What has been said about Lausanne
“Lausanne, with its slender steeples, Lausanne, whose white houses seen from a distance resemble a procession of swans drying themselves in the sun, and which has set the little town of Ouchy by the side of the lake, a sentry posted there to warn travellers not to pass by without paying tribute to the Vaudois queen; our boat approached with deference and a party of its passengers disembarked on the bank.”
Impressions de voyage en Suisse, 1833-1837
"Lausanne is a block of picturesque houses, spilling over two or three hills, which spread from the same central knot, and are crowned by a cathedral like a tiara. I was on the esplanade of the church, in front of the door, and thus at the top of the town. I saw the lake over the roofs, the mountains over the lake, clouds over the mountains, and stars over the clouds. It was like a staircase where my thoughts climbed step by step and broadened at each new height."
Le Rhin, 1842
Gérard de Nerval
“From there, the view is admirable. The lake extends to the right as far as the eye can see, sparkling in the sunlight, while to the left it resembles a river losing its way between the high mountains, obscured by their great shadows. The snowy peaks crown this operatic setting and, beneath the terrace, at our feet, a carpet of yellowing vines unfurls to the edge of the lake. […] Lausanne is a town full of steps; the districts are divided into storeys: the cathedral must be on the seventh at least. It is a really fine Gothic church, now spoiled and plundered by its Protestant destiny, like all of Switzerland's cathedrals, magnificent on the outside, cold and bare on the inside.”
Voyage en Orient, 1851
(French delegate at the Conference of Lausanne in 1932)
“The beautiful cosmopolitan and hospitable town is always ready to receive guests. A few hundred strangers, no more no less, change neither its appearance nor its habits. And yet it has smartened itself up a little: masses of foliage and floral borders embellish the façade of the Hôtel des Postes; the palaces have hoisted the national colours and those of the delegations for whom they must provide shelter. And the sun especially, of whose presence this sad spring has been so deprived, gives Lausanne a festive air from the early hours of the morning; it floods the white streets and gardens with clarity, it illuminates the mountains where a light mist still covers the summits and makes the lake shine like a silver cloth.”
Images de Lausanne in Revue des deux mondes, 1932.