Tuesday, September 14

Scenic Switzerland – Winter Fantasy

Switzerland occupies a position on the rooftop of the continent of Europe, with the drainage of its mammoth Alpine glaciers becoming the source of such powerful rivers as the Rhine and the Rhone. The scenery is virtually unrivaled in the world, from Alpine peaks to mountain lakes, from the palm trees of Ticino to the “Ice Palace” of Jungfrau. The appellation “the crossroads of Europe” is fitting, as all train lines, road passes, and tunnels through the mountains lead here. From the time the Romans crossed the Alps, going through Helvetia (the old name for today’s Switzerland) on their way north, the major route connecting northern and southern Europe has been through Switzerland. The old roads and paths have developed into modern highways and railroads.

In November the country's ski resorts begin opening, and visitors pour in throughout the Christmas season and until the snow begins to melt with the onset of spring. With the highest pistes in Europe, Switzerland's ski runs offer reliable snow and breathtaking views. Most resorts also have plenty to do for those not so keen on skiing, making Switzerland the perfect destination for a winter fantasy of log fires, fondues and glistening snow.

Switzerland's cities are pristine and beautifully laid out with famous Swiss precision. Zurich is widely held to be the intellectual and artistic center of the country, sporting incredible architecture and more than a thousand fountains, with many museums and galleries. Geneva is the principal city for the international community, and is home to hundreds of world organizations. Its setting on the shores of Lake Geneva gives it a romantic atmosphere, and the city has an exciting, if rather expensive, nightlife.

Do not rely on your provincial health plan to cover all expenses if you get sick or are injured while abroad. It may cover nothing or only a portion of the costs. Understand the terms of your supplementary insurance policy. Some credit cards offer their holders health and travel insurance. Do not assume the card alone provides adequate coverage. Carry details of your insurance with you. Also, tell your travel agent, a friend or relative, and/or traveling companion how to contact your insurer. Get a detailed invoice from the doctor or hospital before you return to Canada. Always submit original receipts for any medical services or prescriptions received abroad. Most insurance companies will not accept copies or faxes.

Also have a Switzerland SIM card as a convenient and economical calling solution while you travel to Switzerland. The Switzerland SIM card includes FREE incoming calls with service across Switzerland. Pay the local rate for local calls and use a cellular phone in Switzerland like you do at home. And unlike home, your Switzerland SIM card and cell phone service is free of a contract or minimum commitment.

Explore the options of buying a Switzerland-compatible cell phone if you don't have a Unlocked Cell Phone, renting a cell phone for Switzerland at $1 a day. 


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