The capital of Switzerland is often overlooked as a destination in its own right by Australians, but as my visit to the city last year proved, there is plenty to see and do. Evelyn Lafone, Director Australia and New Zealand for Switzerland Tourism, hails from just outside Zurich and she shares her Insider Secrets with us.
>>For a detailed guide on what to do on a two-day visit to Zurich, read my article How to spend 48 hours in Zurich.
Must-see sights in Zurich
- Definitely start with a visit to the Old Town, Niederdorf and Limmatquai
- Visit Zurich's two imposing towers of the Grossmünster Church and Towers
- For a shopping extravaganza, head to Bahnhofstrasse, regarded as one of the most expensive shopping strips in the world
- Take in the beauty of Lake Zurich from the Lake Side Promenade
- For great views, head to Lindenhof, the site of a 4th Century Roman fort and easily accessible by foot from the Old Town
Favourite place/area to stay in Zurich
I enjoy staying in the Old Town or Bahnhofstrasse area. Boutique Hotel Townhouse***, Hotel Schweizerhoff****, Hotel Baur au Lac***** and Sorell Hotel Rütli*** are a few of my favourites.
Best place to eat in Zurich
Zurich offers many fabulous places to eat. Some of the most popular restaurants are (Guild House) Zunfthaus zur Waag, Haus Hiltl, Coco Grill & Bar, Sternen Grill and Zeughauskeller.
Best way to get around the city
Walking is a great way to see the city and is definitely the best way to explore the cobbled streets of the Old Town. Zurich's tram system is efficient and regular and can have you from one side of the city to the other in minutes.
TiPP: Use ZürichCARD for public transportation, free entries to the museums and much more
- „Zürcher Geschnetzeltes” (sliced veal in gravy) is the most traditional menu from Zürich (and it's delicious! Ed.)
- No visit to Zurich would be complete without sampling some of the delicacies from one of the many chocolate and confectionary stores like Sprüngli, Schober and Café Felix.
- For the hippest satchels, head to Freitag Bags for trendy, 'must have' bags made from recycled materials
- For designer street and snow wear, check out Alprausch Fashion.
Best way to spend a lazy Sunday in Zurich?
- Guided Walking tour of the Old Town
- Trolley City Tour
- Hürlimann thermal bath & spa
- Visit the Kunsthaus (Art Museum) or Landesmuseum (Swiss National Museum)
- Cruise on Lake Zürich
- Visit to the Uetliberg Mountain
My hidden secret
- Enjoy summer in the city with a swim in one of Zürich’s numerous lake and river baths. Favourites include Seebad Enge, Oberer Letten and Lido Mythenquai. Some of those public swimming places change at night to open air bars and lounges. You can enjoy the amazing atmosphere at Barfussbar, Rimini and Pier West, to name a few.
- Expolore the upcoming area “Zürich West”
- Shopping at the Viaduct Arches in Zürich West area