Geneva Sights

The République et Canton de Genève (Republic and Canton of Geneva) commands sweeping views of the French Alps and the French Jura from its fortuitous position at the southwestern tip of Lac Léman. The water flows straight through the city center and into the River Rhône en route to Lyon and the Mediterranean, leaving museums, shops, restaurants, and parks to jostle for space on its history-laden

south shore, known as Rive Gauche. Busy shopping streets underline the hilltop Vieille Ville, the Plaine de Plainpalais lies to its west, and Eaux-Vives stretches along the quays to the east.

The quartier international (International Area), the Gare Cornavin, and sumptuous waterfront hotels dominate the north shore, or Rive Droite. St-Gervais, just north of the Ponts de l'Ile, was once a watchmaking quarter. Les Pâquis, a mix of artists, ethnic communities, and scrappy pleasure seekers, extends north from the Pont du Mont-Blanc. The International Area, on the outer edge of the city, is a short tram ride from Gare Cornavin; all other neighborhoods are easily toured on foot.

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Fodor's Choice

Area

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Rive Gauche (Left Bank) 29

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Centre Ville Rive Gauche 4

Eaux-Vives 4

Plainpalais 7

Vieille Ville 14

Rive Droite (Right Bank) 11

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International Area 7

Les Paquis 4

Category

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Archaeological Site/ Ruins 1

Arts/ Performance Venue 1

Building/ Architectural Site 2

Canyon 1

Cemetery 1

Fountain 1

Garden/ Arboretum 2

Government Building 2

Historic District/ Site 1

Hotel–Sight 1

Industrial Site/ Mill/ Factory 1

Memorial/ Monument/ Tomb 2

Military Site 1

Mountain–Sight 1

Museum/ Gallery 16

Nautical Site/ Lighthouse 1

Park (National/ State/ Provincial) 1

Plaza/ Square/ Piazza 2

Public Art (Mural/ Sculpture/ Statue) 1

Religious Building/ Site/ Shrine 4

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Family 5

Geneva Sights

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Beau-Rivage

  • Hotel–Sight

Jean-Jacques Mayer's descendants still own and operate the hotel he built in 1865. It has discreetly witnessed the birth of a nation...

Jardin Botanique

  • Garden/Arboretum

These 69 peaceful acres of winding paths and streams bear witness to Geneva's early-19th-century fascination with botany. They also include...

Mont Blanc

  • Mountain–Sight

At 15,767 feet, Mont Blanc is the highest mountain in Europe and the crown jewel of the French Alps. Geneva's Right Bank—particularly...

Monument Brunswick

  • Memorial/Monument/Tomb

Charles d'Este-Guelph, the famously eccentric (and deposed) duke of Brunswick, died in Geneva in 1873 and left his vast fortune to the...

Musée Ariana

  • Museum/Gallery

An architectural anachronism when it was completed in 1887, this serene Italianate structure now houses the Musée Suisse de la Céramique...

Musée International de la Croix-Rouge et du Croissant-Rouge

  • Museum/Gallery

The museum focuses on three major challenges in today's "Humanitarian Adventure": defending human dignity, restoring family links, and...

Musée Militaire Genevois

  • Museum/Gallery

The humble setting adds authenticity to this detailed look at a neutral but thoroughly competent military force. Uniformed models, weapons,...

Musée d'Histoire des Sciences

  • Museum/Gallery

Walk-around glass cases display age-old sundials and astrolabes, microscopes and telescopes, barometers and ornate globes that collectively...

Musée des Suisses à l'Etranger

  • Museum/Gallery

Rooms full of models, paintings, documents, and objects highlight the considerable achievements of Swiss people outside Switzerland in...

Palais Wilson

  • Historic District/Site

The largest of Geneva's grandes dames, this former hotel leaped to international prominence on April 28, 1919, when the peace negotiators...

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