Mixing expansive greenery, slick cities and buckets of fresh air, Switzerland is a stylish tourist destination offering countless outdoor adventures and contemporary urban breaks.
Top ski resorts in Switzerland include Zermatt, Verbier and celebrity-studded St Moritz, while white-capped mountain peaks set against blue skies make a wonderful backdrop for summertime hiking.
The ancient capital Berne provides superb opportunities for sightseeing, shopping and traditional folk entertainment, while Zurich leads the way in arts, design and nightlife; from opera and world-class theatre to stylish bars and nightclubs.
Small, mountainous and wealthy, Switzerland is renowned for its enviable quality of life in a country that ticks along like clockwork. Its products are coveted the world over, from delicious cheese and chocolate to luxurious watches whose timekeeping is as sharp as a Swiss Army Knife; another popular export from this sophisticated Alpine nation.
With its low crime rate, Switzerland is also very safe for tourists.
Switzerland is best known for its stunning Alpine nature, so we would certainly advise to go and see the Alps. But if you love city trips, you will definitely enjoy yourself too.
Apart from shopping for watches, chocolate and much more, you can stroll along the boulevard in Montreux or Geneva, enjoy the many museums in Basel and Zurich, and the pretty old town centers of Lucerne and Bern. Take a scenic train to get there, make a boat trip, and your holidays are complete!
The Matterhorn and Switzerland are inseparably linked to each other. The pyramid shaped colossus of a mountain, which is very difficult to climb, is said to be the most-photographed mountain in the world. The Klein-Matterhorn ("Little Matterhorn"), which can be reached via a funicular, lies adjacent to the Matterhorn.
The first ascent of the Matterhorn in the year 1865, which cost the lives of four out of seven alpinists, changed the region (which had been isolated until then) forever. The Matterhorn became world-famous, and ambitious mountaineers aspired to climb it.
Even today the ascent of the Matterhorn is very challenging and can only be achieved by expert mountaineers with excellent equipment and a competent guide. One has a fantastic view of the world's most photographed mountain from the Klein-Matterhorn (Matterhorn Paradise), which is only separated from the Matterhorn by the Theodul Pass and Glacier. Visitors can board the aerial cable car in Zermatt. The mountain station at 3820 meters above sea level is the highest cable car station of the Alps.
To stand high above Europe's largest waterfall, feeling the roar and vibration of the water over one's entire body - this can be experienced at the Rhine Falls near Schaffhausen. By ship one can reach castles, the Rhine Falls Basin and even the mighty rock in the midst of the waterfall.
Due to tectonic shifts in the Ice Age, the Rhine River was forced into a new riverbed over 15,000 years ago. The Rhine Falls came into being at the transition point where hard chalk turned into soft gravel. Over a breadth of 150 meters, several hundred cubic meters of water rush into the depths at the rate of 23 meters per second.
In the middle of it all stands a mighty rock that has withstood the elements for a thousand years. The rock can be reached on a circular tour of the Rhine Falls, during which one can observe the natural spectacle from up close. Virtually in the middle of the waterfall, visitors stand on platforms that jut out and partially hover over the Rhine. The castles of Wörth and Laufen can be reached by river boat, and very daring visitors can rent canoes.
"Creux du Van", a natural rock arena of immense proportions, is located at the border of the cantons of Neuenburg and Vaud. Impressive 160 meter high vertical rock faces surround a four kilometer long and over one kilometer wide valley basin.
First the glaciers, then the brooks have shaped the breathtaking rock formation from the 200 million year old lime deposits of a prehistoric ocean. The steep rock faces afford detailed insight into the geology of the Jurassic folding.
The regional climate of the "Creux du Van" is exceptional and unusual - there are forests and arctic-alpine flora in the rock arena. Chamois, ibex, lynx and numerous other wild animals inhabit the pristine natural landscape, which is protected through the existence of a 25 square kilometer nature reserve. A spring, the "Fontaine Froide", has its source in the middle of a sinkhole. This spring's water is four degrees Celsius throughout the year.
The majestic Eiger, Mönch and Jungfrau summits, together with close-up views of the longest glacial flow. The Jungfrau railway travels from the heart of the mountains to Europe’s highest lying mountain station at 3454 meter altitude.
From Kliene Scheidegg, the cog-wheel railway travels year-round through the tunnel and over the steep climb up to the Jungfraujoch. Two stops in the tunnel permit spectacular views of the Eiger north wall and surrounding glacier world.
Standing amidst the snow-capped mountain world, views extend from the Aletsch Glacier to the Jungfrau - and a 45-minute snow hike through the thin air direction Mönchsjoch is pefectly feasible form here.
Additional wothwhile sights include the ice scupltures on the inside of the glacier, adventurous "Sphinx" round tour, as well as the ultra-scenic "Top of Europe" glacier restaurant.
Chillon Castle is located on a rock on the banks of Lake Geneva. The water castle is the most visited historic building in Switzerland. For nearly four centuries Chillon was the residence and profitable toll station of the Counts of Savoy.
The rock island between Lake Geneva and the steep looming mountains was inhabited even in prehistoric times. For hundreds of years the passage of ships on Lake Geneva and the important land route to the St. Bernhard Pass was controlled from this island. Chillon belonged to the Counts of Savoy from the 12th to the 16th century, then the inhabitants of Bern conquered the water castle, and subsequently the inhabitants of Vaud prevailed.
It’s possible to rent the castle for various events. From the Castle, you can reach Montreux (by boat, by bus or on foot), where you can admire ten mile of sheltered bays, bordered with flower-lined promenades, exotic plants and palm trees.
More than 300,000 guests visit Chillon per year. They view the wall paintings from the 14th century, the subterranean vaults, parade halls and the bedroom (which has been preserved in its original form) dating to the time of Bernese rule. The entire complex consists of 25 buildings and three courtyards, protected by two circular walls.