With its colorful old town and excellent public transport, Zurich is a perfect addition to your trip to Switzerland.

Stroll through the picturesque Old Town, eat fondue, shop, and take a boat tour of Lake Zurich. Here are the best things to do in Zurich in one day.

Zurich is the largest city in Switzerland. With a large railway station and international airport, it is one of Switzerland’s major transport hubs. If you are planning a trip to Switzerland, chances are good that your trip will start or end here.

In 2018 Zurich was ranked the 4th most livable city in the world. Zurich has many banks and financial institutions, making him one of the largest financial centers in the world. These prices are passed on to you as a tourist. The price difference is not astronomical, but you can expect more expensive hotels and meals than in other major European cities. Zurich city center is small and compact, so you’ll spend most of your time here. The Limmat river flows through the city center into Lake Zurich. The church towers of Grossmünster and Fraumünster dominate the skyline, and a labyrinth of narrow, cobbled streets cuts through the Old Town, making for a leisurely stroll.

Rather than create a detailed itinerary, here is a list of things to do during his day in Zurich.

At the end of this article, you’ll find recommendations for where to eat and stay. If you plan to stay in Zurich for more than 2 days, we also have some great day trip ideas. Zurich is a great starting point for day trips to other parts of Switzerland.

The Altstadt is the historic city center of Zurich. These narrow pedestrian streets are lined with shops, restaurants, hotels and local residences.

The old town borders the central station to the north, Lake Zurich to the south, and extends a few blocks east and west of the Limmat River. A leisurely stroll through the old town will take several hours.

Niederdorf (as the locals call it Dorfli) is a small district in the middle of the Old Town. The area is the city’s main nightlife destination, with many shops, restaurants and quaint side streets. Its name comes from Niederdorfstrasse, the main pedestrian zone through the district.

Grossmünster is a Protestant church in the Old Town. He is one of the city’s most prominent landmarks. The church is open daily from 10am to 6pm, but from November through February he has limited opening hours. 

Frauenkirche is another main church in Zurich. The church is famous for its stained-glass windows designed by Marc Chagall in 1970. Take an audio tour of the church and crypt.

Hike to Lindenhof for beautiful views of Zurich. Find a seat against the wall and enjoy the view. See 4,000 paintings and sculptures from the Middle Ages to the present day.

The museum displays paintings and sculptures on the history of Switzerland from prehistory to the Middle Ages and his 20th century. See Gothic art, carved altars, and medieval coins.

Home to Dior, Chanel, Louis Vuitton, Hermès, Prada and more, he is one of the world’s most expensive shopping destinations.

A popular pastime in Zurich is a boat trip on Lake Zurich. A perfect break from strolling the city streets and visiting museums.

For those interested in football, it’s worth a visit. Learn about the history of football through the museum’s interactive exhibits and short films.

This ‘mountain’ is really just a big hill, but it offers great views over the city of Zurich. It’s on the outskirts of Zurich, so it takes a while to get there.

Should I buy the Zurich Card? The Zurich Card covers unlimited travel on trams, buses and trains in Zurich city, including a Limmat river cruise and a short cruise on Lake Zurich. Enjoy free or discounted admission to the museum and a 50% discount on a guided walking tour of the Old Town.

The Zurich Card costs CHF 27 for the 24-hour card and CHF 53 for the 72-hour card.

If you plan to visit two museums (Swiss National Museum, FIFA, Museum), the card alone pays for itself. You also get free transport in Zurich city, discounts at select restaurants, and the option to add on a boat trip on the Limmat River or a short cruise on Lake Zurich. 

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