Switzerland ? home of awesome Alpine peaks, snow-sure ski resorts, precise timepieces, lip-smacking chocolate and pocket knives packed with tools for everything from popping champagne bottles to shoeing horses.
But this beautiful European location is more than the sum of its parts and exudes a certain je ne sais quoi that keeps visitors coming back for more.
If you’re planning to holiday here, there are certain locations that condense that special Swiss magic a little more than others ? to help plan your itinerary, we’ve gathered together three swish Swiss holiday locations for your delectation.
While Switzerland officially has no capital city, Bern is the de facto capital and seat of the federal government. It’s a stunning city with a UNESCO-listed Medieval centre boasting 11 Renaissance fountains, an impressive Gothic cathedral and the Bundeshaus, the elegant Neo-Renaissance seat of the Swiss Federal Assembly.
However, for something a little different visit Zentrum Paul Klee in the city’s eastern outskirts. This is a unique Renzo Piano-designed museum built to house local (but internationally renowned) artist Klee’s works, which span surrealist, cubist and expressionist genres.
Tip: dine at Restaurant Casa Nova if you love sumptuous Mediterranean cuisine.
Geneva is another gorgeous Swiss city with plenty of activities to suit all tastes. If you like messing about on the water, take a local ‘mouette’ boat for a short pleasure cruise on the crystal-clear waters of Lake Geneva, or relax on a larger vessel for the three-hour cruise to Lausanne, enjoying superb scenery all the way.
Meanwhile, the charming, cobbled Vielle Ville (Old Town) is the most expansive historic centre in Switzerland and winds it’s way around a hill topped by the imposing cathedral, which is also worthy of your time. The Neoclassical columns of the cathedral’s façade are complemented by architectural features that stretch back to the 4th Century and interesting artefacts include John Calvin’s chair (this was his home church).
Tip: Geneva car hire from Enjoy allows you to explore the city and its surroundings with ease.
If you love magnificent mountains, Zermatt will be the pinnacle of your Swiss holiday. The skyline of this charming chocolate box town is dominated by the iconic Matterhorn and, as you might expect, year-round skiing and hiking are on your doorstep.
It’s a car-free town, which makes it more manageable for families, and as well as its scenic walking trails, if you’re an experienced climber up for a challenge you can tackle the 4,164m Breithorn summit. Although this is a tough challenge, it’s considered the most accessible of the 4000m-plus peaks in the region.[ Speaking of alpine peaks, check out the Annapurna base camp trek before you decide on your next alpine adventure ]
Tip: the Matterhorn viewing platform is Europe’s highest and offers views across France, Switzerland and Italy.
You’ll have a holiday to remember in any one of these three Swiss locations, but if you still can’t choose, split the difference and spend a few days in each ? sometimes it’s nice to spoil yourself!
Have we missed your favourite Swiss location? Share it in the comments section!