Best day trips from Zurich

The 7 Best Day Trips From Zurich

The global center for finance might be a bustling Swiss city with tons to do and see, but for a quiet escape, try these best day trips from Zurich.

Hop on a train and see authentic Swiss culture and charming towns on these day trips.

Best day trips from Zurich, SwitzerlandHow do these rankings work?

1. St. Gallen

Located in the northeast corner of Switzerland and just south of Lake Constance, St. Gallen is a picturesque town with a notable monastery, the Abbey of St. Gall. Walk through the city center and visit the twin-towered cathedral.

There’s also the Textile Museum which details the local industry and is an interesting way to spend an hour or two.

Best Zurich day trips in Switzerland

2. Lucerne

Lucerne is undoubtedly one of the most popular destinations in Switzerland thanks to its renowned covered bridge with medieval art. This quaint city is an easy access point to surrounding mountains for hiking and skiing too. Don’t forget to look up when strolling through the city to take in the intricate art on the building facades.

Best Zurich day trips in Switzerland

3. Mt. Titlis

If you’re looking for peace among the peaks, this is a great option. There’s hiking at lower elevations during warmer months or great skiing during the winter. The spa at the resort isn’t a bad way to unwind either.

Best Zurich day trips in Switzerland

4. Engelberg

Located in the shadow of Mt. Titlis, Engelberg is a small Swiss town that provides a great city break. There is Swiss culture, a good culinary scene and even a 12th-century monastery worth visiting.

5. Appenzell

For an unmistakable Swiss experience, go to Appenzell. This small district at the foot of the Alpstein mountains features traditional Swiss chalets in its charming village. Warm up over raclette during the winter or feast on mountain cheese during the summer.

Cyclists will also have a field day riding the many routes that stem from this town.

6. Fribourg

This is a great option for culturally-minded visitors. There’s a rich history here and a beautiful medieval old town to explore. The entire city is bilingual, so everything is in both French and German.

 7. Gruyere

A sleepy but incredibly charming city, Gruyere is of course the home of its namesake cheese. Relax with a bottle of regional wine and enjoy the local delicacy. Wander the streets and don’t miss out on seeing the castle.

Molly Harris

Molly Harris is a freelance travel journalist dividing her time between the United States and the Western Balkans.

View stories