This beautiful town on the edge of lake Geneva was a hidden gem I discovered when looking for a relaxing two night stay in 2014. I wanted something close enough to family I was visiting just over the border in France and wanted to get just a glimpse of the Swiss mountains for my first time visiting Switzerland. Recently I visited again and felt just as charmed by this place. I’d recommend staying for 2-3 nights to explore the area but even just staying overnight you could get a great experience.
Enjoy Walking Along The Montreux Lakeside
Walk along the lakefront to the Chateau and further. This beautiful waterfront has views of the mountains, gardens full of colourful flowers and trees along with historic architecture lining the path.
For a relaxed and fun activity you could try the lakeside mini golf. I did this on my first visit, it was a great way to take in the amazing views, fresh air and have some daft competition with friends, family or a significant other.
Visit The Chateau De Chillon In Montreux
This medieval Castle has some fascinating stories and has played a key role in the history of the area. Dating back to the 10th Century, the architecture of the this building was tactical and made it a very difficult castle to breached.
The design of the external walls not only kept people out but also kept prisoners in. The underground dungeons made for the perfect place to make this uncomfortable for anyone stuck here. With little to no light the prisoner could only hear the sounds of the water crashing against the castle walls and feel the damp cold air.
The functional design of Chateaux de Chillon is the reason it has been so well preserved over the centuries.
The British poet Lord Byron famously wrote the poem ‘The Prisoner of Chillon’ where he depicts the dark, damp dungeon. And you can see his name carved into the one of the pillars he visited which he also described in his poem.
- Click here to book your tickets for less than £12.00 per entry and flexible covid policy should you need to re-arrange.
- Parking is available for 3 hours.
- Audio guides are not included in the ticket price but you can add those on when you arrive. There are signs and plaques all over the key areas of the site.
Queen and Freddie Mercury In Montreux
We didn’t know about this before visiting but Feddie Mercury famously recorded his last album with queen here and purchased a recording studio in the town. There is a queen museum base there which you can go and visit. You will also spot a Freddie Mercury statue on the waterfront.
Get On The Lake
You can go Stand Up Paddle Boarding. Montreux was the first time I’d ever seen a paddleboard (which is crazy thinking about how much I do this now and that I teach paddleboarding).
The water is like glass and calm and has the perfect conditions to explore the area and view Montreux from the lake itself. Around Montreux itself the lake is quite sheltered from winds but it does pick up the further out from the shore and later in the afternoon.
You can also take out boats at certain times of the year on the lake such as Kayaks, Dingies or book on to a boat tour.
Visit One of The Many Casinos In Montreux
There is a casino next to the hotel, and a few more in the main town. You’ll be sure to see lots of supercars driving round as it’s clearly a playground for the wealthy.
Explore The Outskirts of Montreux
I would reccomend having a car if possible to visit the surrounding mountains and view points. We had one both times and it gave us the freedom to stop whenever we wanted and take in the views.
On your way out of Montreux there are vineyards dotted along the hillside. This regions wine paired with cuisine is a favourite for many visitors.
If Montreux is your base you can also do a day trip to the Riviera Col du Pillon & Glacier 3000 which I would highly reccomend. Get Your guide does a pick up straight from Montreux for this trip which is about £60.00 per person for the whole day Click Here.
Staying at The Palace Eden Au Lac In Montreux
I stayed here The Palace Eden Au Lac during both stays. For me the hotel was the epitome of romance. During my first visit, I was messed around by another hotel that double booked us and only told us when we arrived that we didn’t have a room. The Palace were great and offered to take us in and honour their room price with breakfast thrown in too. They went out of there way to make sure we had a great time and give us advice on where was best to go and what to see.
The hotel has a bit of an old style luxury feel and the service has been fabulous on both stays. But the best features of this hotel are the location right next to the lake with amazing uninterrupted views from our balcony (pictured above) and in the restaurant (pictured below).
On both stays (years apart and during different seasons), this place really stood out for us for a number of reasons:
- The food was delightful during both stays
- The service was impecable and the staff really wanted to make your stay special
- The location on this part of the lakeside was away from the hustle and bustle of the bigger high rise hotels, loud bar scene and sports cars (which are very popular here).
- It is in walking distance to everything, but particularly close to the Freddy mercury statue, board walk, waterfront gardens and not too far to walk to Chateaux Chillon.