Thursday, August 11, 2022

Culture Of Switzerland

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Three of the most important European languages are official languages in Switzerland. Swiss culture is characterised by its diversity, which is reflected in a variety of traditional customs. A region may in some ways be strongly culturally linked to the neighbouring country that shares its language, since the country itself is rooted in the culture of Western Europe. An exception is the linguistically isolated Romansh culture in Graubünden in eastern Switzerland. It survives only in the high valleys of the Rhine and Inn rivers and strives to preserve its rare linguistic tradition.

Switzerland has made many notable contributions in the fields of literature, art, architecture, music and science. The country also attracted a number of creative people in times of turmoil or war in Europe. Some 1,000 museums are scattered throughout the country; their number has more than tripled since 1950. Among the most important cultural events held each year are the Paleo Festival, the Lucerne Festival, the Montreux Jazz Festival, the Locarno International Film Festival and Art Basel.

Alpine symbolism has played an essential role in the history of the country and in Switzerland’s national identity. Today, certain concentrated mountain areas have a strong ski resort culture with a high energy level in winter and a culture of hiking or mountain biking in summer. Other regions have a year-round recreational culture that favours tourism, but the quieter seasons are spring and autumn when there are fewer visitors. Many areas also have a traditional culture of farmers and ranchers, and small farms are ubiquitous outside the cities. Folk art is kept alive in organisations throughout the country. In Switzerland, it is expressed mainly through music, dance, poetry, woodcarving and embroidery. The alphorn, a wooden musical instrument resembling a trumpet, has become an example of traditional Swiss music, along with yodelling and the accordion.

How To Travel To Switzerland

By plane The main international airports are in Zurich IATA: ZRH, Geneva IATA: GVA and Basel (for the Swiss part: IATA: BSL), with smaller airports in LuganoIATA: LUG and Bern IATA: BRN. Some airlines fly to Friedrichshafen, which is on the other side of Lake Constance at Romanshorn, not far...

How To Travel Around Switzerland

By plane As Switzerland probably has the best developed public transport system in the world and the country's airports are not that far apart, domestic air traffic is very limited. Routes offered by Swiss International Airlines and Etihad Regional include Zurich-Geneva, Zurich-Lugano and Geneva-Lugano. In most cases, the train, sometimes...

Visa & Passport Requirements for Switzerland

Switzerland is a member of the Schengen Agreement. There are normally no border controls between the countries that have signed and implemented the treaty. This includes most countries of the European Union and a few other countries.Before boarding an international flight or ship, there is usually an identity check. Sometimes...

Destinations in Switzerland

Regions in Switzerland Politically, Switzerland is divided into 26 cantons, but the following regions will be more useful for the traveller: Western SwitzerlandFrom the north shore of Lake Geneva and the Alps to the Jura.Bern RegionThe central region of traditional Bernese influenceBernese OberlandThe majestic Bernese AlpsCentral SwitzerlandThe birthplace of the Swiss...

Weather & Climate in Switzerland

The climate is temperate, but varies considerably with altitude (on average around 6.5°C every 1000m). There are four clearly defined seasons, which bring changes in both temperature and precipitation. Switzerland experiences cold, cloudy, rainy/snowy winters and moderate to hot summers, with weather that can change very quickly; especially on...

Accommodation & Hotels in Switzerland

Most accommodation in Switzerland can now be found and booked through the main internet booking portals, even hotels and accommodation in remote areas. Nevertheless, most tourist regions in Switzerland have a tourist office where you can call to book a hotel for a small fee. Each city usually has...

Things To See in Switzerland

Chillon Castle: Castle near MontreuxThe Lavaux vineyards: on the shores of Lake GenevaThe castles of Bellinzona: in the south of the canton of TicinoSt. Gall AbbeyThe summit of Europe and the Sphinx Observatory: a "village" with a post office on the Jungfraujoch, 3,500 metres above WengenGrande Dixence: a 285-metre-high...

Things To Do in Switzerland

Switzerland is world famous for skiing, but the country is also suitable for many other outdoor activities such as hiking and mountain biking. Mountaineering, from easy to very difficult, is also practised in Switzerland, and there is hardly a place with a longer tradition of it. Some routes, such...

Food & Drinks in Switzerland

Food in Switzerland Although Switzerland has a long tradition of culinary exchange with its neighbours' cuisine, it has a number of emblematic dishes of its own. Switzerland is famous for many types of cheese such as Gruyère, Emmentaler (simply called "Swiss cheese" in the USA) and Appenzeller, to name just a...

Money & Shopping in Switzerland

Currency Switzerland is not part of the eurozone and the currency is the Swiss franc (or franc, or franco, depending on which language zone you are in), divided into 100 centimes, centimes or centesimi. However, some places - such as supermarkets, restaurants, tourist attraction counters, hotels and railways, or ATMs...

Festivals & Holidays in Switzerland

Holidays Public holidays are regulated at cantonal level (except 1 August) and can vary greatly. However, they are those that are observed (almost) everywhere: New Year's Day: 1 January (one of the three public holidays legally recognised by each canton). St. Berchtold: 2 January (in many cantons and municipalities it is a...

Traditions & Customs in Switzerland

English is widely spoken in Switzerland, but any attempt to speak the local language is always appreciated, even if you are answered in English. It is always polite to ask if you speak English before starting a conversation. Make an effort to learn at least the words "hello", "goodbye", "please"...

Internet & Communications in Switzerland

Many of the internet cafés that popped up in the 1990s have now closed, probably because Switzerland has one of the highest rates of high-speed internet connections in the world in households, but there may be a few internet terminals in some major train stations. The tourist office should...

Language & Phrasebook in Switzerland

Switzerland has four official languages at federal level, namely German, French, Italian and Romansh, and the main language spoken depends on which part of the country you are in. The cantons are free to choose which official language they want to adopt, and some cities such as Biel and...

History Of Switzerland

Switzerland has existed as a state in its present form since the adoption of the Swiss Federal Constitution in 1848. The forerunners of Switzerland concluded a protective alliance at the end of the 13th century (1291) and formed a loose confederation of states that lasted for centuries. Ancient history The oldest...

Stay Safe & Healthy in Switzerland

Stay safe in Switzerland Switzerland is unsurprisingly one of the safest countries in Europe, but any place that attracts Rolex-wearing bankers and throngs of distracted tourists is bound to produce a few pickpockets too. Clearly, you need to keep an eye on your business, especially amid the summer crowds. In...

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