11. Vacation memories: Bellinzona – part 2

We took our kids from Toronto, Canada to Switzerland on vacation. This is our adventure.

This is a multi-part series. Scroll down to the end of this post for a list of the previous stories in chronological order.


The castle in Bellinzona is of course a major tourist attraction, but because of this religious thing that had the whole town shut down, there were very few tourists around.

It was hot, though. I think the kids in particular would have preferred it to be a bit cooler, shadier, but they still enjoyed themselves despite not having had much occasion for swimming.

Up top, by some miracle, the restaurant was open so we sat and ordered some cool drinks. There was a lovely breeze, shade, and of course this fabulous view.

There were many places to explore. I’m not sure how much the kids registered about the way this castle had been built many centuries before. How hard the labour must have been. How harsh the working condition under the burning sun, schlepping heavy stones.

My aunt explained that the castle is actually more like a fort, that it protected the Swiss from Roman invasion.

Apparently it worked.

We marvelled at the walls and at the simultaneous beauty. Functionality does not have to be ugly. 😉

Of course there is also a vineyard on the adjacent slopes.

The narrow little streets leading us back out toward the main part of town and the piazza were just as breathtaking. I kept thinking: people live like this.

Just look at the labour intensive work that must have been just to make the roads.


When we got back to our village, it was time for my aunt to pack up her dogs and make her trip back to Zurich. I accompanied her to the bus station where she demonstrated how to get to the river with it’s sandy banks so the kids can swim.

Which is exactly what we did later that afternoon. I let my partner have some kid free alone time, and took the kids to the river.

To be continued…

  1. Vacation memories: travel day – part 1
  2. Vacation memories: travel day – part 2
  3. Vacation memories: from flight attendant to passenger 20 years later
  4. Vacation memories: arrival in Zurich
  5. Vacation memories: exhaustion and a trip down memory lane – part 1
  6. Vacation memories: exhaustion and a trip down memory lane part 2
  7. Vacation memories: exhaustion and a trip down memory lane part 3

7.1Vacation side note: what is wrong with me?
8. Vacation memories: Swiss train adventures

8.1 Vacation memories: after arrival in the village
9. Vacation side note: writing surrounded by beauty
10. Vacation memories: Bellinzona – part 1

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