Our journey & stay through the UNESCO World Heritage site of Lavaux Vineyards was nothing short of stunning. We found ourselves immersed in an enchanting tapestry of experiences that went beyond the ordinary. From the allure of grape harvesting to the rhythmic hum of a scenic train, each encounter unfolded a unique facet of the ultimate wine tour. Our visit was accentuated with a stay at Le Baron Tavernier in Chexbres right in the heart of the Lavaux region. It was a key enabler for us to enjoy all these experiences.
Harvesting Grapes: A Symphony of Nature and Tradition
Timing is everything, they say, and our visit harmonized perfectly with the harvest season. This year harvesting in Lavaux started around 25th of September and continued for 10 days or so. Early in the morning before even the sun spread its rays, the harvesters took their marks on the vineyard terraces. With eager hands we participated in the age-old tradition of grape harvesting at the vineyard. Amidst rows of vine-laden trellises, the sweet scent of ripened grapes filled the air, creating an unforgettable and deeply immersive experience. We learned some of the basics of grapes harvesting and wine making. We were stunned as we watched the harvesters frequent the lanes like busy bees. Jean-Paul Rogivue, one of the Fils Rogivue winemakers, shared with us that his children are the 4th generation of winemakers in the family. Handing over this tradition secrets from one generation to another.
Vineyard Vistas from a Panoramic Train: A Pictorial Journey Through Time
All aboard the charming train from Chexbres to Vevey – Lavaux Panoramique, a journey that meandered through the heart of the vineyards. It granted us a front-row seat to the picturesque Lavaux panorama. With stops for wine tastings and panoramic views, it was a sensory feast. Sipping fine wines against the backdrop of sprawling vineyards, we revelled in the moment. Lavaux is considered as UNESCO World Heritage site, with its vineyards that trace back to the 11th century, when Benedictine and Cistercian monasteries controlled the area. The monks transformed these steep hills into wine terraces that benefit from extensive sun exposure. The breathtaking views are one of the charms of Lavaux, but also are the centuries-long interaction between the inhabitants of the region and its enviroment. We wrote before about Lavaux in more detail on our blog here.
Sunset Picnic: Nature’s Palette Unleashed
During our stay, we wanted to enjoy these stunning vineyards in every possible way. During one late afternoon, equipped with a basket of local goodies by Le Baron Tavernier, we set off for a new experience. After a short walk, as the sun dipped below the horizon, we set ourselves on a porch, surrounded by local delicacies and the finest wines. The hues of the setting sun painted the sky, turning the vineyards into a canvas of warm tones. A simple picnic became a symphony of flavors and colors, etching the memory deep into our hearts.
Lavaux Vineyard Strolls: Sipping Elegance, Observing Life
A leisurely hike through the vineyards revealed a different facet of Lavaux’s charm. Watching boats glide on the lake and trains winding through the landscape, we sipped on exquisite wines. It was a serene moment, a pause in time amidst the lively surroundings. The hiking routes in Lavaux are unlimited. Most if not all come with breathtaking views of the wine terraces and the lake. Occasionally you can pass through enchanting villages like Epesses, Lutry, Cully, St. Saphorin with their enchanting pebbles streets. Search for the local winemakers and try some of them! The wine is not only amazing but always come with a family story!
Hiking trails are limitless here, most known of them is the “Terrasses de Lavaux” trail going from Saint-Saphorin to Lutry. The distinctive thing here is that you can adjust your hiking route according to your capabilities anything from 3 km to 10.
Le Baron Tavernier: A Tranquil Retreat Amidst the Vines
Nestled in the heart of Lavaux Hotel Le Baron Tavernier became our sanctuary. The spacious terrace of our suite opened up to panoramic views of the vineyards. Whether it was the gentle light of morning or the captivating hues of sunset, each moment spent in the embrace of the hotel’s ambiance was nothing short of breathtaking. We established a drink’s menu that comes with every period of the day. Early morning coffee to watch the sunrise. Colourful cocktails for the afternoon and local wine for the sunset scenes. We are very happy of our matching rituals 🙂
Le Deck: Culinary Delights with a Panoramic Backdrop
At the hotel’s restaurant, Le Deck, culinary indulgence met a captivating panorama. Le Deck is outside of the hotel building but just across the street. It has 2 parts. The open deck which serves drinks and finger food, and the glass salle which offers the gastronomy experience (& breakfast in the morning). Overlooking the vineyards and the lake, each dish was a masterpiece. The fusion of flavors and the scenic backdrop elevated our dining experience to new heights. As we savored each bite, our eyes were treated to a captivating visual feast that elevated our dining experience to a level beyond the ordinary. On top of the “a la carte” options, the menu offers seasonal delicacies and is renewed every month!
Relaxation Beyond Lavaux Vineyards: Spa Indulgences
Beyond the vines, the hotel beckoned with a promise of relaxation and rejuvenation. An indoor pool, SPA facilities, saunas, and a gym awaited our exploration. A rejuvenating massage added the finishing touch, ensuring that our relaxation mirrored the serene pace of Lavaux itself. It was amazing moments of tranquility and zen.
In the heart of Lavaux, our ultimate wine tour unfolded like a well-crafted novel, with each chapter revealing a new layer of enchantment. From the tactile connection with nature during the harvest to the luxury of a spa retreat, our journey surpassed expectations, leaving us with indelible memories of Lavaux’s timeless allure.