City guide Geneva
The symbol of the «world’s smallest metropolis» is the “Jet d’eau” – a fountain with a 140-metre-high water jet at the periphery of Lake Geneva. Most of the large hotels and many restaurants are situated on the right-hand shore of the lake. The old town, the heart of Geneva with the shopping and business quarter, holds sway over the left-hand shore. It is dominated by St. Peter’s Cathedral, however the actual centre of the old town is the Place du Bourg-de-Four, which is the oldest square in the city. Quays, lakeside promenades, countless parks, lively side streets in the old town and elegant shops invite guests to stroll. One of the best-maintained streets is the Grand-Rue, where Jean-Jacques Rousseau was born. The «mouettes», a type of water taxi, enable crossings to be made from one lakeshore to the other, while larger vessels invite visitors to enjoy cruises on Lake Geneva.
Geneva is Switzerland’s most international city, as it is where the European seat of the UNO is based. Even the International Red Cross directs its humanitarian campaigns from here. Besides being a congress city, Geneva is also a centre for culture and history, for trade fairs and exhibitions. The «Horloge Fleuri», the large flower clock in the “Jardin Anglais” (English Garden), is a world-renowned symbol of the Geneva watch industry.
Culturally, this city on the westernmost fringe of Switzerland has much to offer. International artists perform in the Grand Théâtre and Geneva Opera House, and an extremely diverse range of museums such as the “Musée international de l'horlogerie”, a watch museum with a collection of jewellery watches and musical clocks, and the International Museum of the Red Cross and Red Crescent, which provides an insight into the work of these humanitarian organisations, invite city guests to visit them.
A rewarding excursion destination is Mont Salève, which is situated in neighbouring France. The cableway lifts visitors to an altitude of 1100 metres in less than five minutes, giving rise to outstanding vistas across the city of Geneva, Lake Geneva, the chain of Alps, the Jura and Montblanc.
Geneva lies idyllically between Alpine peaks and vineyards by the largest lake in Western Europe. Geneva is the UN capital of peace, home of the luxury watch industry – and a delightful place to visit.
- Jet d’eau – visible from afar, the 140-metre-high water jet is the ‘landmark’ of Geneva.
- St. Pierre Cathedral – the north tower of the three-naved basilica in the old town of Geneva offers up an unique vista over the city and lake.
- Palace of the United Nations – on passing through the paled gate of the Palace of the UNO, visitors enter international territory.
- International Museum of the Red Cross – the birthplace of the International Red Cross houses the only museum dedicated to the history and work of this organisation.
- Cruises on Lake Geneva – from the cruise boats, visitors can marvel at the unique scenery of castles and magnificent residences set against wonderful landscape and mountain panoramas.
- The magnificent parks of Geneva
- A certain art de vivre in the Bains district
- Carouge and its bohemian atmosphere
- The birthplace of fine watchmaking: from the Flower Clock to the watchmakers' shops
- A getaway to Mont-Salève