Olliechinny - Swiss Travel & Lifestyle Expat Blog
Swiss Travels Travels

Valais, Switzerland: A Summer Travel Guide

View from Moosfluh Viewpoint, Aletsch Glacier

Not leaving on a jetplane just yet! We are continuing our Grand Tour for the second half of summer 2021, and this time, we arrived in canton Valais in the Southwest of Switzerlerland!

Here’s my guide for visiting Valais: an itinerary that will see you exploring pictureques vineyards and alpine villages, soaring high over the skies and wild, majestic mountains that will set your sense of adventure alight.

Swiss Travels Travels

What to do in Ticino, Switzerland in summer

Summer is here! Last year we spent it in Lugano with our friends and we loved our time SO MUCH. We were so excited this time about spending it coming back to this Italian-part of Switzerland, but to explore other cities around the region! If this continues next year, it seems like a trip to Ticino will soon become our annual summer affair!

We spent a fantastic week in Ticino, returning home with satisfied pot-bellies from all the feasting, and cameras loaded with beautiful summer travel memories. Today I’m all pumped up and excited to share with you all the stunning beautiful places in this travel itinerary!

Swiss Expat Life

Moving House in Switzerland: 7 Reflections + FREE MOVING CHECKLIST !

A week ago, we moved house in Switzerland from Lausanne to Morges. If you’ve had ever moved house, relocated or been through a renovation process, you would know that it is a REAL roller-coaster ride of emotions. The stress, the chaos, the excitement and the exhaustion….there’s really only a few other things in life (maybe parenthood?) that can rival it in terms of intensity!

Looking back over the whole time, I have to admit there are many things that we could have done more efficiently and differently if I had my time over. The dust’s finally settled and I am sitting in my new living room typing this post to reflect about the whole process of moving house in Switzerland – the ups, the downs, and the honest reality of it.

I have also specially prepared a Swiss MOVING CHECKLIST compiled based on my personal experience, so stay till the end of the post!

No Comments
Travels Swiss Travels

Top Things to Do in Lucerne, Mt Titlis and Pilatus

When travel returns to some normality in the near future, add the Lucerne-Lake Lucerne region to your must visit destinations in Switzerland. More specifically the iconic city of Lucerne, and the two mountain peaks in Titlis and Pilatus!

This is the second blogpost in my Grand Tour of Switzerland travel series in partnership with MySwitzerland. Catch up on my recent blog post in which I showcased some of my weekend highlights in Neuchâtel to add to your Swiss bucket list!

We spent a weekend here as part of our Grand Tour of Switzerland, and in this post I will be sharing with you all our itinerary and must-see/do activities. I’d also included a detailed comparison between Mt Titlis and Pilatus so you can decide which is the better option for you to visit so be sure to read till the end!

1 Comment
Travels Swiss Travels

Neuchâtel and La Chaux-de-Fonds Switzerland: 7 BEST Things to see and do

Wide Streets and parallel Buildings in La Chaux de Fonds

At last….Kicking off my latest project in 2021 with MySwitzerland: OLLIECHINNY’S GRAND TOUR OF SWITZERLAND!

In this year-long travel series, I will be sharing TEN various bucket-list worthy destinations with activities to do in Switzerland, which I hope would serve as an inspiration for you when planning your next Swiss trip! It’s already my third year in Switzerland but really, the number of sights and places to discover is ENDLESS. I hope you will be equally excited as I am and follow along my adventures!

Our first destination is at canton Neuchâtel in the French-speaking part of Switzerland! I don’t know why, but this region tended to be missed out when people visit Swiss Romande, preferring the Montreux Riveria or Lausanne, the Olympic city. However, did you know that in Neuchâtel, there is actually a watch-making capital (A UNESCO world-heritage site, no less!)?

Get ready to find out the 7 BEST THINGS to do in Neuchâtel: From watch-making, Old-Town scavenger hunts, to scenic nature hikes!

1 Comment

Stay Home Notice (SHN) in Singapore: 10 Positive Tips To Survive Your 2 Week Quarantine

It was the very last week of 2020, and Vince and I boarded the plane back from Zurich back to Singapore. We had planned for an annual visit to our home country every year. But this time, we had to hasten our return right before 31 Dec. This was after the new implementation by the Singapore Government that with effect 1 Jan 2021, the cost of the 14-day Stay Home Notice (SHN) for returning citizens who left Singapore before 23rd March 2020 would no longer be waived.

For overseas readers: The SHN is a requirement for citizens and visitors entering Singapore (regardless of origin) to serve a 14-day quarantine in a designated government facility (usually an assigned hotel room) before they are allowed to return home.

I have since served my 14-day SHN, and I felt compelled to share my personal story: Specifically 10 tips on how to survive and make the best of time during these 2 weeks of quarantine. Hopefully this can help other returning Singaporeans going through the same situation, or that it can at least help you to gain new perspectives!


Travels European Travels

Winter Holiday in Liechtenstein: 10 BEST Things to See and Do

skiing in Malbun, Liechtenstein

LIECH.TEN.STEIN. This name is difficult to spell…and might ring absolutely no bells. But in fact it’s a small country, just 1.5 hours outside of Switzerland!

