Walking Across Europe is superb so get on your walking boots to see the region at its very best and really get away from it all.
A small federal country, surrounded by Italy, France, Germany, and Austria is a perfect walking destination in Europe. Its attractions are near each other, so you can easily explore one after another on foot.
Switzerland is one of the most prosperous countries in Europe and the crime rate is very low, so it’s a safe country as well. Swiss look after their environment, they are known for keeping the world-best sustainability. No wonder that you’ll find a lot of gorgeous parks, crystal clear lakes and fascinating ancient and modern architecture. There are 18 parks of national significance in Switzerland covering almost 15% of Switzerland’s surface.
Some people imagine that Switzerland is as cold as Alaska, but this is far from the truth. In the plain, temperatures can rise to 30ºC (86ºF) in the summer, and even in the mountains the sun is hot. In the winter, temperatures rarely drop below minus 5ºC (41ºF) in the entire country, save the mountaintops. In the higher mountains conditions can be glacial, while they can be near Mediterranean in lower areas towards the South. Swiss Summers are generally warm with occasional rain while winters are cold and snowy.
Switzerland has a temperate climate, but there are large local differences depending on altitude.The mountainous character of Switzerland is responsible for spectacular variation in the weather among different regions. It is very common to move from a cold, cloudy and rainy landscape to a beautiful clear blue sky with hot sun in just a few minutes.
The warmest parts of the country are Montreux (where palm trees line the lake-side), Ticino and Valais. In Ticino, the Italian-speaking canton South of the Alps, there are over 298 sunny days a year and daily mean temperature in July are over 26ºC (79ºF). In Valais, kiwis, peaches, figs and tomatoes are grown in orchards and tiny scorpions can be found.
The official currency in Switzerland is Swiss francs that are divided into 100 centimes. However, many businesses throughout Switzerland, including most hotels, some restaurants and souvenir shops, will accept payment in euros. Only keep in mind that any change will be given in Swiss francs, at the rate of exchange calculated on the day.
You can change money at banks, as well as at airports and nearly every train station daily until late into the evening. Whereas banks tend to charge about 5% commission, some money-exchange bureaus don’t charge commission at all. So, it’s better to exchange cash in money-exchange bureaus.
To get cash you just need to find ATM (called Bancomats in Switzerland). Most of them are accessible 24 hours a day. However, your bank or credit-card company will usually charge a 1% to 2.5% fee, and there may also be a small charge at the ATM end.
There will be less possibility of paying by credit card in Swiss shops, hotels or restaurants than in the UK or USA.
Actually, it’s languages spoken in Switzerland. There are four national languages spoken in Switzerland – French, German, Italian and Romansh! The most widely spoken national language is German (about 64 percent), then French (20 percent), Italian (seven percent) and Romansh is spoken only by one percent of the total population. So, the principle of how those languages are spread is obvious – according to the neighbour countries. German is spoken in the North-eastern part of a country, French is spoken in the west of the country and Italian is used in the south of the country. Romansh is spoken only in Graubünden.
English becomes more and more popular in Switzerland. The reason is simple – the tourism and business are highly developed in Switzerland. English is declared as corporate language in Swiss offices of multinational companies. So, there is a big chance that if you ask someone in the street of Switzerland in English, you’ll get an answer in English too.