Summary of the stay

  • 6 days
  • Spring
  • Summer
  • Couple
  • Family
  • Culture / Heritage
  • Faune and flora
  • Discovery
  • Relaxation / Well-being
  • Luxury

On the shores of Lake Geneva thrones Geneva, capital of international organizations. During a weekend, you will have the chance to visit Switzerland's second largest city and its many monuments. And, if the climate permits, a swim in the lake is quite possible.

Map, Itinerary of the stay and pictures

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Itinerary of the stay
  • Geneva
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Detail of the stay : A week in Geneva - 6 days

Day 1: Geneva, the essentials

Morning. Geneva is above all famous for Lake Geneva, the Rhone which flows into it towards the Mediterranean, and also for the Jet d'eau, which like a game projects its 14 tonnes of lake water into the air every minute. So let's start by looking at the city through the liquid element. From the right bank (direction of the Rhône's flow), the quai des Pâquis, then on the Mont-Blanc bridge, the view of the lake, the Jet and Mont-Blanc is breathtaking. You may want to have a bite to eat at the Bains des Pâquis. To get to the other side of the lake, cross the Pont de la Machine and take the time to immerse yourself in the city's watchmaking tradition in the Cité du Temps. A place where you can understand that the mastery of watchmaking technology has also enabled the Swiss to become the masters of time. You can also decide to take a "Mouette" to cross the lake. Then continue to the Place Neuve via the Rue de la Corraterie.

Lunch. When you arrive at the Place Neuve, and to recover from this first long walk in the city, lunch in the very beautiful and very Art Deco restaurant of the Parc des Bastions (Old Town - Bastions) is a must. Under the glass roof supported by elegant grey-green posts, you feel transported to the beginning of the century, just a stone's throw from the neoclassical architecture of the old town. An almost authentic Belle Époque atmosphere awaits you.

Afternoon. Now it's time to get to the heart of the matter. In the Parc des Bastions, the wall of the Reformers takes you right into Protestant Rome. Austere robes and an aesthetic worthy of Tolkien, here you are reminded that the Reformation was to Geneva what the Renaissance was to Italy, a great flood of thought and thinkers that made the city a rich and powerful centre. An impression confirmed by a visit to St. Peter's Cathedral at the top of the old town: a perfect combination of austerity and power, magnificence and restraint.

Dinner. Since we are in the old town, we might as well extend the journey through time, with a choice of the Papon café and its terrace overlooking the Promenade de la Treille, a historic place, out of time in the summer, or the wide beams of the Armures restaurant in the winter, with of course, to warm up, a little fondue in the carnotzet.

Evening. We can end this first day with a visit to the Alhambar, this well-known place in the old town where the whole of Geneva meets in front of its large bar and its good-natured and relaxed dance floor.

Day 2: Art in Geneva

Morning. Back to the old town, for a breakfast on the Place du Bourg du Four in front of the flowery fountain. Then history and culture are on the agenda for the morning. The Tavel house and its long history, before entering the Museum of Art and History, which allows you to discover the richness of the collections and also the artistic creation of Geneva in the 19th and 20th centuries. For a coffee break or an aperitif, the Café du Bourg du Four below the square will attract your curiosity. The wooden frontage is reminiscent of the cafés of the time and the posters on the wall take us back to the lives of the illustrious Genevans.

Lunch. Since we are already in the Museum of Art and History, why not take advantage of the excellent Barocco restaurant, located on the lower ground floor overlooking the beautiful interior courtyard in summer. On the menu, a nice mix of all the influences that cross paths in Geneva, under the gaze of peaceful statues.

Afternoon. To avoid the risk of being trapped by Sunday closures, it is best to shop on Saturday. When you leave the museum, walk down to Eaux-Vives via theRussian church and the picturesque Terrassière district, to the shops on rue des Eaux-Vives. Then take the tram to rue de Carouge (12), to rue de Leschot. You can stop for a drink at the Recyclables or at the Jules Verne café (Plainpalais). To end this already busy afternoon, head for the Mamco and its exploration of contemporary artistic creation.

Dinner. Adjacent to the Mamco, a restaurant decorated in the 19th century gives you the opportunity to dive into Geneva's nightlife on the right foot. The Café des Bains has a bistro atmosphere. You can also walk to Les Halles de l'île, the most prominent restaurant in Geneva, praised as much for its atmosphere as for its cuisine.

Evening (1). For this evening, the rue des Bains is very lively and you will be spoilt for choice between numerous cafés and bars. The area is a mix of beer-hungry students and young hipsters looking for a party experience. Café Cuba and Café du Lys are two of the neighbourhood's most popular addresses.

Evening (2). To end this evening, after this gentle start, you need to speed up by going to Carouge and its Chat Noir, unless you are tempted by the neo-burlesque shows of the Palais Mascotte in the warm Pâquis district.

