Hello everyone dear travelers, here we are to start a new adventure in Switzerland. Today is the turn of Lausanne, what do you say to present it? Let’s get to know it.
Lausanne is the capital of the Canton of Vaud and is located on the northern shore of Lake Lemano (also called Lake Geneva). It is the fourth largest city in Switzerland and is connected to the French town of Évian by boat. Lausanne is an important center of commercial banking and university activities; it is also home to the famous Rudra-Béjart dance school, founded by the famous choreographer Maurice Béjart. In 1994 it was declared Olympic Capital and is therefore the seat of the International Olympic Committee. And still right here in Lausanne there is the “Cinématèque Suisse” where important cinematographic materials are kept, making it the sixth city in the world for quantity and variety of goods kept. A curiosity about the city is the well-known expression on both sides of the Franco-Swiss border and it is the famous: “Il ya pas le feu au lac” (there is no fire in the lake), there is no rush . We are certainly not in a hurry but we have a great desire to start, so let’s go!
To know more (what to eat, where to eat, where to have fun, things to visit…) continue to read.
It’s time to get to the heart of our adventure, starting right from the cultural side. Let’s begin!
PLACES TO VISIT (MUSEUMS/THEATERS…)
Cathédrale Notre-Dame de Lausanne
- Cathédrale Notre-Dame de Lausanne: it is the largest Gothic Protestant (formerly Catholic) church of Lausanne located on the upper part of the city, near the Vaud canton of Lausanne, so it majestically overlooks the historic center and from here you can enjoy a great view. The interior is very nice and bright with this nave full of arches. Representative are the mosaics, the imposing organ and its bell tower where you can enjoy a full view of Lausanne. In the evening, the marvelous building comes to life thanks to the play of lights that on the occasion of the Lausanne Lumieres Festival is illuminated with a particular technique that colors it and transforms it into a spectacle that you would never stop watching.
- Musée olympique: the museum is dedicated to the history of the ancient and modern Olympic Games. The structure recalls a temple while its history is illustrated through vintage photos and films, original medals (donated by athletes), stamps and various memorabilia. The museum is also surrounded by small gardens (and just nearby we can suggest you the vast and well-kept Parc de mon repos), where various sports-themed sculptures and plus here are exhibited other works by various authors. The property also houses a library and a restaurant, overlooking Lake Geneva. Each year the museum welcomes millions of visitors and it was elected “European Museum of the Year” in 1995.
- Sauvabelin Tower: this tower, not far from the center, offers a panoramic view of the city of Lausanne, Lake Léman, the surrounding countryside and mountains. The spiral stairs are so many, but it is absolutely worth a visit because we assure you that this panoramic point will leave you speechless.
- Palais de Rumine: it is a Renaissance-style building and this is already visible from the main hall in full style. To welcome you there will be a beautiful fountain, an absolutely suggestive touch in this fantastic atmosphere. This structure also contains a lot of history and culture because a series of museums are part of it: Musée cantonal des beaux-arts (Cantonal Museum of Fine Arts), Musée cantonal dell’Archéologie et d’histoire (Cantonal Museum of Archeology and History ), Musée monétaire cantonale (Cantonal Museum of Money), Musée cantonal de géologie (Cantonal Museum of Geology), Musée cantonal de zoologie (Cantonal Museum of Zoology). The interior is therefore beautifully full, but the exterior is not far behind, thanks to its imposing statues that adorn the building and its turret that completes the whole. The building is located in a large and well-known square, Place de la Riponne.
- Musée de l’Élysée: it is a museum entirely dedicated to photography and is housed in a beautiful and elegant 18th century palace with a well-kept garden and a crazy background. The collection not only contains photographs but also the techniques and the history of how they were made and how they were born. Everything starts from the daguerreotypes (device used for the daguerreotype, the first photographic process for the development of images) of the nineteenth century up to contemporary digital prints. Plus many works by famous artists such as Ella Maillart or Nicolas Bouvier.
