Sightseeing in Switzerland
Tourism and Culture
Different Forms of Tourism
- Zürich (Switzerland's largest city) has many monuments to visit. One should definetly visit the gothicFraumünster with its stained-glass windows by Chagall; the imposing twin-towered Grossmünster cathedral; and the Swiss National Museum.
Visit the Horological Museum and watch-making factories at La-Chaux-de-Fonds In the elegant ancient city cenre of St Gallen, enjoy the baroque cathedral and famous Abbey Library (Stiftsbibliothek) in the old Benedictine monastery (incunabula and illuminated manuscripts), named a World Heritage Treasure by UNESCO.
Some other important historical places to visit in the country are:
- Kunsthaus (Zurich),
- The Clock Zytglogge ( Bern),
- The Kunst Museum (Basel),
- The Swiss Transport Museum (Lucerne).
- Some of the important cultural places in Switzerland recognized by UNESCO are: - Benedictine Convent of St John at Müstair - Convent of St Gall - Lavaux, vineyard terraces - Old City of Berne - Rhaetian Railway in the Albula / Bernina Landscapes - Three Castles, Defensive Wall and Ramparts of the Market-Town of Bellinzone
- There are many beautiful lakes in Switzerland which could be visited by a lake cruise or ferry trip. These include Lake Zürich, Lake Geneva, Lake Constance and the picturesque Vierwaltstättersee at Luzern.
Also visit Berner Oberland, a major tourist area that includes spectacular scenery including famous peaks (Jungfrau, Mönch andEiger), mountain lakes, alpine streams and wild flowers.
One should not miss to visit one of Switzerland's most photogenic villages, Gruyères, home to the nation's most famous cheese, to explore its castle and various cheese factories.
- In the ancient city of St Gallen, one can visit the baroque cathedral and famous Abbey Library ( Stiftsbibliothek)in the old Benedictine monastery (incunabula and illuminated manuscripts), named a World Heritage Treasure by UNESCO.
- Switzerland's has many thermal spa resorts. The Graubünden resorts of Arosa, Davos, Klosters and St Moritz are renowned the world over. Interlaken, near Bern, is another celebrated health resort and the gateway to the Berner Oberland.
- There are no sea beaches in Switzerland.
- Winter Sports
- These include skiing, ice climbing, ski touring, snowboarding, heli-skiing and glacier walking. Top ski areas include Portes du Soleil, Davos, Klosters, Zermatt, Verbier, Saas Fee and glamorous St Moritz.
- Outdoor Activities
Hiking is a favorite Swiss pastime.There are over 5,000km (31,070 miles) of marked trails. Hiking times are given on the signposts, and trails are colour-coded according to difficulty .
Cycling is another big outdoor activity. There are 3,300km (2,046 miles) of well-marked interlinked trails, and most of them offer easy cycling. Many railway stations offer bike hire (return it to any other station at the end of the tour) .
- Some of the traditional Swiss items one can shop for inlcude embroidery and linen, Bernese woodcarving, chocolate, cheese, Swiss army knives and luxury handmade clocks and watches. Zürich is the shopping capital. It has luxury boutiques and department stores of the reputed Bahnhofstrasse.
Individual and Civic Freedoms
- Political Freedom
- Swiss enjoy considerable political freedom and rights.
- Civil Liberty
- Freedom of the Press
- Free press
- World Ranking of Freedom of the Press According to "Reporters sans Frontières", 2009 report : 8/175
- Evolution: 4 places up compared to 2008
- For Further Information, Consult Worldwide Press Freedom Index 2009, Reporters Without Borders
- Free Access to the Internet
- Freedom of Assembly
- Rule of Law
- Switzerland is ruled by law. Foreign nationals in Switzerland enjoy treatment at par with the natives from the country’s judicial system, including the commercial disputes.
- Personal Autonomy and Individual Rights
- Women's Condition
- There is no discrimination against women in Switzerland. Women have legal equality.
- For Further Information
Human rights report, US Department of State
- Degree of Freedom
- Roman Catholics (41.8%), Protestants (35.3%), Muslims (4.3%), Orthodox (1.8%), Other Christians (0.4%), Others (1%), Unspecified (4.3%), None (11.1%) (2000 census).
- Role of Religion in Society
- There is no official state religion, though the country is predominently Christian. However most of the cartons recognise official churches which are financed by the local governments.
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