A famed diplomatic haven, as well as a leader in banking, Geneva’s vibrant city vibe is matched only by its picturesque setting. With dramatic views of Mont Blanc, Geneva is surrounded by the Alps and Jura mountains and situated at the southern tip of Lac Léman, aka, Lake Geneva. Switzerland’s most famous city also serves as the headquarters of Europe’s United Nations and the Red Cross. Geneva is a bucket list destination, filled with history, beauty, and luxury, but what should be on your list? We recommend these sights.
Park Pierre Challandes
A visit to an animal park may seem odd but this park is worth both a mention and a visit. While the residents change as need arises, the park is currently home to felines such as the lynx, panther, and serval; monkeys such as the macaques, marmosets and tamarins; birds such as parrots, sparrows, pheasants, ducks, peacocks, and owls; wild boars, squirrels, guinea pigs, rabbits, fox, wolf, and deer. Monitored and prepared for release once they’re deemed ready, these animals are a sight to be seen. While you’re there, you may want to consider a donation, the park is financed entirely through memberships and donations.
Palais de l’Athénée
The Palais de l’Athénée, aka, Athénée Palace, may lend itself better to the idea of sophistication as it features different lounges and the Salle des Abeilles, famous for its rich decor. This palace has served as home to the Société des Arts since 1863 and the structure itself was designed by architects Gabriel Diodati and Charles Schaeck and donated by arts patrons philhellene JeanGabriel Eynard and his spouse Anna Eynard Lullin. Refurbished in 1985, the palace continues to exhibit the opulence and sophistication as originally intended.
Casino du Lac
On the surface, Casino du Lac may seem like an average casino, but if you’re a traveling gambler with an interest in high stakes, you’ll want to check into their VIP room. One of 39 casinos held by Group Partouche, Geneva’s Casino du Lac not only promotes gambling and gaming but also helps those who may have a gambling addiction. Gambling with a conscience makes Casino du Lac a must-see in Geneva.
Not only a must for a photo opportunity, it’s also a must because it’s beautiful. The Jet d’Eau is a large fountain that is one of the city’s most famous landmarks. The jet, built in 1886, became an official landmark tourist attraction in 1891 and has helped define the landscape of the city and it holds a special place in the hearts of Genevans as well as those who visit it.
Place du Bourg-de-Four
No trip to any destination is complete without a good shopping excursion and, of course, dining. Geneva is no exception and the must-visit shopping and dining for us is Place du Bourg-de-Four. Located in Old Town, this square is a high-end shopping haven replete with fountains, excellent restaurants, and gelaterias!
Geneva is a bastion of peace, neutrality, and sophistication and should be on the travel itinerary of anyone visiting Europe, and the sights we’ve cited are must-sees on that visit. While you’re there, you’ll want to include a stop at the home of Art Basel Switzerland.