Take advantage of your time on this attractive Swiss metropolis with our greatest issues to do in Geneva, Switzerland – residence to the UN, CERN, the gorgeous Lake Geneva, a formidable Outdated City, and extra.
Once we first locked in our journey to Geneva, considered one of Switzerland’s largest and most important cities, we have been most excited to take a look at CERN, as that was all we actually knew for what to do.
After we arrived we have been immediately amazed at simply what number of unbelievable issues to see and do there are on this stunning metropolis, completely suited to travellers of all types.
Set on the sting of the attractive Lake Geneva and surrounded by the Swiss Alps, there’s an abundance of pure magnificence right here.
You possibly can take day journeys to the Alps to see peaks, valleys, and glaciers, bounce on the cable automotive up into the forests, or check out some water sports activities proper on the town on Lake Geneva.
Geneva can also be an enormous heart for worldwide diplomacy and has an enormous historical past.
You possibly can go to the United Nations workplace or go to numerous attention-grabbing museums. The Outdated City of Geneva can also be one of many largest and oldest in all of Europe.
Geneva can also be residence to some unbelievable inexperienced areas, similar to Parc de la Grange and Parc des Bastions.
You possibly can take a look at the Botanical Backyard and the well-known Jet D’eau Fountain throughout your sightseeing, or go on an area chocolate-tasting tour.
There may be actually a lot to do if you go to Geneva. It’s a gorgeous metropolis with a wealthy historical past and plenty of tradition in addition to pure magnificence.
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The Finest Issues to Do in Geneva, Switzerland
On this article, we’ll dive into many of the finest issues to do in Geneva, from exploring the Outdated City to visiting the museums to getting out on Lake Geneva for some water sports activities.
Additionally, contemplate getting the Geneva Move earlier than your go to. The Geneva Move will get you reductions and free affords at among the high sights within the metropolis.
So for those who plan on visiting a number of museums, taking public transport, or reserving any excursions or cruises, the Geneva Move can prevent cash throughout your journey.
Let’s uncover what to see in Geneva, Switzerland!
1) Go to the Pink Cross and Pink Crescent Museum
The Worldwide Pink Cross and Pink Crescent Museum is among the high Geneva sights.
This museum unites historical past, science, and humanitarian efforts. There may be a number of artwork and content material to find right here that tells the tales of individuals from all totally different cultures and backgrounds.
Yow will discover everlasting and momentary exhibitions, all of which dive into the idea of humanitarianism and the way it ties to feelings and present occasions.
If you wish to begin off your go to to Geneva with some deep reflection on the world, the Pink Cross Museum is a good place to begin.
- Deal with: Av. de la Paix 17, 1202 Genève, Switzerland
- Hours: 10am – 6pm (Closed Mondays)
- Price: 15 CHF
2) Admire the Jet D’Eau
One of the vital unforgettable issues to see in Geneva is the Jet D’eau. This huge fountain on Lake Geneva is among the tallest fountains on this planet.
It was initially in-built 1886 with the aim of releasing stress from a close-by hydraulic plant. However since then, the Jet D’eau has develop into a logo of town.
Jet D’eau pumps by means of 500 liters of water per second. The water shoots up into the air at such a velocity that it might attain 140 meters.
Whereas sightseeing in Geneva, you’re positive to see the Jet D’eau taking pictures into the sky from wherever you’re.
You should definitely take a second to admire and respect the well-known fountain, as it’s a beloved landmark within the metropolis.
3) Take a Tour of the United Nations Constructing
The United Nations is a global group based on the finish of WWII. It serves as a platform for various international locations to handle their points, within the hopes of making extra peace and cooperation for the world.
The United Nations is a crucial a part of worldwide relations right this moment. Although its headquarters are in New York, there’s one other United Nations workplace in Geneva that’s residence to a number of branches of the group.
The workplace is positioned within the Palais des Nations, which is among the high convention facilities for world leaders.
Palais des Nations was initially the assembly level for the League of Nations within the Nineteen Thirties, so it has at all times served as a significant heart for worldwide diplomacy.
You possibly can e book a one-hour guided tour of the Palais des Nations on-line.
