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Tourist Places To Visit In Switzerland
The size of Switzerland is inversely proportional to its tourism potential. It is amazing that a country so small has so much to offer. Soaring peaks, glistening glaciers, ancient castles, a picturesque countryside – all this and more make it a dream vacation destination. Add to this its record of being a safe destination, with great food, well-maintained roads, and you know you have found the perfect spot to unwind.
Here are some of the top tourist places you absolutely must visit in Switzerland, especially the absolute delights like Zurich, Geneva, Interlaken, Lucerne and Basel!
Chateau de Chillon, Montreux
This 18th-century water fortress-castle is located in the heart of the Swiss Riviera on the banks of Lake Geneva. Stroll by the lakeside and explore the ancient halls of the castle to discover a carefully preserved world of the past. Explore towers and vaults, appreciate ancient paintings and gawk at weaponry as you make your way through Switzerland's and Europe's most visited castle.
The Jungfrau Region
This alpine region is an adventure tourist’s delight. The three most prominent mountains of Switzerland - Eiger, Mönch, and Jungfrau – are located here. These mountains make up the Swiss Alps and are nothing short of spectacular. The icy peaks descend into lush green meadows; like the once that have been idealised by Bollywood films for decades. You can go hiking and trekking to the peaks of Grindelwald-First, Kleine Scheidegg or Schilthorn. You will not forget the panoramic views for a long, long time.
Swiss National Park, Zernez
Switzerland has only one national park – and it is a complete ecosystem in itself. It features 172 square kilometers of unspoiled scenery, with gleaming glaciers, green pastures, waterfalls and lush woodlands. It has 21 hiking routes. You can see the rare ibexes, golden eagles, marmots, and chamois dotting the landscape.
Lucerne is a lakeside city in the heart of Switzerland. Nestled in the mountains, it is an idyllic spot for picnics, long walks, and pictures. You will find fortified towers, wooden bridges, and churches dotting the landscape. You can also go see Mt Pilatus, Mt Rigi, and the Stanserhorn mountain. The hiking paths of Rigi offer you breathtaking views of several lakes. The steepness of Pilatus will surely overwhelm you. You can also take a cogwheel train up to Pilatus. On the return trip, you can take the aerial route.
The Rhine Falls
This is Europe's largest waterfall, located in north Switzerland, near the town of Schaffhausen. The Rhine Falls have a breadth of more than 150 meters. There are several viewing decks for the convenience of tourists, and you can stand on one of them and watch the awesome spectacle. If you are the bold and fearless kind, you can even rent a canoe and travel to nearby castles of Schloss Laufen and Schloss Wörth.
The Matterhorn is one of the most iconic peaks in the world not only for its sharp and angular protrusion into the sky but also because of the level of difficulty it poses to climbers who must maneuver rock and ice almost throughout the way to the peak and then back down. Standing 4,478 meter tall, naturally, the Matterhorn is Switzerland's most prominent Alpine peak attracting trekkers and mountaineers from all around the world. Those interested in skiing at that altitude can take the Cable car to reach your starting point.
Sprawled around River Aare's blue trail, lies the medieval city of Bern and the current capital of Switzerland. If you are a history lover, this is where you belong. Tread the cobble-stoned streets to get to the Old Town, a UNESCO World Heritage Site you wouldn't want to miss during your visit. Bern is picturesque and grand no matter where you are. A landscape dotted with fountains and botanical gardens, the river always in view and arcades with numerous bars and cafes. If you keep an eye out for it, you can even find cabaret stages in vaulted cellars.
One of the major cities of Switzerland, Geneva is beautiful, luxurious and very important to International community — all in the same breath. When here, you find yourself enjoying the old world charm with the amenities of the new. From lakes to alps, the glories of Geneva’s nature are endless. Visit museums, namely Maison Tavel, International Red Cross and Red Crescent Museum, Art and History Museum etc. Check out the Botanical gardens, La Grange and Jardin Anglais.
A charming little town, Interlaken is classic Switzerland. It is rimmed by tall mountains and has been a touristy delight for more than a century. Visit Swiss Alps, walk down the old town, eat cheesy dishes at cute cafes, and check out how chocolate is made at one of the many yummy workshops. Nature treks and hikes are also quite famous up here, with the trails crossing many caves, cliffs and even waterfalls. And if you aren’t so adventurous, hop onto a cable car!
Zermatt is a town known for its cheeses and mountains. The Matterhorn Alps make for a magnificent chain of mountains here, inviting tourists with open arms. The place is car-free, and hence adds an extra old world charm to its natural beauty. You can commute here by gondolas, horse drawn carriages and electric cars. Or just walk. With ancient buildings, churches, cemeteries and typical Swiss cobbled streets, Zermatt is a postcard destination. When here, do not forget to dig into their scrumptious pastries, coffees and cheese!