Day 3: Geneva au naturel

Morning. After these purely urban sequences, the third day will also be an opportunity to go green, and in Geneva there is a choice. Beaches and parks are as many exotic places in the heart of the city. To recover from the previous evening, there is nothing better than a good brunch, either at the very central Halles de l'île, or at the Coup de Girafe for a more intimate atmosphere. In either case, head for the Pointe des Eaux-Vives and its special seaside resort atmosphere. Why not take a walk on the lawns of the Lagrange and Eaux-Vives parks , or the sand of Baby Plage?

Afternoon. After crossing the lake on one of the "Mouettes" from the Port Noir towards the Perle du Lac, head for the Nations district, with a visit to the European headquarters of theUN and its impressive flag alley and constructivist architecture. A little further on, take the time to discover the very touching Red Cross Museum, opened by Laura Bush and Raïssa Gorbatchev, a symbol of peace and compassion.

Dinner. Indulge in the authentic Geneva cuisine of Le Rémor, which you will find strangely full - Le Rémor is, in the memory of Genevans, always open on Sundays. A detail not to be forgotten in this city, which jealously (and fortunately) keeps its Sundays available for family gatherings.

Evening. Between the Victoria Hall and the Grand Théâtre de Genève, a cultural evening will bring to a close this journey that began in the water and ends in art.

Day 4: Historic and international Geneva

Morning. To start your weekend, discover international Geneva with a visit to either the Palais des Nations, the UNHCR (United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees) or the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Museum.

Lunch. Once in the Pâquis district, sit down in one of the many foreign restaurants in the area, which brings together many different nationalities. You can also choose to eat at the Bain des Pâquis, an emblematic place where all of Geneva meets, in a magical setting in the middle of the harbour.

Afternoon. Passage on the right bank in a Geneva "Mouette", the shuttle boat that crosses the lake, to admire the great classics: the Jet d'eau (with a good ice cream if it is hot enough), theFlower Clock and the charming old town of Geneva. If you have enough energy left, climb to the top of the Saint-Pierre cathedral, the panorama of the region will reward your efforts!

Dinner. Stay in the area and eat a good fondue! You can choose between the Café des Antiquaires, which offers excellent value for money, or the Café aux Armures, which is steeped in history in the old town.

Evening. You will have to go back down the hill to the trendy Plainpalais district, full of bars of all kinds where young Genevans meet. If you prefer an opera, a play, a concert or a film, you will be spoilt for choice!

Day 5: On the heights of Geneva

Morning. Take the time to walk through the lovely streets of Carouge, with their small coloured houses and mysterious gardens. Then, take the cable car up to the top of the Salève (neighbouring France), dear to the hearts of the Genevois, which offers a magnificent panorama of the Geneva plain, and the Alps on the other side. You can even consider a descent into the air by paraglider!

Lunch. On the terrace in the summer, if possible by going for brunch, to feel fully in weekend mode. It is even more convenient to enjoy it in the neighbourhood, which is full of good restaurants in all price ranges. The Auberge du Cheval Blanc is worth a visit.

Afternoon. If the mountains don't appeal to you, take a trip to the Museum of Art and History to admire the remarkable paintings by Ferdinand Hodler, the Miraculous Fishing by Konrad Witz or the halberds used during the attack on Geneva by the Savoyards in 1602, the famous Escalade!

Dinner. A chic evening in one of the city's best restaurants, the Gusto, ideally located in one of the city's mythical palaces, the Metropole. A romantic evening in perspective if you opt for a drink at the 5 Lounge bar, the hotel's roof-top with a breathtaking view of the Jet d'eau.

Evening. Head for the only slightly lively corner of the old town after dark. On the Place du Molard, Lord Nelson Pub is one of the few establishments in the district to invite you to a last drink, in good company if you please!

Day 6: Park and gastronomy

Morning. If the weather is good, take the time to walk to the lake via the botanical garden and the Perle du Lac, it's a very nice walk. It is one of the most beautiful and vast parks in Geneva and the calm and panoramic views it offers are worth getting lost in for a few hours.

Lunch is served. Unless you prefer to have a picnic in the park, we will return to the Eaux-Vives, towards another park, to have lunch in the Brasserie du parc des Eaux-Vives, which we appreciate in particular for its serene and natural aspect and especially its grandiose terrace.

Afternoon. It would be unthinkable to leave Geneva without taking a look at the delicate collections of the Baur and Bodmer foundations , between treasures of the history of writing and refined jewels from the Far East. Then go to Cologny.

Dinner. To end this stay, reserve the last evening to taste classic Italian dishes, but revisited in a chic version at the restaurant In Fine (Bourg de Four), which also offers appetizers and cocktails in their basement lounge. Then, why not discover the old town and its cobblestones by night, as romantic as it gets!

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