Additionally make sure you take a look at the Damaged Chair sculpture throughout the road, which symbolizes the significance of searching for the victims of violence around the globe.
- Deal with: Palais des Nations, 1211 Genève, Switzerland
- Hours: Hours fluctuate based mostly on the division, verify the web site for particulars.
- Price: A guided tour is 16 CHF
4) Style Swiss Chocolate
You possibly can’t go to Switzerland with out indulging in a number of scrumptious Swiss chocolate!
Whereas exploring the great metropolis of Geneva, cease into lots of the native chocolate retailers to style and store for some wonderful chocolate.
Or higher but, e book a guided tour of the chocolate tradition of Geneva. A chocolate strolling tour of Geneva will take you to all the most effective retailers and cafes within the metropolis. You’ll additionally get to style a number of the most effective chocolate treats round.
READ MORE: Examine our our detailed information on mountaineering in Switzerland
5) Discover Outdated City Geneva
Wandering by means of the picturesque Outdated City is among the finest issues to do in Geneva.
Known as Vieille Ville in French, the charming Outdated City is stuffed with slender, cobbled streets, historic buildings, distinctive museums, native cafes, artwork galleries, cafes, secret passageways, cool structure, and a lot extra.
Place du Bourg de 4 is the center of the Outdated City. Because the oldest sq. within the metropolis centre, Place de Bourg de 4 is beloved by locals and vacationers alike.
The Outdated City encompasses 1000’s of years of historical past, and you may discover the entire thing on foot.
6) Bathe within the Bains des Pâquis
It doesn’t matter what time of yr you’re visiting Geneva, it’s important to take a dip within the Bains des Pâquis.
Situated on a man-made peninsula that jets out into Lake Geneva, the Bains des Pâquis is a spot with public baths, saunas, and a seashore.
In the summertime you possibly can lie on the seashore and soak within the solar. Within the winter you possibly can loosen up within the saunas and rejuvenate. There are additionally showers, bogs, altering rooms, and sports activities and recreation services.
Your entire Bains des Pâquis space is open year-round, and it’s free within the wintertime. It’s positioned on the gorgeous lakefront promenade, Quai du Mont Blanc.
- Deal with: Quai du Mont-Blanc 30, 1201 Genève, Switzerland
- Hours: 10am – 9pm (opens at 9am on Sundays)
- Price: Free in winter, 2 CHF in summer season
7) Go to the Parks
One other probably the greatest issues to do in Geneva is visiting all the gorgeous inexperienced areas. Geneva is a comparatively large metropolis, nevertheless it doesn’t really feel that means with all of the wonderful parks.
Parc de la Grange is among the most attractive locations in Geneva. As the biggest inexperienced area within the metropolis. Parc de la Grange has heaps to see.
There may be an 18th-century villa and quite a few gardens, together with the most important rose backyard in Geneva. Branching off from Parc de la Grange is Parc des Eaux Vives, a grassy space with impressively previous and majestic bushes.
Parc des Bastions is one other nice park to go to. It’s positioned proper close to the Outdated City and has gardens, lounge chairs, and playgrounds.
Proper subsequent to Parc des Bastions is Promenade de la Treille, one of many longest benches on this planet that provides improbable metropolis views.
8) See the Flower Clock
Geneva’s well-known flower clock is a must-see landmark within the metropolis.
Situated on the western facet of the Jardin Anglais (the English Backyard, one other beautiful inexperienced area in Geneva), this big clock made up of colourful flower beds is a ravishing sight to see.
It’s made up of 1000’s of flowers and is well-maintained year-round, although the vegetation change together with the seasons. It’s free to go to and open 24/7 for entry.
- Deal with: Quai du Général-Guisan 28, 1204 Genève, Switzerland
9) Go E-Biking
Although many sights in Geneva are inside strolling distance, biking is a enjoyable strategy to discover town and canopy extra floor.
E-Bike Tour is an superior native firm the place you possibly can e book e-biking excursions round Geneva.
E-bikes offer you that little further little bit of energy and velocity whereas biking so you possibly can journey additional with out getting too drained.
They provide many several types of e-biking excursions, together with wine excursions, artwork excursions, chocolate excursions, and Geneva highlights excursions. Contact them to personalise your tour as nicely!
