Switzerland’s beauty is indisputable, as well as the research papers state the country is one of the best to live in
Everything comes with a price. So how do the ordinary tourists manage to survive in Switzerland without going bankrupt? Do you need to have all of your savings with you to enjoy the country? We figured out some tips and tricks (completely) unintentionally to share with those of you who want to visit this wonderful place. Some things turned out to be completely free, others are a good deal having in mind the high standards. So, fortunately, our long weekend in Geneva and around turned out not to be equally expensive as a 3-week vacation in a tropical destination.
Enter Saint Pierre Cathedral and Old Town (free, access to tower 5 CHF)
For those who don’t get bothered with walking on cobblestone streets mostly up- or downhill, Old Town is expecting you with nice sights and hidden corners full of charm. Entering and walking around the Old City comes for free (yes, there are places on Earth you need to pay even for this). One of the main points of interest is the Saint Pierre Cathedral which could be enjoyed from the inside for free. Access to its tower costs
5 CHF(as of August 2015) but see the views from up there first before you decide if you could sacrifice 5 CHF and climb a decent amount of stairs.
Now you can enjoy some of the promised views from above. Lack of photo coverage from the climbing is intentional.
Open Summer City Festival
One-hour long fireworks
Here’s our video with 45 minutes of the fireworks (our hands failed to hold the camera for longer):
Admire the fountain
Jet d’Eau is probably the city’s most famous landmark. The actual usage is to release some water pressure when the Geneva Lake empties into a river. After its aesthetic value was noticed, it is the thing to admire and nowadays you cannot say you’ve been to Geneva unless you have a photo with the fountain.
Bains de Pâquis – 2 CHF entrance and food is cheap
2 CHF is the fee to enter the complex and you can walk around, lie on the “beach”, lie on the rocks, lie everywhere. The food corner is attractive – with breakfast set for 10 CHF and a lunch set for 20-30 CHF – this is super cheap for Geneva.
Weekend public transportation card for two
Even if you are single you might want to take advantage of this transportation card for two people that cost 10 CHF and applies for weekend days. With a single ticket of 3 CHF for 1-hour trip, you may also consider walking more:-) We heard some hotel provide you with a free card for the public transport network but having in mind the prices for hotel accommodation, we wouldn’t say it’s free.
The city is well-connected with trains, trams, buses. They are always on time (wow, Swiss punctuality) and very clean.
We suggest that you try to find nice apartments/rooms in Airbnb (using this link will give you a 26-euro discount with your first reservation). Booking.com is also an option here.
There are a lot more things to do and enjoy for (almost) free. Check out the second part of the Geneva and around on the cheap!