Lausanne
Lausanne is a small city, surrounded by vineyards, countryside and lake, but it packs a lot in. It has a old Gothic cathedral presiding over the city like a sentinel,  beautiful twisting cobblestone streets in its historic Old Town, and in the modern parts it has bustling shopping, with 1500 shops and pedestrian walks just waiting to be discovered: with unique boutiques and lovely cafes. Down the hill on the lake you can find Ouchy, with spectacular views to the French alps across the water, and beautiful tree-shaded strolling lake-side paths boarded by colorful flower gardens. A short stroll along, you will find the Olympic Museum.
Features
Olympic Museum
On display here are more than 10,000 fascinating artifacts of Olympic history, the largest Olympic archive in the world. Highlights include Carl Lewis’s running shoes and various Olympic running torches. Here you get to feel the spirit of the Olympics from the athletes perspective, and discover the history of the games from ancient times to modern day, with the help of high tech video and audio displays.
Ouchy
The Port of Ouchy, is definitely the most popular destination in Lausanne for locals and tourists alike. Take a small driverless metro from the centre down the hillside to the lake, and as you step out, you will feel as if you have arrived in another world. Listen to the seagulls, and bask in the sunshine. People flock to the wide boulevard and lake side walk at the first hint of sunshine, to absorb the glorious mood enhancing atmosphere as the sun sparkles over the lake and makes everything seem shinier. Walk, cycle or roller skate down the tree-lined path with gorgeous flower gardens arrangements every few metres, no design repeated. ... Read MoreRelax and feel the carefree life, as you sip a cocktail or a coffee on one of the many glamorous lakeside hotel terraces in the sunshine. If you want to experience the lake, take a dip, or even dare a water ski lesson! If you don’t fancy diving getting your feet wet, you can easily hire a pedalo, or a boat. Less
Old Town
This car free part of the city dates back to the 6th century. Take a stroll over the cobblestone streets to see the history still standing. Some of the most notable are the cathedral, the old bishops palace and St. Francois Church.
The Cathedral
Built between 1150 and 1275, on the top of much older structures dating back to the Roman era. During medieval times pilgrims used to travel here.
The Old Bishops Palace
Built in the 11th century and now houses the Lausanne Historical Museum.
St. Francois Church
Built around 1270, is the only remnant still remaining of the old friary.
Events
National Day
For National Day on 1 August, there are fireworks displays off Ouchy and the celebrations are held in the Place de la Navigation.
Bol D’or
Lausanne is a venue for sporting challenges. Every year many regattas are held off Ouchy, including Europe’s biggest Bol d’Or Mirabaud.
Nearby Attractions & Excursions
Boat Cruise
Another memorable experience you should never miss is our boat cruise on the beautiful lake Leman, this will include either fondue, local fresh fish caught from the lake, or perhaps dining at the captains’ table! ... Read MoreFrom your beautifully set table you may gaze out the panoramic windows and admire the stunning lakeside towns of this region from a new perspective! Less
Highlights
  • The rose garden in Place du Général Guisan, which features more than 130 varieties of rose bush.
  • The embarkation points of the CGN situated at the end of Dapples gardens: with magnificent floral arrangements and several sculptures awaiting discovery.
  • Three delightful gardens can be visited one after another along the quays: Denantou garden, Elysée garden, and the Olympic Park.
  • Lausanne City Centre Flon – The epicentre of young style shopping and nightlife, not to be missed if you are young or just young at heart.
History
Lausanne has an ancient history, with traces of habitation dating back to 6000 B.C. Later, the Celtic tribe of the Helvetii inhabited the area and established the settlement Lousanna. The tribe was defeated by Caesar’s troops in 58 BC and as a consequence the Romans settled the area, while retaining the Celtic name of the settlement and called the surrounding state Civitas Helvetorium. The canton of Vaud passed through control of many peoples including Alemannic tribes between 2nd and 4th century, then from 5th century the Burgundians and later the Franks who established christianity in the region where Lausanne became a bishops diocese and a pilgrimage destination from the 6th century. The Counts of Savoy controlled the area from the 11th century until the 15th, when it came under Bernese control. In 1536, the Bernese reformed the official religion of Lausanne from Catholic to Protestant. ... Read MoreLausanne, like the rest of the canton of Vaud, was then under the control of the Bernese until 1798. The Bernese occupiers were not popular amongst the population who felt the Germanic speaking Bernese ignored the political rights of the french speaking Vaudoise. Inspired by the revolution in France of 1789, the people of Vaud began petitioning and demanding the independence of the canton from the Bernese. French emperor Napoleon Bonaparte was welcomed warmly and with jubilation to the city in 1797 and the calls for independence were supported by Napoleon and the Vaudois drove out the Bernese governor in 1798. With the help of french troops from Napoleon, the canton proclaimed itself a republic in the style of Geneva, called “Lemanic Republic”. However, when Napoleons troops finally departed in 1802, a conflict began between supporters of Federalism and Vaud nationalists. Vaud finally became a canton of the Swiss Confederation in 1803, and Lausanne was declared the capital city. The Federal Supreme Court has been established in Lausanne since 1874 and the International Olympic Committee has had it’s headquarters in Lausanne since 1915 and the International Olympic Committee awarded Lausanne “Olympic Capital” status in 1993. Less