You can even go mountain biking within the mountains and trails round Geneva if you wish to discover much more.
10) Experience the Mont Salève Cable Automobile
Hitching a journey up the majestic Mont Salève on the cable automotive is among the most enjoyable issues to do in Geneva.
Mont Salève is a mountain in France that’s only a 30-minute drive exterior Geneva.
Enjoyable issues to do on the mountain embody paragliding, mountaineering, mountain climbing, mountain biking, snowboarding, and extra.
The cable automotive takes you up Mont Salève in only a few minutes. The views are stunning, and it’s a enjoyable little tour to take exterior Geneva.
- Deal with: Téléphérique du Salève, Route du Téléphérique, 74100 Etrembières, France
- Hours: Spring hours are 9:30am – 6pm on Wednesdays and Fridays, 9:30am – 7pm on Saturdays and Sundays. Summer time hours are 9:30am – 7pm each day, with 11pm closing instances on Fridays and Saturdays.
11) Go to the Worldwide Museum of Reformation
The Worldwide Museum of Reformation is one other distinctive museum to go to in Geneva. It’s positioned proper subsequent to the Cathedrale de St. Pierre within the Outdated City.
This museum focuses on the Protestant Reformation, which was a monumental motion in Europe within the 1500s that sparked spiritual reform. The motion was enormously influenced by John Calvin, a French minister in Geneva.
Geneva turned a refuge for protestants in the course of the reformation, and the teachings and actions of John Calvin helped make Geneva a middle for enlightenment in Europe.
To study extra about John Calvin, the Protestant Reformation, and the way it ties into Geneva and Europe’s historical past, this museum is price a go to.
12) Strive Stand Up Paddle Boarding
This was what we bought as much as on our first day in Geneva, and we completely cherished it.
Stand-up paddle boarding is a beautiful strategy to expertise the Rhone River, a significant river in France and Switzerland that flows by means of the Alps.
For a enjoyable and lively time out in nature, e book a stand-up paddle boarding tour with Rafting.Ch.
The excursions run each day and go away from the Geneva metropolis centre. You’ll then paddle for 7-12 km down the river, which takes round 2-3 hours. All of your gear is offered!
If you find yourself loving SUPing (and let’s face it, you’ll) and need to get into it a bit extra these guys have an incredible information on what to search for when shopping for a get up paddle board.
13) Go to the Artwork and Historical past Museum
As the biggest artwork museum within the metropolis, the Artwork and Historical past Museum is among the finest issues to do in Geneva for individuals who like to study.
There are over 1 million items on this fascinating museum. The Artwork and Historical past Museum covers the artwork and tradition of Western civilization all through historical past, with items relationship again to historic instances.
See spiritual work, high quality artwork sculptures, historic pottery, and even Historic Egyptian sphinxes and pharaohs. There may be additionally a restaurant and a child’s playground within the museum.
- Deal with: Rue Charles-Galland 2, 1206 Genève, Switzerland
- Hours: 11am – 6pm on Sundays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Fridays, and Saturdays. 12pm – 9pm on Thursdays, closed Mondays.
- Price: Free
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14) Stroll By the Botanical Backyard and Conservatory
Also known as a “Dwelling Museum”, the Botanical Backyard and Conservatory of Geneva is a ravishing place to spend a day.
With over 16,000 totally different plant species, landscaped gardens, and peaceable strolling trails, you possibly can immerse your self in nature on the Botanical Backyard.
There may be an Herbarium with one of many world’s largest collections of plant and fungi species, in addition to a historic rose backyard and distinctive, rotating exhibitions.
The backyard is positioned subsequent to Avenue De La Paix in downtown Geneva.
- Deal with: Chem. de l’Impératrice 1, 1292 Pregny-Chambésy, Switzerland
- Hours: 8am – 7:30pm
- Price: Free
15) Take A Day Journey to Mont Blanc
One of many high Geneva actions is taking a day journey out to Mont Blanc, the very best mountain within the Alps.
For those who don’t have a automotive when visiting Geneva, you possibly can simply e book a guided tour that may convey you to the unbelievable mountain.
