The city and its people
The city of Zurich is located in northern Switzerland and borders on the Swiss Alps. Countless Swiss mountains and beautiful mountain lakes can be explored in a day trip from the city. Residents of Zurich like to travel by public transport, which can be traced to the tightly knit transport network of trams, buses and trains. The best thing about it is that the public transport is generally as reliable and punctual as Swiss clockwork. Zurich Airport is well connected to 170 destinations around the world. It takes just a 10-minute train ride to reach it from the main station in the city centre. The train station itself is one of the largest in Switzerland and, with more than 3000 trains arriving and departing each day, it is an important hub for trains from Switzerland and abroad. Like the station, the city itself is among the largest in Switzerland – and yet it seems both manageable and charming, even picturesque in some areas.
Switzerland stands for neutrality, humanitarianism and tolerance. These values, coupled with low tax rates, make the location extremely attractive for foreign companies. In addition to the financial centre, sectors such as life sciences, aerospace and automotive supply have experienced strong growth in recent years. One interesting fact is that 80 of the 100 largest Swiss companies are located in Zurich or the surrounding area. The popularity of the region is also reflected in immigration, with every 10th immigrant to Switzerland settling in the city of Zurich. That’s why it is not a surprise that the city is perceived as both diverse and multicultural.
The financial centre in Zurich is Europe’s most important after London. More than 500 of the most renowned financial institutions are based in Zurich, generating one in six Swiss francs and providing every 10th job in the region. This alone accounts for more than 90,000 jobs, of which some 43,000 are directly attributable to the banks. According to estimates, every 10th job indirectly depends on the banking sector.
And what about the people of Zurich? If you believe the cliché, people from Zurich are arrogant and reserved. We would actually say that their nonchalant “coolness” is sometimes misunderstood. As residents of a world-class city and an attractive metropolitan area, residents of Zürich see themselves as cosmopolitan and self-confident. In fact, the locals like to describe themselves as having a big mouth, which is affectionately referred to as Zürischnurre.
- In the Sihlwald Wilderness Park, animals native to the region ranging from foxes to marmots can be viewed in an environment that is very similar to their natural one.
- Once a year, Zurich’s Theater Spektakel transforms Lake Zurich’s left shoreline into a cultural playground featuring a top-notch programme and spontaneous open-air performances.
- Thanks to countless artists who create and exhibit works of art in the former brewery, the Löwenbräu-Areal in Zurich-West is a special pilgrimage destination for art enthusiasts.
- For 150 years, it has been possible to purchase select coffees and spices from all over the world in the Schwarzenbach “colonial goods shop”, which offers a historic shopping experience.
- You can visit vegetarian restaurant Haus Hiltl, which the Guinness Book of Records has certified as the world’s oldest vegetarian restaurant.
- At nightfall in the summer, some lakeside and river swimming areas are transformed into cosy bars.
Enjoy incomparable quality of life
In Zurich, it seems like it is gurgling, bubbling and babbling on every corner – water is everywhere you look. This is in part due to Lake Zurich, which lies in the heart of the city, but also because of the Limmat River, which has side canals that also leisurely meander through several neighbourhoods. It stands to reason that Zurich has an extremely high density of swimming opportunities in comparison with the rest of Europe. Residents love to relax and unwind by the lake or river. Speaking of water, it should also be mentioned that crystal clear, drinkable fresh water flows from both the private taps and the countless public fountains of the city.
This is perhaps one reason why Zurich is one of the most liveable cities in the world. The fact that Zurich has been named the world’s second-safest city also makes a significant contribution to this. This safety is not only due to the low crime rate but also stems from the political stability of the country. In terms of liveability, it should also be noted that one third of Zurich is green space. The parks and forests of the city are local recreational areas that are used gladly and often by the residents. These natural areas include Zurich’s local mountain Uetliberg, where beautiful forests offer plenty of space for enjoying the great outdoors.
In a very small space, this idyllic natural landscape is brought together with urban life that is lively and creative. There is so much to do, with entertainment and variety on offer to satisfy all tastes. Art lovers can choose from more than 50 museums and over 100 galleries. A vibrant nightlife is provided by a sheer countless number of restaurants, bars and clubs.
One thing is clear: Zurich is the place to go out on the town, to work, to raise children or simply to enjoy life – don’t you agree?