It was early morning when we started pulling our suitcases to the nearby Zurich Central Train Station. The skies were cloudy and the rain started to pour in fine droplets at the time we reached the station. The drizzle did not stop me from pushing my plans for the day because the night before the rain poured heavily and left us trapped in the station despite me getting itchy feet. I could not afford cancelling my trip this time to Europe’s largest waterfall – the Rhine Falls.
We took the train from Zurich Station to Neuhausen Am Rheinfall where the Rhine Falls is exactly next to it. We travelled for approximately 50 minutes passing to Switzerland’s countryside adoring the various landscapes from the window. There were only few passengers on board the train during that time which made me feel quite uncomfortable wondering if we were heading the right direction. Knowing that Rhine Falls is a popular tourist attraction, I kept asking myself why the train is almost empty and no one ever inspected for our tickets. I got several answers in my mind though. It could be because of the bad weather, or maybe that was the usual scenario on board a regional train, or perhaps visitors took the other route – the Schloss Laufen am Rheinfall (on the southern side of the falls). As several thoughts run through my head, I suddenly heard the strong sound of gushing waters which made me looked out of the window. It was the Rhine Falls! I felt so enthusiastic and delighted that after 13 stops, we have reached our destination.
Rhine Falls Entry
The Rhine Falls is exactly in front of the Neuhausen Am Rheinfall Station. The lift transported us directly to the northern visitor entrance of the waterfall. There was no entrance fee on that side unlike on the southern part where guests need to acquire a ticket to allow entry. We left our luggage on lockers available near the souvenir shop to allow us to move freely while exploring the place.
Exploring the Waterfall
Rhine Falls can be viewed on several vantage points but whichever you choose it is guaranteed that it will leave you in awe. This waterfall is not that high with a height of only 23 meters but what makes it impressive is its width, pouring out huge volume of water at an expanse of 150 meters. This massive waterfall is undoubtedly the largest in Europe!
Two castles are situated on both ends of the Rhine falls: the Laufen Castle on the southern side and the Wörth Castle on its north. The viewing platforms situated on Laufen Castle allow guests to get extremely close to the falls so be ready to get wet. On the other hand, the view from the Wörth Castle is also breathtaking. Though a bit farther from the waterfall but visitors could hike on paved routes to get closer to the rushing waters. If you are interested to move from one castle to another, it is possible through a boat ride across the river.
An exciting viewpoint perhaps is the enormous rock towering in the middle of this massive waterfall. Once you climb the top of the rock, you would be delighted with the spectacular display of nature in all directions. This centrally-located rock could only be reached by boat which is not accessible during the winter season.
We spend half day exploring the grand Rhine falls and appreciating its beauty in several perspectives. Our lunch that day was awesome not only because of our appetizing meal but also of the great ambiance. It started to drizzle when we finished our meals so we begin pulling out our luggage from the safety compartments and headed back to the train station to proceed to our next destination.