Atop a wooden tower overlooking Lake Geneva, I wrote of Lausanne that the city is a painting, but one that looks like a dream— and perhaps feels like it too. I remember on that day the sky was a color blue I’m not sure I’ve ever seen captured in a work of art or even in a photograph. As in many places, I wondered (and wonder still) what it must be like to grow up in a place such as this. Do young children know how beautiful their world is compared to so many others? Do people leave when they grow old? And if they do, how could they?
This day trip was just the escape I’d needed at the time, a small break from the business of my life in Geneva to spend a day in a fairytale, much like in Brugge.
After finding my high-up viewpoint, the first thing I do in most places, I ventured into the city proper only to find it just as peaceful as my perch in the woods. Locals were charming and helpful, food was much more affordable than in Geneva, and the city was quiet in a way most never manage to be.
Borrowing from my daydream of a visit, I’d suggest a few things for a day in Lausanne:
- Hike (or take the bus) to the Sauvabelin tower. From here there are spectacular views of Lake Geneva and the Swiss Alps. I’d recommend going in the morning or at least an hour before sunset for the best lighting.
- Visit mudac, the Museum of Contemporary Design and Applied Arts. Though relatively small, mudac has hosted some incredible exhibitions. During my visit the works on display focused on disarmament and arms control, providing a timely social commentary
- Lausanne is home to the Olympic Museum. While not a major fan of the games myself, it was incredible to learn more about their history. The museum is highly interactive and located just beside the waterfront, meaning it has stunning views.
In all, Lausanne is the epitome of peaceful, and made for the absolute perfect break from the stress that comes with the territory in Geneva— called by many the city of peace and by others the city of bandits. Lausanne has no such nickname.