2 days in Geneva
Geneva is the second most populated city in Switzerland and offers a mixture of nature and art to the visitor. It is also a global hub for diplomacy and banking where you will find the headquarters of Europe's United Nations and the Red Cross. A walk along the lake, a boat cruise and a delicious fondue in one of the restaurants of its Old Town; Geneva is a great destination for a stopover.
The climate in Geneva is moderately continental, with cold winters and warm summers. The wettest month is September and the hottest month is July. January is the coldest month with an average temperature of 1.5 °C.
We visited this city in November and it was freezing cold!! We were lucky though as we had clear skies and no rain. I will definitely choose the summer months for my next visit.
To travel from Geneva Airport to downtown Geneva you can take a train (6 minute ride) or a bus (less than 20 minute ride). On arrival to the airport you can get a free UNIRESO ticket that allows you to use the public transport for 80 minutes; which is really convenient. You will find these ticket machines at the baggage reclaim hall. Apart from this, if you are staying in a hotel, hostel or campsite, you will receive a "Geneva Transport Card". This is a personal and non-transferable card that will be given to you when you check in at your accommodation, and allows you to use all the public transport for free for the duration of your stay in the city.
Otherwise, a regular ticket costs CHF 3 and it's valid for 60 minutes.
If you prefer to take a taxi, the cost will be around 35 - 45 CHF. You will find them outside the terminal building at the airport.
PLACES TO VISIT AND THINGS TO DO
Start your day with a walk along Geneva Lake. Here you will be able to admire the Jet d'Eau, a huge fountain that with its 140 metres is one of the tallest in the world.
While you are wandering, find the monument of Empress Elizabeth of Austria, also known as Sissi. When I was a kid I was fascinated with the movies about her life and I love everything related to her.
Stroll around the Jardin Anglais, an urban park that is home to the famous Flower Clock.
On a scorching day, why do not venture to take a dip at the Bains the Pâquis? These public baths are located on a Pier in Lake Geneva and they turn into saunas during winter.
Go to see the Broken Chair at Nations Square (Place des Nations). This 12 metre high sculpture was created to remember the victims of landmines. In front of this chair you will find the Palace of Nations.
Spend some time exploring the International District, with more than 200 world wide organisations. Pay a visit to the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Museum.
Finish your day with a delicious cheese and meat fondue.
For your second day in Geneva, get lost in the charming streets of the Old Town. Here you will find St. Peter's Cathedral, which became a place of Protestant worship. Pay a visit to its tower and enjoy one of the best views of the city.
Continue your day with a boat cruise in Lake Geneva and see the Statue of Little Mermaid.
Don't forget to buy some Swiss chocolate for your loved ones. At Farvarger Chocolate Boutique they offer different varieties and on of the best chocolate in the city.
End your day with a wander around Carouge, a district of Geneva with a Mediterranean atmosphere. Relax and enjoy a meal or drinks at one of its many cafes and bars.
Note: If you like all types of markets check out the Plainpalais flea Market. Opened on Wednesdays, Saturdays and the first Sunday of the month.
FOOD AND DRINK
These are some of the typical dishes that you can try during your visit to Geneva:
Cheese fondue: Melted cheese with bread cubes.
Raclette: Melted cheese served with jacket potatoes, cocktail gherkins, onions and pickled fruit.
Älplermagronen: A kind of gratin with potatoes, macaroni, cheese, cream and onions. Served with stewed apple on the side.
My personal recommendations:
Au Petit Chalet: Where you can enjoy a meat and cheese fondue. Address: Rue de Berne 17, 1201,Geneva.
Chez ma cousine: If you like chicken this is your place! Address: Place Bourg-de-Four,1204, Geneva.
WHERE TO STAY
We stayed at the Ibis Genève Centre Nations hotel. This three star accommodation is conveniently located nearby the train station and offers free Wi-Fi.
The currency in this city is the Swiss Franc (CHF). Euro is accepted almost everywhere in the city, but it is better to pay in the local currency (1 CHF=£0.84).
Geneva is an expensive city so I suggest around £150 (170 €) for two days.