Walking with a pram: Pfäffikersee, Zurich

Where the Pfäffikersee slumbers, walkers can find tranquility, birdsong and wildflower meadows - all within half an hour's reach of Zurich.  

Half an hour away from Zurich, all is quiet. Tall reeds dance around the water, a mirage of inky blues, and ducks gather. On the horizon, the giants of Central Switzerland slumber free of their winter cloaks - the Glärnisch massif and Drüsberg, and further west, icons Rigi and Pilatus. Not a car engine or aeroplane roar disturbs the scene.

We are following the 10km circular route around the Pfäffikersee on a well-surfaced wide path suitable for pushchairs. It hugs the smart leafy promenade in Pfäffikon ZH, where period villas snuggle beside modern architecture, then sweeps across marshy moorland on boardwalks and over meadows billowing dandelions, gentians and cuckoo flower. The lake is a nature reserve, and today we see storks, herons, grebes and coots. The blossom trees are magnificent, and there is a tang of honeysuckle on the air.

There are lakeside kiosks and swimming spots dotted along the route, and lovely jetties with tranquil outlooks over the glassy water. We pass Jucker Farm too, a working farm that also has seasonal pick-your-own, a restaurant and activities for kids. Around two hours after we set off, and close to the car park once more, we settle in a meadow golden with dandelions for our Easter Sunday picnic, sheltered by a vast umbrella of blossom.

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