Most day excursions to Mont Blanc will convey you to the mountain resort city of Chamonix on the foot of Mont Blanc. Then you possibly can take the cable automotive as much as get pleasure from panoramic views of the Alps.
You might additionally e book a Mont Blanc day journey that features Glacier 3000. This 3,000-meter-high glacier is below 2 hours away from Geneva.
You’ll cross over the Peak Stroll, a scenic strolling platform that offers you the most effective views of the mountains and the glacier.
Whether or not you’ve a automotive and need to drive on the market your self, otherwise you need to e book a tour, a day journey to Mont Blanc is among the high issues to do in Geneva.
16) Wakeboard or Wakesurf on Lake Geneva
Among the finest methods to discover Lake Geneva is by wakeboarding or wake browsing. For those who’re craving one thing slightly totally different from museums and gardens, get your adrenaline going by driving the waves behind a ship on Lake Geneva.
GenevaBoats is an area boat rental firm that additionally affords wakeboarding and wake browsing excursions in addition to water snowboarding and water tubing.
For any adventurous, sports-loving vacationers on the market questioning what to do in Geneva, these water sports activities are an incredible possibility.
- Deal with: 27-29, Quai du Mont-Blanc, 1201 Genève, Switzerland
- Contact information: +41 79 775 04 12 or [email protected]
17) Tour the CERN Institute
The European Group for Nuclear Analysis, also known as CERN, is the world’s largest particle physics lab.
The CERN Institute was established in 1954 and is positioned in Geneva. For those who’re in any respect enthusiastic about physics and science, this is among the high establishments on this planet!
There are free guided excursions of CERN each day that final 1.5 hours. Excursions are extraordinarily in style and availability is restricted, however you possibly can solely e book your spot on website.
CERN can also be opening up a new customer heart in summer season 2023, so hold your eyes peeled for that!
- Deal with: Espl. des Particules 1, 1211 Meyrin, Switzerland
- Hours: 8am – 6pm Monday – Saturday
- Price: Free
18) Take a look at the Patek Philippe Museum
One other one of many coolest museums in Geneva is the Patek Philippe Museum. It showcases the historical past of Swiss watchmaking and manufacturing, from the sixteenth Century to the current day.
Patek Philippe is among the world’s oldest watch producers, and the Patek Philippe Museum is among the world’s most prestigious horology museums.
There may be an astonishing assortment of vintage watches, and the museum homes round 2,500 watches in complete. You can even go on an academic tour or a non-public guided tour.
It’s a fascinating place to study concerning the artwork and historical past of Swiss watches.
- Deal with: Rue des Vieux-Grenadiers 7, 1205 Genève, Switzerland
- Hours: 2pm – 6pm (Closed Mondays, opens at 10am on Saturdays)
- Price: 10 CHF
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19) Strive Foil Boarding
Tropical Nook is an superior native tour firm in Geneva that focuses on quite a lot of water sports activities similar to windsurfing, paddleboarding, and foil boarding.
Foil boarding is a much less well-known kind of water sport, so for those who’re trying to attempt one thing new, e book a lesson with Tropical Nook!
A foil board is sort of a surfboard with a foil that extends down into the water, so you’re browsing whereas raised above the floor of the water. It’s an excellent enjoyable exercise that makes you are feeling such as you’re flying above the lake.
For those who’re an skilled foil boarder and also you don’t want classes, Tropical Nook additionally has leases. That is an superior strategy to spend a time out on the gorgeous Lake Geneva.
20) See the St. Pierre Cathedral
The Saint Pierre Cathedral is among the most iconic landmarks within the metropolis heart.
It was initially a Roman Catholic cathedral when it was constructed within the twelfth Century. However the St. Pierre Cathedral reworked right into a Reformed Protestant church in the course of the pivotal Protestant Reformation of the sixteenth Century.
St. Pierre Cathedral is the primary church of Geneva and sports activities a number of totally different architectural kinds together with Neoclassic, Gothic, and Roman.
Whereas exploring the Outdated City, positively take the time to take a look at this monumental landmark.
