Geneva has held tremendous importance as a site of international relations and peacekeeping; the League of Nations was based here and today the city is home to European headquarters of the United Nations. Yet, Geneva is not merely a political tool for negotiations; historically and culturally vibrant, the city provides an extensive amount of entertainment for the prospective visitor. Although French speaking, Geneva’s strong international role determines that most languages will be spoken here, with English being extremely widespread. Situated on the site where Lake Geneva meets the Rhône River, by both the Alps and the Jura mountain ranges, Geneva’s natural beauty is breathtaking. Yet, Geneva is also a site of man-made splendour and in 2000 the city was presented with the Wakker Prize for commitment to architectural history.


The Jet d’Eau is one of Geneva’s most cherished monuments. A burst of water is driven 140 metres into the air and during the evening the site is illuminated with breathtaking results.

Cathédrale St-Pierre symbolises the strength and achievement of the Reformation during its most successful period. Situated alongside the Cathedral is the Auditoire, where Calvin, the founder of Calvinism, taught. Entry to these two buildings also allows the visitor to view the International Museum of the Reformation. Commemorating the role of Geneva within this notorious religious struggle, the Museum aims to educate and entertain those who pass through its doors. Covering every aspect of the upheaval, the tour includes a ‘live’ debate between several key religious figures of the period. The Museum aims to discover a place for the Reformation in present society and analyses the contemporary state of religion.

Originally intended as the seat of the League of Nations, the Palais des Nations has since become the European base of the UN. The building is situated in the prestigious Ariana park, home to many important monuments as well as a collection of peacocks who are allowed to roam freely throughout the grounds. The Palais itself has a stunning Assembly Hall and an enormous collection of art which consists of pieces donated by countries belonging to the UN.

The Flower Clock is situated in the Jardin Anglais and is testament to Geneva’s watch making industry. Not purely decorative, the clock is fully operative and boasts the largest second-hand in the world. This garden is also home to the Niton Rocks, which were used sacrifices during the Bronze Age. Also worth visiting is the Treille Promenade, home to Geneva’s infamous chestnut tree. Used to calculate the beginning of spring, the blossoming of the first bud is a momentous event.

Geneva’s Art and History Museumaims to present a comprehensive history of the Western world and consists of three sections dedicated to archaeology, fine arts and applied arts. Music enthusiasts will enjoy a tour of the Grand Théâtre and the Conservatory of Music. The Natural History Museum of the City of Geneva has exhibitions dedicated to animals throughout the world and, more specifically, the geology of Switzerland. Also worth a visit is the Musuem of the International Committee of the Red Cross.


Switzerland is renowned for its fantastic chocolate and Geneva is certainly the place to sample it. There are a number of exceptional confectioners dotted around the city, but for those on a tight budget the chocolate sold in supermarkets is also delectable. Swiss wine is delicious and much cheaper than bottles sold in Great Britain. A favourite remains Le Domaine des Molards, a considerable vineyard producing over 20 varieties of wine. For gastronomic delicacies try Caviar House which sells items such as salmon, truffles and, of course, caviar. There is also a restaurant on the first floor for those whose appetite has been awakened by the delicious smells and sights.Switzerland is a famous watch producer and the products on offer in Geneva will not disappoint. For the ultimate Swiss souvenir try Bucherer for pieces made by Gucci, Rolex and Carl F. Bucherer. The avid shopper should visit Bon Génie, a collection of boutiques selling clothes as well as furniture and accessories. Septième Etage is also home to a multitude of labels for the fashion conscious.

Traditional Swiss items to look out for include Cuckoo clocks and Swiss Army Knifes which should be available throughout the city. For fantastic toys try Pinocchio Jouets, home to a massive collection sure to satisfy the young and the young at heart.

Nightlife and Eating Out

Geneva has an impressive selection of fantastic restaurants, although it is necessary to keep an eye on prices as meals can be quite expensive. For a bargain try the Espresso Club. Open until 2 am, the Club serves delicious pizzas, pasta and salads. For Chinese cuisine try Boky on the Rue des Alpes. For a slightly more expensive meal Café du Soliel claims to have the best fondue in the country. A short drive from Geneva, the Auberge de Dardagny uses only local produce in order to create authentic Swiss dishes. Items such as freshly caught fish and farmyard eggs are delicious. Many of the best bars can be found in the vicinity of the University. Favourites include Le Ferblanterie and the Moloko Bar. For those missing home, Pickwicks is a fantastic British pub, complete with fish and chips. For genuine home brew try Les Brasseurs. Visitors in the mood for dancing should head towards La SIP. Located on two floors, La SIP is one of the most popular nightclubs in Geneva

Tourist Information

Genève Tourisme3 Rue du Mont-BlancGeneva1201

Tel : +41 22 909 7000Website:


Geneva International Airport is situated only three miles from the centre of Geneva and is served by the majority of European airlines. There are also two transatlantic flights per day, including one from New York. For more information visit or the websites of individual airlines.