Switzerland is famous for its beautiful mountainous scenery, the snow-capped Alps and fantastic skiing conditions. But some of the most famous landmarks in Switzerland include architectural wonders, castles and cathedrals.
While tourist numbers may drop outside of ski season, Switzerland is a beautiful country to visit all year round, with castles to rival the chateaux of France and lakes to rival the crystalline waters of the Balkans.
LAKE GENEVA. There's a good reason why Lake Geneva is an amazing natural landmark in Switzerland, not only is it the largest lake in Switzerland but it's also one of the largest in Europe. Surrounded by the Alps and the French-speaking Swiss city of Geneva, the lake is the perfect meeting of urban civilisation and Switzerland's stunning nature. It's possible to swim and kayak in some areas of this vast lake, and there are several hotels, spas and restaurants that look out over the shimmering water. One of the bucket list things to do here is to watch the sunsets over the lake. Another treat on the shores of the lake is the Lavaux Vineyards, which produces some of Switzerland's best quality wine. In spring, the cellar door is open to visitors, traditionally selling their wines at lower prices for a limited period.
THE MATTERHORN. The Matterhorn is a famous Swiss landmark and one of the highest peaks in the Alps and Europe. Straddling the Swiss-Italian border, the Matterhorn overlooks the quaint town of Zermatt in the Valais region of Switzerland. The peak is distinctive in shape: it looks somewhat like a pyramid, with four sides. Capped with snow, even during the summer months, the peak is a dramatic addition to the impressive mountainous skyline. For seasoned hikers, there is a 9-day Matterhorn trek, a challenge filled alternatively with high-altitude glaciers and flower-filled fields.
LAKE LUCERNE. Lake Lucerne is a stunning body of glistening turquoise water located in Central Switzerland. A smaller lake than Geneva, its shape is spiky with several arms of water. As with other lakes, there are designated areas for swimming in the summer months. The best views of the lake are arguably from the top of Mount Pilatus, although great panoramic viewpoints are more easily accessible from the Sonnenberg mini-mountain. The Golden Pass scenic rail journey starts in Lucerne and passes by the lake.
JUNGFRAUJOCH. Often referred to as the ‘Top of Europe’, Jungfraujoch stands at 3,454 metres above sea level in the Bernese Alps. Acting as a saddle connecting two peaks – the Jungfrau and the Mönch – Jungfraujoch has a viewing platform with shops for visitors. The views from the viewing station are simply out of this world: you can see for miles around across snowy peaks. To one side of Jungfraujoch, you can see that magnificent Aletsch Glacier. Jungfraujoch’s railway station is the highest train station in Europe and it is from here that you can take an elevator to the viewing platform.