Traveling to the Alps in the summer, How do you do it?

  • I’ve heard so many times people traveling to Switzerland for vacation, I never had a chance to do it my self.

    With so many cheap tickets around I think this is our opportunity and we would love to give it a try this year, I am struggling with lack of information on this topic all over the internet, and I have so many questions, & would love to get them straightened out.

    I am not finding any mentions of hotels, apartments or any other Kosher amenities, just a select few, in Zurich, Davos & Montana, and their prices are quite expensive.

    Are there any other options at all? Does everyone go to a hotel, are there ay private condos & villas for rent (think: New Hampshire & Florida)?

    Between those few locations which is the most suitable and you would recommend for a first timer with a family with kids to explore?

    Can Kosher food & snack be bought in all those places?

    Everyone is saying that the public transportation in Switzerland is just amazing and there is no need to rent a car, would you all agree to this?

    Any help or guidance would be a great help.

  • @silvermoon
    Most people take apartments and not hotels, you just go anywhere near an hotel so like this you have Minyan & other Kosher amenities.
    @S-weiss is a pro at holidaying 🙂

  • GSP

    Yes, We’ve doe it so many times, that you can consider me a pro at it :), just the amount of phone calls I am getting those days…

    Maybe I’ll do a little write up soon, that people might find helpfull.

  • GSP

    OK, here we go

    First, as an introduction, I DO NOT TAKE RESPONSIBILITY FOR ANYTHING I AM POSTING HERE, everything I write is based on our past experience, we’ve flown many times and visited “THE ALPS”, as it’s called, with kids and without, and gained some experience, and I’m more than happy to share with others, but am not to be held responsible for any outcomes.

    In our crowds, Switzerland is viewed as the most compelling and attractive country to visit, I think it’s not so true, and it depends on what kind of experience you’re seeking to enjoy, I’ve only been to Switzerland, Austria & Italy, so I only know what’s happening there.

    Each place is different, ane each region offers different experiences, some are more child Friendly, like Serfaus-Fiss-Ladis, some are higher locations with extraordinary views like the SaasTal, Zermatt, some are large big cities like Davos & Klosters, ZellAm Sea, Kaprun, some don’t have much to do in the villages but more around, like Flachau, some have more local activities like Solden, and so on, each place is unique and each location has their perks and is suited for different types of vacations, some have thousands of Yiddishe families, and some barley have 10 - 20, some have big lakes and some have 10-15 cable cars locally, some have more thrilling adventures, some have shooping mals, some places are greener and some are rocky, and so on.

    First thing first - planning your stay.

    There are many decisions you will need to decide,

    • Should I join an organized tour/group, or should I fly on my own?
    • Should I order food or Schlep along?
    • Should I rent a car or rely on Public Transportation?
    • And of course the biggest subject is where should I travel.

    I’ll try going through some of the details, and hopefully, this will be of help.

    I have only twice stayed in hotels because I like being my own boss and having the freedom to plan my days, especially when you want to go on day trips and not be bound to the timings of your hotel’s meals.

    Some people would rather enjoy a nice luxurious hotel without any hassle and taking everything in without any extra work.
    Your decision…

    If you go for a hotel, there isn’t much to write about choices of places and other Kosher amenities because you are limited to what they provide anyways.

    In normal years there are many options spreading all over, (naming a few: Davos, Arosa, St. Moritz, Crans Montanna, Hinterglemm, Serfaus, Saas-Fee) this year due to Covid-19 a lot isn’t open, Google for “Kosher hotels Europe 2021” you’ll find the info, there are also the regulars who operate hotels, Lev, TourOlam, etc. so check their websites too.

    If you wanna travel yourself, wherever there are Kosher hotels - Yidden take apartments in the neighborhood so there is Minyan where you can Daven.

    There are also many popular places where for years people are going and there is organized Minyanim & Kosher Bread and Milky items to be gotten locally, just ask around, or try searching for them online,

    Just a few helpful sites

    Food in Switzerland & Austria you buy most food items in the local supermarkets and you use “The List” those are lists of food items that are approved by the local Hashgachos, can be found here,

    Usually, in the local Swiss & Austrian papers, there is also a lot of info on more places where there are Minyanim,
    But as you can see from the above sites you should already have a list of
    a good 20+ places with Minyan, I heard of quite a few that are not listed there, so if you have a question on a specific place, I can try to find out.

    Finding Apartments the easiest and cheapest and the most reliable is finding through the villages own site, most places have their own tourist offices (that are always super helpful) and have their accommodation booking system, you can also search on Booking and Airbnb, and compare prices.

    Renting a car or not, really depends on the place you’re going to and what you’re planning on doing there, If you are just going to Saalbach-Hinterglemm and just planning on staying locally then the bus system is more than excellent, you also have to figure out you’re getting there from the airport, sometimes it’s a big hassle with 3 trains switches and then a bus and after that a Taxi, it’s also worth to compare different pricing options, with A day pass or family/half card.

    I hope this helps, if you have questions I hope to stick around…

  • This was so helpful, what do you do with food? do you bring along entire cases for the whole duration of your trip?

  • Are there any Kosher takeout’s or caterings out there?

  • @jgrp Sounds like alot of fun.

  • You can order food from the European Kosher stores, a lot of them deliver

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