germany-bavaria

Switzerland Attractions


The lavishly embellished Abbey Library is the star attraction. It houses a staggering collection of 2,000 ancient manuscripts and 100,000 books. To protect the library’s precious inlaid wood floor, felt slippers are loaned to visitors to slip over their shoes.... more

  • Karen Brown Recommended

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The Appenzell Folk Art Museum is a four-story house with shutters and window boxes, located on the left side of the square as you drive into town. The museum is closed until 1:30 pm, but if you are in Urnäsch in the afternoon, this is a dandy little museum to visit.  Its purpose is to show th... more

  • Karen Brown Recommended

Many people from Geneva dine at the very charming and exceptionally fine restaurant, Auberge d’Hermance, which also has a few guestrooms.... more

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Ballenburg is an outstanding open air museum with typical houses brought from all over Switzerland. With 100 original century-old buildings, "historical" gardens and fields, demonstrations of typical crafts, many special events and 250 native farmyard animals Ballenberg creates a vivi... more

  • Karen Brown Recommended

  • Karen Brown Recommended

About 8 kilometers beyond Frutigen on the road to Kandersteg, watch for a sign for the Blausee (Blue Lake). Park your car near the main road and walk along a wooded path through a forest of twisted, mysterious trees. You begin to wonder where in the world you are going when suddenly you come up... more

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The Brienz Rothorn is a little red train that chugs up to the top of the mountain where the views are glorious. ... more

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If you are a devotee to the joys of chocolate, when planning your trip to Switzerland, include a visit Caillers-Nestlé factory located in the town of Broc (about 5 kilometers north of Gruyères). It’s history dates back to 1897 when Alexandre Cailler, who was bicycling through the area, disc... more

  • Karen Brown Recommended

  • Karen Brown Recommended

This is an absolutely stunning castle—a real jewel whose fairy-tale quality is further enhanced by its lovely setting on a gentle knoll wrapped by endless fields of manicured vineyards. The wines produced here are acclaimed as some of the best in Switzerland. The castle, which was built in th... more

  • Karen Brown Recommended

The Castle of Chillon is one of Montreux's sightseeing highlights. It is tucked on a tiny island just 3 kilometers south of town. The castle is romantic (attached to the mainland by a bridge) and also open as a museum and certainly should be on your list of places to see.... more

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For sightseeing, visit the Castle of Coppet that was the home of Germaine de Staël. She was an outspoken young Swiss noblewoman living in Paris who unwisely criticized Napoleon and had to flee to the safety of her father’s castle in Coppet. The lavishly furnished castle is open from ... more

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The Castle of Gruyères is a marvelous fortress. A visit to the castle, which is built around a courtyard, is highly recommended. In addition to an art gallery (where exhibits change from time to time) there are numerous rooms that are handsomely furnished in antiques, including a huge di... more

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Be sure to visit Lugano’s grandest church, the Cathedral of Saint Lawrence. Its handsome renaissance façade and Baroque interior are well worth a visit.... more

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The Chateau Saint Marie is a handsome yellow sandstone castle built in the 14th century for the bishops of Lausanne.... more

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The Church of Sachseln is famous as the burial site of the beloved Saint Nicholas of Flue. Brother Klaus(Saint Nicholas of Flue) became a mystic after the age of fifty spending most of his days in prayer. He was much revered and his counsel was sought by many. ... more

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Located within a few blocks of the Piazza Communale is the especialy lovely 16th-century Church of San Vittore.... more

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The Church of Santa Maria del Sasso contains some outstanding 16th-century frescos. The renaissance church built in the late fourteen hundreds replaced other religious structures dating back to the 13th century. ... more

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Very soon after descending from Soglio, you come to the quaint rustic village of Stampa, the birthplace of the three famous artists—all members of the talented Giacometti family—Giovanni, Augusto, and Alberto. Ciäsa Granda, a museum in what used to be their family home, has a c... more

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Folklore Museum (Appenzeller-Volkskunde Museum) shares the life-style and customs of the people in this lovely part of Switzerland. Featured are some of the local crafts such as carpentry, weaving, and belt making. One exceptionally interesting exhibit shows 19th-century handiwork by the local ... more

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This Franciscan church is Lucerne’s oldest building, dating back to the 13th century .... more

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 If you are a devotee of Chagall, be sure to visit the Fraumüster to see its stain-glass windows designed by Chagall. The Fraumüster dates back to the 9th century. It was first founded by the German King Ludwig who built an abbey here and installed his daughter, Hildegard, as hea... more

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Fromagerie d’Alpage is a wonderful 17th-century, stucco and timbered farmhouse. Here you have a chance to see cheese being produced in the traditional way, just has it has been for hundreds of years. In the front part of the house there is a shop where all kinds of local products can be p... more

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The Geneva Tourist Office offers a two-hour walking tour of the old part of the city with a guide who will lead you back through history as you discover hidden courtyards, fountains and picturesque squares, plus a glimpse into the Cathedral and the Town Hall.... more

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To ride the Glacier Express between Zermatt and Saint Moritz is truly a dream come true for any train buff. Before this privately owned train was inaugurated, one had to hip-hop across Switzerland, switching trains several times along the way. Fortunately, this all changed when a Swiss entrepre... more

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The Golden Pass Line features premier trains that cross the heart of Switzerland, linking two of its most precious jewels: Lucerne and Montreux. If you prefer, you can begin your trip in Zürich instead of Lucerne, and extend your journey beyond Montreux by continuing on to Geneva. This pop... more