Given the pandemic situation, Vince and I had ideally wanted to visit to have a break and go somewhere unique for the end-of-year vacation, but still not too far away from home for safety reasons. That was why we were so thrilled when we were invited by Liechtenstein Marketing to spend a weekend winter holiday in this princely state!

In this post, I’d be sharing with you all the activities you can do in Leichtenstein, featuring the Liechtenstein Museum & Adventure Pass. With four museums, a royal treasury to snoop around, plus a ski resort and fairytale castle, this itinerary has you covered for a fun and unique winter holiday!

Also, read till the end of the post for a fantastic giveaway 😀

DISCLAIMER: if you don’t feel comfortable travelling during this pandemic, save this list for later. Being a travel content creator, I know what an impact the lack of travelling has on the industry. I’d made the conscious decision to travel, but of course under compliance of the respective rules within Switzerland and the Principality of Liechtenstein, and with consideration of mine and especially other people’s safety.

Travels Swiss Travels

Is the Bernina Express Worth it? All You Need to Know Before Booking

Bernina Express Alp Grüm

When I first arrived in Switzerland, one of things on my bucket-list was to go on classic train experience across the Swiss Alps. Afterall, this mountain country is known for having one of the most beautiful rail routes in the world. I finally got the chance of a lifetime come true, when we were invited by Rhaetian Railway to experience the Bernina Express!

Now, there are many other paranomic train rides in Switzerland, the closest comparison being the Glacier Express. The cost of the Bernina Express can be quite hefty: potentially costing over 200 CHF per person during peak seasons for the full-length journey (unless you have relevant rail passes, more about that below). Thus, you might be seriously wondering if this train ride is seriously worth the hype, time and money.

To answer the question, I’ve prepared a comprehensive guide including on all the important must-knows for you prior to taking the Bernina Express: including the route highlights, how to buy your tickets, comparing the First and Second-class, where to stay as well as other travel tips so that you can have the most enjoyable experience. I was doing my research before the trip and I know how messy and hard it can to piece together all these information, so this should come in handy!

So sit back, read and prepared to be amazed!

DISCLAIMER: if you don’t feel comfortable travelling during this pandemic, save this list for later. Being a travel content creator, I know what an impact the lack of travelling has on the industry. I’d made the conscious decision to travel, but of course under compliance of the respective rules within Switzerland, and with consideration of mine and especially other people’s safety.

Travels Swiss Travels

Review: Enjoy the Best Relaxing Weekend at Hotel Saratz, Pontresina

Hotel Saratz, Pontresina

As part of a belated celebration for my birthday and our 9th dating anniversary, Vince and I went on the classic Bernina Express train experience last weekend. The day before our train trip, we were really glad to have been hosted by Hotel Saratz to spend a night at their beautiful resort in Pontresina!

We had a brilliant stay and it was just what the sort of relaxing staycation we needed after spending a lot more time than usual at home this year. So, I am excited to share everything about our trip with you and hopefully inspire much wanderlust to explore this region of Switzerland!

Swiss Expat Life

27 Important Lessons I’ve Learnt at 27

important lessons at 27

(Warning: Long post ahead.)

Today, I turn 28. It’s not that big of a deal, I know. Afterall, it’s not the big 30. But now that I am at the point of no-return into my late 20s, I’d noticed that my lessons and priorities are much different of those from my younger carefree days, and worth penning down for reflection.

27 was a year of rediscovering myself. Of taking a long hard look in the mirror the past self, after 27 years of just floating through the noise.

As a middle child, I had always been a follower. I never gave much thought to who I was, or what my purpose is in this world. Because I didn’t need to. I only had to walk straight on the path already paved ahead for me and 99% of the time, life turned out pretty much fine.

I spent the entirety of my life absorbing the prescribed Singaporean ideals, beliefs and mindset on what it means to be wife, daughter, sister, employee. And then all of a sudden, I found myself thrown into a different world, where at every possible social event, they ask, without fail: “So, who are you?”. “Why are you here?”, “Tell me more about yourself”. “What do you do in life?”

What makes me, me? I didn’t have an answer to that. Because all this while, I’d only knew what I ought to be in this world, not who to be.

In a way, our move to Switzerland was a necessary part of my growth. Because by removing ourselves away from our past social circle of influence and living life independently, it allowed me the space I needed to re-examine every single part of myself—the good, the ugly, the hidden and the unconscious. It was frustrating having to undo all the past black and white lessons taught in my life. But I needed to come to the realisation on my own, that all that I once used to hold as absolute without questioning, were only illusions of another person’s subjective ideas and beliefs.

27 was the year I started listening to myself and learn to form my own judgement. Based on my opinion, not others.

So, this is my list of the 27 important lessons I’ve learned at 27. I’m openly sharing these lessons, with the hopes that they would bring you comfort and remind you of the light. I know too that I will be reading this list over and over again when life feels heavy and I need the reminder myself.