"OLD History...the Walled Village of Gruyeres...." Gruyères by Greggor58

Gruyères Travel Guide: 101 reviews and 454 photos

A Walk ino the Past...

I was simply awestruck the first time that I ventured into the medieval town of Gruyeres....It was so beautiful....the weather that came with that day was simply the BEST, and in fact all three times that Ive visited now I've had the luck of sunny blue sky days.....I couldn't have asked for better!

I visited in February of 2008 ,April of 2009 and now again in July of 2010...I simply love this little gem of a town...its a wonderful place to walk about,relax,take some photos....its so picturesque...and of course we mostly go there to enjoy the fondue....actually its become a tradition now as I have have the good fortune to have friends that live nearby that I visit whenever I can.

Gruyeres is a simple hour drive at most from Fribourg...and offers the chance to enjoy beautiful scenery and wonderful food and visiting here in the mid week of February we pretty much had the place to ourselves.Its a little different if you might happen to be there during a weekend...or during the summer months...its certainly busier...you'll find people that make a day trip from Bern or Fribourg..or visitors like myself that come from farther away to explore here...

Now that Ive been here a third time and have now visited during the summer peak season I would suggest that for the nicest ambiance come here to visit if you're able to in February,April, or May before the tourist crowds arrive.

Ive read that the little town will accommodate over a million tourist visits annually now and except for the flowers that decorate the houses and the foliage that makes so often a better photo,my preference would be to visit in the late Winter or Early Spring.

Le Chateau de Gruyeres...

The Chateau is likely the focal point of the walled town and to say its an eye catcher is an understatement...

The Chateau de Gruyeres was the home of 19 Counts of Gruyeres between the 11th and the 16th Century and as you walk through town to get to the Chateau....you walk past architecture,history and culture that spans eight Centuries...

The last Count.. Michel, had been in financial trouble almost all his life and finally declared bankruptcy in 1554. His creditors the cantons of Fribourg and Bern shared his earldom between them and from 1555 to 1798 the castle became residence to the bailiffs and then to the prefects sent by Fribourg. The castle was put up for sale and sold to the Bovy and Balland families .

In 1938 the Chateau was bough back by the Canton of Fribourg and opened as a museum.

Nowadays as well as a permanent exhibit there are many special exhibits and music events that are open to the public here...

The Entrance to the Chateau....

We doddle around town for a little while during our visits... then make our way to eat Fondue and an amazing desert that you can read about in the restaurant tips section...my FAVORITE place to eat a meal is at a spot called the Hotel de Ville...DON'T miss this little restaurant.

Ive explored the ramparts a little, strolled along the outside of the walls of the town,managed a visit to the Chateau,I'll always take some time to check out the Parish Church and Ive made time to explore somewhat the HR Giger Museum that makes its home here in Gruyeres.

EVERY time I visit here I'm always thrilled that Ive been able to examine a little piece of history that exists here in Gruyeres, and I hope that you can enjoy your time here as much as I always do!

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:Beautiful setting and amazing architecture..
  • Cons:Can be busy during tourist season...
  • In a nutshell:YUMMM.....the fondue and double cream and meringue desert!!!
  • Last visit to Gruyères: Jul 2010
  • Intro Updated May 9, 2016
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Reviews (7)

Comments (6)

  • balhannah's Profile Photo
    Sep 10, 2011 at 5:12 AM

    This is a lovely town. I had a peek in at the Giger bar,mmm interesting!
    Didn't go into the museum, but I bet it was good. Trying to get motivated to write my page on Guyeres

  • breughel's Profile Photo
    Jun 23, 2011 at 2:52 AM

    I eat Gruyere but ignored there was a town and castle of Gruyeres.

  • Regina1965's Profile Photo
    May 26, 2010 at 8:17 PM

    This town looks very lovely. P. was just telling me about this old Swiss fondue recipe which is like out of this world - her words. You should get it from her :)

  • Mikebb's Profile Photo
    May 23, 2010 at 4:11 PM

    Wow, does that sweet look magnificent. Would be worth visiting just for the meal. makes me think I should hire a car for a few days and visit the small towns.

  • ranger49's Profile Photo
    Aug 12, 2009 at 9:22 AM

    Oh dear - another place to add to my list of Would like to Visit places! I love the image the photo on the Intro page summons up - looks quite other worldly.

  • riorich55's Profile Photo
    Jun 20, 2009 at 3:11 PM

    Count Michel declaring bankruptcy, he sounds like a man ahead of his times or at least a man who could fit in today.

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