We’ve had an unbelievably warm and sunny spring in Switzerland this year. So much so that the flowers are blooming a few weeks earlier than usual.
I’ve been waiting all year for the fields of Narcissus in the mountains around Lac Leman (Lake Geneva) to bloom. Hooray, they are finally here and do not disappoint! Two of the best known places for Narcissus viewing are in the mountains above Montreux — Glion and Les Avants.
We opted for Les Avants as the valley is gorgeous and we did this “family-friendly” hike last fall. I’m using quotation marks intentionally here — what the Swiss call family-friendly and what I call family-friendly are two different things. That said, the Route de Narcisses loop is doable and fun with school age and up kids.
Just note there are some real hills to ascend/descend, even after taking the funicular railway to Sonloup for the start of the trail.
If you don’t want to spend the time or energy doing the full Route de Narcisses hike, you can also park or take the train to Les Avants and just walk up the final part of the trail. This is where the bulk of the flowers are located anyway.
You’ll walk uphill to get there, but the distance is short and it takes only 15 minutes to reach the flowers. This is also a good option for little legs and parents carrying kids in packs that don’t want to go far.
Fields of flowers are everywhere right now and we found Narcissus in other mountain pastures too. The smell is less fragrant than I expected — but still wonderful and appreciated by kids (and dogs) too.
I’ve learned that the tourist offices in Switzerland are phenomenal. If you have questions about this hike or others in the area, be sure and take advantage of the Montreux Riviera tourist office — they answer the phone and speak English.