- Museum of Contemporary Design and Applied Arts: is a museum of contemporary design and applied arts. This place offers a wonderful approach between vision, storytelling and application, a wonderful mix. There are many exhibitions, including recognized and interesting permanent ones, which show an evolutionary path of the exhibition. But the museum does not stop there, in fact, it has also opened its doors to aligners, directors, performers or musicians, creating a connection between the different forms of art. A mention must certainly be made for its characteristic structure with its high extremity.
- Musée du château de Morges: if you are looking for a castle like the fairy tales ones or one in which you will see some antique furniture, huge rooms and so on, this is not the place as the castle contains several museums, some of which reconstruct the great battles of the past, like the Napoleonic or Roman wars, others with a military theme with many collections to show. Here are exhibited many original pieces and meticulous miniatures reproducing original objects. The museum is located right in front of the lake and is surrounded by a small garden where artists often stage medieval fights or other period scene.
- Lousonna: it is an open-air museum, surrounded by greenery, precisely it is a Roman archaeological site. Before the birth of the city, the Romans built a military camp in this place that they called Lousonna. A piece of history not to be missed!
- Collection de l’Art Brut: the ugly art collection is a museum dedicated to the “outsiders” that has nothing to envy to any other art museum. This is a magnificent experience in the world of “diversity” and originality where the ugly becomes beautiful and special. Don’t miss this great opportunity!
- Lausanne history museum: it is the historical museum of Lausanne that testifies the rich economic, social and cultural history of the city. The exhibition is structured in 11 sections to understand the metamorphosis of this particular territory from the period from the Middle Ages to the Enlightenment. Perfect place to get to know the city and its past in depth.
- Three other museums and a library, respectively, Musée Bolo (private museum dedicated to the digital revolution), Aquatis (aquarium), Musée et jardins botaniques cantonaux and Rolex Learning Center which we recommend you visit if you still have time or if you simply want to.
As for the theaters, here are a few: Lausanne Opera, Théâtre Vidy-Lausanne, Théâtre Boulimie.
Palais de Rumine
Escaliers du Marché
And we continue to discover the city but from another point of view, the entertainment.
- Around the city we can find: the nerve center of Lausanne, in the historic part of the city, there is Place Saint Francois. Rue de Bourg branches off from the square, a shopping paradise with shops and boutiques of the most prestigious luxury brands. Immediately above this street there is the Rôtillon district, one of the oldest in Lausanne where you can enjoy a drink in total relax. Place de la Palud, one of the main squares of Lausanne with numerous cafes, restaurants and clubs, a meeting place where once a week there is a very colorful market full of many good and beautiful things. At the center of the square there is a beautiful fountain adorned with the oldest statue in the city, representing the Justice dressed in blue holding the scales. Think that this is the square where David Bowie got married, plus in a building there is a carillon clock that at the strike of every hour gives life to an animated show that illustrates the history of the Canton of Vaud. Ouchy a small neighborhood directly overlooking the lake. This beautiful area in addition to the promenade and many beautiful clubs is the favorite area for those who love roller skating and skateboarding, thanks to the presence of numerous paths and tracks created specifically. Also worth visiting is the Flon district, the perfect place to buy some souvenirs; and always in the Flon valley don’t miss the view of the Grand-Pont. Esplanade de Montbenon, a beautiful viewpoint.
- Escaliers du Marché: is one of the must-see attractions. It is a steep staircase covered by a wooden roof flanked by other wider stairs. The most characteristic thing is represented by the row of houses on the side of the stairs, where today there are numerous boutiques and bars and the cathedral as a backdrop. A real beauty!
- Parc du Denantou: an immense green expanse populated with some sculptures where you can learn the history. As a main attraction there is the wonderful Thai style structure which makes it even more special and intriguing. Another very nice park to go to is Milan Park.
