The photos on this blog are scanned photos as at this time the digital camera was not yet invented. That is why the quality is not so good.
Many years ago (around 1985 to be more exact) we regularly went for a week's holiday somewhere in Switzerland in Autumn. We lived in the town and wanted to get away from things a bit. It is quite a custom to go to the Italian part of Switzerland in Autumn. The weather is mild, lots of sun, and they have a few lakes. The dark blue bit is the kanton of Tessin, the Italian part of Switzerland. We travelled from Solothurn with the car and even the journey was a small adventure. We packed the two boys in the car, then being about 8 years and 13 and made our way. The trouble with Switzerland is when you drive anywhere there are mountains in between. Either you drive over them or through them. Going to the Tessin we had to get through the Gotthard range of mountains, quite high and wide. In 1984 the road tunnel did not yet exist but the train tunnel and that was the one we mainly chose. We drove onto the train on special platforms and then we had a twenty minute train ride through the Gotthard tunnel. It was also a rest for Mr. Swiss as the complete journey was about three hours on the road. It was also possible to drive over the Gotthard. Here is a photo of the original road known as the Tremolo. It is no longer in use as in the meanwhile a motorway has been built. I went over it once when I was a teenager in a coach. It was quite an experience.
The vegetation in the area is also completely different to the rest of Switzerland. Palm trees grow wild and the gardens are full of flowers that you usually have to cultivate in a garden. The Tessiner people even say the palm trees can be a bother as they grow wild in the gardens and even get in the way. Here is me in on one of the paths along the banks of the lake.
The holiday soon came to an end and we had to return through the Gotthard mountains. It seems that once we actually did drive over the Gotthard mountain and here is a photo of my husband and oldest son at the top of the pass.