Through the Gürbe Valley, Bern
Sights along this driving tour include the little town of Belp, a museum of veteran cars and motorcycles, Zimmerwald, Riggisberg, and the 16th C. castle of Burgistein.
From Wabern it is 3.5km/2mi to Kehrsatz (alt.573 m/1,880ft; bypass), with a 16th C. Schloss, now a state girls' reformatory. From here the direct road runs through the beautiful Gürbe valley (to the left Schloss Oberried, now a boys' school), via the neat little town of Belp (alt. 526 m/1,726ft), at the foot of the Belpberg (894 m/2,933ft), which has a picturesque 16th C. castle and a series of Gothic frescoes (1455-60) in the church of St Peter and Paul.
From Belp continue to Toffen where there is a museum of veteran cars and motorcycles in the Gürbestrasse and a medieval Baroque castle (1671). The castle in neighboring Rümligen is also of Baroque style (18th C.); the last owner was the well-known Bernese Madame de Meuron. Past Seftigen, continuing over the ridge between the Gürbe and Aare valleys, the road reaches Thun on the lake of the same name.
From Thun alternatively take a road on the right to Kehrsatz, and after a short distance uphill turn left into a ridge road which runs above the Gürbe valley (extensive views), passing below Zimmerwald, where the formation of the Third International (the Communist International Organization) was discussed at a conference in September 1915 attended by Lenin.
Abegg Foundation, Riggisberg, Switzerland
The Abegg Foundation is the foremost center in the world for textile conservation. The annual changing display of textiles/costumes includes some of the most prominent archeological and historical pieces from all over the world.The permanent display includes examples from Coptic Egypt to pristine velvets and embroideries of the Renaissance to the 18th C.The museum's textile collection is among the foremost in the world.
This day-long festival takes place in late October.
From Burgenstein it is 2.5km/2mi to Wattenwil (604 m/1,982ft), below the Staffelalp (983 m/3,225ft: far-ranging views; inn; 3km/2mi by road). Continue through the Gürbe valley for 4km/2mi to Blumenstein (661 m/2,169ft), with a 14th C. church (beautiful stained glass in choir) and a chalybeate spring (impregnated with iron). Finally, 4.5km/3mi, we reach Oberstocken (672 m/2,205ft), at the foot of the Stockhorn, from which there are extensive views.
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