Zurich is another important city of Switzerland, surrounded by alps, thick forests, mountain lakes and emerald meadows that are grazed by Swiss black-and-white cows. The Zurich River slices the entire city into two parts — Old Town and New. When in the Old Town area, you will see ancient cobble stoned streets, churches right from the Renaissance era and buildings that are greatly influenced by German and French architecture. And here is also the world’s largest clock tower! The New Town on the other end encompasses theatres, libraries, museums and galleries. Also, when here, do try all the chocolates every shop has to offer. After all, this is the country’s chocolate capital.
Montreux is a town perched on the bank of Geneva Lake, overlooking the south west part of Switzerland. With its gorgeous woods and hills, and vineyards by Geneva, Montreux is packed with activities for travellers. You can go for a walk by the Geneva Lake promenade, where the path is canopied by beautiful almond, fig and mulberry trees that become heavy with fruit in season. You can rent a boat and enjoy some rowing in the lake, dig into Swiss fare at a cafe or go wine tasting. Visit beaches, gardens and markets, and don’t miss the imposing 12th- century Chillon Castle.
The border town between Switzerland, Germany and France, Basel is lined by Rhine River. It is gifted by nature, with such beautiful fauna and flora, especially the lilac flowers that stretch on for an eternity in front of Rhine. This town also has an Old Town, where the buildings are medieval and life is slow and sweet in its pace. Where the residents sit in cafes sipping coffee before walking to work and children are laid back. You will get to see cute boutiques, tile-roofed homes, promenades and Roman Gothic churches. Museums are also abundant here, and the culture of people is a melting pot of Swiss, German and French.
Lugano is quite a popular tourist destination in Switzerland, popularly called the Monte Carlo of Swiss. Due to its laid back vibe, chill lifestyle and an easy beauty the town attracts those with wanderlust. The parks and streets and squares are decidedly Mediterranean in style, while architecture leans towards Italian. You can visit museums here, which promote ancient artists like Degas, Jawlensky, Renoir, Klee etc.
One of the best vacationing places for locals as well as International tourists, St. Moritz is surrounded by alpine forests, glaciers, snow-point peaks and clean mountain lakes. Little charming villages are lined by cobble stone streets. Art centres and cafes and casinos dot those streets, and chalets stand tall in secluded areas. The nightlife of St. Moritz is happening, blaring with exclusive restaurants, clubs, bars and casinos. Skiing, hiking, sledge riding and other snow activities are coveted here during winter and most of transitioning seasons.
Another little town on the side of Geneva, Lausanne is called the most beautiful city of Switzerland. Lush meadows and snow-capped mountains go hand in hand here, and ensconced in their lap is Lake Geneva. Some of the best places to visit in Lausanne include Vevey-Montreux vineyards, Cathedral of Notre Dame (a 12th Century landmark), and Sauvabelin Forest. Since Lausanne was founded by the Romans, its food, culture and architecture is still influenced by them.
Grindelwald is a quaint settlement in the lap of Bernese Alps. It is the home of native Swiss people and hence unique in its culture. The sky is painted clear with a chain of aline mountains to complement here, while the sun shines bright over lakes and emerald valleys. Trekking trails, sledding, mountain carting and biking are coveted during summer while the Jungfraujoch peak is preferred during winter for its Observatory Deck and Ice Palace. Skiers worship the land of this town for its well-laid smooth slopes. Therefore winter and Christmas holidays are more than beautiful in Grindelwald.
Gruyeres is a town that dates back to the 11th Century. And it makes for a real food lover’s paradise. All those cheeses and chocolates that you’ve coveted from Switzerland are best experienced here together. Some of the most popular chocolate and cheese factories are located in this region, and you can get tours and tastings arranged quite easily. Some places that are just as beautiful as the orgasmic gastronomical experience of Gruyeres include Tibet Museum, HR Giger Museum and the Gruyeres Castle.
Ranking among the top sites to see in Europe, the Swiss Alps stand like a symbol of Switzerland itself. Bright and snow covered too, shimmering in the sun as well as hard as freezing glaciers, the Swiss Alps are unique. They are some of the best slopes for skiing in the region as well as the world. Hence loads of luxurious ski resorts dot the hills. Hikers and seasoned trekkers find much to do here as the trails are quite beautiful. There are also quaint villages that are traditional and classic in their Swiss heritage, serving cheese fondues and chocolate delicacies all day round!