Top 9 Things to do in Zurich (Switzerland)

Discover some of the best things to do in Zurich, the top jewel of Switzerland. Find out where to go and what to see while enjoying its vibrant atmosphere all while strolling its beautiful streets.
top tourist attractions in zurich switzerland featured

One of the best cities in Europe when it comes to business and banking especially, Zurich is the largest city in Switzerland despite it not being the capital of the country. Here are located centers of some of the most important banks in the whole world.

It is the financial hub of Switzerland, and it houses the headquarters of a large number of national and international companies. Here is also located the FIFA’s headquarters and Google’s worldwide second largest development center.

Why is Zurich one of the best places to visit in Switzerland?

This city lies by the Lake Zurich and is very close to the snowy mountains of Alps. Therefore, this city is also called the “portal to the Alps.” There are many things to do in Zurich, you can spend a full day walking around the city visiting museums, and your evening in one of the cool clubs that are open almost every night or at one of the chill bars and awesome restaurants.

Zurich is an essential historical destination in Europe. Here you can visit one of the 50 museums and 100 galleries to learn a little bit more about Swiss and European history. Today, we present to you the best of Zurich.

Top 9 Things to do in Zurich (Switzerland)

top tourist attractions in zurich switzerland lake zurich

Spend a day at Lake Zurich

It is one of the most amazing places to visit and one of the most picturesque places in Europe. Zurich is the biggest city located on the Zurich Lake.

If you are a real traveler, you know that this lake is one of the primary things to put on your “What to see in Europe” or “What to see in Switzerland” list. The natural beauties of this lake will take your breath away!

The mountains and the city on the other side look stunning and unforgettable. One of the best places to visit in Switzerland during the summer is the Lake Promenade.

It is the most beautiful place in Zurich to spend the evening or the whole weekend. There, you will find thousands of people on a sunny day.

For the end of your visit to this lake take a boat ride and see the city from the other side. You will be assured that this is one of the best places to visit in Europe.

Read the full blog post: Top 15 The Most Expensive Cities in Europe That Are Still Worth the Visit

top tourist attractions in zurich switzerland swiss national museum

Visit the Swiss National Museum

Swiss National Museum works as part of the Musée Suisse Group, and it is one of the most significant art museums of cultural history in Europe. This museum, located next to Hauptbahnhof, is one of the places you need to visit in Zurich. It was built in 1898 by Gustav Gull. Its impressive architecture with dozens of towers and a beautiful park on an island has become one of the leading displays of the Old City District of Zurich.

Museum’s extensive and impressive collection made visiting this tourist attraction one of the best things to do in Zurich. Here you will see exhibitions that will take you from prehistory through ancient times and the middle ages to the 20th century. Do not forget to add this place to your list of what to see in Zurich.

Read also: Top 12 Museums in Europe (For Arts, History, and Culture)

Where to stay: Best hotels in Zurich , Switzerland

top tourist attractions in zurich switzerland mount pilatus

Get up to the Mount Pilatus

This mountain massif is where you need to go if you want some adventure and the touch of nature in Switzerland. This mountain is located in Central Switzerland and embraces cities like Zurich and Lucerne. It is composed of several peaks.

The highest one is Tomlishorn, and it is 2,128 meters high. You can reach this peak by taking the world’s steepest cogwheel railway from Alpnachstad and all-year-round by cable-car in three sections from Kriens.

Read also: Top 6 Mountains to Go Hiking in Europe (For Outdoors Enthusiasts)

top tourist attractions in zurich switzerland old town lindenhof

Take a free walking tour of the Old Town of Zurich

One of the things to do in Zurich is to take a free walking tour through the Old Town. This part of the city represents Zurich as it was before 1893. Today, it is part of Zurich’s district one or Kreis 1.

This part of the town is divided into four quarters – Rathaus (town hall), Hochschulen (universities), Lindenhof (“lime trees courtyard”) and City. In this small part of Zurich lives around 5000 people or little under 2 % of the entire city population.

If you ever thought about what you could see in Zurich, take this tour and find out. You will discover some of the top places to visit in Europe. These tours start every day at 11 o’clock in the morning and at 1 PM on the weekends. Your meeting point with a tourist guide is going to be the UBS building at Paradeplatz.

