Europe Switzerland Travel

Exploring Zurich’s Scenic Old Town

I have always day dreamed of travelling to Switzerland. Ever since childhood! So I jumped in joy literally when I made this little weekend getaway possible. Personally, this trip has been one of the self care kinda one to me, and I will leave it at that. Although short, there was a ton of travel experiences I cherish in this one.
With only 24 hours to explore the city, I headed on to explore Zurich’s Scenic Old Town for it’s architecture and oh what a beauty it is! Trust me – the pictures don’t do justice to its intricate architectural detailing, upbeat life and the breathtaking view I got to witness.


A Romanesque-style Protestant church
The Grossmünster.
– also spelled Großmünster

The Grossmünster in Zurich's Scenic Old Town

Being one of the most iconic landmarks of Zurich. I spotted this one from a mile away and was the very first thing I visited. Unfortunately, due to some maintenance work going on in the bell tower the day I visited – I wasn’t able to witness the bird eye’s view from the tower. 🙁
However, the Stained Glass from inside the church by Swiss artist Augusto Giacometti added in 1932 is stunning. Too bad, photography isn’t allowed inside!

The Grossmünster in Zurich's Scenic Old Town

This church was built in the early 12th century and the towers were added in the 14th century. However, the ornate brass doors (which are extremely heavy to push open) were built in the early 19th century and if you have an eye for architecture you will definitely see how well the different eras blend in together throughout its transitional construction phases in which this landmark was built in.


Bird-Friendly Streets

Zurich Old Town Münsterbrücke bridge

The Bird Lover in me loved the flock of birds that weren’t afraid to come too close. I seen at least a dozen of people feeding the birds and truly admiring the ducks and swans while they sat chilling alongside the bridge.


Equestrian statue of Hans Waldmann 


Equestrian statue of Hans Waldmann

I spotted the Statue of Hans Waldamann that stands on the Münsterbrücke bridge between the Fraumünster and Grossmünster churches.
I kind of eavesdropped on a guided tour happening near by and learnt how he was the mayor and a Swiss Military Leader in the 14th Century. He was then beheaded in response to pressure by farmers who could not accept his land reform policies followed by accusations of corruption, and sodomy later. That was quite a history lesson I must say!


The Fraumünster 


Fraumünster Church in Zurich's Scenic Old Town

Literally opposite to the Equestrian Statue stands the Fraumünster Church. This church again was easy to spot since it’s pretty popular on postcards. The five part stained glass windows are truly stunning.


Lindenhof hill – Panoramic View of Zurich’s Old Town


Lindenhof hill  - Panoramic View of Zurich's Old Town
Lindenhof hill  - Panoramic View of Zurich's Old Town

Lindenhof is a moraine hill and serves as a public square situated in the historic center of Zurich. While it’s historic significance goes back to the Roman and medieval times – it has the best panoramic views of the city that one can enjoy for free!

Although after like walking around for more than an hour on cobbled streets -climbing a dozen of steep steps up to the hill sure did give me a reality check on my so called healthy lifestyle 😛 Good thing I did not choose to wear my high heels 😛


Lindenhof hill  - Panoramic View of Zurich's Old Town

The Pastel Colored Houses
Overlooking Lake Zurich


The Pastel Colored Houses 
Overlooking Lake Zurich

In my point of view, the row of pastel houses with their open shutter windows builds the aesthetics for Zurich’s Scenic Old Town.
The capital city even though filled with all kinds of modern transports, lavish boutiques & restaurants blends with the old architectural details. You can see it on the Tram Stations, the Cobbled Streets, the Statues, the Arched Bridges, Victorian Lamp posts. The mix of old with the new is surreal. Personally, the aesthetics of this place is everything.

Zurich Old Town Pastel Colored Houses

Enjoying A Mini Reading Session
in Zurich’s Old Town


Enjoying A Mini Reading Session
 in Zurich's Old Town

I could not get enough of the view. No matter how many times I strolled these streets. I ended up settling for a deck nearby and chose to unwind with a bit of reading and just enjoy like how the locals would 😛
The lake is so clean,you can see the bottom. I can totally see why this place is such a magnet for birds and the most desired place to live.

Enjoying A Mini Reading Session
 in Zurich's Old Town
Enjoying A Mini Reading Session
 in Zurich's Old Town

Eating At the Pop – Up Food Stalls With a View of Zurich’s Scenic Old Town


Eating At the Pop - Up Food Stalls With a View of Zurich's Scenic Old Town

I bought a Pesto Pasta and Coke around noon at a kiosk near the lake. To be honest, there are a ton of cafes in the vicinity and I’m sure they would be lovely. I obviously chose the one with the best views. Why sit inside anyways when I am lucky to have blessed to be here on a lovely sunny day!

Also, the view was definitely nothing less than the ones I see on postcards and I was glad I could make the most of it.

Eating At the Pop - Up Food Stalls With a View of Zurich's Scenic Old Town

The Important Stuff


How to Get There :

I arrived from the airport in the city center by train and then walked through the Bahnhofstrasse filled with shops on both sides. A short walk across the bridge took me about 15 mins and was fairly easy to navigate.
You could also get on the Tram to Helmhaus which stops right opposite The Grossmünster.

How Much Time Will It Take You :

I roughly spent 2.5 hours to explore Zurich’s Scenic Old Town. I have excluded the time I spent lazing around while I read my book and get some food inside of me.

Things You Ought To Know :

A.I highly recommend to wear comfortable walking shoes as you’ll be walking on cobbled streets and most of it is a bit of a climb.
B.Also, buying the 24 Hours Zurich Card from the airport will be an extremely good decision as I did not have to bother buying a ticket every time I hopped into a Tram or the Bus which otherwise would cost me 5 CHF minimum per trip
C. Most of the shops and restaurants are either closed or open late on Sundays. This ended up being quite a detour as I searched for chocolates to buy and take home.
D. Zurich doesn’t have Public Wifi except for popular cafes and restaurants. With only less than a day I did not want to invest in buying a Sim Card. This led me to begin conversations with friendly locals and I guess that is a win- win! 😛


This has to be one of the most unplanned and spontaneous trips I have ever been on. I am definitely going to come back and use the most of my Zurich Card on my next visit. It includes numerous free entries to museums and provides discounts to a number of shops and restaurants. Also, I missed the Uetliberg Mountain which is definitely on my bucket list for next time.


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    Have you explored Zurich’s Old Town? What was your favorite part of it. Mine is the elaborate architecture and the friendly people that chose to guide me in getting the right transport every step of the way.

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    2 comments on “Exploring Zurich’s Scenic Old Town

    1. Pingback: Visiting The Botanical Garden of Zurich - Monica Shastri

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