Switzerland is clearly one of Indian outbound traveller’s favourite destinations and figures in the top 15 destination list. In 2018,
according to the data published by the Schengen authorities. This is set to grow significantly in the coming years and is expected to touch more than 250,000.
|Location / Language
Switzerland is a sovereign state situated in the confluence of western, central, and southern Europe. It is a federal republic composed of 26 cantons, with federal authorities seated in Bern, which is the capital city of this beautiful country. Switzerland is a landlocked country bordered by Italy to the south, France to the west, Germany to the north, and Austria and Liechtenstein to the east. It is geographically divided between the Alps, the Swiss Plateau and the Jura, spanning a total area of 41,285 sq kms. While the Alps occupy the greater part of the territory, the Swiss population of approximately 8.5 million is concentrated mostly on the plateau, where the largest cities are located, among them the two global cities and economic centres of Zürich and Geneva.
The four national languages of Switzerland are German, French, Italian and Romansh. In some situations, Latin is used, particularly as a single language to denote the country. In 2017, the population of Switzerland was 62.6% native speakers of German; 22.9% French; 8.2% Italian; and 0.5% Romansh.
|Visa Requirements / Currency (please note these procedures/ exchange rates can changed from time to time…please get an update from the embassy prior to travel)
As India is not part of the Schengen Area, if one is an Indian passport holder you will need to apply for the appropriate type of Schengen Swiss Visa for travelling to the country. To be eligible for a Schengen Visa for Switzerland one will mainly need their current passport, along with certain documents, to be submitted with the Visa application form.
Currency : Euro (EUR)
Conversion: Rs.1 INR = 0.013 EUR
1 EUR = Rs. 78.04 INR
|Top 10 Tourist Attractions in Switzerland
- The Matterhorn - Switzerland's iconic pointed peak is one of the highest mountains in the Alps. On the border with Italy, this legendary peak rises to 4,478 meters, and its four steep faces lie in the direction of the compass points. At the foot if the picturesque village of Zermatt, a top international resort with horse-drawn carriage rides, quaint chalets, and world-class restaurants and hotels. In the summer, swimming and tennis are popular pursuits as well as hiking, biking, and climbing in the surrounding mountains.
- Rhine Falls - Spanning 150 meters, the Rhine Falls at Schaffhausen are the largest falls in Central Europe. The best time to visit is during June and July when the mountain snow melts, and the falls swell in volume to spill over a 21-meter-high ledge of Jurassic limestone. Boat trips up the Rhine provide excellent views of the falls as do the viewing platforms on both sides of the river.
- Interlaken - Nestled between Lake Thun and Lake Brienz, this is one of Switzerland's most popular resorts. In the center of town is Höhematte, with 35 acres of open space and flower gardens, hotels, and cafés surround the Höheweg the main boulevard. Hiking, climbing, abseiling, and kayaking are prime pursuits. More than 45 mountain railways, cable cars, chairlifts and ski lifts transport visitors into the surrounding countryside. In the winter, skiers and snowboarders are busy while in summer, paragliders launch from Beatenberg-Niederhorn.
- Zurich – Check out the cobbled streets of the Old Town with its quaint shops, cafés, and galleries or the mile long Bahnhofstrasse, one of Europe's finest shopping strands with designer stores selling fashion, watches, and jewelry or more than 50 museums and 100 art galleries, Zurich is a bustling city. A top pick is the Kunsthaus Zürich, the museum of fine arts or the Rietberg Museum, focusing on non-European art with many works from China, India, and Africa as well as the Swiss National Museum which highlights Swiss cultural history. Families will love the Zurich Zoo with an elephant park, penguin parade, and Madagascar pavilion.
- Lake Geneva - Europe's largest Alpine lake, straddles the Swiss/French border in Geneva which sits pretty between snow-capped peaks at the point where the Rhône spills into Lake Geneva. Promenades, parks, and gardens surround the lake, and the old town is a lovely spot to stroll among the historic buildings. The Jet d'Eau, a fountain in Lake Geneva shooting water 150 meters into the air, is a famous landmark. Cultural attractions include the Opera House and the Grand Théâtre, which stage international acts.
- Bern - The city's medieval old town is a UNESCO World Heritage Site with it’s cobbled streets, the tallest cathedral in Switzerland, 16th-century fountains; the Zytglogge medieval clock tower with moving puppets; and six kms of shopping arcades, called "Lauben" by the locals. The Rose Garden (Rosengarten) offers beautiful views of the old town centre. Bern also has many excellent museums and galleries, including the Zentrum Paul Klee and the Bern Museum of Art. Families will also enjoy a visit to the Bear Park, where the kids can actually cuddle up to the friendly bears.
- Swiss National Park - Founded in 1914 in the Engadine Valley, it is the oldest reserve in the Alps. The park encompasses more than 170 square kms of mountain pine forests, flower-dotted hollows, shrubs, fast-flowing rivers, and limestone crags. Nature-lovers can explore the region on the large network of trails, though veering off these paths is forbidden in an effort to preserve the natural ecosystems. More than 5,000 species of wildlife make their home here including marmot, red deer, chamois, ibex, fox, and more than 100 species of birds.
- Jungfraujoch, Top of Europe - One of the most popular experiences in the beautiful Bernese Oberland is the train journey to reach Jungfraujoch, with an observation terrace and scientific observatory perched at 3,454 meters. The longest glacier in Europe, the Great Aletsch Glacier begins at Jungfraujoch, and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The famous walks around are Eiger Trail, Panorama Way, the Gletscherschlucht (Glacier Gorge); and Öpfelchüechliwäg mostly through fields of flowers, alpine pastures, and woodlands.
