This past weekend we had the pleasure of attending a very traditional annual festival in Charmey about bringing the cows back from the Alps to the farms where they will spend the winter, called “La Fête de la Désalpe” (roughly translated to The Desalps Party).


charmey_house mountain

charmey_house treeEvery year, in the beginning of Summer, farmers take their cows up to the mountains where they graze freely for more than 4 months. By the end of Summer, on the last Saturday of September, they bring back the cows to spend the harsh Swiss winter in the comfort of the farm. Since this is a big event, why not make a party out of it?

charmey_cowsEvery cow is embellished with flowers on top of their heads and a big gigantic bell on their necks (the more noise the better, right?). And so they walk down from the mountain until they get to the first village, Charmey, in the district of Gruyère.

And then there’s a cheese fair, concerts, street food markets… I made a small video showing all that! In 2 minutes you will get a glance at how we spent our Saturday. I must warn you I’m not the greatest film maker of all times, sorry about that 😉


charmey_swiss horns

This post was written in September 2015.

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