Wednesday (Mittwoch), 8 (acht) June (Juni)
View from our balcony at the Hotel Bernerhof, 1.50 pm
OUR ONLY day of the holiday without a travel pass, so, on this drizzly morning, we walk up to the Park Hotel to follow Wengen’s Forest Trail on the lower western slopes of Männlichen. You can get a trail leaflet from the Tourist Information Centre in Wengen.
It’s an easy way to get familiar with the trees and flowers of the area as 69 species are labelled with their botanical names and in German, French, English and Italian (we’re only 22 miles from the border with Italy, but that’s over the mountains and across the Rhone Valley). Hornbeam, Carpinus betulus, for example, is Charme in French, Carpino in Italian and Weissbuche or Hagebuche in German.
Rhododendron hirsutum is the German Behaarte Alpenrose, French Rhododendron cilie and Rhododendron peloso in Italian. The label suggests Hirsute rhododendron as the English name but I’d go simply for Alpenrose, which is also the name of one of the hotels in Wengen, one that has been attracting guests for over a century. In winter, one visitor tells us, you can ski right down to this hotel from the slopes.