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Rheinfalls and Stein Am Rhein

can be combined to make a pleasant excursion from Zurich. The Rheinfalls are the largest water falls in Europe. While there are bigger and more impressive water falls in the world, what is unique is how close you actually get to them. When you enter from the side near Schaffhausen, you have the opportunity to get very close. There is a platform that is built just over the falls and you can feel the power of the water rushing just beneath you. Also, you will find an opening in the rocks that looks something like a cave with water on the floor. If you enter there, you will come out on a platform that is within a short reach of the falls and the roar of the water rushing by will fill your ears.

If you still have not had enough, you can take one of several boat excursions. One will deposit you on a rock which is in the middle of the falls and come back later to pick you up. Another will simply motor to the foot of the falls and then cut its engines and let the power of the rushing waters push it back away again. It is possible to get to the Rheinfalls by train, by traveling to Schloss Laufen. From there it is a 5-10 minute walk to the falls. 

To see a video of the Rheinfalls Click Here

 

 

Nearby the Rheinfalls is the medieval village of Stein Am Rhein. This is a small but extremely beautiful village, which has been well presevered from the ancient times. The city walls and city gate are all intact. Buildings in the town square are painted with detailed frescoes.  As you walk through the gates of the city, you feel that you have magically transported back through time. For more information Click Here. Trains run twice per hour from Zurich to Stein-am-Rhein. It takes just over an hour to be wisked back to another time.

An excellent excursion would include a morning at the Rheinfalls followed by lunch at Stein Am Rhein in one of the restaurants in the town square. But be warned, in Switzerland, most restaurants stop serving food at 2pm and only begin again at 6pm. Our lunch, around 4pm was at a nice pizzeria near the river. Good food, but not what we had hoped for.