• BLOG
  • And Then We Take Konstanz

    Tiina Kivelä

    In Lapland, I go to Sweden (about 3h drive from Rovaniemi) for IKEA and Swedish supermarkets like ICA. And get a bit confused with the time difference (1h) and that there’s no border control or so.

    In Eastern-Switzerland, I go to Germany (appr. 40min by train or 30km by bike) for Alnatura and german prices. Sometimes. And get a bit confused by Deutsche Bahn and no time difference.

    And for no big mountain adventures lately, here’s a few pics of the cute old town of Konstanz. Because while no mountains, I can at least brag by going abroad.

    If you are going and need tips, then check all the bio and organic supermarket and restaurant options (including wine and skin care). And be careful with the trains if your trip has anything to do with german trains on your way there – and for the confusion, if you’re coming from the Swiss side, I highly suggest you come biking or stop with the train stop in Kreuzlingen Hafen (and get out) and cross the border by foot. There goes a nice path close the Bodensee.

    And this time of the year, the Swiss side of Bodensee is very nice for a proper Sunday (granny) bike trip, with all the appletrees and pumpkin direct sales and grispy autumn air.

    Oh and in June, every year, they have this huge 9km secondhand row over the border, in Kreuzlingen (the Swiss side town) and Konstanz (the German one). Apparently it’s bit of a madness, but not as mad as Octoberfest. Though I have never been to the latter one, so what do I know.

    Anyone want to invite me some year? I guess I’m too late for this year already…

    Tiina Kivelä

    Tiina Kivelä

    Tiina Kivelä

    Tiina Kivelä

    Tiina Kivelä

    Tiina Kivelä

     


    Where: Konstanz, Germany

     

  • BLOG
  • Hiking In Zermatt

    Tiina Kivelä

    Quickly came to tell you a bit of my hiking in Zermatt week ago. For me the weekend was mainly work, but I managed to squeeze in few evening runs/walks and one big Sunday hike in the moody gloomy weather (the days working where nice though).

    There’s so much more in Zermatt than this and so many more good trails and especially elevations for even more awesome hikes, and for the biking as well. In other words, these aren’t anything suuuper amazing in the Zermatt scale (which reaches kinda high btw). But still, I would especially suggest checking the village of Z’mutt and the Schönbielhütte. Those were nice even in the bad weather of Sunday, when I did about 24km hike to the Schönbielhütte and back through the Z’mutt, and I can imagine how awesome they are when the big mountains and glaciers aren’t hiding behind clouds.

    For a combination tour of the same kind or the kind of a shorter evening run/hike I did (about 5km), I would suggest going up to the restaurant Edelweiss (maybe good for food and drinks too, I didn’t try so can’t say sure though) from the church and making a loop which again on a good weather would give a nice view to the Matterhorn. And on the Gornergrat side of the village, I just did a little evening walk on (apparently) amazing trails for biking too, which for once gave a nice view to the Matterhorn. In there, you might also give a try in the restaurants bit more higher  – to which you might also take the train – for me it was too late for a meal and walking further on before dark, so turned back and had about 7,5km hike.

    You may see all the loops I did in the map in here, two of them with the starting point by the Zermatt Kirche (in where you can fill your bottles easily with fresh water too) and the one on the right on the Gornergrat side starts and ends in the map at the Zermatt Youth Hostel.

    Oh, and say hi to the sheep and goats if you see them – Zermatt has a very special kind of creatures in addition to the special trails.

    Zermatt Sheep

    Tiina Kivelä

    Tiina Kivelä

    Tiina Kivelä


    Where: Zermatt 

  • BLOG
  • Biking In Zermatt

    Tiina Kivelä

    Biking (MTB) in Zermatt. Such wow.

    Although I still haven’t done any biking in Zermatt, I do think it’s a good idea of tell you about it. Because even though I didn’t have my bike with me last weekend in Zermatt, I did see many super happy looking bikers and awesome trails for biking (and many awesome bikes – the fever is high). And I simply came came to the conclusion that Zermatt truly lives to its reputation when it comes to MTB. The scenery and wild landscape – hello Matterhorn – makes a good base, on which more than ok infra, planning and car free village make it eventually a kind of a bikers paradise. Even for my kind of wannabe/beginner (not long though!).

    What’s really interesting in Zermatt is that almost all the roads and trails are open for both bikers and hikers. And on top of that, the village is car free, which makes it a good break for the daily urban bike commuters fighters too.

    In Zermatt, there are flowtrails and other paths only for biking and trails prohibited from bikers, but generally the rule goes that mtb riders are allowed to ride on all roads, unless a prohibition sign forbids it. Though this means – of course – that the highest level of consideration and peaceful playing is required on the paths in and around Zermatt, Täsch and Randa (=nearby villages).  Haters will hate but also, I only met considerate and friendly bikers on the paths and as a kind of multisport hustler myself I think we all fit on the same trails more than fine and destinations and trails can serve various modes of use at the same time.

    So go. It’s also the best season now. But please, really, be nice, make space and keep an eye for others. Both for people and animals.

    Biking in Zermatt – How And Where Exactly

    As I didn’t have the bike I don’t have many detailed tips for biking in Zermatt yet, sorry. But I saw and confirmed with the help of the ones who know better that the Gornergrat side and trails around Schwarzee / Schönbielhütte direction are more than nice. And if taking the Matterhorn direction from Zermatt village center, you can even have lunch or beer in the adorable (more than fine for badass bikers too) village of Zmutt on your way back.

    More information of biking in and around Zermatt in i.e. Supertrail guide in here – and hopefully by me once I get back there with a bike.  Oh and the weather this weekend, when I was free, was kind moody. Therefore, a bit grainy and moody pics. But you should get the point, I hope.

    Ps. (Guidelines for mountain biking in and around Zermatt, pdf)

    Tiina Kivelä

    Tiina Kivelä


    Where: Zermatt

    How: Take the train to Zermatt (bike comes well along with the SBB bike day pass). Book your sleep in any of the hotels, cabins, huts or maybe try the same hostel where I stayed (Zermatt Youth Hostel) in Zermatt.

    Then, get a day or two’s pass for the lifts and trains in the area, and just enjoy. 

    When: Autumn.