How to Spend 2 Days in Geneva
With two days in Geneva, go beyond Old Town landmarks, chocolate shops, and shopping to explore the institutions that power the lakeside city. Stroll the halls of the United Nations at the Palais des Nations, visit groundbreaking scientific labs, and pick out a few of Geneva’s world-class museums. Here’s where to start.
Day 1: Old Town to Lake Geneva
**Morning:**While Geneva can seem downright futuristic, there’s plenty of history here—start in the cobblestone streets of the Old Town, whose highlights include St. Peter’s Cathedral (Cathédrale de St.-Pierre), the Reformation Wall, and picturesque squares. Choose between walking tours, Segway tours, and hop-on hop-off buses.
**Afternoon:**Now that you’ve worked up an appetite, satisfy a hunger for Swiss flavors with one of Geneva’s richest and most beloved treats: fondue. You can find a bubbling pot of cheese at almost any traditional Swiss restaurant. Ask the waitstaff for tips on eating fondue like a Swiss person, from what to drink to optimal dipping technique.
**Night:**Take advantage of sunset light to join a cruise on Lake Geneva; you’ll see the evening sun light up the lakeshore, the surrounding mountains, and the powerful Geneva Water Fountain (Jet d’Eau), which sends water rocketing high into the air.
Day 2: Museums, Chocolate, and Lakeside Strolling
**Morning:**Whether you’re talking supercolliders or nongovernmental institutions, Geneva is a history maker—choose one of the key spots to explore in-depth. Learn about the groundbreaking nuclear research at CERN, tour the UN Palais des Nations, visit the Geneva Ethnography Museum, or see the precise workings of Swiss watches at the Patek Philippe Museum.
**Afternoon:**There’s more than fondue on the menu in Geneva—don’t forget about chocolate. Duck into one of the jewel-box chocolate shops in the town, or go all out on a chocolate tour that features the city’s best chocolatiers.
**Night:**Even if you’ve spotted the Jet d’Eau from the water, spend at least part of your last night in Geneva taking a leisurely stroll past the iconic landmark. On warm evenings, brave the spray on the walkway to the base, and catch the light shows that illuminate the jet in summer.