by Merz in Cool Travel on Wednesday 21 November 2012

Initially, one of the attractions of being in Bern was the Alps, snowboarding in winter, and all that. What I didn’t bank on was the unique summer swimming experience in the fast flowing, glacial river that runs around the capital. It’s a bizarre but blissful ritual; on a really hot day, tens of thousands of people parade a kilometer or so up-river in swimsuits then jump in at various points to float back down again. Like ducks. Much infrastructure has been built around this pastime: places to safely exit the river (it’s fast), masses of lockers so people can just come down after work, dump clothes and jump in, logs provided by the state for campfires and BBQ’s.