Hidden gems: lakes & picnics.

Author:Mawson, Emily
Position:Lifestyle: insider
 
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Hundreds of kilometres from the sea, Lake Zurich provides respite from the heat and sun for the sweltering inhabitants of the city and its surroundings. However, the Badis (bathing areas) along its shores are not the only places for a dip or a picnic.

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Egelsee

The Egelsee offers something for everyone. Curtained by reeds and located on a plateau among clusters of woodland and Alpine foothills, it is home to a nature reserve. The western end of the lake is fenced off to protect the indigenous flora and fauna. Children will find plenty to amuse themselves in the naturally formed, shallow pool that is separated from the main swimming area by lilies-including a zip wire and wooden pirates ship. Bigger kids can swim out to the floating platforms, while parents can relax n the 'quiet area' across the bridge. For hungry tummies, there is a barbecue for public use and picnic benches to enjoy your own food. Alternatively, the self-service cafe and kiosk offers a range of drinks and snacks.

Make it happen

* Location: Bubikon, Canton Zurich

*Getting there: Take bus 880 from Bubikon train station to Wolfhausen Neugut, then walk or bike 800 metres: car Dark available

* Eat & drink: Picnic benches, barbecue for public use, self-service cafe and kiosk

* Activities: Swimming, beach volleyball table tennis, walking

* Prices: Adults/children CHF 5/3 (MaySeptember; changing room and toilets available) www.bubikon.ch

Katzensee

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Where the high-rise apartment blocks of Zurich-Affoltern end. the Lower Katzensee hides m a copse of woodland at the start of a rolling, agricultural landscape. Reached by a sun-dappled path through the trees, the family-friendly lake has an 80-metre long sandy beach and a shallow area for children. The lake is also ideal for Iong-distance swimming. It is only 15 minutes by train from Zurich main station, and this shows in the up to 4,000 people who gather n the spacious sunbathing area during a Sunday afternoon. However. enjoyed in the morning or evening, the Katzensee is peaceful with a pleasant temperature. Taking an hour to walk around the Lower Katzensee to enjoy the views across the neighbouring Upper Katzensee (where swimming is forbidden) is worthwhile--the...

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