There may be some street up or down, but an approximate route of what we have done today It could be something similar to the following ...
Although before, we have discovered that the Hirschen Hotel that lodges us (you already have the Hirschen Hotel reviewavailable), season your basic breakfast with a beautifully decorated room, which serves to take energy and get on the road not too early (dawn at 8'15). The car today we will not take it (All information in)
The Polybahn, the nostalgic tram
Before coming to Zurich we had heard that in the University area there are good views of the city and we had decided that this could be a good start for our tour. So, just a few streets up we went to find one of those funiculars, the Polybahn, which Isaac likes so much (professional defect?) And that connects the Limmattquai (main avenue parallel to the river) with the hill that houses the University of Zurich , for just 1.20 CFH each.
Perhaps it is an expensive 3-minute ride, like everything we have found today, but seeing a more nostalgic than useful tram automatically operate without any driver is always an interesting curiosity.
Also, get some of the best panoramic photos of the city from the lookout point 1 in front of the University, about 50 meters to the right of the Polybahn stop, it is well worth it.
Today is Saturday, and also Christmas time, so you do not see too much atmosphere in this area of Zurich, but you have to recognize that the sun that the day has given us makes us appreciate a very different Zurich than we would have imagined. In fact, we did not have so many hopes placed in this city and it is beautiful! Another option to make a Full tour of Zurich, which according to your tastes may fit you better, is to take a guided tour of the city.
The guided tour lasts half a day and includes the ferry ticket and cable car.
A morning in the most modern Zurich
With the need to find some exchange or local money, we have decided to start wandering around the most modern Zurich, the one that begins in the Bahnofplatz 2 , better known for being where most of the tourists from Central Europe arrive thanks to its really huge Hauptbahnhof (Central Train Station). In fact it is the largest in Switzerland and dates back to 1871.
And what we did not expect is to solve our needs so quickly. Not only did we get some more exchange at CHF 1,175 per EUR (the currency is at 1.22, so it is not too good) but we have also seen a Sunrise store where for just CHF 30 we achieved a PREPAID SIM with 1 GB of data to navigate and another SIM with 5 free CHF that we will use for New Year's Eve calls.CHANGE EUROS TO SWISS FRANCO FROM HOME IN 48 HOURS (UPDATED 2018/2019):
How times change since our trip. You no longer have to wander like us! Now you get the best change from EUR to CHF ... AT HOME!? The Ria Currency Exchange company (25 years in Spain - you will have seen it in many cities -) offers you the best currency exchange rate now also online (and has more than 60 currencies), in less than 48 hours with free home delivery and you buy the remaining currency in preferential exchange so we recommend you forget about wasting time and bringing money from home because you will also have better change than us in your day. In addition, if you do it on this link you have an exclusive discount for being a Key Reader:CURRENCY EXCHANGE from euro to Swiss francwith Ria (48h at home, better change and DISCOUNT)
We also make some other necessary purchase (CHF 6.80). Tomorrow we tell you what we do with all this.FULL DAY EXCURSIONS FROM ZURICH:
For those who want to complete their trip to Zurich with some getaway to the stunning surroundings, There are full-day excursions that will take you to places as:Excursion to Lucerne, many travelers who travel to Zurich take the opportunity to visit this city that is only an hour away from transport. You will take a boat ride on the Lake of the Four Cantons, you will visit a museum and get to know the city in depth. If it fits you on your trip, it is well worth reserving a day. We also went and you can read our full experience in the travel diary.
Excursion to the Rhine Falls, includes visits to the surroundings and crossing the Zürichsee by ferry, as well as a wide city tour as we did
Jungfraujoch excursion, this site is “the European top”, where you can see the Sphinx viewpoint, one of the most spectacular viewpoints in Switzerland; the Ice Palace and much more, cold and frozen nature in all its splendor.
Tour to Mount Titlis, this excursion will attract the attention of nature lovers and the more adventurous. Climb to the top of Mount Titlis to 3200 meters high (by cable car), walk through the Titlis Cliff Walk, the largest suspension bridge in Europe, and much more. This excursion, together with the previous one, are excursions where you can see much more Swiss nature, walk freely in the mountains and enjoy the views.
