There's something about getting out in nature and foraging your food - and in the autumn in Switzerland, there are several ways to connect to Mother Earth and feast on her provisions. Here are three fun ways to seize the season while getting some fresh air - just make sure to do it safely and refer to the experts when in doubt.
Go foraging for mushrooms
Did you know that in Switzerland, there are more than 1,500 species of mushrooms, but only a few dozen are considered edible? If you do decide to forage your own mushrooms, make sure you verify that you haven’t picked something poisonous. A great way to do so is to pop by the office of mushroom control. Yep, you read that right. On certain days of the week, a certified mushroom expert is at the office in Chalet-a-Gobet ready to tell you which of your fungi is feast-worthy and which will end in a frightful fate. You can also download mushroom identifier apps but don’t rely solely on these as the recognition system isn’t always 100% right. Where to pick? A true mushroom enthusiast never gives away their spots, but we’ve spotted quite a few foragers in the forests of Chalet-a-Gobet.
Go fruit picking
It may not be foraging, but you’re still picking fruit straight from the tree! Admittedly, the fruit picking scene here in Switzerland pales in comparison to the (overly) commercialized one in the States, but perhaps that makes it even more of a momentous occasion when you do stumble upon it. Called “autocueillete” in French, there are a handful of farms near Lausanne that allow you to pick your own produce and flowers (our favorite flower picking spot is called Mille et Une Fleurs) then weigh your haul at the end to determine the cost. Try out HennyFruits in Le Mont Sur Lausanne who are offering apple picking until the end of October.
Go truffle hunting
Who says you have to go to Piemont when you have incredible truffles right here in the blessed ‘nord vaudois’ soil? And not only do Swiss truffles exist, but there’s an entire experience organized by the Truffle Association of Western Switzerland you can take part in with friends and family. For a few select Saturdays in October and November, you can participate in a guided foraging walk with truffle experts as well as truffle dogs (!), and to finish you’ll indulge in a truffle tasting accompanied by regional wines. The experience is only offered in French and is 72 CHF per person (kids aged 12-17 are 36 CHF and under 12 are free).
Discover more information on their website here.