A beautiful city brimming with culture and history, located close to some of Europe’s most dramatic scenery, Zurich offers something to satisfy every kind of traveler. If you’ve got three days to visit, here’s an itinerary that shows you the city’s highlights, and also includes a day trip to the famous Swiss Alps.
Day 1: Zurich Sightseeing
Get oriented with Zurich on an electric tuk-tuk tour, which takes you from the historical landmarks of Old Town—including Grossmunster and Fraumunster churches—to the Limmatquai waterfront in a short amount of time. Or you can enjoy a more personalized experience with a private city highlights tour, which can be customized to include the attractions that interest you most. History and culture buffs will also want to fit in a visit to the Swiss National Museum to see gothic art, photography, pottery, and other objects that detail Switzerland’s history. To see the city from above, take a half-day tour just south of the city center for a ferry ride across Lake Zurich and a ride up the Felsenegg Cable Car, where you can admire views from an elevation of 2,630 feet (800 meters).
Day 2: Natural and Culinary Highlights
Marvel at the largest waterfall in Europe on a half-day tour north of Zurich to Rhine Falls, which gives you the chance to glimpse some of the countryside scenery outside the city. Options are also available to combine Rhine Falls with a stop in Stein am Rhein, a small town known for its medieval architecture. Back in the city, indulge in Swiss chocolate on a sweets-themed walking tour, or take a city tour that includes a stop at the Lindt chocolate shop. Then experience the cheese culture of Switzerland with a culinary tour that includes a Swiss fondue dinner or a master class where you can learn how to pair cheese with wine.
Day 3: Into the Mountains
With Zurich’s proximity to the Alps, it’s a shame not to visit this alpine wonderland if you can spare the time. Mt. Titlis and Mt. Pilatus are two of the most popular day trips—Titlis is known for its rotating cable car that takes you to the summit for a panoramic view of snowy peaks, while Pilatus features a gondola, a cable car, and the world’s steepest cogwheel railway. Both day trips include a stop in Lucerne. The third day-trip option is Jungfraujoch, aka the Top of Europe, where visitors ride a cogwheel railway to the highest railway station in Europe. Alternatively, skip the Swiss Alps for the chance to visit another country in one day with a tour to Liechtenstein, a tiny principality that sits between Switzerland and Austria.