Swiss Watching trivia, No 16: Rhine Falls
August 16, 2010, 6 Comments
Jumping into the basin of Europe’s largest waterfalls may seem a very foolish – and therefore very unSwiss – thing to do, but it’s strangely popular with some Swiss teenage boys. Such daredevil acts (do not try this at home!) are both dangerous and only possible in high summer, when the water levels are at their peak: 700,000 litres per second going over the falls. I’d rather stick to swimming in the river Aare. Far safer, and drier, to hear the roar and feel the spray of the falls by staying on the concrete platforms built out from the cliff face. Better yet, ride on a longboat against the tide to a small outcrop of rock in the middle of the falls and watch the water rush by on both sides. Niagara they are not but at 150 metres wide and 23 m high, the Rhine Falls are Europe’s largest waterfalls. Although the River Rhine forms the Swiss-German border for some of its length, thanks to an abnormal bulge in the border the falls sit completely within Canton Schaffhausen, Switzerland’s most northerly outpost.