The Counts of Kyburg are said to have founded the city at the beginning of the 13th century. The 52-meter-high Zyt Tower dates back to the same era. It was first built as a simple wall entrance to the Old Town and in the course of the centuries it was built higher and received additional structures, until it finally reached its present form, complete with bay windows and a steep hipped roof. In 1574 the large clock was built, which gives the tower its name. Below this main clock there is an astronomical clock with four hands, which indicate the week, the phase of the moon, the month and the leap year.
The Late Gothic town hall, built in 1505, and the church of St. Oswald, which belongs to the same epoch, are located in the Old Town itself.
Thanks to free bike hire from May to October, it’s easy to explore the town and the surrounding area on two wheels. There is an extensive network of footpaths, with several walks along the shores of the lake and over the Zugerberg or the gently rolling moraine landscape of the region. As an alternative to walking, try the paths for cycling or skating along the side of the lake. A popular biking route goes over the Zugerberg to Lake Ägeri and through the Lorzentobel valley back to Zug. On a hot summer’s day, the shady, romantic gorge of the Lorze is an attractive way to hike to the caves, complete with stalactites and stalagmites.
Thanks to its central location between Zurich and Lucerne, and good infrastructure, Zug is, of course, an excellent starting point for excursions.
- Old Town – an impressive Old Town building from the late Gothic period, emblem of the historic centre, is the 52 m high Zytturm, rising above the other ancient towers.
- Art Museum – six annual exhibitions of modern art, artists are invited to help create the exhibition.
- Zug station – a light installation by the American light artist James Turrell has turned Zug station into a trendy work of art.
- Lake Zug – organise a boat ride or enjoy a romantic sunset from the lakeside promenade.
- Baar Caves – especially fine cave with stalactites and stalagmites in the deep, shadowy Lorzentobel valley.
- Chapel of former Cistercian abbey – impressive early Gothic monastery church near Zug, dating from the 13th/14th century, with fine choir stalls and stained glass windows.