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Zurich Tourism And Travel Guide
3.8° C / 38.8° F
April to October
2 to 4 Days
Zurich Airport (11 kms)
A swiss-vacation is on everybody's wishlist and Zurich is probably one of the most popular cities in the world. So no wonder it attracts crowd every year from all over the globe. Zurich is one of the most expensive cities to live in and has one of the most advanced economies. While tourism in Zurich is a thriving economy for the city, the banking industry is another top contender. Here is our travel guide to Zurich which highlights some of the best things you can do in this beautiful dream destination.
How To Reach
Travelling by air would be by far the easiest and most convenient way. There are many direct flights to Zurich from India and plenty more with stopovers. In less than 10 hours, you can reach this gorgeous swiss wonderland.
Zurich is well-connected by Railway to other parts of Europe. If you are travelling from another European country or from another part of Switzerland, this is probably the best way to get into the city. Scenic routes, comfortable and affordable are the top qualities here. The main railway station at Zurich is located within the city-centre so that is another plus point.
There is a saying in Switzerland that all roads lead to Zurich! So you cannot go wrong while travelling by road. But again, this option is only viable if you are travelling from another European country or another Swiss city. There are long-distance buses that are available on a daily basis. Renting a car and driving down is another convenient option.
Zurich has a great number of public transport systems. You can travel within the city by Taxi, Bus, Tram, Train, Cable Car and Boat. A combination of any of these would be the best way to get around the city. Once at the city-centre, you can also walk around to many of the sightseeing spots.
With so many public transport options, hiring a private vehicle is not a necessity, but is still an option for those who swear by it.
Weather & Best Time To Visit
Spring (March to May):
When flowers bloom and the grass is green, that's what makes for a perfect scene. The months of spring brightens up the city with its vivacious colours. While March and April is still quite cold, by May it becomes warmer. The average temperature between the 3 months is 14°C. You can expect 10-12 days of rain. The traditional festival of Sechseläuten is celebrated in April.
Summer (June to August):
Summer months are the most crowded due to its warm weather. The average temperature is 25°C but with 12-15 days of rain per month. There are plenty of indoor and outdoor activities in Zurich so a mix of both is how you can have the perfect holiday during the summer. There are many events and festivals that happen during these months like the Street Parade, Swiss National Day, numerous concerts and performances, Film Festivals etc.
Autumn (September to November):
The orange shade of Autumn can be seen all over Zurich and makes for a pretty picture. The average temperature during these months is around 15°C where it starts of warm and becomes quite cold in November. Rain is expected around 10 days every month. The Zurich Film Festival is held around the end of September up to the first week of October. Wine-tasting is a popular activity in October.
Winter (December to February):
Winter is a very popular time for activities like Sledding, Snowmobile, Skiing etc that take place on a hill nearby and can easily be accessed from Zurich. Temperatures can often fall below 0°C but the average temperature would be 2°C with rain and snow for around 10 days of the month. Christmas is celebrated with high spirits with popup Christmas markets and a special Christmas tram called Märlitram.
Things To Do
One of the prettiest sights in Zurich is its Lake surrounded by hills. You can swim or sail on the lake or visit the tiny islands of Lützelau and Ufenau. Nearby you will also find the Alpamare which is a covered water-park, a wooden footbridge, a beautiful church and the Lindt Chocolate factory.
Segway / E-Bikeboard Tours:
You can explore the city centre on a segway or e-bikeboard and make it a fun experience. A 2 or 3 hours tour is ample time to cover the main spots within the city along with its street art and market areas.
The Zurich Zoo is one of the best in Europe and is home to over 380 species. They have different exhibits like the Masaola Rainforest, Krachan Elephant Park and even an Australian exhibit. It is open all year round and makes for a fun family activity.
Limmat River Cruise:
The river-cruise is open only between April and October and is a lovely way to see some of the city's top architecture lined up one after the other. A few of the buildings you will pass by are the Town Hall, Guild Houses, Grossmünster Church and even the Lindenhof. A roundtrip tour would take about 50 minutes.
If you are looking for some exclusive and expensive shopping, visit Bahnhofstrasse street in Zurich. You will get the best of brands and retail outlets. In 2011, it was ranked as the most expensive retail property street in all of Europe. The Sihlcityshopping centre and Glatt shopping mall are other interesting places to shop which are just outside the city limits.
If you are looking to pick up some Swiss Souvenirs, some popular shops you can drop by are Schweizer Heimatwerk, Meng Cutlery, Teddy's Souvenir-Shop and messer-scharf. To satiate your swiss chocolate craving, visit Vollenweider Chocolatier Confiseur, Bachmann - Chocolate World, Sprüngli Café & Restaurant or Taucherli chocolate. For some local swiss-designs and boutiques, check out Ana Blum, Boutique Caran d'Ache, Die Macherei and Fabric Frontline.
A word of caution, all shops are closed on Sundays!
Swiss Cheese and Chocolates are world-famous. But there are other swiss delicacies too that you must try when in Zurich. Rösti is the national dish of Switzerland. Raclette, a dish exploding in cheese and veggies. Zurcher Geschnetzeltes which is a dish made with veal is great, as is Bircherműesli which is a breakfast cereal. Other yummy things to eat here include Zürcher Eintopf - a flavourful pot of meat and veggies and Zoph - a type of bread.
Some of the popular restaurants in Zurich that you must visit are Brasserie Lipp, Zürcher Geschnetzeltes, Zunfthaus and for vegetarians a popular joint is Haus Hiltl. A unique dine-in-the-dark experience can be had at Blindekuh. And don't forget to try out the local wine wherever you go!