Best Things To Do in Zurich
Zurich boasts of Dadaism, more than 100 art galleries, several renowned museums (like the Museum of Art and the Swiss National Museum) and world-famous architecture, both old and new. But for those who aren't art enthusiasts, Zurich also offers a number of active pursuits that range from swimming in clean Lake Zurich (in the warm months) to hiking on nearby Uetliberg Mountain. For a more relaxed pace, there's Lindenhof. Local historic treasures include the Minster of Our Lady, Old Town and the Great Minster. And a visit to Zurich wouldn't be complete without checking out the haute-couture shopping along Bahnhofstrasse and the variety of animals housed at Zoo Zurich.
Updated March 12, 2018
- #1View all Photos#1 in ZurichFree, Neighborhood/AreaTYPE2 hours to Half DayTIME TO SPENDFree, Neighborhood/AreaTYPE2 hours to Half DayTIME TO SPEND...Read More »
Backing lower Lake Zurich is a tangle of parks and gardens, collectively known as the lake promenade, that make for a picturesque place to spend an afternoon. And in warm weather, the lake is peppered with boats, while the banks are filled with picnickers and sunbathers. If you're a jogger, the area is also one of Zurchers' favorite places to pound the ground.
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Standing an impressive 2,858 feet above sea level, Uetliberg Mountain offers some of the best views of Zurich and the surrounding Alps. Once at the top, travelers will find multiple trails for hiking, biking and sledding. Paragliding at the mountain's peak is another popular pastime here.
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Zurich's Old Town is the historic part of town – and by historic, we mean medieval. Winding cobblestone alleys run alongside quintessential Zurich attractions like the Great Minster. You'll also find several acclaimed museums – such as the Swiss National Museum and the Museum of Art – and hotels in and around the district.
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One of Zurich's must-dos is a stroll along the sleek storefronts of Bahnhofstrasse. Stretching across Old Town from Hauptbahnhof station to Lake Zurich, Bahnhofstrasse features a variety of high-end shops, including Louis Vuitton, Burberry, Chanel and Giorgio Armani. Swiss shops like the dessert-focused Confiserie Sprungli and the jewelry-centric Gubelin AG can also be found here.
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With its assortment of works, some say the Museum of Art, or the Kunsthaus Zurich as it's called in German, is one of – if not the – best museums in the city. Among an interesting collection of Swiss artists, the museum also hangs works by Pablo Picasso, Wassily Kandinsky, Marc Chagall and Claude Monet.
- #6View all PhotosfreeLindenhof#6 in ZurichParks and Gardens, FreeTYPELess than 1 hourTIME TO SPENDParks and Gardens, FreeTYPELess than 1 hourTIME TO SPEND...Read More »
Whether you want to play a game of chess, relax after exploring Bahnhofstrasse or take in some superb views of Old Town, the Great Minster and the Limmat River, odds are you'll appreciate Lindenhof. What was once the location of a fourth-century fort is now an elevated park with Linden trees, benches and giant chess sets.
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The Swiss National Museum resides within a historic, castle-like building in the northern tip of Kreis 1. The museum surveys Swiss art, history and culture from as far back as the fourth century B.C. Exhibits cover everything from medieval and religious frescoes to weapons and Swiss furniture. There are also several ornate rooms to explore during your visit.
- #8View all Photos#8 in ZurichChurches/Religious Sites, FreeTYPELess than 1 hourTIME TO SPENDChurches/Religious Sites, FreeTYPELess than 1 hourTIME TO SPEND...Read More »
Located in Kreis 1 in the Old Town, the Great Minster church was the starting place of the Protestant Reformation in Zurich. Preacher Huldrych Zwingli initiated the movement from this austere church's pulpit. But the history of the Grossmunster goes back even further. According to local legend, Charlemagne is said to have founded this magnificent church, which is believed to sit atop the graves of the city's patron saints of Felix and Regula.
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Nestled within Kreis 7 is Zoo Zurich, where more than 380 animal species from all over the world reside. The zoo features several areas, including an elephant park, a petting zoo and a miniature rainforest.
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Known to Zurchers as the Fraumunster, the Minster of Our Lady church is popular to visit thanks to its graceful spire (which tops Zurich's skyline) and its Marc Chagall stained-glass windows. The church was founded in the ninth century by Emperor Ludwig, Charlemagne's grandson, though the property's iconic spire wasn't added until 1732. And in 1970, Chagall's famous stained-glass windows were added.
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If you have a sweet tooth, then no visit to Zurich would be complete without sampling some world-renowned Swiss chocolate during a Sweet Zurich Tour. This MyKugelhopf excursion takes participants on a two-and-a-half-hour journey around the city to check out a variety of specialty shops. Some of the items you may try include chocolate-dipped hazelnuts, hot chocolate and, of course, truffles and chocolate bars.
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