- Deal with: Cr de Saint-Pierre, 1204 Genève, Switzerland
- Hours: 10am – 5:30pm (Opens at 12pm on Sundays)
- Price: Free
21) Go to the Pure Historical past Museum
Many cities around the globe have a Pure Historical past Museum, and Geneva is not any exception.
To find extra concerning the fascinating world of vegetation, animals, minerals, and different pure issues, spend a number of hours on this huge museum.
Take a look at the interactive reveals, taxidermy shows, and distinctive collections of things from the pure world.
It’s the biggest pure historical past museum within the nation, so it’s a spotlight of visiting Switzerland for those who love museums.
- Deal with: Rte de Malagnou 1, 1208 Genève, Switzerland
- Hours: 10am – 5pm (Closed Mondays)
- Price: Free
22) Go on a Operating Tour
To get a exercise in whereas sightseeing in Geneva, contemplate happening a operating tour! Go Operating Excursions is an superior native firm that likes to current Geneva in a singular means.
They provide quite a lot of totally different operating excursions based mostly on what you need to see and your health stage.
For those who’re an skilled runner and also you need an epic problem, take the “Climb of Your Life Tour”. It’s an 8km run that takes you up 900 metres so you may get a tremendous view of Lake Geneva.
There are runs starting from 7km – 16km. If you need a extra leisurely tour, go on the Metropolis Highlights strolling tour which is simply 5km.
Both means, that is one of the best ways to soak within the metropolis life whereas operating or strolling with an area.
- Deal with: Rue de la Faucille 14, 1201 Genève, Switzerland
- Hours: 7am – 10pm
23) Take A Boat Cruise on Lake Geneva
Among the finest methods to deal with your Geneva sightseeing is by taking a ship cruise on Lake Geneva.
For those who’ve already tried paddle boarding, foil boarding, or wakeboarding, attempt having fun with the well-known lake by simply enjoyable on a ship.
You possibly can sit again, take within the sights of town and the encompassing Alps, and simply get pleasure from your epic journey to Switzerland.
A boat cruise of Lake Geneva often lasts round one hour, so it’s a straightforward tour to slip into your full days of sightseeing.
Geneva isn’t precisely a budget-friendly vacation spot, however that’s okay – the standard of motels is fantatic.
We personally stayed on the hôtel Cornavin, which was an incredible place to name residence for a number of nights in Geneva.
Well-known for being featured within the Tin Tin comics, this centrally-located historic resort has been refurbished and affords brilliant, snug rooms with nice views over town.
The included breakfast is fairly respectable, employees are pleasant and wifi is quick. It’s additionally positioned proper subsequent to the practice station and close to a significant bus and tram cease, so excellent for those who’re planning on getting across the metropolis or elsewhere in Switzerland.
The place to Eat in Geneva:
Now that you understand about the most effective issues to do in Geneva, let’s talk about one thing that the majority travellers like to do: eat!
Switzerland has some unbelievable meals and it’s important to bask in some scrumptious native delicacies. Listed below are a few of our favourite locations to eat in Geneva.
This cute cafe sits on the sting of a small park that surrounds the Nineteenth-Century Brunswick Monument.
It has a comfy out of doors terrace the place you possibly can get pleasure from mild breakfast and lunch meals.
For some traditional French meals, head to the Brasserie Bagatelle. This restaurant is positioned proper subsequent to the Notre Dame de Genève Cathedral and has a big choice of wines and desserts along with meals.
Resort de Ville Restaurant
You possibly can’t go away Switzerland with out tasting some traditional fondue! This conventional native restaurant affords a scrumptious cheese fondue in addition to different traditional Swiss dishes.
Situated proper subsequent to the English Backyard and Lake Geneva, this charming cafe is the proper place to seize lunch or cocktails with a view. Additionally they do brunch and stay music within the evenings.
You might not consider wonderful Lebanese delicacies when visiting Geneva, however this restaurant has among the finest meals within the metropolis.
Balila Geneva is a Lebanese restaurant within the coronary heart of Geneva that unites japanese delicacies and tradition with the native French and Swiss influences.
Cafe du Centre
This native favourite has been open for the reason that Nineteen Thirties. It’s a restaurant with historical past in addition to unbelievable meals. They give attention to recent seafood and meat dishes with native flavors.