- Other unmissable activities are the boat ride on the lake (or why not, practice paddle boarding) for a truly unique perspective of the city and the rich vineyard area such as Lavaux (which includes a breathtaking panorama not surprisingly a Unesco heritage site) or Al Domaine Croix Duplex Simon and Maude Vogel where you can taste local wines and enjoy the calm climate of the cottages. And again, if you are in Lausanne in the height of summer, a stop not to be missed is the Plage bellerive with access to the lake, a large swimming pool with a diving board and recreational spaces or even Plage de Vidy-Bourget. Tropiquarium de Servion, if you are interested in the local fauna.
- Other places to visit, even if far from the center, are: hilly chain that extends above Lausanne where the parc naturel du Jorat is located, an intact and beautiful green environment in which to get lost (metaphorically speaking hahaha). Glacier 3000 is a paradise for mountain lovers. Its panorama offers a breathtaking view of 24 peaks and constant snow. The surprising thing is its walkway suspended between two peaks but let’s not forget its beautiful toboggan runs. In addition, nearby the picturesque village of Les Diablerets entirely composed of chalets (an ideal stop for those who suffer from vertigo and don’t want to go into it). Don’t miss all this because this place will make you speechless!
- We would like to inform you of the presence of the Lausanne Transport Card which allows you to travel freely on public transport without any limitations.
Esplanade de Montbenon
Lausanne’s nightlife is full of life and there is everything for each one of you depending on what you prefer, tranquility, entertainment and so on. The most popular places are the Flon, Place de la Gare, rue Marterey, Place du Tunnel.
Among the clubs that we find in the city there are:
- White Club: nightclub
- MAD Club: disco
- ZBar Club: disco
- El Secreto Club: disco
- MY HOUSE Club: nightclub
- Caffe Bellini
Croute au fromage
Now we are ready for the typical dishes. Let’s eat!
- Croute au fromage: cornerstone of local cuisine, it is a fairly thick slice of bread that is soaked in white wine, covered with cheese, egg and often a few slices of ham. Everything is heated in the oven or on the grill.
- Papet vadois: it is a typical dish of the canton of Vaud based on leeks and potatoes. They are cooked together with saucisson vadois, a pork sausage, flavored in the mixture with spices. As opposed to meat, another dish not to be missed is perch as Lausanne overlooks Lake Geneva, so is full ot it!
- Malakoff: they are pancakes with gruyère cheese. Be careful, these cheese bombs are highly addictive!!
- Birnbrot: this is a very famous dessert in Switzerland, a puff pastry filled with dried pears along with figs, apples, nuts, raisins, candied fruit and spices. What a spectacular mix!
- Magenbrot (literally bread for the stomach) is a small biscuit, a kind of gingerbread with cocoa, honey and cinnamon, covered with a delicious chocolate glaze.
WHERE TO EAT (RESTAURANTS/CAFE’…)
We have the typical dishes, now we just have to see where to taste them. Here are some suggestions.
- Anne-Sophie Pic au Beau-Rivage Palace: French, European, vegetarian cuisine.
- Auberge de l’Abbaye de Montheron: Swiss, European, vegetarian cuisine.
- Il Ghiotto: Italian, Mediterranean, European cuisine.
- Le Tandem: Italian, Mediterranean, European cuisine.
- Restaurant du Vieux-Lausanne et Bar Giraf: French, Swiss, European cuisine.
- Restaurant Le Mirabeau: French, Swiss, European cuisine.
- SUD: fast food with French, Mediterranean cuisine.
- Les Trois rois: French, Swiss, European cuisine.
- Le Troubadour: Italian, French, Swiss cuisine.
We conclude our tour in Lausanne in style while the one in Switzerland has just begun, so you just have to continue traveling with us to discover our next destination.
Let us know your opinions about this place. If you liked it or not, if you’ve been there or you’re going to go there? What you liked the most or least? We’re curious to read your opinions.
A big kiss to everyone.