After a ski season in the Alps last winter with less snow than we may have wished for, it was great to put away our skis in April and start welcoming schools and groups from all over Europe for a taste of the Camp Suisse outdoor education programmes and residential class trips in May.
By the time we started the first of our international summer camps in July, the beautiful summer sunshine had well and truly arrived in the Alps and the Camp Suisse team was a well-oiled machine, delivering outdoor educational and adventurous activities of the highest quality to our campers.
This summer we welcomed campers from 37 different countries spanning 6 continents. From Australia to Albania, Canada to Cameroon and Peru to Poland, the cultural and ethnic diversity of our camp is something we are very proud of and will continually strive to encourage and broaden.
After 15 years the Camp Suisse programme continues to evolve and lead the way as a uniquely personal, great fun, safe and pedagogic experience. This summer we introduced paddle boarding on Lake Geneva for the first time and revisited some of the old favourites such as the Caillers chocolate factory and the Parc Aventure high ropes course. Creating an activity programme that is flexible and adaptable is of paramount importance to us; when there was no snow left on the glacier in late July and August for husky dog sledding we introduced the Snow Bus and Canirando activities as new and alternative adventures for our glacial experience.
Summer 2017 will go down as another great summer at Camp Suisse with fantastic campers and an amazing staff team who are completely dedicated to the safety and wellbeing of the campers in our care.
Post-summer we had the pleasure of welcoming campers from far and wide onto our autumn residential programme for international schools, which takes place down the road from our Torgon site in the beautiful village of Champéry. Autumn was a huge success with campers and teachers alike benefiting from mountain adventure sports, field education and outdoor pursuits with the usual Camp Suisse flair.
2018….. what is to come?!
Well in the winter we have the Olympics in Pyongyang (of course). Camp Suisse will be offering pedagogic ski and winter sports camps to its international school clients – and in the summer more fun and adventures at summer camp which we are already excitedly planning and building towards.
Amongst other things, next summer will see the launch of our French immersion programme as well as further development on our entire language course offering. The French immersion programme will involve campers undertaking their activity programme and excursions as well as the general camp life in French with our French-speaking staff and teachers.
We will also be introducing more water sports on Lake Geneva in addition to looking at different options for our overnight expeditions for older campers.
Keep in touch 🙂 Julie & Richard
Kicking the day off with an ArtJam session, the Greens and Yellows created some amazing masterpieces to hang all around the Camp Suisse Centre. Some serious archery skills were displayed later that morning as the campers took to the field to emulate the Prince of Thieves himself… Robin Hood!
After lunch the campers headed to the class rooms for their language lessons in preparation for their entries into the Camp Suisse Language Talent Show.
Evening ents took the form of the infamous Campers Vs. Staff football match. After making a strong play in the first half, the staff were 1-0 up. But, with shocker storming from the campers in the 2nd half, the final whistle was blown and the game ended with the campers walking away with a landslide victory of 6-2!
Finally the time had arrived for one of the major activities at Camp Suisse – the overnight camping trip. Greens and yellows carefully packed their rucksacks with clean clothes, toothbrushes and full water bottles, ready for the much anticipated hike! Campers set off around 10am and trekked through the forest, gradually moving uphill with regular breaks along the way. Packed lunches were enjoyed at 12.30, with a little lie in the sun helping tired limbs recover. The second half of the hike was a little gentler, and the campers moved at a good speed, eventually reaching the camp at 2.30pm. Everyone was excited to settle into the chalet, with all 12 boys squeezing into one room together, and the girls spreading between two rooms. Some much-needed relaxation was in order, and campers enjoyed playing table football, ping pong and various card games until dinner. Chefs Curtis and Jodie whipped up an amazing BBQ for 34 campers plus staff, rounded off with the Camp Suisse classic of melted bananas and chocolate. The after-dinner quiz was enjoyed by all with ‘majority rules’ round provoking controversy and hilarity. Amazingly, many campers still had the energy to hike up to the French border to enjoy the Bastille Day fireworks, before settling into sleeping bags for a well-deserved sleep.
The next morning, after eating breakfast and packing away, the campers enjoyed a much more relaxed hike back to the centre, leaving time for a shower before lunch. Language lessons followed, with the added thrill of preparing for the evening Talent Show, in which the campers demonstrated how much progress they have made in their language classes over the last two weeks. Campers were also presented with awards to celebrate some of the activities and qualities they have demonstrated skills in during the session.