Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Trip to Appenzell

 If you want to see a typical Swiss village Appenzell is the best place to go. It takes two hours from Zurich via Gossau station. The whole train journey would take you through many beautiful farms. 

I made a last minute plan to visit Appenzell. I was little late to the train station. At the ticket machine it asks for the pin so if you have an international credit card it doesn't work. I stood in the line to buy a ticket. Everyone in the line was so relaxed. My train was at 9.09 a.m. and I was still not close to ticket window. Finally at 9.00 a.m I bought my ticket.

I hastened to the train, sat in the nearest train car. When I went in there was a group of school boys and girls who were making tons of noise. They went down at Winterthur station. After they left the train car was nearly empty except for two old ladies who got on the train at Wil Station.

The farms were beautifully maintained. Huge farm land and small house at the center it was spectacular. After reaching Gossau station I had to change train for Appenzell. That train was tiny only with 3 cars. There was no one on the platform and I was 15 minutes early. I was alone in the car until the last minute when an old man got on the train just before the train started moving. I was busy taking photos he looked at me with a smile and asked where I am getting down at. That journey was really beautiful.  The mountains were small but full with snow. The old man was telling me information about mountains we were passing by (in his typical European accent which I found it cute) as he hike there almost every alternate day. I was really impressed. Finally we arrived at Appenzell. He told me to visit tourist information office for maps and touristic routs in the village.

The Appenzell is really small place. First thing I noticed was the castle. The castle has been privately owned since 1780 by Sutter family, who still resides there, and is not open to the public. But still it looks beautiful from outside. I completed my touristic route in an hour. Among the entire place I like ‘Heiligkreuzkapelle’ a tiny church in the village. It could occupy about 12 people at a time. The stained glass windows of the church are depiction of five sorrowful mysteries of rosary and were designed by Ferdnand Gehr in 1964.

Saw some typical Swiss houses like Salesis House, Konkordia House, Hampi  Fassler House and historic square called as Landsgemeindeplatz, which is unfortunately used as car parking. Another place was mentioned in tourist route ‘The Lowen Pharmacy’ which is considered to be an architectural gem with beautiful paintings on its decorated façade. It has pictures of herbs painted on the white round arched panels covering the shutter. There is a cemetery on the side of the St. Mauritius Catholic church from there you can see a beautiful view of mountains and river.

On the way to Appenzelll


Heiligkreuzkapelle Interior

Lowen Pharmacy 

View from St. Mauritius church

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