Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Tuesday 7 October - Basel and Berne

Sunrise from my hotel room
 It was raining first thing but there were patches of blue sky. We took a tilting train to Basel and a tram to the Market which has the red Rathaus. 
Basel Rathaus
The smoky Basel concourse
 There was a visit to a model shop (no sale), tram back to the station then another model shop (no sale). The booking hall here is beautiful but SBB allows smoking which makes it somewhat unpleasant.
We wanted to see the Waldenburger bahn again but chose a different way to get to Bern. The suburban train to Liestal  was held outside the station and we only just made the Waldenburg train - 750 mm gauge, roadside tramway. A lady was gaily chatting away to us in German. We smiled politely not understanding a word. 
 At Waldenburg we caught a post bus to Balsthal. This was a pleasant ride through several small villages and through hilly green fields.
At Balsthal they don't even use the SBB clock
 We caught the Oensingen Balsthal Bahn train to Oensingen. This railway has a collection of exotic equipment. We saw some small locomotives which were over 100 years old but dod not see the crockodile or Churchill railcar.  At Oensingen we transferred to the narrow gauge Aare Seeland Mobil train to Solothurn. 
Aare Seeland mobile train at Solothurn

The Regional Verkehr Bern Solothurn train took us to Bern. This is a narrow gauge company that provides some suburban services in Bern.  Even with the smaller out of the way operations everything runs to time. This complicated journey turned out exactly as planned.
Quite a trip with good scenery although cloudy.
In Bern we walked down the historic quarter and took a look at the bears who seem quite happy in their large quarters. Bern is a good place to wander around. There was a break in the clouds and the snow covered mountains provided a spectacular back drop.  

We took a BLS regional train back to Neuchatel.

Click here to see all Waldenburgerbahn, Oensingen and Solothurn Pictures

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