Skiing down world-class slopes in winter, sailing on blissfully calm lakes in summer, and exploring bustling cities, all with a picture-perfect backdrop, what the country of Switzerland lacks in size, it certainly makes up for in terms of its monumental landscapes.
The central European country shares borders with Italy, France, Germany, Austria and Liechtenstein and has four official languages – German, French, Italian and Romansh, which showcases just how versatile Switzerland is. This is all part of its unique quality, and something that residents happily share with visitors. In Basel, for example, one can stand at a vantage point and spy German, French and Swiss scenery thanks to its position close to the borders, while Geneva, surrounded by French land, finds itself heavily influenced from its neighbouring country, from the language to the gastronomy.
Elsewhere in the country, visitors will find a fantastic selection of sights to explore, from mountain tops to glistening lakes, thriving cities to inviting villages and towns with historic landmarks, and all promising that famed scenic backdrop that impresses both first-time and return visitors alike. If you’re looking to get a good glimpse of a range of locations on your travels then a tour, such as the likes of Thrillophilia’s Switzerland tour package, is a fantastic way to tick off a number of destinations and experiences on your list.
When making the trip to the country that is also famed for its delectable chocolate, exquisite timepieces, and so much more, it’s good to be prepared, so read on for our brief guide to Switzerland.
Crans-Montana, St. Moritz, Verbier, Zermatt with the iconic Matterhorn – those with a love for skiing, snowboarding, hiking and the like will be awash with options when visiting Switzerland. The mountainous country lends itself well to winter sports and those looking for challenging runs, luxurious ski resorts and an all-round good time are in luck.
Host to two Winter Olympics, the luxurious resort of St. Moritz holds 87 pistes all of which conform to World Cup quality standards. Add to this the selection of Michelin-starred restaurants to dine in, the likes of the awe-inspiring Badrutt’s Palace Hotel to reside in and the choice of activities and events to partake in and visitors should be kept well entertained.
Verbier is a great option for those who wish to visit year-round as there are a host of activities to partake in, both indoor and out, whether there is snow on the ground or not. Five-star W Verbier or Chalet d’Adrien play the perfect hosts while fine dining can be found at La Channe by Marco Bassi, La Grange and La Cordee.
With around 1,500 lakes in Switzerland of varying sizes and with a range of surrounding points of interests to entice, it’s safe to say that visiting a few of them on your travels is a must. Lake Constance and Lake Geneva are the largest, but Lake Lucerne and Lake Lausanne should not be missed either, and it would be remiss not to visit the jewels that are Lake Thun and Lake Lugano.
Providing dazzling scenery to its visitors, the lakes of the country are sure to impress with their glistening blue waters, while the towns, villages and cites that grace the banks provide easy access and a host of activities and sights to keep you busy too. Don’t miss out on a boat trip around a lake to fully immerse yourself in the picturesque backdrops.
The towns and cities
Geneva, Basel, Zurich, Bern and Lucerne make it to many a list of top cities to visit in Switzerland, and each of them offer something different for their guests. Capital city Bern delights with its medieval features in the Old Town as well as the array of fountains many of which date back over 500 years, while Basel, which sits on the banks of the Rhine River, holds plenty of museums and historic buildings such as a 12th century Gothic cathedral and red sandstone 16th century town hall.
Geneva delights with its location at the southern tip of Lake Geneva, and also possesses impressive views of the Alps, Jura Mountains and Mont Blanc, while boasting plenty of French influence. Head north for Zurich, the global centre for finance, which sits on the pretty lake and features pre-medieval history and waterfront promenades. Small Lucerne is worthy of a few days to spy its historic sites, such as the covered Chapel Bridge which was built in 1333 and its colourful Old Town, while a boat trip out to gaze at the surrounding snow-capped mountains in a must.