Running Events for Children and Families

My husband and son like running. They have been doing many races in the area in the last few years. My son has ran races since he was almost 4, first accompanied by his dad or me, but he could run by himself since he was 5. I love promoting running races as I believe running is the easiest and cheapest sport a healthy person can do.

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What to do with Kids: Easter 2017

This is already the last week before Easter holiday for children in Vaud public schools! I have blogged about the available holiday camps here, and below you can find more Easter-related events and activities:

  • Easter egg hunt in Flon, Saturday 8 April 2017 – with make up artist, mini train and egg decorating workshop. Free and without registration (info)
  • Easter Bunny at Micasa Etoy Saturday 8 April 2017 – with make up artist and craft workshop. Free (info)
  • Marché de Pâques in Nyon, 8-9 April 2017 (info)
  • Pâkomuzé offers many programs during the Easter weekend. Registration for most activities started 28 March 2017 (info)
  • Easter egg hunt at Swiss Vapeur Parc in Le Bouveret (Canton Valais), all day during Easter holiday 14-23 April 2017 (info)
  • Coop offers a children workshop to decorate Easter Bunnies on 12 April 2017 (register asap as space is limited)

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Where to go with children on a Sunday

It’s probably safe to say that many of us who were used to shops open on Sunday were shocked to find “nothing is open on Sunday in Switzerland”. But now that I know so much more, I can prove that it is not true. Almost all shops and supermarkets are closed but there are a lot of things that one can do as a family. So many in fact that I spent 3 days compiling them into this post! We just have to adopt some Swiss-ness, by enjoying outdoor more. After all, we are living in such a beautiful country! But worry not, I included options for those rainy windy Sundays you’d rather be indoor.

OUTDOOR

Vallee de la Jeunesse

Vallee de la Jeunesse is a huge playground for all ages. There is a massive green area for picnic and running around. There are all kinds of slides, climbing and balancing structures, a skate park, and a huge water fountain among other things. The hilly landscape is popular for skateboarders.

The children’s science museum Espace des inventions is located here and open on Sundays. We are fans of this museum.

Ouchy

We all know Ouchy is strong magnet for locals as well as tourists. Beside the view and the abundance of restaurants, there are many green spots and playgrounds for families to relax and do a picnic. Our favorite spot is the grassy area close to the Thai Pagoda.

The playground and Thai pagoda in Ouchy

The park of the Olympic Museum is great to stroll with children. All area are accessible for strollers and wheelchairs. Mine could never resist to race on the 100m athletic track. They often have free temporary exhibition and their TOM’s café Sunday brunch is very popular.

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Winter with Kids – 2017

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This winter has been dry, then super cold, and now wet! But at least we had snow and can expect more to come! I know that as with everything, some people like winter and some don’t. I happen to be the one who love it, and I think the key is by having quality winter outfit for everyone in the family, so that everyone stays warm and dry. No one will like winter when they feel cold and wet!

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Rendez-vous Bundesplatz – in Bern, 14 Oct – 26 Nov 2016

Below is a blog post that I wrote 3 years ago about this very special light show. This year’s program is promised to be even more spectacular, with The Red Cross at the heart of the story, to mark their 150th anniversary! It will start tomorrow (14th Oct) and will show until 26th Nov. We love Bern and this show is a good excuse for another trip there!


Two weeks ago we went to see Rendez-Vous Bundesplatz, a spectacular light, music and story show, that was projected onto the Parliament Building at the Bundesplatz in Bern. It was a beautiful Saturday evening. We arrived about 40 minutes before the 7pm show and the crowd was just starting. At the last minutes the area got really busy, but not really packed.

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The show started Swiss time – on time at 7pm. It was a WOW! Simply amazing and from our spot we could enjoy it easily. I’m a petite (1.54m), but it wasn’t a problem, although in the the photos you’ll see silhouettes of heads 🙂 I saw that many families brought stepping stools for their children to stand on. My 5-yo daughter stood on her brother’s stroller and I carried my 2-yo with an Ergo.

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The Pink Challenge at the Lausanne Marathon – 2016

Lausanne Marathon is coming at the end of the month, and I am sure many of you runners already know and most likely will run there. However my post here is more directed to those who may want to join the fun even without running, and for a really good cause: To raise awareness of breast cancer!pinkWe know that October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month and within the Lausanne Marathon’s many shorter races, there is the “Pink Challenge”, calling all who can walk for 15 minutes. Adult, teens, kids and babies, even in strollers, are welcome. All who participate officially (fee chf20) will receive perks such as official t-shirt, finisher medal, and small souvenir. The date is Saturday 29 October 2016, start at 2.30pm in Parc de Milan.

Daughter and I will be there (Son will run the 600m earlier that afternoon and husband will run 10K the next day so that they won’t join the girls as it would be too expensive for us). If you are interested to march there too, don’t forget to register asap, as the early registration closes on 10 October 2016. Prices go up (chf30) for registration between 10th and 17th (the closing date).

Hope to see you marching there!