Read also: Top 10 Castles in Switzerland

Where to stay: Best hotels in Zurich , Switzerland

top tourist attractions in zurich switzerland grossmunster church

Visit Grossmunster church

This Protestant church built in Romanesque-style is undoubtedly one of the places to see in Zurich. It is one of the four dominant churches in the city and is located on the banks of the Limmat River. The Grossmunster was built on the spot of an old Carolingian church.

The construction of the church started in 1100 and finished in 1220. This church firstly was a monastery church. According to legend, Charlemagne founded the Grossmünster when his horse fell onto its knees over the tombs of Felix and Regula, the patron saints of Zurich.

Read also: Christmas in Switzerland: 11 Best Christmas Markets in Switzerland

Where to stay: Best hotels in Zurich , Switzerland

top tourist attractions in zurich switzerland opera house

Watch an opera in Zurich Opera House

Oooh, opera! Is there anything more emotional and beautiful than opera? If you are an opera fan like me, you will enjoy watching some of the famous operas at the Zurich Opera House.

It is located at the Sechseläutenplatz and has been the home of the Zürich Opera since 1891. This building also houses the Bernhard-Theater Zürich and Zürich Ballet.

It is what you need to visit when in Zurich if you need some emotions and pure art.

Read also: Top 10 Places to Visit in Switzerland

top tourist attractions in zurich switzerland bahnhofstrasse

Bahnhofstrasse

Your perfect weekend getaway in Europe can be easily located in Zurich, especially if you love luxury brands and designer clothes. Bahnhofstrasse is among the best places to visit in Switzerland when it comes to shopping. It is the main downtown street and one of the world’s most expensive and exclusive shopping avenues.

Bahnhofstrasse is the most expensive retail street in Europe and the third most expensive worldwide. Here you can find shops of Apple, Burberry, Bvlgari, Cartier, Chanel, Dior, Giorgio Armani, Gucci, Hermès, H&M, Louis Vuitton, Prada, Tiffany, and Co., etc.

This is a street in the pedestrian zone, but it still has a vital role in the Zürich tram network. At the end of this street, you can see and visit one of the most beautiful squares in the world, Paradeplatz.

Read also: Top 8 Best City Breaks in Europe (That are Worth Visiting)

Where to stay: Best hotels in Zurich , Switzerland

top tourist attractions in zurich switzerland museum of art

Museum of art

Zurich offers a wide variety of activities to do; therefore it is considered to be one of the best travel destinations in the world. One of the things you should do in Zurich is visiting the Museum of Art. It houses one of the most significant art collections in Switzerland.

All items were collected by the local art association called Zürcher Kunstgesellschaft. Here you can see numerous masterpieces from the Middle Ages all to contemporary art. ”Die Flucht des Rochefort” by Édouard Manet, “Am Waldrand” by Henri Rousseau, “Composition II in Red, Blue, and Yellow” by Piet Mondrian are just some of the famous paintings you can see here.

All these cultural and educational activities that you can have with your family make Zurich one of the best family holiday destinations in Europe.

Read also: Summer in Europe: Top 14 Best Summer Destinations in Europe

top tourist attractions in zurich switzerland cheese fondue

Eat some traditional Swiss food

Switzerland is a country that consists of three administration parts – German, French and Italian canton. Therefore, it is not strange that Swiss cuisine is a mixture of German, French and Italian cuisine. Some of the most famous dishes are Cheese fondue, Bűndnernusstorte, Saffron risotto and soft white loaf called zopf.

Switzerland is the land of farmers, so all the ingredients that are used in the preparation of these dishes are simple like potatoes and cheese. Even though, Swiss cuisine is not famous in the world like Italian or French cuisine, when you say cheese or sausages you immediately think of this beautiful Alpine country.

Read also: The 15 Culinary Destinations in Europe That Will Make You Hungry! (Foodie Vacations)

Check out these activities in Zurich

 

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Evan Kristine

Evan Kristine

Founder of Pretty Wild World and one of the leading experts in Europe travel, the Nordics, and Scandinavia Destinations.

Evan Kristine has been mentioned in big publications such as The Huffington Post and the Thought Catalog has been sharing her useful travel tips and hacks to the world for more than five years now.

Nowadays, she is a full-time traveler exploring and documenting her journey around the world providing you the next best travel idea for your great next adventure.

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