My husband, Eddie, and I ended up in Zürich, Switzerland at the end of our Paris to the Swiss Alps cruise with Viking River Cruises. I had been to Switzerland before but not Zürich. Viking delivered us from the cruise ship to the hotel (included in the cruise price) and also to the airport at the end of our trip.
Zürich is fascinating, very beautiful, and even more expensive. We explored as much of the town as we could in our two days and participated in the complimentary walking tour and boat ride from Viking River Cruises. Take a look at what you can expect on your visit to Zürich.
Amazing scenery encompasses every inch of Zürich. From stately architecture to colorful rows of historical buildings, snow-capped Swiss Alps to cobblestone streets that meandered to and fro, your camera is destined to get a workout.
This is such a cool city to walk around. We logged seven miles on our Fitbit one day and didn’t even realize how much walking we had done because it was so enjoyable.
Switzerland is famous for one of my favorite foods: cheese! You’ll find exotic cheese offerings everywhere you go. Having fondue in Switzerland was a must for me, so Eddie and I went to Swiss Chuchi Restaurant in the heart of old town for world-famous cheese fondue. We chose the traditional recipe with Vaudois cheese, white wine, cherry liquor, and garlic. It was everything I had imagined!
Another trendy cheese favorite around Zürich is raclette, which has recently started infiltrating our American eateries. We saw raclette shops all over town. If you aren’t familiar, you will smell it long before you see it.
The food is extremely costly in Zürich. At our hotel, simple meals were $24 and $4 to $7 for a small bottled soda. Beer was much cheaper than both bottled water and soda. In the old town, we found Blue Monkey, a tasty Thai restaurant with cool decor and a lunch buffet for $26 per person. I highly recommend it.
Eddie and I loved roaming around Paradeplatz (Parade Square) in downtown Zürich. This is the high-end part of the city known for great shopping and people-watching. Fashion and accessories take center stage in Parade Square while home accents are a close second.
If you aren’t staying downtown, getting there is super easy on the tram, and that is coming from someone who rarely ever uses public transportation. Tram stations have instructions printed in English and take credit cards. They are clean, efficient, and a great way to get around Zürich. Pay attention to the stately architecture and magnificent blooms as you travel through the city.
Our Viking River post-cruise excursion featured a boat ride around Lake Zürich. Bürkliplatz is where the boat tour starts from and lasts around 90 minutes. There are indoor and outdoor seating and spectacular views of the lake and snow-capped mountains on the ride. Our route took us to Rapperswil, an adorable medieval town with a lovely hillside 12th-century castle across the lake. We could hop off in the city of Rapperswil and catch a later boat back into town if we wanted.
All-in-all, the scenery all along the boat ride is excellent, and the fresh air feels fantastic. Plus, the boat cruise was free to Viking River Cruise guests, so make sure that you take advantage of the opportunity.
Viking River Cruises put us up at the Sheraton Zürich Hotel for two nights. The hotel is sleek and stylish with two restaurants and excellent service in a cosmopolitan neighborhood. Rooms offer a sitting area, excellent beds, an ergonomic desk and work area, mini-fridge, and invigorating shower.
Viking offers complimentary breakfast for cruise ship guests in a private space at the hotel. That was a real money saver! The Sheraton is also within steps of Toni-Areal (the local tram station), so that opened up all sorts of possibilities for exploring the city.
Zürich, Switzerland: One for the books!
Zürich is a lovely city to visit for the scenery alone. Switzerland is a breathtaking country with loads of things to see and do. Zürich has been my favorite city there thus far.
Visiting Zürich was a great way to close a fantastic cruise and 12 days of fun with Viking River Cruises.
Zürich Photo Gallery