Lausanne Switzerland

Lausanne Switzerland sits squarely along the shores of Lake Geneva. The capital city of the Canton of Vaud is many things at one—it’s a seat of government, a university town, and winter sports central, along with a fantastic place for vacation. It’s easy to find, connected by rail and roads, just 40 miles outside of Sion and a scenic 30 miles from Geneva, the largest city along the lake. Like Sion and Geneva, Lausanne offers the signature Swiss experiences, including mountain scenery, fresh air, and a long of delightful things places to enjoy. But unlike another other city in Switzerland, or the world, Lausanne holds a very distinctive designation. The French-speaking city is surrounded by the Jura Mountains is home of the International Olympic Committee and a city that has captured the attention of the world stage.

Lausanne Switzerland History

Lausanne Switzerland History
Lausanne Switzerland History

Thanks to its picturesque location along the shores of the lake, this area has long been home to human settlement. The Romans called their town Lousanna, when they settled on Celtic lands. Eventually Rome fell to the marauding invaders, and this hilly, protected site was an attractive site for various rulers. The Dukes of Savoy eventually came into power and put their stamp on history. The Protestant Reformation turned Geneva and its neighboring Lausanne Switzerland into a refuge for French Huguenots and remained a center of training for new pastors for the decades to come. When the Napoleonic wars changed the status of Switzerland, Lausanne became the capital of the canon in 1803, the same year it became a part of the Swiss Federation. The International Olympic Committee chose Lausanne Switzerland as its headquarters in 1968.

Lausanne Cathedral & Other Attractions

Lausanne Cathedral & Other Attractions
Lausanne Cathedral & Other Attractions

Dominating the skyline and the city’s cultural history is the Lausanne Cathedral, one of the best examples of Gothic architecture in the entire country. The 13th-century Notre-Dame Cathedral is open for tours; don’t miss its striking Rose Window and the richly ornamented cathedral. The inside is largely free of ornamentation, evidence of the Protestant influence of Lausanne. The cathedral is just one of the medieval influences. Old Town Lausanne is truly a delightful place for a stroll. There’s a long list of other delights to see, including the Olympic Museum, which chronicles the history of the modern Olympic movement since the 1896 Athens games, and Musee de l’Art Brut, an interesting collection of art created by inmates of prisons and asylums. Foundation de l’Hermitage focuses on fine art. Other delightful experiences include a train trip to wine country or other Swiss locales.

Lausanne Lake

Lausanne Lake
Lausanne Lake

There’s no doubt that Lausanne Switzerland visitors want to see the lake. Called Lac Léman in the French, the big lake is delightful as a backdrop and a destination. If you really want to experience the lake up close, you’ll want to step aboard a ship for a sightseeing excursion. Cruises take place on paddle-wheelers and modern vessels. The sunset cruises are especially delightful, as are cruise and rail packages.

Lausanne Hotels

Lausanne Hotels
Lausanne Hotels

As a bustling, international city, Lausanne is well equipped for visitors. Most of its hotels fall in the three- or four-star range, although the options also include more upscale luxury hotels and budget properties. The collection of properties includes international brands including Best Western (pictured) and Novotel. You’ll also find one-of-a-kind properties only located in Lausanne, so it’s a snap to find the accommodations that completely suit your style.  

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