Riding into History

July 27, 2014

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A ride to Ballenburg’s Swiss Open Air Museum (near Interlaken)

It had been ages since I took the motorcycle out for a pleasure ride and I wasn’t about to let the questionable weather stop me. Dan and I decided that Sunday would be the nicer day of the weekend and we planned accordingly.

The clouds hung low and the roads were empty. We shunned the motorway for the first hour and enjoyed the rolling hills and curves of the Jura Mountains.

Dan’s got my six

Most people think only of the Alps when they think of riding through Switzerland, but I love having the Jura at my back door. It really makes me appreciate living where I do.

Random castle along the road

After wending our way through Bern, the Alps finally broke through the clouds and we could see that we were getting closer. The weather was overcast, usually threatening to rain, but the temperatures were good and the roads stayed dry.

Thunsee near Spiez

The village of Brienz

Having passed through Brienz we reached our destination, the Swiss Open Air Museum. I had heard about it last year after moving here and the idea of it intrigued me. The museum had gathered over one hundred century-old buildings from all of the different cantons of Switzerland and moved them to Ballenberg. The idea of moving these massive structures and then reassembling them boggles my mind, but they did it.

I’ve set up a separate page for a tour of the museum: Click here (photo heavy!!!)

After about five hours of meandering through history it was time to go home. The sun had come out and we actually were too hot; we didn’t expect that today! The umbrella hadn’t been needed and I ended up carrying around my raincoat for most of the day. Not that I’m complaining – it was perfect weather to visit the museum.

We decided to simply retrace our steps home, as it was Sunday afternoon and we expected traffic on the roads. Instead, we found the roads to be quite empty until we joined up with the motorway north of Thun. Even then, the traffic moved well but the lanes were packed.

Eastern end of Lake Brienz

Lake Thun

Nearing Spiez

I decided that I didn’t want to go directly home, instead preferring to take the back roads over the Jura and into Basel. Dan declined to join me and instead stuck to the motorway. We still rode together until I reached the turn off at Neiderbipp, at which point I left him to play with traffic while I went off to play with the curves – and the small towns along the way.

I wasn’t alone on the roads

A few of the villages I rode through:

The villages slowed me down, but I made up the time in between.

It was still early, around seven o’clock, but with the heavy cloud cover it was getting slightly dark. That hadn’t stopped me from taking a last-minute detour to enjoy a few more roads before finally reaching Basel. Dan had made it home an hour ahead of me, but I was happy with my delay.


  1. Linda says:

    That was fun, looks like some nice roads! And all the refreshing greenery and lakeside areas are beautiful!

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