“In every walk with Nature one receives far more than he seeks.” – John Muir
In one of my courses this semester, we spent a lecture talking about the restorative qualities that the natural environment provides humans. We looked at case after case showing that spending time in nature reduces stress, reduces negative emotions, increases health, and increases well-being. Before I took this course, I already could attest to this from experience. My time here in Switzerland has been filled with time spent outdoors. Hiking was not only a great way to see Switzerland, but it always left me feeling restored and at peace. My favorite trips weren’t the ones to famous European cities like Rome, Florence, Barcelona, Munich, etc., (although they were great). My best memories are from the days I spent hiking, taking in the fresh air and beautiful landscape our world has to offer.
One of the main reasons I chose to study abroad in Switzerland was for the mountains. The first time I went up onto my rooftop here in Zurich and saw the snowcapped Alps in a distance, I was in complete awe. Five months later, the site of them still amazes me. Switzerland is a hikers paradise. There are hundreds of hikes to do. The paths are well marked, and public transportation can take you nearly anywhere you want to go. Not to mention the cows roaming around, they always put a smile on your face despite how tired you are. Below are some pictures from the various hikes I went on this semester.
As my time here comes to a close, I wanted to go out with a bang. Tomorrow I leave for a two day hike from Lauterbrunnen to Meiringen, with an overnight stay in Grindelwald. Over the course of the two days we will hike 42 kilometers, and gain 3000 meters. Wish me luck!