7 Reasons To Visit Lausanne
Spoiler alert: it’s bloody beautiful.
1. Easy peasy to get there
(From Geneva airport). I’ve been to Geneva heaps of times over the years travelling to ski resorts near by – it’s the hub of getting to lots of different places, but I had no idea Lausanne was so close. I actually had never heard of Lausanne until the moment this trip was mentioned. I’m so glad to have now discovered it & want to share my findings with YOU reading this!
Lausanne is only 40 mins or so on a train from Geneva – the airport fills with me with dread as it’s super expensive and full of big groups coming back from skiing holidays being loud and hitting you in the head with their skis accidentally (this happened). But little did I know the beautiful tranquil city of Lausanne is a stones throw from the mayhem of Geneva. It was so super easy to get the train, there are so many frequent trains running you aren’t under much pressure to get one particular train. I mean, HIDDEN GEM or what?
2. Food & Restaurants
On the first evening we had an incredible dinner at the Brasserie de Montbenon which is a huge grand building right in the middle of a gorgeous park. I ate a beautiful pesto tortellini and the red wine was amazing. Earlier that day we went to Café de Grancy which was beautiful for light salads and beer, Ta Cave a quirky bar and Café du Grütli a traditional restaurant in the old town, in a building from the 1800s. I think this was my favourite meal experience, I loved the traditional Swiss sausage and leeks – plus the mayor of Lausanne was eating on the table next to us – a sure sign that this a firm favourite throughout the city. You also must visit Le Barbare which does the best hot chocolate in town – so thick you can eat it with a spoon.
3. Choice of hotels
Lausanne isn’t a huge place but there are a huge range of hotels to my surprise (around 45 different hotels to choose from, I believe). We stayed at the Hotel Agora Swiss Night **** Design Hotel in Lausanne. It’s located in a quiet part of the neighbourhood that feels residential, but still very close to the main train station, super easy to get around and easy access to anywhere really. You walk anywhere in Lausanne although you get a free travel card on checking into the hotel (the travel cards are free for everyone) – although it’s very hilly, but it’s fine, you just feel like you’re burning more calories than normal. My legs were definitely feeling exercised after walking around all the uneven roads. One of my favourite things about this hotel was that the breakfast is served in an incredible panoramic roof top glass room, there is honestly nothing better than eating your breakfast whilst looking out over Lake Geneva with fantastic view on the Alps and the Jura Mountains. All my silly life stresses just magically fizzled away.
4. The views!
The views were honestly breath-taking. It is now up there with being one of my favourite ever city breaks for this reason. I felt so relaxed being able to look over the lake and having the mountains constantly in sight. It made me stop and sit and stare and probably look.
5. Art & Culture
Visiting museums is always something I love doing on city breaks. We visited Musée de l’Elysée which was dedicated exclusively to photography. Some of the projects were deeply moving including a photographic series documenting survivors of 9/11. It had a big eclectic mix of photography and it gave me a lot to reflect on and think about.
6. The Olympic museum
The Olympic museum is AMAZING. Also, I found it quite emotional. The Olympic Museum first opened in 1993 and refurbished in January 2012 – also a short walk from the station. You really do experience the magic of the Olympic Games and the Olympic Movement throughout history with loads of interactive experiences, games, videos, tours – I learned so much and it made me feel really inspired that such an incredible iconic event can bring the whole world together in such a positive way.
7. Cully Jazz Festival
This was my favourite part of the trip (and trust me that was a hard decision because it was all BEAUTIFUL.) We took the train from Lausanne station to Cully (it took around 20 mins by train) and felt like we’d really stepped into a rural part of the country. The views, as you can see from the photos below, were incredible. People lined the wall and rocks surrounded the lake and sat drinking beers in the sunshine. There were beer stalls and food places and music tents playing different kinds of jazz all night long. We ate at Le Bistrot and had burgers which were delicious. I really recommend going here for an afternoon/evening especially when the festival is on!
For more info, visit Lausanne Tourism’s website.
****Lausanne Tourism gave me a complimentary stay in return for a blog post, but as you know I only ever write about things I genuinely like and would be happy to recommend to others. This weekend was truly fantastic and it was one of my favourite city break experiences***
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