Geneva: The Clock of Switzerland

Rich in history, natural beauty, and one of Europe’s most cosmopolitan cities, Geneva has a lot to offer anyone itching for an all out adventure or simple relaxation. For the best views of the city take the Cable car up to Mount Saleve where you will enjoy panoramic views of Geneva and Lake Geneva (Lac Lemon) below. Mount Saleve has countless hiking and biking trails of all levels so whether you are fit or not you can still enjoy the fresh mountain air and captivating views of the city far below. Coming back down to the lake itself, along nearly the entirety of its shores are lovely walkways and even beaches with cafes and eateries strewn throughout, always with a multitude of people enjoying a stroll or sitting in the many green areas as well.

And a visit to Geneva would not be complete without seeing the Jet D’Eau a water fountain at the heart of the lake that shoots a stream of water 459 feet into the air. It would be a shame not to at least get a picture. Around the lake is Geneva itself, an elegant mixture of ancient, old, and modern architecture that makes for a unique and beautiful tapestry. Ancient church steeples dot the skyline, cobblestone streets and modern roads coexist and one look up to the left or right of lake Geneva and you are surrounded by the towering Alps Mountain Range. There are photo opportunities at every turn.

As Geneva was once known as the Protestant Rome it should not be a surprise that there are so many churches, however the Cathedral of Saint Pierre is certainly the most beautiful and worth it to enjoy the sheer scale and skill that it was built with. If churches don’t bring a sparkle to your eye then the Patek Phillipe Museum surely will. It houses over five centuries of watchmaking history into two important collections: the extraordinary antique collection starting from the 16th century, which includes the earliest watch ever made and the Patek Philippe collection from 1839 onwards. Even if you aren’t a watch person it’s enough to make you go “wow”.

If it is relaxation that you are coming for then Bains De Paquis will make your list. Since 1870 it has been opened to the public boasting saunas, hammams, a 500 meter beach and affordable restaurants with delicious food. it is a local and international favorite, but be sure to get to Geneva between May and September otherwise it’ll be closed. To add to your relaxation there are also many Michelin star restaurants throughout Geneva and wine lists for days. You can also shop till you drop finding everything from antiques to the most postmodern art and fashion. Geneva is an expensive city though so don’t be too shocked when you see some of the price tags.

Geneva is also an international hub of governance so places like the Palace of Nations where the current human rights council of the UN is based is open for visitors, but be sure to book a tour first. It is a huge and imposing complex full of history relevant to today. Don’t forget the Museum of Art and History and the Museum of Natural History as well because the displays will have you gobsmacked as you walk through. You are bound to find your particular niche in Geneva, and if the second biggest city in Switzerland doesn’t suit your tastes, then there are plenty of phenomenal places just a stones throw away which you can read about in the next post. See you in Geneva!

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