Despite its historical reputation as a world financial center, beautiful and exciting Zurich is so much more! As one of the cradles of the humanist movement and religious revolution, the city's rich past is evident around every corner in the variety of architecture and its many landmarks. With two universities and a thriving research sector, Zurich is at the cutting edge of technological development. Though one can certainly buy one of its trademark knives, clocks, watches, or chocolate, busy and exciting Zurich has much more than those to offer. Its proximity to the storied Alps make it the perfect getaway, no matter what the reason or the season. Hike among the Alps in the summer, or ski at one of 51 resorts within three hours of Zurich when the snow flies.
Location: A jewel poised near the Alps and beautiful Lake Geneva
Poised among the peaks of the Albis Mountains and the slender finger that is Lake Geneva, busy Zurich is located near the northern border of Switzerland, about a half hour's drive from Germany, and an hour from France. Zurich is in the Limmat Valley, formed by the river that flows into Lake Geneva from the north. The nearby Uetliberg is the highest peak in the area, and offers a remarkable view. The city is divided into twelve districts that are accessible by complex network of roads and rail. Public transportation is abundant and popular.
Business: A hub of world finance and a magnet for tourists worldwide
Situated in the very center of Europe, Zurich has grown over the centuries to become a major financial hub for Europe and the world. With 140,000 businesses, ten of Switzerland's biggest companies have their headquarters there. Though many mistake Zurich for the country's capital, that title actually goes to Bern. Switzerland's biggest airport is located in the city, and so are the central hub for the national railway network and the headquarters for the German Swiss national TV company. With its proximity to the Alps, tourism also plays a major role in the economy.
Culture: A multi-lingual and diverse city at the very heart of Europe
With its outstanding educational system, attractive business environment and governmental institutions, Zurich ranks very high in quality of life. Independent and proud, Zurich residents (and the Swiss in general) have been intellectual leaders since the time of Zwingli, a major figure in the Protestant Reformation. Because of its role as a world financial center, many of Zurich's residents are multi-lingual, with Swiss German being the country's lingua franca alongside French and Italian. The city's history is reflected in its storybook collection of Romanesque, Gothic, and Baroque style houses, churches, and municipal buildings.
Activities: Cruise on the Limmat and Lake Geneva, or ski the Alps
Whether your pleasure takes you indoors or outside, beautiful Zurich is loaded with exciting and interesting things to do and see. Art lovers can find their bliss at one of many museums including the Museum of Art (Kunsthaus) or the Reitberg. Take a cruise along the Limmat River, or out on Lake Zurich. Stroll among the shops and restaurants of Old Town (Altstadt). Savor the view of Zurich from the top of Uetliberg Mountain, relax in Parkanlage Zuerihorn (one of the city's popular parks), or check out the menagerie at the Zurich Zoo.