If you are considering travelling to Switzerland, you have come to the right place. We love Switzerland and in this travel guide to Switzerland, you will find all the steps you must follow to plan your visit to this incredible European country.
Travelling through Switzerland, you can see a different country with a touch of elegance, respect for nature and incredible cultural diversity. Four official languages spoken in Switzerland are German, Italian, Romansh and French. Switzerland is a very safe and costly country. It has beautiful cities, charming towns and many spectacular natural places. We start our list of the essential places to see and visit in Switzerland.
Best time to travel to Switzerland
Depending on the type of activities you want to do, the best time to travel to Switzerland depends on the season.
The high season covers the months from July to August and those from December to April. July and August are ideal for high mountain routes for hikers and cyclists.
The climate in Switzerland does not have large temperature ranges, so during July and August, that is, in summer, temperatures are usually between 18 and 28°C, and it is not common to find suffocating temperatures. During spring and autumn, the temperature is normally between 8 and 15°C.
In winter, from the end of December, January and February, the temperature rarely falls below 2°C and does not usually exceed 7°C.
Major Cities and Towns in Switzerland
Many of Switzerland’s cities and towns are world-famous for their beauty and many attractions. Here are some of the most important cities in Switzerland :
↠ Zurich: If you visit Switzerland, it is unthinkable not to visit Zurich. Although it is an expensive city in terms of its costs, it is a place where there is no shortage of beautiful places to visit, learn and be surprised about. It is an elegant and refined city and is considered the city with the highest quality of life in the world. In addition, it has one of the most expensive shopping streets in the world.
↠ Geneva: After Zurich, another of the most important cities in Switzerland is Geneva. This city is the financial epicenter of the country. Many international organizations are found there, as is the case with none other than the United Nations. However, being the main financial center does not detract from Geneva’s beauty and majesty. Therefore, a tour of this city is something worth it.
↠ Basel: Basel is considered one of the most beautiful cities to enjoy in Switzerland. It is easily recognized by its red color and the beauty of its town hall in its main square. Basel’s town hall is famous for its architectural beauty and its façade. In addition, this city can be easily explored on foot, which makes it especially attractive for walks.
↠ Lucerne: We now come to what is usually one of the favorite cities in Switzerland. Walking through the streets of Lucerne and allowing yourself to get lost in its corners is one of the favorite walks in this country. In fact, one of the most photographed monuments in Switzerland is the Chapel Bridge which belongs to Lucerne, followed by the Water Tower.
↠ Bern: Bern is a Swiss city declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. Its old town is something that surprises all its visitors, along with its streets full of fountains, statues and arcades. It has several clock towers that are kept in excellent condition and are an interesting experience for those who want to discover a luxurious mediaeval city where everything seems to be in perfect order.
Where to stay in Switzerland
One of the crucial points for any traveler is accommodation since it is what makes our trips more expensive. In addition to hotels, Airbnb and apartments, with patience and foresight, you can find interesting accommodation at very good prices.
- Camping: The cheapest way to spend a night in Switzerland is camping, although average prices exceed those of nearby countries. The rates depend on the space used, how many people stay overnight, and the corresponding supplements when parking is required or when travelling with pets. If you travel by motorhome or car, you can use the motorway service areas to spend the night.
- Sleep in a haystack: If you love adventure, some farmers rent haystacks for the night, with breakfast included.
- Cabins in the Alps: they offer simple and efficient accommodation.
- Youth hostels: in a room shared with other people.
Best Attractions in Switzerland
Some of the main attractions of Switzerland that you cannot miss are:
↠ Chillón Castle: Located on the shores of Lake Geneva, it is a truly spectacular mediaeval castle, and its interiors are in perfect condition.
↠ The Rhine Falls: Located in a small town called Schaffhausen, which sits on the Rhine River.
↠ Mount Matterhorn: It can be reached via tour trains or electric vehicles. In addition, it is next to the Zermatt ski resort, which is perfectly equipped.
↠ The Nightlife of Switzerland: includes a wide variety of nightclubs, discotheques, bars of all kinds, theatres, cinemas, casinos and restaurants that offer live shows.
↠ Shopping: It has a large number and variety of shopping centers and stores of the most famous brands in the world, and Geneva is considered the largest shopping center in the country and one of the most important in Europe.
Tips for saving in Switzerland
As far as accommodation is concerned, you can opt for an Airbnb, a campsite or the Couchsurfing system, which consists of sleeping for free in a resident’s house, in exchange for cooking some traditional food from your country or telling them your stories and travel adventures. Also, here are some of the most vital tips to cut costs in Switzerland:
- To eat, the idea is to cook yourself in your accommodation, buying in a supermarket. The cheapest is Aldi, but also at Lidl or Denner.
- To drink, the public fountains will save you €5 every time you are thirsty, you can take your bottles and fill them up. The water is absolutely clean.
- There are a lot of free places and museums, which will allow you to make significant money savings.
- Another local custom in the main Swiss cities is to “buy yesterday’s bread”. The Ässbar bakery has branches in Bern, Zurich, Basel, St. Gallen, Wintherthur, Friborg and Lucerne.
- Ride your bike, do things yourself, and buy your groceries after 5 pm, as you will get them at a discount.
Our Final Word
Yes, Switzerland can be expensive but there are ways to save. We have outlined a few in this travel guide. Kati and I love Switzerland and seem to go back again and again. If you are looking for a bucket list adventure, head to Switzerland. It never dissapoints.