- Lucerne – This stunning city has a sparkling blue lake surrounded by mountains, a car-free medieval old town, covered bridges, waterfront promenades, frescoed historic buildings, and sun-splashed plazas with bubbling fountains. Famed for its music concerts, this quintessential Swiss town lures renowned soloists, conductors, and orchestras to its annual International Music Festival. The Culture and Convention Center is home to one of the world's leading concert halls. Other One famous landmarks are the Chapel Bridge and the Lion Monument.
- St Moritz - Mirror-like lakes, glaciers, jagged peaks, alpine forests, and oodles of sunshine make St. Moritz one of the world's top mountain destinations. Palatial hotels and pricey restaurants are normal at this chic resort town, which has hosted two winter Olympics. In an alpine valley 1,800 meters above sea level, the town is divided into two parts: St. Moritz Dorf sits on a sunny terrace and St. Moritz Bad on the valley floor. Winter sports from skiing, snowboarding, skating, and bobsledding to tobogganing are activities on the famous 1.2- kilometer-long Cresta Run.
|Things You Must Do in Switzerland
Apart from the most obvious thing to do in Switzerland which is skiing, some of the other interesting activities any tourist must try include :
- Skydiving - Switzerland is one of the best destinations to experiences sky diving. The views of the snow-capped Alps, the pristine lakes, and green valleys would be absolutely breathtaking. Enjoy a jump from the height of 14,000 feet above the land while skydiving in Interlaken.
- Kayaking at Lake Geneva - Lake Geneva in Geneva is one of the most popular lakes in Switzerland for kayaking. The calm and serene lake with beautiful mountain scape and a castle on its shore looks picture perfect. Rent a kayak from the lakeside and enjoy riding it on the water. Make sure to follow the safety instructions while indulging in this adventure activity.
- Have a Cable Car ride - One of the many best things to do in Switzerland also involves reaching to the heights of the beautiful Matterhorn via a cable car. Upon reaching Matterhorn, soak in the peace the place has to offer, and ski back to the car-free village on one of the longest ski runs in Europe.
- Take a Train Ride on the Bernina Express - While there are a multitude of options to enjoy the spectacular beauty of Switzerland, the most amazing is to take a train ride. Take the famous Bernina Express, known for its panoramic view windows and slow speed to absorb the very best sceneries. The train connects Chur (or Davos) in Switzerland to Poschiavo in Switzerland and Tirano in Italy by crossing the Swiss Engadin Alps. It also runs along the World Heritage Site known as the Rhaetian Railway in the Albula / Bernina Landscapes.
- Go Wine Tasting - Go out, explore the vineyards, and get your hands on the finest local wines of the city from the wine made from Chasselas grapes on the shores of Lake Geneva, Merlot from Ticino to Pinot Noir from the Valais, savour all the local labels.
- Gorge on Swiss Chocolates - Treat your sweet tooth with the famous milk chocolates, and try everything you can. Being the origin place of milk chocolates, this place never disappoints. Also, this is literally the sweetest souvenir to take back home for friends and family!
|Food on the Plate
Swiss cuisine bears witness to many regional influences, including from French, German and Italian cuisines and also features many dishes specific to Switzerland. Switzerland was historically a country of farmers, so traditional Swiss dishes tend to be plain and made from simple ingredients, such as potatoes and cheese.
Swiss food one must try includes:
- Cheese Fondue – It’s a dish made of melted cheese (gruyère and emmentaler) and other ingredients, such as garlic, white wine, a little cornflour/corn starch and often kirsch (cherry brandy), served up at the table in a special ceramic pot called a caquelon which is kept warm.
- Rösti – It is a potato dish made by frying (or occasionally baking) flat round patties of coarsely grated raw or parboiled (semi-cooked), seasoned potato in oil. They’re crisp on the outside and soft and melting inside. Sometimes bacon, onion, cheese – and even apple – are added to the mix.
- Raclette - The name of a Swiss cheese made from cow’s milk. Slices of raclette are melted in table-top raclette pans or grills, and can be accompanied by small potatoes cooked in their skins, vegetables, charcuterie, pickled gerkins, onions and bread.
- Alplermagronen – It uses all the ingredients that were available to the herdsmen who were looking after their cows on the mountain pastures of the slopes of the Alps: cheese, potatoes, onions, macaroni, milk or cream – and apples. The classic version is made by layering cooked potatoes and macaroni with cream and cheese, baking it in the oven and then serving it with fried onion rings and a stewed apple sauce on top.
- Bűndnernusstorte – It is a yummy caramelised nut-filled short crust pastry with a filling of caramelised sugar, cream and chopped nuts, usually walnuts. Enjoy a piece, with a cup of coffee or tea.
|India travel medical insurance for Swiss Visa
Since Switzerland is a country which is part of the Schengen countries in Europe, the traveller needs to purchase good travel health insurance for applying for Swiss visa or Schengen visa if visiting other Schengen countries along with Switzerland.
Travel insurance Indians applying for Swiss visa is relatively cheaper when compared to destinations in Americas, and most insurance companies offer a specific Schengen Insurance Plan. One must ensure that the minimum Accident & Sickness (A&S) sum insured for a Schengen plan must be €30,000 (around $50,000), and a visa to visit any Schengen country will not be provided without this minimum coverage.
The insured must purchase an “Excluding Americas” Plan, if they are travelling to other destinations that don’t include only Schengen countries.
Illustration for 15 days India travel insurance for travelling to Switzerland.
These premiums are across different plans and different benefits.. please log in to www.eindiainsurance.com to compare and buy the best Schengen visa travel medical insurance for Indians to Switzerland.
|Sum Insured($USD or €Euro) / Premium in Rs. INR
||Insured Age 33
||Insured Age 63
|Schengen - €30,000
|Schengen - €50,000
|Excluding - $50,000