About Switzerland

Switzerland

Central Europe
Population 8,287,000 (2015)
Coordinates: 47 00 N, 8 00 E
Area Total: 41,290 sq km

Capital: Berne
National Holiday: August 1
Currency: Swiss Franc (CHF)

Bordering Countries:
Germany, France, Italy, Austria, Liechtenstein

Languages:
German, French, Italian, Romansch

Overview

The capital of Switzerland is Berne. The Swiss Confederation (conventional name of Switzerland) is a federal republic divided into Executive, Legislative and Judicial branch. The country is split into 26 administrative divisions (cantons). The Swiss Confederation was found on August 1, 1291 and the Swiss celebrate this 1 of August as their National holiday.

It is an exhilarating place to spend your Switzerland vacation. The diversity of the landlocked, mountainous country is the essence of Switzerland and gives the country its unique identity. Along with its attractiveness as one of Europe's main tourist destination, it is best known for its financial institutions, fine cheeses and chocolate, the watch making industry, for its scenery and an excellent network of public transportation.

The renowned Swiss obsessiveness with cleanliness, punctuality and hard work, coupled with the highest standard of living in Europe, make about Switzerland one of the most desirable and least problematic of countries in which to travel. The tourist infrastructure is highly developed, and the Swiss themselves are unfailingly courteous and proud of the beauty of Switzerland. Together with a longstanding tourist tradition, you will leave with lasting memories of a great Switzerland vacation. Most Swiss speak English, and at least one of the other Swiss languages - French, German, Italian, or, in the extreme southeast, Romansch.

There is just something special about Switzerland - a lot of untouched nature and in general people are careful with it with many efforts being undertaken to protecting the environment. As a result, Switzerland is far advanced in recycling waste material. Chemicals, paper, carton, glass, plastic, cans, textile, oil and cooking fat are all collected separately. For most tourists, our recycling measures are relatively drastic. However, you will get used to it quickly and the advantages are clear: Switzerland is a very clean country. You will not find a lot of street litter along your way.

Attractions and Activities

Discover Switzerland

Switzerland takes up an area of 41,295 square kilometers and is home to 7.4 million people. More than 60 percent of the country is mountainous and a quarter of it is covered with forests. Our country boasts breathtaking mountains, picturesque lakes and charming cities and towns that are full of culture and history. Switzerland is landlocked and situated on the crossroads of northern and southern Europe. Along with southeastern France and northern Italy, Switzerland contains the highest elevations in Europe.

Swiss Regions

Bernese Oberland
The Bernese Oberland is one of the most spectacularly beautiful regions of Switzerland. It is well worth a visit, especially during the summer months. The combination of snow-capped mountain peaks, fresh air, summer heat, jagged rocks and lush rolling green hills will quickly fascinate you.

Graubunden
The alpine canton of Graubunden is only an hour away from Zurich and offers a lot of excitement for every taste. Succulent green fields, spicy mountain air, dreamy mountain lakes and tanning summer sun: plenty of reasons to spend your summer holidays in Graubunden. And not to mention all the winter sports opportunities!

Engadin
The Engadin extends from the Maloja Pass to Martina on the border with Austria. A popular travel destination for the Swiss, it is divided into the Upper and Lower Engadin and features a different scenery from the other valleys of the Swiss Alps. The Engadin boasts lovely landscapes with dark blue mountain lakes and a continental mountain climate that make it a hiker’s paradise.

Appenzellerland
The Appenzellerland is known for its gently rolling green hills, flowery meadows and rugged mountains. The Alpstein massif in the eastern region of the Appenzellerland is one of the most beautiful mountain ranges in Switzerland. Tourists seeking culture and customs come to Appenzell to discover the immense wealth of tradition of painting, music and cheese-making.

Ticino
The Ticino is Switzerland's only Italian-speaking canton. The areas around its two lakes, Lago di Lugano and Lago Maggiore, enjoy a distinct Mediterranean climate where palms and citrus trees grow; figs, olives and vineyards are cultivated, and other tropical vegetation flourishes. The architecture throughout Ticino is Renaissance and Baroque, and the atmosphere is very Italian.

Valais
The Valais is a L-shaped valley between Lake Geneva and the heartland of Switzerland. This area about Switzerland is most famous for the Matterhorn, the longest Glacier in Europe and 47 peaks over 4,000m in elevation.  The people are proud of their top class resorts, delicious specialty wines and the charm of their towns.

Baselbiet
The Baselbiet is in very close proximity to Basel is one of the best kept secrets of Switzerland! Softly rolling hills which are part of Switzerland's second mountain range invite to hike, bike and have fun. This region of Switzerland is also a great place for families with smaller children. From its highest peak, the Passwang, you will have gorgeous panoramic views of the Mittelland and the Swiss Alps.

Museums

Museum Pass
Switzerland is covered with museums of all sorts and kinds. Many top of the best European museums and collections are exhibited in Switzerland. The Museum Pass provides access to about 500 museums in Switzerland. The museum pass is included with a Swiss Rail Pass. A few private museums are not included, but some offer a discount of 50%.

Location and Map

Switzerland is located in Central Europe and is landlocked. Its neighbors are Germany, France, Italy, Austria and Liechtenstein. The main 3 airports are Zurich (ZRH), Geneva (GVA) and Basel-Mulhouse (BSL / MLH).