Introduction to Switzerland

Ever believed you could have secret yodelling skills? Here’s a little trick, just sing "little-old-lady-who" (and repeat) - then you’ve got it! But if you’d like to learn from the masters then get on that big jet plane bound for Switzerland. Of course, it’s not all yodelling, secret bank accounts, cuckoo clocks and smooth silky chocolate, there’s much to discover in Switzerland beyond the clichés. There’s separate cantons for starters and 3 main languages spoken: Swiss-German, French and Italian.

The soaring Swiss Alps provide a beautiful backdrop for many villages and cities including Zurich, which is home to swanky restaurants and bars, a fashion strip that rivals the Champs-Élysées and over 50 museums. The Swiss capital, Bern, has a lovely medieval old town, a spectacular modern and alternative art scene and the whole city just happens to be an UNESCO World Heritage Site. The largest Swiss city is Zurich, which is a tourist destination in its own right and a major international banking centre, and Geneva is famous for being the headquarters of major government and charity organisations including the Red Cross.

Bound by France, Germany, Austria, Liechtenstein and Italy, this landlocked country isn’t exactly large, but it sure packs a punch when it comes to epic landscapes that are made for adventure. Grab your hiking boots, your board or get on your bike for a rollicking good time. Come winter, Bernese Oberland, Graubünden and Central Switzerland are choice for carving it up. Come summer, these destinations are still plenty exciting for hikers and bikers. You can cruise along trails into picturesque valleys, pass mythical lakes and gaze out onto the spectacular mountain ranges. There’s also whitewater rafting, sky diving and handgliding. What a sight to behold from above!

Classy cultural affairs are also Switzerland’s bag. There are countless museums, galleries and theatre events all over the country. You can even see Switzerland on a tiny scale – 130 houses, castles and monument models at a 14,000 square metre-sized open-air parkland called Swissminiatur in Melide on Lake Lugarno!

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