Top sights to see in Geneva

Top sights to see in Geneva Geneva 2018

From its picturesque views of the landscape to its collaborative approach to diplomacy, Geneva, the host of the 30th Annual EAIE Conference and Exhibition, is sure to leave you inspired. The conference takes place from 11–14 September 2018, but make sure you plan in some extra time in your trip to familiarise yourself with this breathtaking international city. Here are some of our tips as featured in the winter 2017 issue of EAIE Forum member magazine.

The Jet d’Eau

Considered the city’s main landmark and star of Lake Geneva, the Jet d’Eau is a magnificent water fountain situated on the harbour. Reaching a height of 140 metres with a constant flow from 9:00 to sunset, the powerful display is difficult to miss. Be on the lookout for the Jet d’Eau while in the skies, as the fountain is easy to spot from an airplane. If you plan to get a closer view, just remember to wear your rain jacket!

The Palais des Nations

Given its renown as a peaceful, neutral city, what better way to experience Geneva than to visit the United Nations European headquarters? While only accessible via a guided tour, the palace is open daily for visitors curious to learn more about the diplomatic happenings within. Even if you don’t make it inside for a tour, it is worth a visit to the classical-style palace, which can be found on the grounds of Ariana Park. Take a stroll through the park for a great view of both Lake Geneva and the French Alps.

Reformation Wall

The International Monument to the Reformation is an homage to the main protagonists of the Reformation. Built into the old city walls of Geneva, the monument is a reminder of Geneva’s central role in Calvinism. After taking in the stoic statues and pondering the ideals supported by those who bore their likeness, take some time to relax in Bastions Park, where the wall is located.

Geneva's Old Town

Did you already pay a visit to the fathers of the Reformation in Bastions Park? Make your way to Geneva’s Old Town to see the symbolic location of the movement, St. Peter’s Cathedral. Rumour has it the view from the tower provides a spectacular panoramic view of the city. If you’re interested in learning more from a historical context, you will find the International Museum of the Reformation right across the way.

The Old Town plays host to a variety of other treasures, both old and new. Shift your focus from Reformation to Enlightenment with a visit to the House of Rousseau and Literature, a small museum within the birthplace of writer and philosopher Jean-Jacques Rousseau.

Bains District

If you’re seeking a more modern Geneva experience, the Bains District is the neighborhood for you. A former semi-industrial-zone-turned-sophisticated-art-district, Bains is home to the Modern and Contemporary Art Museum and the Geneva Contemporary Art Centre, among an array of other galleries and cultural institutions. The area is sure to pique the interest of those with a passion for trendy art, hip bistros and a buzzing nightlife.

Exhibitions for every interest

Geneva has no shortage of museums, and the city is sure to have at least one to sate your curiosity. If you didn’t get enough literature at the former home of Rousseau, visit the Bodmer Foundation Library and Museum, which boasts a collection of written works including manuscripts, first editions, archaeological documents and illustrations. Originals from both Shakespeare and Dante make up a portion of the 300 exhibits.

Known for its peace and diplomacy, Geneva is also revered for its dedication to humanitarian efforts. The International Museum of the Red Cross and Red Crescent is located in the city where the organisation was founded in 1863. Reflect on the permanent exhibition dedicated to the heroes who have worked tirelessly to defend human dignity, reunite families and reduce risk of natural disaster for all.

Find yourself mesmerised by the luxury watches in the window? Whether or not your wallet allows you to treat yourself to a new timepiece, the Patek Philippe Museum is a great place to admire the world’s most prestigious collection of watches. The museum also houses a library full of horology literature – check it out if you can find the time!

For even more sight-seeing suggestions, visit the Geneva Tourism website.