Nestling in the west of Switzerland
, almost surrounded by French territory,
lies beside the tranquil waters of Lake Geneva. With a backdrop of mountains
is for many the gateway to the Alps. By far the most international of Switzerland's cities, the "most compact metropolis in the world" is the seat of 25 international organisations, and the crossroads of nations. Known for its exceptional quality of life, Geneva
is also a clean and green city.
Your first impressions of the city should probably include the harbour in the bay of Geneva
, and the city's famous and emblematic fountain
. A jet of water shoots 372 metres (1220 feet) into the air from the surface of the lake. With its flowering neatly planted gardens, and the bobbing yachts' multicoloured sails, the harbour is a cheerful sight.
Among the most important events in Switzerland
is the Geneva Festival
, when the harbour hosts craft, food and trade stands, as well as around 120 concerts in Geneva
for the occasion.
This international city is home to three major institutions, the Palais des Nations
(HQ of the United Nations), the Palais Wilson (former HQ of the League of Nations, now HQ of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights) and the UNHCR (UN High Commissioner for Refugees).
Geneva, city of peace, is also the home of the international organisation the Red Cross. Learn all about the charity's founder, Henry Dunant, and the work carried out by the Red Cross all over the world, at the Red Cross and Red Crescent Museum
Do check out the statues of the "Reformation Wall
", honouring the major figures within the Protestant Reformation.Switzerland
is of course famous for its watches, and you can check out some beautiful models at the Philippe Patek Museum in Geneva
The Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art (MAMCO)
has a particularly noteworthy collection of ceramics and glass. On the more technical side, the Antique Transport Fair
is full of treasures, with collectibles of all kinds: cars, motorbikes, planes and boats.
If you're in need of some fresh air, the Parc des Bastion
is one of Geneva
's fifty-odd parks which breathe life into the city.