There are more excursions, but we have selected some of the most reserved and the most interesting ones. You can check here all excursions in / from Zurich
We are now facing one of the longest streets in Zurich, the Bahnhofstrasse 3 It starts here and "empties" into the lake. and that more luxurious stores, banks and brand establishments houses the entire city.
We also begin to understand the fame that the means of transport have, and that is that the amount of trams and reduced intervals that it has is innumerable. In fact at the height of the Paradeplatz Square 4 , the center of Zurich, where the central tram exchanger is located and which in the nineteenth century seems to be a famous livestock market.
But what causes Paula's eyes to become "chiribitas" (is it written like this?) Comes a few meters later, at number 21 on the street ... The Confiserie Sprüngli!, one of the most chic places to stop to taste some chocolates and tea, although when we see the prices we have to settle for a simple coffee and tea (CHF 10.10)
The place is completed with a shop that still breathes the atmosphere of the old chocolate factories, where Lindt & Sprüngli offer a large selection of products. Did you know that the father and the son were the ones who created the first solid chocolate in the first small pastry they had? And what was Rodolphe Lindt who invented the first chocolate that really melted? If deep down, while Paula "melts alone", this has its history ...
Thus, almost without knowing, we have reached the point where the Limmat River flows into the Zürisee or Lake Zurich, around 90 km2. It's about the Bürkliplat Square 5 .
In addition to being one of the cleanest in Switzerland, and the one that generates the most fertile coastline, it is a pleasure to spend some time in its surroundings. In summer this place is transformed into activities and excursions, even improvised baths, and at this time it still contains a special mysticism, with some ship-theater moored (must be a pimp) and some daring canoeist.
Without the possibility of moving further along this side of the river, we cross the Quaibrücke bridge to go to the other side of the city, where a large building catches our attention, the Opernhaus or Opera House 6 , opened in 1891 and that has nothing to do with the modern building that we saw in Sydney on past trips.
Also in this area, near Bellevueplatz Square, there is a historic café of the Belle Epoque famous especially for the Lenin Pass. Joyce, Einstein and many other characters, Café Odeón, although we are already serving coffee for today.
With the day, we prefer to retrace our steps and contemplate from afar the historic center that will receive us from these moments, possibly the most worth visiting.
We start a walk along the riverbank, the Limmatquai, where we will cross side to side with a certain sense.
Bypassing the Limmat River, the most historic Zurich
Helmhaus 8 It is more visible from the other bank of the river, although you could also say that the views from the source area is essential.
In essence it is a gallery where there are usually temporary exhibitions, although there is also an annex Wasserkirche, or Water Church (since at some point it was completely surrounded by water), where the statue of Zwingli is still preserved.
Culture apart, we are passionate about the beautiful views that the sun leaves us on both sides of the river as the morning progresses. As in the early afternoon, it is still from the North Bank that leaves the best views
From here, going up some stairs, we found the Great Church or Grossmunster 9 , whose facade of two towers is already an icon of the city and where by 4 CHF it is allowed to access one of them, although we did not do it because of the tail that there was and because we knew that there are many high points where to do it.
The views from one of its sides at this point of the Fraumunster Church or the St.Peter Church leave another snapshot of this beautiful area.
It is precisely Fraumunster or the Church of Our Lady 10 Our next destination, a building dating from 853 and that fundamentally belonged to the female aristocracy, the one that surprises us the most inside, with its stained glass windows and the largest organ in the canton of Zurich with 5793 tubes.
It is entered from Munsterhof 11 , the entry point to a network of streets that we will leave for the afternoon, and where is the Zunfthaus zur Waag (City Hall), built in 1637.
Have we talked to you about prices in Zurich? If having a coffee already seemed expensive, entering a restaurant for lunch and dinner can ruin any "Spanish" budget. In general we have concluded that everything here is worth 2.5 times more than in Spain (and think that the last trip to Iran we did not reach € 800 in 21 days).
€ 20-25 / plate, € 30, 25, 30… !! Paula suddenly finds something similar to a tavern !! Evaluate this? A kind of reformed deli (we leave here the address for those who want to try: Metzgerei Zgraggen Gmbtt, Stüssihofstatt 10) offers all kinds of meats, sausages, fried foods and salads at very affordable prices. !! Here we stay !! 2 types of sausages, 2 breaded fillets, potatoes and water for CHF 21.90, and recovered energy that we complement with coffees and teas (CHF 9.80)
Another option to eat is the Nordsee restaurant chain has several locations in Zurich and here you can find the one closest to you. They offer a wide variety of fresh fish and is not excessively expensive.
