In addition to the compelling conference program that will bring you to the 2nd ACM conference on recommender systems, Lausanne (the capital of the Vaud canton of Switzerland) offers a variety of possibilities to explore highly attractive areas throughout Switzerland. Autumn is the golden season for visiting the most spectacular glaciers, wine regions while foliage is at its peak.
Most of the places that we recommend are reachable by the publication transportation system. If you plan to travel for more than few days before or after the conference and visit a few far places from Lausanne, it makes sense to purchase the Europass in your country in advance. The cost can be more reasonable than purchasing train tickets in Switzerland. For public transportation schedules, please go to http://www.sbb.ch/en/index.htm. Notice that even bus schedules can be obtained there.
The following activities are suggested to you based on availabilities of time, proximity to Lausanne, and personal interests.
Surrounded by the white tops of the mountains and the soft
waves of Lake Geneva, Chillon castle is a historical site as well as a beauty
spot. It is built on a rocky island along the antique road to Italy. By train,
this castle can be reached from Lausanne in 40 minutes.
This castle is located nearby Montreux ( http://wikitravel.org/en/Montreux). Within an hour and by a rack train, you can reach The Rochers de Naye (http://www.montreux.ch/naye/ ) where you can get a spectacular view of the lake Geneva, the nearby famous alps, and enjoy some hiking at the same time.
On the way to the Chillon castle, you may be also interested in visiting the wine region either on the same day or in another day.
Imagine yourself high in the Alps, overlooking the clear blue waters of Lake Geneva. There are acres of terraced vineyards all around you following a wide path that cuts across the vineyards, winding through medieval villages and Swiss country cottages. Welcome to the Lavaux Vineyard Trail in Switzerland, just 30 minutes northeast of Geneva, and directly across the lake from Evian, France. This is some of the most beautiful and austere scenery in the world, a perfect place for some hiking and wine tasting.
Source: Hiking the Swiss Wine Trail by Liz Dodder. http://www.egoddess.net/Articles/hiking_the_swiss_wine_trail.htm
Lausanne is a city in the French-speaking part of Switzerland, situated on the shores of Lake Geneva (French: Lac Léman), and facing Évian-les-Bains (France) and with the Jura mountains to its north. Lausanne is located about 50 km (31 mi) northeast of Geneva. It is the capital of the canton of Vaud and of the district of Lausanne. The headquarter of the International Olympic Committee is located in Lausanne. It lies in the middle of a wine-making region.
Luzern is within 2 hours of train ride from Lausanne (see train schedules at www.rail.ch) and is located on the Lake Luzern. Thanks to its nearby mountains (the Rigi, Pilatus and Stanserhorn which offer impressive panoramic views of central Switzerland), this city with its beautiful lakeside setting is a favorite touristy destination for those who like cobble stoned European cities as well as those who like to venture to the off-the-beaten-path places.
Complete with gable paintings, the covered, medieval Chapel Bridge forms the center piece of Luzern’s townscape and is considered to be one of the oldest, covered wooden bridges in Europe. Another landmark of the town is the Museggmauer wall that, with the only exception of its own towers, has been preserved in its original well-fortified state.
Luzern is the ideal starting point for many excursions to the highlights of
central Switzerland. A trip up one of Luzern’s regional mountains, the Pilatus
or the Rigi – the queen of mountains – is a must. But excursions up
onto the Stanserhorn, the Bürgenstock or a steamship cruise on Lake Luzern
with its many bends and arms are certainly no less worthy. The Wilhelm Tell
Express originates in Luzern and ferries its passengers to the foot of the
Gotthard pass via Lake luzern and then continues by rail into Ticino, south of
the Alpine ridge. The «cherry road» leads from luzern through the landscape of
cheery trees and kirsch.
Interlaken is located in the Bernese Oberland, nestling between Lakes Thun and Brienz at an altitude of 570 meters above the sea level. The name Interlaken literally means in between lakes at the foot of three famous mountains: Eiger, Mönch (monk in German) and Jungfrau (young lady in German). It is a holiday resort of international importance and an ideal starting point for countless excursions to the region’s top destinations. The composer Felix Mendelssohn wrote “If you haven’t seen the Interlaken countryside, you haven’t seen Switzerland.”
The car-free village of Bettmeralp which is only accessible by a large-car cableway is located in the immediate vicinity of the impressive Aletsch Glacier, the first UNESCO World Heritage Site of the Alps. The family-friendly summer and fall holiday resort boasts almost 300 sunny days a year.
Bettmeralp is located on a sun terrace high above the Rhone Valley with a view of the four-thousand-meter-high peaks of the Valais including the Weisshorn, Dom and Matterhorn. The resort has been awarded the "Families Welcome" quality certificate and offers a variety of children's activity programs. Even the hiking trails have been designed with small children in mind with pushchair-friendly hiking trails.
Summer and Fall
Summer and fall holidays in the area of the Jungfrau-Aletsch-Bietschhorn UNESCO Natural World Heritage Site are excellent opportunities to explore the unspoilt countryside of Switzerland. The holiday resorts of Belalp, Riederalp, Bettmeralp and Fiescheralp are located in this attractive region characterized by the Aletsch Glacier, the biggest glacier in Europe. The nearby vantage points Bettmerhorn (2643m) and Eggishorn (2926m) offer impressive views of the 23-kilometre-long glacier. Young and young-at-heart visitors have the opportunity to indulge in sport and excitement on scooter trails and downhill bike courses. Romantic Lake Bettmer is perfect for fishing and making a splash in summer.