Autumn Holiday Activities in Lausanne and Around (2016) – Updated

This is not a sponsored post

autum-holiday

We are touching the end of summer, and it’s somehow already September (can you believe it?!) – It’s about time to think about school autumn holiday coming this October! :)

For those not yet familiar with the school here, school kids in Switzerland have holidays often, approximately every 6 weeks (find the list here). This may stress many parents, especially ones who are employed. Chatting around, I found that most employed couple rely on help from grandparents or families (who sometimes fly from another side of the planet). Or hire a temporary nanny when they can afford one. Or they take turns taking off days from their office. But considering the active life of kids, even the stay-at-home parents need programs to keep those little ones and teens happily occupied.

Below I complied different kinds of activities and camps that are offered during the school holidays in Lausanne and surrounding areas. Please click the links for more info.

As a general rule, the winter holiday after Christmas and the Relâches (February) are considered ski holiday thus most of the sport camps offered concentrated into this. For other holidays, activities are more varied.


Offers from the city of Lausanne and surrounding municipalities (Le SJL, le CVAJ and la FASL)

Note that these may be reserved for children domiciled inside the municipalities. Check current offers here on the column on the left hand side

Educational, Wildlife and Nature themes

  • Pop In’s – Full or half day, 3-12y (info)
  • L’écoline in St.Sulpice – Full or half day, there is also one bilingual French-English week, 3-9y (info)
  • Camps des Graines de Curieux – in Ecublens, 4-10y (info)
  • Kids Break – whole day trips for 4-12y, starts from Fribourg (info)
  • Club Vacances in Vevey and Promasens (Fribourg), 3-12y (info)

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Gurten Park – in Wabern (Bern)

Re-post from last year. Originally published May 2015.

My kids and I have often been in Bern within last few years as a close friend lived there. In fact, Bern had been our main destination for many school holidays. And we could never skip Gurten on a sunny day and it remains one of our most favorite spots in Bern. Bern is close enough from Lausanne to do a day trip (around 1h one way by train or car), and we could totally spend a whole day at Gurten alone.

Gurten for Bern is like Ouchy or Sauvabelin for Lausanne, it’s the place where the locals let go the busy city and breath the fresh air. But unlike Ouchy where we go down to the lakeside, Gurten is located at the top of the hill above Bern, and not accessible by car. There is a train station (Wabern, Gurtenbahn) at the foot of the hill as well as car parking. Then everyone goes up the hill by climbing the stairs (free) or with the funicular “Gurtenbahn” (for a small fee).  Strollers can be brought in at the end of the funicular, and as far as I know, most (if not all) areas are stroller- and wheelchair-accessible.gurten-viewbelow

Once you get to the top and out of the funicular, you will be greeted by a view to the city of Bern, lots of greenery, and grazing highland cattles. Ahhhh…

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Swiss Vapeur Parc in Le Bouveret

The Swiss Vapeur Parc will re-open for this year on 19 March 2016, so that I brought this post (originally published Aug 2012) back for those who haven’t been there. Both my kids looooove this park and I’m sure we’ll spend at least a day there this summer. Choo-choo!


I had been meaning to do this post for the last 2 months. Life’s surely busy with 2 kiddos around.

We (hubby, 3.5-y.o. daughter, 1-y.o son, and I) went to Swiss Vapeur Parc on a Saturday, in end of May 2012 (also the Saturday of the Pentecôte weekend). We “had” to go there as I bought a voucher from BuyClub.ch and it was to expire by end of the month.

We took the train (station: Bouveret, approx. 200m or 5 min walk to the park). From Lausanne it took 1 hour 12 minutes, including a change of train in St-Maurice. Very easy and relaxing, and the view from the train (the mountains and valleys of Valais) was breathtaking. FYI, during spring and summer, you can also take the CGN boat from Villeneuve.

We arrived at noon and expected a crowd. There were many people, but it was far from packed. There was an area to leave strollers, and we did so. Our 1-y.o. moved into the Ergo carrier. Stroller doesn’t really work there, as there were bridges, although you can keep it with you.

The queue to board those mini trains was not bad. The “stations” located more in front of the park were the most crowded, but even there we only had to wait for the next train. Some “stations” only had a few “passengers” waiting. There were many trains with different styles, really cute. The train rides were longer than I expected. The mini trains really went everywhere around the park, yet we saw something different each time. And to enjoy the view of mountains surrounding us, with the blue sky we had that day, was awesome.

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The Hot-air Balloon Festival in Château-d’Oex, 23 -31 Jan 2016

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The annual Hot-air Balloon Festival in Château-d’Oex is scheduled to begin on 23 January and will last until 31 January 2016. As always, the program looks very exciting, there will be many shows. Ballons Pirates sounds especially wonderful.

You can also ride on the passenger balloons (chf390/adult, chf195/child with min. 130cm of height and max. 14y of age). There is also special programs for kids on Wednesday afternoon and the week-ends, including flying in an attached balloon (chf10, 5-12y). The Night Glow will also return to the program this year!

For more info and complete programs, please check their website. You can also follow them on facebook.

FYI, before going, better check the weather and update on their website or call the answering machine (026 924 25 24 from 8am everyday) as the balloons won’t take off during bad weather.

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