Lausanne Switzerland City Facts
The 1964 Swiss National Exhibition was held in Lausanne. That was the first
time I visited this beautiful city. Lake Geneva is a picturesque waterfront
which is used to excellent advantage by the Swiss in this city.
(Lake Geneva Region)
Art & Architecture in Lausanne
The Olympic capital Lausanne is built on three
hills. And with its labyrinth of winding lanes, the medieval city´s
heart is just as fascinating as its geographical location. The
Notre-Dame cathedral crowns the hill of the upper city. The Art
Brut Collection at Château de Beaulieu is highly unusual. Here,
French painter Jean Dubuffet left to posterity his impressive
collection of work by artists on the fringe of society. The Elysée
Museum is entirely dedicated to photography as an art form.
Large picture: Flon district. This trendy quarter
has grown out of a former warehouse district. Today Flon
is a melting pot of art and culture.
be the capital of Vaud, but Lausanne isn't your typical cantonal seat. This
picturesque, hilly city of 130,000 has vied with Geneva as the intellectual and
cultural center of French-speaking Switzerland for centuries.
Lausanne is a convenient place to spend a day
or two while touring Switzerland, since its railroad station is a connecting
point for trains between France, Geneva, Bern, and the skiing and mountaineering
resorts of the Valais. And if you're tempted to skip Geneva because you don't
have time to do that city properly, Lausanne is a practical (and manageable)
Something old, something new
The Cité, or old city, is uphill
from the train station. It's packed with fine buildings--among them,
Switzerland's largest cathedral, which has been Protestant since the 15th
Century. Other landmarks include the 17th Century Hôtel de Ville (city hall),
the Palais du Rumine (occupied by several museums), the Château St-Maire (a
former bishops' castle), and the Ancienne-Académie (the University of
Lausanne's former home).
Heading in the opposite direction--i.e.,
downhill--you can take a six-minute funicular ride from the train station to the
port of Ouchy. This is a great place to stroll along the shores of Lac Léman
(a.k.a. Lake Geneva), catch a lake
steamer to Geneva or Montreux, or spend a lively evening on the waterfront
during the summer months.
Many of the city's other attractions are
modern. The Olympic Museum is one of the most popular tourist spots; it offers a
varied collection of art objects, Olympic memorabilia, interactive displays, and
video clips of famous moments in Olympic history. (Unfortunately, the museum is
priced too high for amateur athletes on a training budget.)
Lausanne is a major railway stop if you're
traveling between France or Geneva and the rest of Switzerland. From the
station, tracks of the Swiss Federal Railways lead to Neuchâtel, Bern, Montreux,
and points beyond.
You can reach the city from Geneva in 40
minutes and from Zürich in 2 hours 45 minutes. By TGV train from Paris,
Lausanne is less than a four-hour trip.
Lausanne Web links
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