Where had we stayed? Ah yes, for the area of Rathaus 14 , from where we can see in the distance the Church of St. Peter where we will arrive wandering.
We enter the Historic District, of alleys with shops to each one with better taste decorated for the occasion. It is impossible not stopping at every step. There is no possible recommendation, here it is best to get lost, walk quietly and enjoy those crossings that separate from the Limmat.
The Church of St. Peter 12 the truth is that it has caught our attention, rather than its interior (its last restoration is from 1975), for its huge 8.7 meter clock, one of the largest wall clocks in the world.
With this we conclude a series of visits that have reminded us a lot of the most outstanding of this kind that we saw in Bristol called St. Mary Redclife,Gothic styles, with pointed bell towers and large organs inside.
The slopes are steep but worth it. We are hovering at lookout Linderhof 13 , where a huge square of trees leaves one of the places with more atmospheres and charm, whose Celtic and later Roman origin, has nothing to do with the romanticism that breathes today. A giant chess match?
It goes without saying that the views, like the ones we have been seeing all day, of each and every one of the symbols of the city, can be seen at this time in the afternoon unbeatable from here. The sun now illuminates the southern shore of Limmat leaving a beautiful print.
All the streets that reach this place have a very medieval touch, although perhaps the modern stores that house it today make it lose a little the magic of other places. !! and the occasional crane in the distance!
We descend down Rennweg Street, and without leaving this shore, we look at one of the oldest neighborhoods in Zurich, and last we had to go, Schipfe, which will take us back to Rathaus (15)
It is also known for being the neighborhood of artisans, the small shops and exquisite taste for decoration. Of those in which you would love to be alone and forget the world for a few hours.
Although we are going to rest our legs a little while it gets dark and leave some clothes that we have too much in the accommodation, which is right in front.A stop that was pending, but those who know us well will know that we like to have excuses to return, it was Üetliberg. It is a mountain quite close to the city of Zurich and is a great viewpoint To see the city from above. There are two ways to climb to the top: by train (the S10, which will leave you directly at the top) or by climbing the top on foot, 40 minutes and an easy road, starting the route from Albisguiti, the end of the tram13 line . We have it in one of those things that we would like to be able to do if we return, and the viewpoints love it.
Ok, yes ... we haven't told you everything! And is that chocolate over here, chocolate over there... that no matter how cold it is there is one that melts just by imagining it
Every corner of Zurich houses a chocolate shop, which is best decorated and with more imagination in its creations. Gift boxes, Christmas surprises, lollipops, chocolates, hearts with messages ... This is a paradise for chocolate lovers, although it seems that Paula is still contained ... Paula! !! PAULAAAA !!
A more romantic night walk
And for the night, taking advantage of our privileged location, we have left the pedestrian and lively Niederdorf 16 , that when the sunlight falls and more on a Saturday like today, it becomes a place of bars, restaurants and street artists, although a few drops begin to fall ...
In addition to a beautiful Christmas decoration, we are surprised to see that there is a wide variety of cuisine, from the Swiss local with its fondeus to sushi, through Mexican, Italian, Cuban or French. We decided to continue saving and eating a salad, some beers and some pasta dishes in an Italian type (and still 63.30 CHF) very nice and set.
Zurich at night? It is a pleasure to walk through its now deserted streets, and see its now illuminated icons leaving the reflection in the calm waters of the river.
For a moment, as if it were a night dance, the bells of St. Peter, Fraumunster and Grossmunster begin to ring around us for a good few minutes ...
Now yes, tomorrow it is early to get up early and although it is not more than 20'30, here it already seems deep night, with silent streets only disturbed by the sound of the semi-empty tram as it passes.
Tomorrow we will get up early and head north, probably east, but it depends a lot on the weather and what we find along the way, so that is part of another story. !!See you tomorrow everyone!!
Isaac and Paula, from Zurich (Switzerland)
EXPENSES DAY:CHF 144.30 (approx. 122.81 EUR)