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SechselĂ¤uten (Spring Festival)
01 853 17 77
traditional spring festival â€“ begins on a Sunday with a big parade featuring
more than 2,000 children. The actual festival takes place on Monday. Guild
members have an early start with a lunch at their own guildhall, and follow it
with the big Parade of the Guilds. Thousands of spectators will line the streets
along the parade route in the Old City. The highlight is Burning the BĂ¶Ă¶gg, an
effigy of winter, on the SechselĂ¤uten field near the ZĂĽrich Opera. The BĂ¶Ă¶gg
woodpile is lit when the bells of St. Peter sound at 6 oâ€™clock. The BĂ¶Ă¶gg
turning to ashes signals winterâ€™s final departure.
Festival hosts dance, opera, theater, and more in several venues throughout
During the ZĂĽri
FĂ¤scht, held once every three years at the start of July, a huge fairground
is set up in central ZĂĽrich. Festivities are topped off with a lavish fireworks
celebrates the confederation's birth in 1291 with fireworks and bonfires.
on August 1, the
Swiss national holiday, while spectacular displays of fireworks explode in
sizzling colors over the cities and towns, the mountain folk build the bonfires
that glow quietly, splendidly, on every hillside of every Alp, uniting Swiss
citizens as they celebrate their proud independence, their cultural wealth, and
above all their diversity. It's that diversity and those quirky contradictions
that make Switzerland a tourist capital - the folksy, fiercely efficient
innkeeper to the world.
a large-scale electronic music event with international DJs.
During late August
and early September the Theaterspektakel takes place, with circus tents
housing avant-garde theater and experimental performances as well as theater
troupes from around the world on the lawns by the lake at Mythenquai.
(Jazz Festival) takes the stage in early September.
01 462 99 55, Fax 01 462 99 65 or
One of ZĂĽrich's
oldest festivals is the prize-shooting on the AlbisgĂĽtli for 12 to 17 year old
boys and girls. A marksman king or queen is chosen every year. A colorful three
day market accompanies the event; the largest of its kind in Switzerland.
held on boats on the BĂĽrkliplatz, offers samples of international wines, and
brings lively musicians and a large, costumed procession.
Late November/early December
ZĂĽrich Six Day
New Year's Eve
Arts & Entertainment
ZĂĽrich supports a top-rank orchestra, opera company,
and theater. Check ZĂĽrich News, published weekly in English and German,
or "ZĂĽri-tipp," a German-language supplement to the Friday edition of the daily
newspaper Tages Anzeiger for weekly events throughout the year.
recognized and booked well ahead, but single seats can often be had at the last
minute. The season is from September through July.
Tonhalle Orchestra, which was inaugurated by Brahms in 1895, enjoys
international acclaim. There are also solo recitals and chamber programs here.
The season runs from September through July; and tickets sell out quickly.
has a long history
of cutting-edge performances. During World War II, this was the only
German-language theater in Europe that remained independent. Today, its main
stage presents German-language works in addition to experimental works produced
in the Keller (cellar).
Year Round Organized Tours
Tram (Trolley) Tours
The quickest and
most convenient way to get acquainted with Zurich is with a two hour trolley
tour through neighborhoods of interest. Riders are given a headset, which
provides commentary in seven languages. Between May and October, for a fee per
person, there are tours daily at 10am and 2pm. The tour covers the commercial
and shopping center and Old Town, and goes along the lakefront for a visit to
FraunmĂĽnster or one of the historic guildhalls beside the Limmatquai.
Full tour and
shorter versions are offered
information contact the ZĂĽrichsee Schiffahrtsgesellschaft by calling
To take a lake
steamer for a tour around Lake Zurich.: Walk to Bahnhofstrasse's lower end and
buy a ticket at the pier anytime from late May to late September. Most of the
steamers contain simple restaurant facilities, and all have two or three levels
of decks and windows designed for wide-angle views of the Swiss mountains and
summer, boats depart every thirty minutes.
round-trip tour of the lake from Zurich to Rapperswil will require two hours
travel each way. Travelers may leave the boat to explore towns en route.
Shorter boat rides cover the northern third of the lake with the total trip
taking about 90 minutes.
Meet the tour in the main hall of Zurichâ€™s railway
station for a two hour guided walk through the Old Town. Telephone 01/215-4000
for prices and times. Tours are offered in English daily.