Doxa Weekend Adventures in Argovie with the Doxa Sub 200
The Swiss region that has it all – historic towns, castles, the largest collection of Swiss art, outdoor activities, and a horological surprise or two
Taking the train to the city of Aarau, my first order of business was to unpack my travel partner, the Doxa Sub 200 C-Graph with its summery turquoise dial and matching rubber strap. I smile as I remembered the brand’s slogan “Your call to adventure”, it seems like the two of us are going to have a lot of fun.
Stadtmuseum and medieval tower © WorldTempus/Sophie Furley
Summer in the City of Aarau
Arriving in the historic city of Aarau, the capital of the canton of Argovie, we are treated to a tour by a historian who takes us around the old town that still has several medieval buildings dating back to the 13th century. We also discover that for a short time – five months to be precise – Aarau was once the capital of Switzerland and the federal government building still stands majestically even if it is now used as an exhibition space.
Federal government building and City of Aarau © WorldTempus/Sophie Furley
The Largest Collection of Swiss Art
After a copious lunch of Swiss German specialties at the Restaurant Mürset, we head for the Aargauer Kunsthaus and the country’s largest collection of Swiss art. Housed in an impressive building that was built in 1959 and was extended by internationally renowned architects Herzog & de Meuron and the artist Rémy Zaugg in 2003, the building is as equally impressive as its contents.
Aargauer Kunsthaus © WorldTempus/Sophie Furley
The museum has an important permanent collection of works of art and is currently showing a temporary exhibit of Swiss Sculpture since 1945, along with special focuses on artists Sophie Taeuber-Arp and Markus Raetz, which are definitely worth the detour.
Getting lost along the River Aar
The following morning, I decided to go for a quick run along the River Aar to compensate for all the delightful food I had been tasting. Strapping on the Doxa Sub 200 C-Graph, I started the chronograph as I set out. The sun had just come up and the paths were empty as it was still a little early for the dog-walking crowd.
Running © WorldTempus/Sophie Furley
Not really paying attention to where I was going, I branched off down one of the river’s tributaries and then crossed over a bridge to the other side. A couple of kilometres on, I looked down at the Doxa and noticed that I had been running for 25 minutes, so I decided to turn around and head back to the hotel. A little while later, I took a second glance at the Sub 200, noticing that the dial was now indicating an elapsed time of 50 minutes. I stopped and spent a moment admiring the highly legible dial with its luminescent markers when something suddenly caught my attention, the river was running in the wrong direction. Panicked, I pulled out my phone and open Google Maps, only to find that I was 1h30 away from the hotel! Luckily, this was a walking speed calculation, so running back in “race-pace” mode, I made it just in time to grab a croissant and make the lobby rendez-vous, albeit a little red in the face!
River Dinghy Trip down the River Aar © WorldTempus/Sophie Furley
A Surprise Encounter in a Military Dinghy
Our next excursion was a river experience in a dinghy with Flussfahrten-Aargau who took us down the River Aar in an old military inflatable craft. I was quite relieved it wasn’t a full-on kayaking experience as I had done my fair share of sport for the day. But the river did pick up speed in certain places and we had to paddle hard to help steer the boat in the right direction, but it made the experience all the more fun.
Doxa Sub 200 C-Graph © WorldTempus/Sophie Furley
Around 11am, we stopped for a glass of rosé on the banks of the river where I took the opportunity to take a few pictures of the Doxa. I suddenly noticed that our captain was wearing an orange t-shirt with blue shorts. He couldn’t have been more Doxa-colour-coordinated if he had tried! I asked him kindly if he would mind modeling the Doxa for me so I could get some pictures on the wrist, when he looked at me exclaming: “This is a Doxa!” Before I could confirm, he ran over to his father, with whom he runs the company, and grabbed his wrist.
Two Doxas © WorldTempus/Sophie Furley
After a lot of excited discussion in Swiss German (of which I understood nothing), it finally transpired that the captain’s father was also wearing a Doxa. And this was not any old Doxa, this was a military edition from 1969 that was given to him when he was a recruit with the Swiss Nageur de Combat unit (the Swiss equivalent of the US Navy Seals). And if this wasn’t enough excitement for me, he told me that he had never taken it off and it was still working famously! We returned to shore and swapped details so I could interview him properly at a later date (stay tuned for a full report in the not-too-distant future).
Doxa 2021 and Doxa 1969 © WorldTempus/Sophie Furley
Going Back in Time
No weekend adventure in Switzerland would be complete without a visit to one of the country’s 500 castles. So from the village of Lenzburg we started the ascent to Lenzburg Castle, one of the oldest and most significant hilltop castles with over 1000 years of living history. After a fascinating tour of the different buildings, we were invited to a medieval cooking class where we reproduced a recipe of egg and parsley fritters from the Middle Ages, cooked them over an open fire, and ate them all. Exploring Argovie makes you hungry!
Lenzburg Castle © WorldTempus/Sophie Furley
The Baths in Baden
The last destination on our Argovie tour was a visit to the city of Baden, where we discovered yet another delightful historic old town where the names of the families and the dates of the houses are painted on the outside of the buildings, reminding the inhabitants of all the generations that have lived before them. We didn’t have time to partake of the full thermal bath experience, but we did dip our feet in one of the outdoor foot spas, which was delightful after all the walking, running, and climbing. I glanced down at the Doxa for the last time, washed its strap in the therapeutic thermal waters, and placed it back in its box. I wonder where its adventures will take it!
Baden: View of the city © WorldTempus/Sophie Furley
All the details
Sophie stayed at the Hotel Kettenbrücke in Aarau – hotelkettenbrueke.ch – and at the Blue City Hotel in Baden - bluecityhotel.ch. She ate at the Restaurant Mürset in Aarau, the Landgasthof zu den drei Sternen in Brunegg, and the Restaurant Grand Casino Baden. For the activities: see aargauerkunsthaus.ch for the art museum and flussfahrten-aargau.ch for the river dinghy trips. For those of you interested in the watch: doxawatches.com.
DOXA was founded in 1889 by an independent Swiss entrepreneur, Georges Ducommun. Located in Le Locle (NE), in the heart of the birthplace of Swiss watchmaking, the brand has always offered technical watches with thoughtful pricing. Established in its first years (1905), creative (8-day calibre dedicated to automotive), DOXA also distinguished themselves from the competition with their designs (the Grafic watch, 1957).Find out more >
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