Though it's not technically official, the blooms are telling us that spring is here. The cold winds are easing, the sun is breaking through, and the flowers are bursting forth in a glorious rebirth. There's nothing quite like fresh air, colorful blooms, and the early spring sun - so we've rounded up the best spring walks in and around Lausanne so you can get out and enjoy. Happy walking, and happy (early) spring!
Tucked away in Aubonne is the gorgeous and expansive Arboretum–open all year long and providing outdoor walks and marked trails for all ages and levels of difficulty. Running, hiking, walking, and exploring this property is highly encouraged. In the spring, visitors must feast their eyes on their magnolia and cherry blossoms that are signaling warmer months ahead. We like to pack a picnic and take our time lapping up the beauty of nature here.
The Morges Tulip Festival begins this year on April 1st and will last until May 14 at the Parc de l’Independence along the lake. They have several events and animations created specifically for the festival this year, so make sure to check out the full program. Around 275 varieties of 145,000 tulips will surround you as you walk throughout the park. It’s a free and beautiful activity that shouldn’t be missed!
Photo by Vaud Promotion
It’s an obvious choice, but for a reason. Walking the narrow pathways along the UNESCO vineyards of Lavaux never ceases to take our breath away. The lake changes from the deep dark wintry blue to a lighter shade with Caribbean turquoise pockets throughout. The mountains still have snow on their peaks, but the air is a perfect mixture of crisp and warm. Pack a picnic or think about doing our Lavaux wine walk as the weather warms up.
Les Jonquilles - Eclepens' Daffodils
A friend described this walk as “spring on crack” and we couldn’t help but agree. From March to April there are footpaths along the Entreroches Canal in Eclepens filled with daffodils as far as the eye can see. An easy walk for families, this is a great activity for kids and adults alike. Keep an eye out for a man that sells daffodil honey from the trunk of his van–he’s a local friend of the bees.
Note: even though the daffodils are wild, it is forbidden to pick them. Please make sure if you walk with young children that they don’t step on them/pick them.
It’s remote and removed from most, but it’s worth the trek. We discovered this walk/hike last spring during confinement and it was absolutely glorious. We may or may not have re-enacted the opening scene to The Sound of Music when the hillside opened up to expose the lake and mountains below. A mixture of steep(ish) inclines and large flat fields, it’s still a great hike for all ages and abilities depending on where you start. More info about the entire path (we obviously only did a portion of it) can be found here.
A Lausanne gem that should truly be treasured and visited in every season. It’s incredible to walk the expansive grounds and watch winter melt into spring. The color of the moss is a vibrant green, the streams can be heard once again, and wildflowers and trees are blooming. A perfect place to get some fresh air and appreciate the warmer weather.
Now this will certainly have you re-enacting the opening scene from the Sound of Music. The Mont-Pèlerin narcissus flower trail takes you on a walk of about 2.5 hours to discover this iconic white flower of the Riviera region. You’ll start your journey from the funicular stop named “Mont-Pèlerin” and leisurely make your way through hills full of narcissus flowers while overlooking Lac Leman and the mountains beyond. Sounds pretty idyllic no?
Parking is available near the station and in the village.
Parc Mon Repos
This Lausanne park is one of our favorites for many reasons. A beautiful alfresco café sits in its center, there are exotic birds to admire, and in the spring there is a grassy knoll filled with cherry blossoms. It becomes a popular place to picnic under the pink canopy–we even did our own little “hanami” one year with friends where we ate sushi under the sakura.
A favorite location for photographers and influencers–and for good reason. This little promenade next to the Olympic Museum and just in front of the old Musée Èlysée is lined with cherry blossoms and has views of the lake and mountains as well. If you can sneak out for a weekday walk, it’s recommended, as this location becomes quite crowded during the weekend.
Château de Vullierens
If you want to feel like you’re transported into a Jane Austen novel (without the angst), then head to this family estate open to the public as of April 8 this year. The property of Château de Vullierens is expansive and manicured; sitting atop the rolling hills and vineyards just above Morges, boasting a panoramic view of Lac Leman and the Alps. It’s a beautiful property in its own right, but the icing on the cake is its world-renowned gardens. What else is in store? Thematic walks, sculptures, cultural offerings, brunches, and wine clubs. This place is pretty special and now is the time to go.
Just above Montreux, and easily accessible by train or car, is Les Pleiades – a gorgeous area where you can see the Narcissus in full bloom (usually in May). With sweeping views of the mountains and lake below plus seemingly endless fields of wild mountain flowers, it’s a perfect easy hike for the whole family. We recommend going on the Circuit de Prantin walk – it’s relatively easy with gorgeous views along the way. Parking is at Les Motalles or you can take the MOB and it’s 25′ from Montreux.
The crocus flowers bloom quickly and don’t last long, so you can test your luck and head up to Les Paccots to see the fields of crocus flowers in all their glory (last year they bloomed the last week of March). You’ll want to follow the snowshoe path number 9 called La Corbetta to get the best views of both the flowers and the surrounding region.
With animals, several walks throughout the expansive forests, a little lake, and a gorgeous panoramic view of Lausanne, Sauvebelin is a popular destination for everyone. Though there’s no “marked flower trail” here, the wildflowers are plentiful and the surroundings peaceful. Take a stroll and let your mind and feet wander – it’s a lovely spot right here in Lausanne where you can enjoy all that spring has to offer.
Photo via Ville de Lausanne