“Ugh, I can’t believe we HAVE to go to Europe” said no one, ever. People have definitely thought it though.
It’s so laughable, but that was the sentiment just before our direct, over-night flight from Nairobi to Zurich. We were heartbroken to leave Africa but just after touching down in Zurich we became two little emoticons with hearts for eyes and a smiles as long as fondue forks.
Zurich is such an easy city to be a tourist in. It’s beautiful to look at. The public transportation system is incredible yet it’s small enough to walk everywhere. The people are friendly and the food is great.
We knew we’d be craving the feeling of home and we added on one more traveler, Joe, so we booked a charming little flat through Airbnb. The apartment has a fantastic location and enough space to fit three people comfortably. It’s nice when you feel at home in a new city. Renting an apartment on vs. staying at a hotel can bring that feeling on quickly.
Zurich was one of the only major cities in Switzerland I hadn’t visited before and now it’s the one I’ll miss most. Here’s a few of our favorite places:
Viadukt: Shopping and Food Market
Viadukt is a shopping (fashion and food) area of about 50 stores built into different sections of a railroad called Viadukt. It makes for a fun setting! My favorite area within Viadukt is at the end of the railroad – an inside food market and restaurant. The market is small, fancy, and nicely curated. There is a restaurant within the market which is very popular. You have to make reservations days ahead. I told our waiter they should have a policy of keeping tables open for tourists but he didn’t seem to understand. We went for lunch; They offer small portions but really tasty food.
Benzin & Koffein: Coffee and Bagels
For coffee and a bit of breakfast I can highly recommend Benzin & Koffein. They make their own coffee beans and enlighten you with some real comforting drinks. We came here straight from the airport after a recommendation (thank you Denise!) and had a simple, yet satisfying breakfast. The coffee truly was outstanding, the bagels were such an unexpected treat, and I can’t believe I was able to walk away without buying that coffee steamer I wanted from the accessories area at the back.
Fribourger Fondue Stubli: Fondue and Chocolate Mousse
I haven’t treated myself to Fondue since the last time I was in Switzerland so I was quite excited. We went to Fribourger Fondue Stubli, near The Old Town, for an incredible pot of “stinky melted cheese” or at least that’s what Jack called it. Fondue pots are the only dish (other than dessert) served at this restaurant so you can imagine the smell. It hits hard as you open the wooden door of the restaurant. Just a heads up, leave room for the chocolate mousse! It was worth it!
Zoological Museum: Learning with a View
We only visited one museum in Zurich; we’re not real museum going people (even though we’re trying) but here’s a few reasons why I would recommend it. One, it’s free. Two, it’s connected to the University of Zurich so you can have a look around the campus and pretend like you’re a student again (or am I the only person that enjoys doing that?). Three, you get a breathtaking view of the city from up there.
Rio Bar: Tea or Beer
Rio Bar is a great place, by the river, for a quick tea or beer. We stopped by around 11am, the place was packed with equal amounts of beer and coffee consumption going on. The view of the river is calming and even though it was too cold to sit outside the patio was set up and looking lovely. I could just imagine having a beer out there in the summer. Sigh.