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The Gornegrat ascent entails a ride on a cog railway up to the Gornegrat Station, which is located on a rocky ridge looking over the town of Zermatt and beyond to the Matterhorn. From the Gornegrat Station a walk down to the next station gives you views of the Matterhorn and the surrounding mou... more

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Cathedral buffs won’t want to miss the impressive and imposing 12th-century Grossmünster cathedral whose twin towers dominate the Zürich skyline. Supposedly the present day structure was built upon an 8th-century church founded by Charlemagne, whose stature adorns the crypt. (Lo... more

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The Bernina Express travels through some of the most glorious scenery in Switzerland. As an added bonus, you may customize the journey to what suites you best. The train originates in the medieval town of Chur, a convenient starting point since it is an important terminal with frequent service ... more

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If as a child you were enchanted by Johanna Spyri’s book, Heidi, stop in Maienfeld to visit the re-creation of what was supposedly Heidi’s village, located in the scenic mountain area that inspired the story. The closest place to park is the Heidihof Hotel, which (with its contempor... more

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Housed in a 16th-century Renaissance building that connects via its gatehouse to Lucerne’s historic covered bridge, the Spreuerbrück, the Historisches Museum depicts the history of Lucerne through its display of costumes, folk art, crafts, and weapons. ... more

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The Jardin Anglais (English Garden) snuggles on the edge of the quay, at the foot of the old town. Highlighting the lovely gardens is an intriguing clock that keeps perfect time. Made of 6,500 plants, which are changed according to season, the clock is placed in the garden to honor the clockmak... more

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The Jesuit Church is a real beauty, enhanced by splendid frescoes and elaborate stucco designs. The stucco interior of the late seventeeth century church was the work of Ticino craftsmen and artists. ... more

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When exploring Geneva you cannot miss the Jet d’Eau (located on the south bank of the lake), which is a huge spout of water that soars into the sky. Originally it had a utilitarian purpose—a practical way to release the extreme water pressure. However, everyone was captivated by the... more

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The Jungfraujoch excursion is a journey on a series of small trains, synchronized to provide you with a perfect prize—the Jungfraujoch, with the highest train station in Europe sitting 92 meters below the summit of the Jungfrau. The most popular starting points for this outing are any of ... more

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The Klein Matterhorn ascent involves a ride on a small cable car to a mid-station, then three or four rides on a large gondola/cable car. The station at the summit is at the highest altitude of any station in Europe (3,820 meters). The views are spectacular. ... more

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The Kunsthaus is reputed to be the most important art galley in Switzerland. Its paintings cover a wide span of time from medieval religious art to the 20th century. Its vast palette of artists include works by leading Swiss painters (including our favorite Albert Ankor) along with a large sele... more

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The Kunstmuseum features paintings from Swiss and French masters.... more

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The Museum of Fine Arts (Kunstmuseum) displays works of art from the 15th and 16th centuries.... more

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The Kuntsmuseum is housed in Lucerne’s Congress Center, an ultra modern, steel and glass building that was built in 2000 by the French architect, Jean Nouvel. The focus of the museum is on Swiss painters from the 18th to 20th century.... more

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The Lötschberg–Centovalli Express links two jewels, Bern, a medieval city that oozes old world charm, and Locarno, a resort located on the stunningly beautiful Lake Maggiore. Trains leave Bern frequently during the day and reservations are not needed. The train soon arrives at Lake T... more

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The Lucerne Tourist Office offers an excursion called “A Walk Around Lucerne”—a walking tour that also includes a short ride on the city train. Along the way your guide will explain many interesting facts (and humorous stories) about the city’s history, its churches, narrow streets, bri... more

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The Lugano Tourist Office offers free walking tours, which give a richer insight into the places you visit than if you were to walk alone. There are three different tours, each on a different day. The tours are offered from March 21 until October 17. Sometimes schedules change so be sure to che... more

  • Karen Brown Recommended

La Maison du Gruyère is located at the bottom of the road as you come down from Gruyères, opposite the Pringy-Gruyère train station. Here you find, housed within a large modern building, the cheese factory, a museum, a restaurant, and a shop. The factory produces up to 48 huge wheels of Gruy... more

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The oldest house in Geneva is the Maison Tavel. It was built in the early 1300s by the Tavel family whose coat of arms still graces the Gothic turret.... more

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Another excursion from Lucerne is to the town of Einsiedeln to see the home of the famous Black Madonna. The Monastery of Einsiedeln was founded by Meinrad, a Benedictine monk, who built a small chapel for the Black Madonna (a statue of the Virgin Mary), which had been given to him by Züri... more

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Switzerland offers two marvelous rail and bus tours (the Mont Blanc Express and the Saint Bernard Express), both of which offer adventure and glorious scenery. The tours originate in Martigny, an old Roman town at the west end of the Rhône Valley—22 kilometers from the French border... more

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Morges Castle is a dramatic walled castle accented by ramparts and towers. Within the castle you find a museum that will delight boys of all ages: the Figurine Museum that features dioramas of lead soldiers in famous battles, ranging from Babylon to Mexico.... more

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Recommended for a sunny day is an outing from Lucerne to the highest mountain peak in the area, Mount Pilatus. The most enjoyable route for this excursion is to take the lake steamer to the town of Alpnachstad and then the electric cog railway up to the top of the mountain. From the rail termin... more

  • Karen Brown Recommended

The Munot Castle in Schaffhausen is a dramatic castle that looms on the hill above town. Built between 1564-1589, the castle has wonderful views over the medieval town.  ... more

  • Karen Brown Recommended

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