From Lake Lucerne to Lake Sarnen

A cow who had just given birth to her calf. Several famous monasteries and chapels. And of course another day of great landscapes. There was a lot to see on the way from Stans to Giswil.

The first thing I did when I returned to Stans that day was having a look into the church. Even though I am walking on the ancient pilgrims’ route through Switzerland, I am neither religious nor often around churches. But after having seen the nice houses around the town hall square of Stans I kind of thought it might be worth it. And it was…The church of Stans is not as overload as others are. No, its rather modest but in an elegant and nice way.


The Way of St. James is not leading through the center of Stans. It just runs to the church and then uphill out of the town. At first the way is very steep and then once you left the town behind changes to a rather moderate up and down.




Finally there was a great view around from the top. It was there that after having walked through another nice farm I came across a cow who had just given birth to her calf! It was so fresh it still lay on the ground, exhausted from birth. Now that’s a seldom sight.


From there the way was leading downhill again. Obviously some people have been really creative lately. I ran into a puppet out of plant pots and wood piles in the shape of houses. That’s cool, isn’t it?


The way after Ennetmoos is mainly even or leading up and down only moderately. After having passed the little villags Halten and Hostet, you enter the woods again. Wow that felt very nice, as that day it was sunny and thus very hot!



Needless to say the path soon left the forest again and left me sweating out in the burning sun. The scenery was worth everything though. I loved things like the milk kettles ready to be filled on the side of the Camino. Or the sight of soft hills, where the farmers were just haying. Or simply the nicly decorated farm houses you find all along the road through Switzerland.





In this region the typical chapel seemingly comes with a red spire. I loved that contrast to the strong blue of the sky very much!

But my highlight of the day very simply was the part of the way leading through the meadows on top of the hills. This really was an absolutely amazing sight. I was so impressed I spontaneously decided to take my lunch there and enjoy the view for a little longer.


After a few more kilometers and having walked through another farm I got the first glimpse of Lake Sarnen. I think the walks with view on the lakes are actually one of the nicest things on the Way of St. James in Switzerland. The landscape is lovely.

Only shortly after I passed by the very modern Bethanien monastery, which is inhabited by Dominican nuns and usually takes in pilgrims for the night. The monastery also offers courses and has an attached guesthouse, thus having specialized on guests seeking for relaxation and spiritual/religeous enhancement, all in one.


From the monastery the Way of St. James leads steeply downhill to St. Niklaus and afterwards straight to Flüeli Ranft.

Flüeli is an ancient destination for pilgrims in their worship for brother Klaus (Niklaus von Flühe), who had lived and worked as a hermit in the 15th century. It has several chapels and guesthouses, where you can stay, pray or have a talk to the nuns on the site. Like the monastery of Bethanien, they also have started to offer courses in meditation a.s.o. to attract people to find their way to Flüeli.
I didn’t stay for long though because I perceived this place as to touristy and bustling for my taste.


Most of the walk to Sachseln was with view on Lake Sarnen. So it definietly was very nice. Again. What else 😉



There’s not much to say about Sachseln for my part. I took a short rest, made a few photos and then continued my walk towards Giswil because it already was 4pm when I reached the town. I just was delighted to get my first photo from a bird up-close. But on the other hand sparrows can be really sassy 🙂
And I was into a balcony in Sachseln. It just was decorated so nicely. I love balconies. That’s the statement of the day!





The rest of the 11km to Giswil the way is first leading through some lovely little villages and then, unfortunately, all along a main road into Giswil. Lots of asphalt. But well…there’s no way around it. If you want to walk the Way of St. James in Switzerland you should just know that you’re feet will be dealing with lots and lots of asphalt. Somehow we just seem to like plastering every single route in the country.

I leave you with the nice pic of what I guess is a traditional farm house for the region of Obwalden. It consists of two parts connected over a small middle part. In many regions of Switzerland, the family usually lived in the larger part of the house and the parents in the small one. Thus the whole family was living in the same complex but in the same time had a tiny little amount of privacy. As soon as the children had grown up, the parents then left the main part of the house to the heir and his wife and moved into the little house.

There’s more coming, so stay tuned. Hope you enjoy the read! And if you have any feedback to my posts, please give it without mentioning a link or whatever the likes. I get such a lot of spam that it’s impossible to make the difference. Therefore I delete every comment with links in it.

About Miriam

I am a traveller. Not in the fast sense. I am travelling on foot, as a pilgrim. And I love writing and playing music. Since I found back to singing and writing while walking the Way of St. James in Spain, I started mingling the two. Means I am walking with my little guitalele and playing whenever the situation seems right for it :-)
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