Welcome to the year 1901!

January 19, 2015, 1 Comment

Belle Epoque artistIn Kandersteg this week it’s no longer the 21st century but over a hundred years earlier. That’s because it’s Belle Époque week. Time for the whole village to be taken back in time to the turn of the century – the 20th century. I’ve been to this wonderful week for the past three years both as a bystander and a partcipant.

If you can’t make it to Kandersteg this week, here are some shots of the time-travel town.

Post OfficeBuildings such as the post office above and Coop below are given reverse makeovers, taking them back to the Before rather than the After by covering up the modern parts with painted tarpaulins.

Coop 1901Staff in many shops, restaurants and hotels wear period dress, as do the children. So don’t be surprised by young boys going to school in knickerbockers and long socks, and carrying a leather satchel.

Cheese sledThere are also quite a few sleds gliding around town, small ones piled up with shopping being pulled by hand, larger horse-drawn ones acting as a taxi service.

CurlingThere are activities all week long, including curling and ice skating, concerts and cookery classes, afternoon teas and candlelit dinners, bridge tournaments and winter walks.

Kandersteg churchMany locals clearly have raided their attics for some great costumes, while most visitors dress up to the nines as well. Costume hire shops across the region must be devoid of big hats and top coats.

Belle Epoque couple in costume

Skater in costume

One Comment on "Welcome to the year 1901!"

  1. Kenneth Stiller Wednesday February 18th, 2015 at 06:10 AM · Reply

    What a wonderful week to be there. My wife and I have been to Switzerland 9 times (re:email address) and 8 of those times we have spent in Kandersteg with Walter and Marliese Holzer-Steiner. We enjoyed everyminute hiking, hiking, dining with Rosti and sausage. By using Kandersteg as our home away from home, we were able to take the trains, boats, busses and trams all over the country from north to south and east to west. I would love to live there for ever. My love of Switzerland is equal to my country. So glad to know about the celebration of Kandersteg. Tell everyone hello and we miss them. Kenneth and Marilyn Stiller, 3317 Buffalo Trail, Floyd Knobs, Indiana 47119 USA. I can’t wait to buy the new books.

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