In Switzerland, there are not only mountains: The fantastic Alps and the Jura cover the south and the west of the country respectively. In between, the white (in winter) and green (in summer) backcountry offers less known spots of this beautiful country in the centre of Europe. The Swiss Midlands also called Plateau in French or Mitteland in German, represent an extended strip that spans from the French-speaking south-western Lake Geneva to the German-speaking centre and north-eastern part of Switzerland, up to Lake Constance.
The Swiss Midlands with its flat meadows and small hills that host countless farms, cows grazing (vital for the milky Swiss chocolate, and the cheese of course!), and other animals provide a lovely bucolic picture. Several towns and main Swiss cities are scattered around the countryside: Fribourg (Freiburg), Bern, Solothurn, Zurich, Winterthur, Saint-Gall and more. Beautiful lakes make the Swiss midlands fascinating for the visitors. In this article, we suggest our readers go through a daily trip hopping off in Fribourg (Freiburg) and, then, in Murten (Morat).
This small city is the capital of the French and German-speaking canton (state) of Fribourg-Freiburg. The natural setting is particularly interesting: The Sarine River (Saane in German) dug over the centuries a sharp rift through the countryside. Small hills surround this narrow valley. The city stretches from the lowland, on the shores of the river, up to the hilltops and its surroundings. Several bridges, most of them with an interesting history, connect the city to the rest of the Swiss backcountry. These great bridges also stand as a connection between two cultures: The French-speaking western part of the country and German-speaking central and eastern parts of Switzerland.
On the shores of the Sarine River, the low borough of the city counts several well-preserved historical buildings. You can enjoy incredible views on the rift dug by the Sarine and the rest of Fribourg (Freiburg). The old town continues uphill. Saint-Nicholas’ cathedral and its Gothic bell tower are visible from almost all around the city. The beautiful buildings hosting the city hall and administrative services are also worth some pictures. In a later article on Fribourg (Freiburg) you will find more details as well as a lovely pedestrian path to discover most of the old city.
Murten (Morat) is a beautiful town giving the name to its lake. Lake Murten/Morat and its neighbouring Lakes Neuchâtel and Biel make up the Three-Lake Country: Three pretty lakes between the Jura mountains and the backcountry. From above its lake, Murten (Morat) is on a hilltop sheltered within well-preserved walls and its tower gates. Traditional Swiss houses and small shops, the little German and the French churches, as well several narrow lanes stemming from the main road shape the town. A small harbour from where you can take boats for a trip and the romantic promenade along the lake will make you enjoy this lovely yet less known part of Switzerland. You can reach Murten (Morat) easily: Many direct train and coach services are available daily from Neuchâtel, Fribourg (Freiburg) and Bern.
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