Need a reason to visit Zurich? For years (seven, to be exact), this city has been chosen as the city with the best quality of life…not just in Switzerland, but the world!
With its exceptionally beautiful lakeside setting, Zurich offers a unique mix of features for any traveler‘s delight, including world class attractions, a culinary repertoire that ranges from dining options that have existed since the Middle Ages to cutting-edge cuisine in an ultra-modern setting. The city is renowned for its arts and culture and lively nightlife, ranging from world class opera to the latest rock groups playing its trendy clubs.
Guildhalls - These magnificent, centrally located buildings are a much loved feature of Zurich. For years they have welcomed visitors to their doors, as well as functioning as traditional craft guilds. These Medieval structures have been offering traditional Swiss fare, such as Geschnetzeltes with Rosti (veal with roasted potatoes), in their dining halls and have become a favorite stop for gourmet diners.
Riverside Churches - Zurich’s most beautiful churches can perhaps best be appreciated aboard a boat on the River Limmat. Three important structures line its banks: St. Peter’s, known for its clock, the oldest in Europe; the Grossmunster, with its twin towers; and the Fraumunster, with its stunning stained glass windows, designed by artist Marc Chagall.
Lindenhof - This "Lime Court" was formerly a customs house, dating back to Roman times. It now serves as Zurich’s most idyllic viewpoint for taking in the city. Under the lime trees, travelers are likely to encounter Zurich natives playing petanque as they roll their boules across gravel lawns to the sounds of splashing fountains. This rooftop to the city is a great area to enjoy nature and take in an awe-inspiring view of the city below.
Mt. Uetilberg - This Zurich recreational area boasts stunning views of Lake Zurich and the cityscape. A narrow-gauge railway takes visitors up the mountain, while walking down in summer is the popular way to enjoy the mountainside. In winter, sledding down the mountain is the preferred method.
Tonhalle - The Tonhalle Orchestra, lead by conductor David Zinman, has become one of Europe’s most prestigious symphonies in recent years. With nearly 100 musicians, this orchestra plays in a concert hall renowned for its acoustic splendor.
Kunsthaus - Zurich’s Art Museum has an outstanding collection, with works ranging from the 15th century to the present, as well as a series of ongoing exhibitions that attract worldwide attention. Among the artists whose works are featured here are Edvard Munch and Alberto Giacometti.
National Museum - Housing Switzerland’s largest collection of cultural artifacts, the National Museum includes items dating from prehistoric times to the present. Located next to the train station, the National Museum’s building itself has frequently been compared to a fairy castle with its mishmash of architectural styles dating back to the late 1800s.
Rietberg Museum - Switzerland’s only museum dedicated to the collection of non-European cultures, the Rietberg, features collections from Asia, Africa, the Americas, and Oceania. In 2007, a new wing was added to the museum, doubling the exhibition space.
Shopping, Dining, and Nightlife
Bahnhofstrasse- Beginning at the main station, this street is Zurich’s most elegant address for shopping. Lined with trendy boutiques and stylish grand hotels, the Bahnhofstrasse ends at the shores of Lake Zurich.
Old Town - Located in the heart of Zurich, this area runs between the main station and the lake, along the eastern side of the River Limmat. Dating back 2,000 years, today Zurich’s Old Town is a hub for restaurants, boutiques, and movie houses, which line its alleyways. Niederdorf, one section of Old Town, is a draw for those seeking a multicultural nightlife scene.
Sinicity - This urban area was once an old paper-making factory that is now filled with trendy shopping, chic dining, and plenty of entertainment in a cozy mix of old World charm and modern amenities.
Zurich West - Located in a former industrial area around Escher-Wyss-Platz, today this is one of Zurich’s evening hotspots, with a vibrant mix of restaurants, clubs, and movies, all centered around the Schiffbau Cultural Complex.
There is much more to discover in Zurich than can be listed here. With stunning Lake Zurich and the River Limmat framing the city, it’s a great location to explore on foot or by boat. The city offers up the best of Swiss living: arts, entertainment, shopping, dining, and sightseeing…more than enough to please any visitor to this charming city.