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An immersive botanical walk in Switzerland with 'Into the Nature'

During my trip to the Canton of Vaud in Switzerland last month, I had the opportunity to participate in an immersive outdoor experience. On day 2 of our trip, we drove from Charmey to the peaks of the Vaud Alps in 'Les Diablerets' to enjoy some mountain scenery and enjoy a short walk with a plant & herbs tasting. The setting for the nature walk was Lac Retaud (Lake Retaud).

Plant and herb tasting walk by Into the Nature

The journey to Lake Retaud took us through stunning landscapes. The lake is located near the Col du Pillon mountain pass and overlooking it is Les Diablerets, a huge mountain massif, the summit of which is the highest point in the canton of Vaud. Very popular among tourists visiting this region are the Glacier 3000 cable cars and ski lifts. The cable car connects the Col du Pillon to the Scex Rouge another huge ice-covered mountain of the Alps.

The plant & herb tasting walk was conducted by 'Into the Nature'. Into the Nature was founded by Robert Klein who is a qualified mountain guide and is also very knowledgeable about wild edible plants. Along with Nadia Morello, who is a social educator, a caterer and the one who organises the outings, Into the Nature offers a range of thematic walks & hikes aimed at both children and adults.

Ours was a short wild herbs & plants experience, which involved a walk around Lake Retaud, with Robert helping our small group to recognise and identify wild, edible plants. We picked and learnt about a number of wild edible plants like common nettle (used to make herbal tea, pesto, soup etc.), parallel leaf plantain (traditionally used to strengthen the respiratory system), yarrow (astringent and mildly aromatic and used in herbal preparations), bilberry, yellow gentian (used in medicinal herbal preparations), woodruff and lemon balm to name a few. It was an interesting session that gave an introduction to the understanding of plants and herbs using smell, taste and other senses. Robert explained the properties and uses of the various plants very nicely.

Plant and herb tasting walk around Lake Retaud

Plant and herb tasting walk around Lake Retaud

Plant and herb tasting walk around Lake Retaud

Plant and herb tasting walk around Lake Retaud

Plant and herb tasting walk around Lake Retaud

Plant and herb tasting walk around Lake Retaud

Post the interesting walk, there was a tasting session of wild herb dishes prepared by Nadia. Nadia's culinary creations which included sweet woodruff cocktail, Swiss quinoa & stinging nettle, wild garlic pesto on toast bread, red lentils balls with ground elder, sweet woodruff pannacotta with Elderberries coulis were all packed with amazing flavours. It was an excellent spread showcasing Nadia's talent and passion for cooking and nature.

Wild herbs tasting session near Lake Retaud

Wild herbs tasting session near Lake Retaud

Wild herbs tasting session near Lake Retaud

Wild herbs tasting session near Lake Retaud

Wild herbs tasting session near Lake Retaud

Wild herbs tasting session near Lake Retaud

Into the Nature offer these sessions and workshops in 5 locations throughout the French-speaking part of Switzerland - Versoix, Lausanne, Givisiez etc. You can visit their website to learn more about their activities and workshops or to book your experience.

You might also like to read about my visit to the Cave de la Charrue winery in Switzerland.

4 comments:

  1. Wow...such an enlightening trip and mesmerising captures. We should have such trips here in India too to tap on the vast potential our Ayurveda has!

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    Replies
    1. Thank you. And yes, I agree. There should be such walks/trips in India centred around Ayurveda.

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  2. Deeptha what a gorgeous place. Rocking post too. Switzerland has long been on my travel list.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, a very lovely place and the botonical walk was informative too.

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