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Neuchâtel

Neuchâtel, Switzerland
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'Another kid, another window'--Renaissance architecture in Neuchâtel Neuchatel  Switzerland
Summer by the Lake in Switzerland Neuchatel  Switzerland
'Another kid, another window'--Renaissance architecture in Neuchâtel Neuchatel  Switzerland
Summer by the Lake in Switzerland Neuchatel  Switzerland

'Another kid, another window'--Renaissance architecture in Neuchâtel

"Un autre enfant, une autre fenêtre!--Another kid, another window!" Check out the second floor of this Renaissance building. Local legend in Neuchâtel says that when construction on this house began, the architect had six children. As the work progressed, his family grew by one--thus the seventh window. (It's now an Italian restaurant.)

This Swiss university-town at the foot of the Jura mountains, with a view of the Alps across its vineyard-ringed lake, is full of 16th and 17th century structures. Due to its distinctive sandstone architecture, the writer Alexandre Dumas once wrote that this French-speaking city ressembled an 'immense toy-city carved out of butter.' It felt like home during the month I spent there, (a summer study-abroad in college), twilights at ten p.m., breezes off the lake...

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AFAR Local Expert
over 4 years ago

Summer by the Lake in Switzerland

At the foot of the Jura mountains, with a view of the Alps across its vineyard-ringed lake, is the university town of Neuchâtel. Its distinctive sandstone architecture led the writer Alexandre Dumas to describe this French-speaking city as resembling 'an immense toy-city carved out of butter.'

It felt like a great place to call home during the month I spent there: twilight at 10 p.m., breezes off the lake, nursing an espresso (or a glass of the local white wine) in the shade of Renaissance façades.

The university attracts students from all over during its summer language programs; my classmates came from Italy, Poland, the Canary Islands, Canada, and the German-speaking regions of Switzerland.

Hourly trains run to Neuchâtel ('Neuenburg' in German) from both Geneva and Zürich--the trip lasts about an hour and a half. Lausanne and Bern are only 40 minutes away by train. And yes, you can set your watch by those trains...

(For more information about its summer language courses: http://www2.unine.ch/ilcf/page-10106_en.html
And for Swiss rail schedules:
http://www.sbb.ch/en/home.html)