Switzerland may be a small and landlocked country, but its tourism offers a fantastic cast of cities in contrast to landscapes taken from a canvas. Soaring Alps and glaciers dominate the top Swiss places to visit.
There are more than 200 hills higher than 3,000m – alongside Switzerland’s rural countryside, picturesque lakefront historic centers and breathtaking mountain peaks in every direction. One of the greenest countries in Europe, where they speak four different languages and all the variety they represent.
Here are our top picks for the best places in Switzerland:
The resort town of Zermatt is the highest in Europe. That ensures a long ski season, including all year skiing in Zermatt glacier. The city lies at the base of the famous Matterhorn, where the elevators ascend 3,883 meters reveal sweeping views of the Alps.
Besides the enchanting downtown, Zermatt is also a culinary destination has two Michelin restaurants. Vehicles using fuel are prohibited from entering to preserve its heritage, although it is possible to drive with electric cars. Accessible by train from Täsch and Visp, Zermatt is a mythical and unique destination in the Alps for centuries.
Montreux is one of the attractive cities of Switzerland located on a long stretch of Lake Geneva in the French-speaking south of the country. The springs Montreux offer miles of walks along the lake, surrounded by exotic flowers and trees. This landscapes framed by beautiful views of the Alps in the background.
The city also boasts a 13th-century castle, the Château de Chillon which shows dramatically in the lake. It was formerly built by the House of Savoy and later inspired literary works of Jean-Jacques Rousseau and Lord Byron. Cultural events are equally impressive. This city hosts the Montreux Jazz Festival in early July, the second annual festival of the world’s largest jazz.
Interlaken is located between two lakes, Lake Thun and Lake Brienz. It is surrounded by some of the highest peaks of Switzerland, so it is an ideal place to enjoy breathtaking views in all directions. It is also the perfect base to enjoy the natural brilliance of the country.
A panoramic viewpoint to 1,322 meters which are accessible by cable car because Interlaken positioned in the heart of the Bernese Oberland, the great peaks of the region, Eiger, Monch, and Jungfrau, also part of its attractions. If you are looking for the most extraordinary cities in Switzerland, this historical relic should be on your list.
The beautiful old town of Bern is a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. It is a place known for its medieval arcades and many sources of the XVI century with painted figures. These include curious source “Child Eater.” Bern has one of the highest collections in the world of artist Paul Klee. This collection is located in the Zentrum Paul Klee, designed by renowned Italian architect Renzo Piano.
Besides all the beauties that you will see in its old town, the city is full of exciting places. You can find a variety of restaurants that allow you to taste the typical delights of the city. And it has a stunning botanical garden, a colorful weekly market, and access to the River Aare and the Bear Park. This is one of the cities of Switzerland you can not miss.
Gateway to central Switzerland, on the shores of Lake Lucerne, is one of the most touristic places in Switzerland. Its old town with narrow streets and picturesque squares gives it that unique aspect of a medieval village which can be seen from the Chapel Bridge, one of the oldest in Europe, roofing, and wood.
However, the city also has a modern front exemplified by the stunning architecture of the Center of Culture and Conventions designed by French architect Jean Nouvel. And the spectacular alpine terrain is still easily accessible by cable cars up the Pilatus, Stanserhorn or Rigi mountains.
Geneva called as ‘capital of peace’ being European headquarters of the UN and Red Cross, it is one of the essential to visit in Switzerland. The “Jet d’eau,” water dispenser 140 meters high on the shore of Lake Geneva, is one of the most representative symbols, like the “Horloge Fleurie” flower clock the English Garden, recalling that we are in the cradle of the prestigious watchmaking. A few minutes drive to Mont Salève invites you to go hiking in a landscape.
There are a lot of museums and art galleries throughout the city, some are related to the many international organizations. The Palace of Nations, home of the UN headquarters, can also be visited.
Over one hundred galleries and antique shops are the perfect excuses to travel to Switzerland if you are an art lover. Or, if you prefer fashion, Bahnhofstrasse will find the most renowned brands in fashion, accessories, jewelry, and watches.
Zurich boasts the highest density of nightclubs country without known closing time, and especially noteworthy in the summer, with many of them outdoors. Something is considered the city with the best quality of life in the world. After all, Zurich hosts the Street Parade, one of Europe’s biggest yearly rave parties.
8. Stein am Rhein
Stein am Rhein is a small town west of Lake Constance, in northeastern Switzerland. The pedestrian center of Stein am Rhein is a dense collection of well-preserved medieval structures. Many of them have colorful facades exquisitely painted.
This city nicknamed as “Jewel on the Untersee,” located at the spine where Lake Constance joins the Rhine River. Stein am Rhein boasts a medieval castle, Hohenklingen Castle. From here you will have a panoramic view of the walled city below. You can also visit the ancient Benedictine abbey of Saint George founded in the 11th century.
With 1560 meters, Davos is the highest town in the Swiss Alps. It’s a well-known ski resort with a conference center that hosts the annual World Economic Forum.
It is the starting point of the famous railway Glacier Express and Bernina Express; the lake is one of the liveliest to see in Switzerland, with beach and surfing and sailing center. Trails mountain biking, as well as hang gliding and paragliding, are encouraged to visit Davos in summer, while other sports, including skiing, snowboarding, ice skating or curling, will delight their fans in the winter season.
This city is just a ferry ride from Lugano. Morcote is the most beautiful along the shore of Lake Lugano city. The small fishing village is on a hillside and offers charming alleys to explore as well as stunning views of the lake below. The fascinating bell tower of the historic Church of Santa Maria del Sasso overlooks the city.
The atmosphere reflects its location in the Italian-speaking canton of Ticino. And the Parco Scherrer offers an exotic variety of Mediterranean and Asian flora. The architectural touches like Greek sculptures, an Egyptian temple, and even a tea house conjoined, not to mention the panoramic views.