“Little big city” is the term, by which the people of Zurich describe their hometown to the outside world. Zurich is either the smallest and most comfortable city in Europe, or the largest and most important village in Europe. It is truly amazing how much Switzerland’s unofficial capital has to offer. Within easy walking distance of the hospital and the hotels you can find all the amenities that give the city its charm and international reputation.
The origins of the city of Zurich are ancient. It was a Roman fort more than two thousand years ago and was strategically located at the head of the lake which now bears its name. The old town is beautifully preserved and the historic buildings have been restored. The great Emperor of Europe, Charlemagne, came here in the 10th century and his statue can be seen in one church steeple of the three major churches which mark Zurich’s skyline. This is the Grossmünster, located on the right bank of the River Limmat, and its two impressive steeples are a clear landmark to citizens and tourists alike. On the left bank of the river there are two other churches: St. Peter’s with the largest clock dial in Europe, and Fraumünster, with its stained-glass windows by the famous artist, Marc Chagall.
Zurich, or “Züri” as the locals call it, more than lives up to its worldwide reputation as a paradise for shoppers. It is easy to take a leisurely walk around the city and find a shop which suits your needs. The shops and their customers are cosmopolitan – English is almost always spoken and the unhurried pace of life makes the entire experience unique in Europe. Zurich is also one of the most important financial centres of the world. The head quartes of UBS, Credit Suisse, Zurich Financial Services and Swiss Reinsurance are all located here. Notably, three of these four companies were founded in the mid of 19th century by one man: Alfred Escher. His statue can be seen on the fountain on the Bahnhofsplatz.
For the art lover, Zurich is a wonderful place to be. There are over 30 museums and art galleries, which house not only the most varied collection of historical artifacts in the country, but are also home of important collections of international paintings and sculptures. When the weather is friendly, there’s no better place to be than on the Lake Zurich. A variety of boat trips are available and a range from a leisurely cruise on one of the elegant paddle steamers to a commute on a modern ferry. But perhaps the best way to discover Zurich, is simply by strolling its streets. By day, there is serious business to be attended to. By night, there are lots of fun to be enjoyed. Regardless of your interests, Zurich has something to offer to each and every visitor.Zurich - A city of contrast and culture