Welcome to Switzerland
A small, infinitely green and mountainous country which serves as the crossroads of Western, Northern, and Southern Europe – and has the language skills to prove it! Switzerland is one great, beautiful landscape. The ultimate place for anyone who loves hiking, skiing and general exploring.
Amazing experiences in Switzerland
The Swiss Alps
One of the crown glories of nature in Europe, the Swiss Alps need no introduction. This vast and sweeping mountain range which cuts through the centre of Europe is one of the ultimate adventure spots. Skiing and snowboarding in the colder months; hiking and trekking in the summer. The Swiss Alps are hiding spots for quaint villages, lakes, and waterfalls. There’s no end to their beauty.
Swiss cheese and chocolate
If there are two things Switzerland is famous for, besides watches and banks, it’s cheese and chocolate. The cheese with the holes in it, and what many consider the tastiest, most finely crafted chocolate on earth. If you’re going to be trying anything in Switzerland, make it food you can take home for your friends to try, too!
The highest train station in Europe
Jungfraujoch is also known as the Top of Europe. A train will take you to a grand and sci-fi-looking viewing platform which shows you a panoramic view of the surrounding mountains which stretch up for 4000 metres above sea level. The views from both the train and the platform are quite amazing!
A magical village with 72 waterfalls
Lauterbrunnen, which is the name of both the village and the municipality it lives in, is a quiet place in Switzerland, hidden in a deep green valley. Sheer and dramatic rocky cliffs and a total of 72 waterfalls surround the village, including the 300m-high Staubbach Falls.
Best sights in Switzerland
With a river that snakes around it, Bern is a picturesque city to say the least. Its architecture ranges from the medieval to the renaissance to the modern. It’s such a beautiful capital.
Zürich (123km from Bern)
Sitting at the northern edge of the beautiful Lake Zurich, this wonderful city of Switzerland is a gorgeous old town of cobbled streets at the same time as being a global financial hub.
Basel (87 km from Bern)
This north-western city sits on the River Rhine and has a perfectly maintained medieval city centre as well as an epic gothic cathedral. Here, you’ll find the remains of the famous Dutch scholar, Erasmus.
Interlaken (118km from Bern)
Most famous as Europe’s adventure hub, Interlaken and the whole Jungfrau area has some of the most amazing alpine views. As well as so many outdoor activities from hiking to parachuting to skiing.
Lauterbrunnen (129km from Bern
Nestled deep in the Swiss Alps, Lauterbrunnen has mountains, hills, and no less than 72 waterfalls framing it on every side. It’s a hidden slice of paradise.
Lucerne (52km from Bern)
Sitting beside the lake of the same name, with the snowy mountain tops framing the distance, this wonderful little city is known for its perfectly-preserved medieval architecture.
How to get around
I always use Rome2Rio for traveling Europe. This site/app is so easy to use. It quickly comes up with a variety of transport options to suit your time and budget. All costs are shown, even taxis.
Best time to visit
Most people head to Switzerland during July and August, tempted by wildflowers, gorgeous green hiking trails and warm weather. However, the prices can be 50% higher than if you travel April to June and you have the benefit of either catching the beautiful snow without the extreme cold temperatures in April or arriving in June with the same benefits of the summer months without the prices.
September – October is also a lovely time to travel if you want to see the vibrant leaves on the slopes and avoid the crowds. Winter is the least popular time to visit, but some people do head to Switzerland for skiing.
- Language: Mostly German, but also French and Italian
- Currency: Swiss Franc
- Plugs: Switzerland uses the standard European plug but with a twist: a third grounding pin, similar to UK plugs. I recommend buying a universal adapter.
- Population: 8.4 million
- Important telephone numbers: 117 for police, 118 for fire, 144 for ambulance
- Visa: Members of the EU, US, and several other countries can stay in Switzerland for up to 90 days, visa-free
- Hotel: $100-200
- Food: $20-50
- Activities: e.g. $174 to go paragliding
- Transportation: $20-50 for a train
- Hello: Hallo
- Thank you: Danke
- Yes: Ja
- No: Nein
- Bye: Auf Wiedersehen
- Cheers: Prost