Looking for a digestible read about the things to do and see in this central European country? Then read on and discover the A to Z of Switzerland in 26 bitesize chunks.
A is for Adelboden
Serene in the summer and ski heavy in the winter, Adelboden offers 300 kilometres of hiking trails, biking routes, a load of pistes in the colder seasons and so much more.
Also, there’s the WAGGGS World Centre, Our Chalet, which is the oldest major hub for Guides and Scouts in the World. Plus, we can organise a trip for you there too!
B is for Bern
If you didn’t know, Bern’s the capital of Switzerland!
As there are the big international cities of Zurich and Geneva, it can be easy to overlook this small metropolis.
C is for Cows Bells
Iconic Swiss cow bells! What are they for?
For shepherds to keep track of their wandering bovine friends in the Swiss countryside.
D is for Dogs
Your cuddly friend can travel on public transport if they have their own ticket too!
E is for Engstligenfälle (or Engstligen waterfalls)
And then there’s the beautiful waterfall you can see from anywhere in Adelboden.
The second highest in Switzerland, they fall over 600 metres and are protected by the canton.
F is for Flag
26 cantons make up Switzerland, with each proud to let their flag fly.
And all those markers plus the national flag are front and centre for you to see on the 1st of August, which is Swiss National Day.
G is for Geneva
Home to the UN, Red Cross and Geneva Convention, it’s Switzerland’s 2nd largest city.
Plus, there’s the Swiss Alps, Lake Geneva and the Jura Mountains in what some call ‘the world’s smallest metropolis’.
I is for Interlaken
Which is the tourist town between Lakes Thun and Brienz which is known for tradition, landscapes and adventure sports.
J is for Jungfraujoch
Also known as the top of Europe, this UNESCO World Heritage Site sits at 3,454 metres above sea level.
And if you visit on one of our trips, you can view the Alps longest glacier from the Sphinx Terrace.
K is for Kandersteg
The Kandersteg International Scout Centre, or KISC for short, is the home for Scouts the world over.
You can volunteer, hike the Bernese Valley, take part in year-round jamborees and so much more.
The best bit? We can organise your Guides or Scouts stress-free trip to KISC. And you can check out our webpage here.
L is for Lindt
Yes – the amazing Swiss chocolate that’s over 175 years old!
M is for Mountains
There are forty-eight mountain peaks within and on the Swiss border which are at least 4,000m high.
They include the tallest Mont Blanc, second highest Mont Rosa and the iconic Matterhorn.
N is for National Day
Which is celebrated on the 1st of August in all 26 cantons of Switzerland.
Flags, Swiss rolls and fireworks are all laid out in an amazing day that celebrates unity, culture and identity.
O is Our Chalet
And then there’s the oldest Girl Guiding WAGGGS World Centre on the planet.
Opened by World Chief Guide Olave Baden-Powell and funder Helen Storrow in 1932, you can find it in Adelboden in the Bernese Oderland.
Also, if you’re thinking about a group trip there soon, you can check out our webpage here
P is for Public Transport
From the Grand Train Tour to over 29,000 kilometres of public transport network, you can easily get around.
Q is for Quadrilingual
German, French, Italian and Romansh are the four national languages of Switzerland.
The language is decided by the home canton, with some cities and regions multilingual.
R is for Rösti
Similar to a hash brown, the potato-based dish is considered the Swiss national dish by many and was originally eaten solely for breakfast.
S is for Schilthon
Which is a summit just below 3000 metres in the Bernese Alps that’s encircled by over 200 other peaks.
Also, it’s the starting point of the world’s longest international ski race, called the ‘Inferno Race’ and the summit’s revolving restaurant was renamed Piz Gloria after James Bond’s ‘On Her Majesty’s Secret Service’ villain’s lair.
T is for Trümmelbach Falls
Which are the biggest underground waterfalls in the world!
Located inside the Lauterbrunnen mountain, the up to 20,000 litres of water per second rushing through comes from the glacial meltwater of Jungfrau.
U is for UNESCO World Heritage Sites
Of which the UN’s official site states there are thirteen in Switzerland.
There are 4 natural sites, like the Swiss Alps, and 9 cultural spaces such as the Old City of Berne.
V is for Villages
And each one is dreamy!
Often characterised by lush valleys, rustic charm and the best welcome you’ll probably ever receive – we sadly don’t have enough space for every village within the Swiss borders here.
W is for Weather
Which is unpredictable.
Due to the North Atlantic Drift weather system, days can quickly turn from warm sun to cold rain.
So, be sure to bring your coat, gloves and sunglasses.
X is for X-mas Markets
They are open mid-November until December, depending on location.
And some of the best are found in Bern, Zurich and Geneva.
Y is for Yodelling
You’ve likely heard about the traditional form of Swiss singing, but did you know it started out as a form of communication across the Alps?
Plus, yodelling is a singing form known for pitch changes from the chest to head register without any recognisable words.
Z is for Znüni
Is a Swiss-German word referring to a snack eaten at 9am.
The meal can include fruits, rolls, croissants and is eaten alongside a tea, juice or coffee.
Your Next Swiss Trip?
There you go – your A-Z of Switzerland in 26 bitesize chunks.
If you want to explore the country in your next group trip, check out our Switzerland home page here.