It's a castle--it's a village--it's a cheese: Gruyère!
Could there be a more glorious setting for a cheese's origin? These pastures surrounding a hilltop village (Gruyères) crowned with a castle (the Château de Gruyères), happy Swiss cows grazing with views of the Alps all around, producing the milk which, in time, arrives on grocery shelves as cheese around the world, stamped 'GRUYÈRE'...and there's a geometric garden in the castle's courtyard, too. This cheese has history... http://www.la-gruyere.ch/en/welcome.cfm
By Joseph Cyr, AFAR Local Expert
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Travel Back in Time at a Swiss Village
Pockets of Switzerland are still entrenched in a time warp, where the stresses and strains of modern-day life are non-existent. One such place is Sonogno. This Swiss national heritage site, located in the Valley of Verzasca, Ticino, dates back 1,000 years and has a population of about 100. Its classic granite buildings are materials from the valley, and a few people still speak the language unique to this village. The medieval town of Gruyères is more popular among tourists, yet still maintains its delightful medieval ambience of 800 years ago. Lined with gorgeous cobblestones, and painted on a perfect mountain backdrop, this town brims with perfection. A must-visit is its spectacular 13th-century castle.
By Simon Willis, AFAR Local Expert