrain and converse aren’t
designed for trekking!
- That said, don’t hold back, enjoy every minute, we were absolutely fine bar a few questioning glances from the pro walkers and lots of the walk are well prepared for tourists!
- Switzerland is super expensive! Everyone tells
you this, but only when faced with a 2.80F loaf of basic bread or 10F pack of
ham do you really take it on board. We looked into a taxi which online was
quoted as around 100F for 18 miles.
- If you are driving bringing food in cool bags etc is a great idea. One camper did a mini celebration as he revealed to us he’d done his full Aldi shop just before he left England!
- 3-8 day passes are available for travel onto the mountains and various options in terms of visiting the highlights are great in terms of making the most of your visit.
- Finally, and most importantly…. Make friends! Local knowledge is so useful here and the site couldn’t be better placed for the most amazing break.
We will certainly be back to Camping Manor Farm for a longer stay. Thank you so much to the fantastic reps who have made this leg of our trip a memorable one.
To see where Louise and family are heading to next, do read their 3 week road trip plan!