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7 essential things to see in Lausanne

March 5, 2018

Here’s a glimpse of Lausanne’s 7 must-sees that will make you forget everything else during a weekend in the lakeside town.

1. Lausanne Cathedral

You can’t miss it! Lausanne Cathedral is undoubtedly a must-see attraction of the Vaud capital. An essential port of call for any visitor. Renowned as one of most beautiful gothic art monuments in Europe, the Cathedral offers a splendid view over the whole town, Lake Geneva and the Alps. The 224 steps that separate you from the top of the belfry will be quickly forgotten as you contemplate the breathtaking landscape! 😉 That’s it then, we put the Cathedral as number 1 on our to-do list and pack a pair of sturdy shoes (not forgetting a camera).

Cathédrale de Lausanne ©REGIS COLOMBO/diapo.ch Cathédrale de Lausanne ©REGIS COLOMBO/diapo.ch

2. The Olympic Museum and the history of the Olympic Games

Lausanne is also a cultural hotspot with its many internationally renowned museums, such as the Musée de l’Elysée (photography), the Fondation de l’Hermitage (fine art) or the Art Brut Museum. Among that long list, the Olympic Museum remains an absolute must for lovers of sport. An interactive museum that takes you on a journey through the history of the Olympic Games and that’s sure to appeal to children and adults alike! (After all, there’s no age limit for having fun 🙂 )

Expo Musée Olympique ©CIO/Lydie Nesvadba Expo Musée Olympique ©CIO/Lydie Nesvadba
Musée Olympique ©LT/ www.diapo.ch Musée Olympique ©LT/ www.diapo.ch

 

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3. Ouchy and its lakeside walk

For a walk, a siesta in a park or just to admire the view on Lake Geneva and the mountains, head to Ouchy. It only takes a teensy ray of sunshine for the lakeside walkways to be packed with joggers, cyclists, people rollerblading and strolling. You’ve just got to stop and treat yourself to an ice-cream before chilling in the sun. And with a spectacular view to boot! 😉

Balade Ouchy ©www.regiscolombo.com Balade Ouchy ©www.regiscolombo.com
Fontaine Ouchy ©Christof Schuerpf Fontaine Ouchy ©Christof Schuerpf

 

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4. Lavaux vineyards

A UNESCO World Heritage site that is a must-see during any stay in Lausanne, Lavaux seems to be unaffected by the passing of time. Terraced vineyards with Lake Geneva and the Alps as a backdrop, the beauty of this landscape can’t fail to move you. It’s a unique area where Lausanners love to go for walks on steep paths. The cherry on the cake is that you can end it with an authentic wine tasting in one of the local winegrower’s cellars 😉

Lavaux ©LT/Laurent Ryser Lavaux ©LT/Laurent Ryser

5. Rolex Learning Center at EPFL

EPFL, the Lausanne Federal Institute of Technology, is actually a small town of 10,000 inhabitants. An international establishment that is architecturally very avant-garde, EPFL is worth a visit! Don’t miss the Rolex Learning Center, a library accessible to the public shaped like a wave and that sits practically in the middle of a field. You can reach it by public transport (7 min from the town centre). The building, designed by the architectural firm SANAA, is striking. 😉

Rolex learning Center ©REGIS COLOMBO/diapo.ch Rolex learning Center ©REGIS COLOMBO/diapo.ch

6. Lake Geneva

Lake Geneva is the gem that makes Lausanne sparkle and its heart beat. From an esplanade, an unexpected opening between buildings, on a terrace, the largest freshwater lake in Europe can be seen from a great many viewpoints in Lausanne. Just about everything lures you down to its shores: chilling on one of the small beaches along the waterfront, a short cruise on one of the Compagnie Générale de Navigation’s famous steamboats, wakeboard, stand-up paddle boarding and water-skiing for the more athletic, an outing on a paddle boat in Ouchy or a dip in the lake in Vidy for those who enjoy more sedate activities… The lake is well and truly part of the Lausanne lifestyle.

Saint-Saphorin ©LT/ Laurent Kaczor Saint-Saphorin ©LT/ Laurent Kaczor
Lac Léman ©Laurent Kaczor Lac Léman ©Laurent Kaczor

7. Points of view

Built on three hills, Lausanne is a very steep town. So much so that film director Godart used to say of Lausanne ladies that the constant uphill walking gave them the nicest legs in the world. 😉

This unusual topography offers incredible points of view: from the top of the Cathedral’s belfry, Sauvabelin Tower, Montbenon Esplanade or the Flon esplanade…

Armed with a camera, you can roam the town to admire Lausanne from all angles. It’s a city packed with surprises! 🙂

#Architecture#Guided tours#Terraces
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