Geneva on a budget

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It has a reputation for being expensive, but it is possible to plan a budget weekend break to Geneva

Geneva is a slick and sleek city by definition. Known as the priciest city in Europe, it’s also an idyllic place to be. Geneva has the second-largest population in Switzerland of about 192,296, beaten only by Zurich.

The city is enclosed by the Jura Mountains to the West and the French Alps on the East where you can find the highest mountain in the Alps: Mont-Blanc.

On the Quality of Life Survey, Geneva shares first place with Zurich. Home to many international organisations, including the United Nations headquarters, Geneva is a worldwide centre for diplomacy. The entire world is there: World Health Organisation, International Labour Organisation and the International Red Cross. The city has an international ambiance with residents from 180 countries so even if French is the most spoken language you can hear countless other languages when you wander through the streets.

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Geneva’s history dates back 4,000 years and can be seen through well-preserved buildings, monuments and museums so there is plenty to see and do for free. However, the city has a reputation for being expensive thanks to all the luxury stores, hotels and restaurants, but it is possible to plan a budget weekend break to Geneva.

Transport costs can often eat well into your budget but luckily for visitors to Geneva, you can get a free pass for transport straight from the airport or at your hotel. It might sound too good to be true but it’s the law!

After getting your free pass head to Lake Geneva and enjoy the breathtaking sights of the beautiful swans swimming in the lake. An exciting way to explore it is to do it using a Mouette which is a sort of mini cab on water that will take you to the five lakeside docks.

Jet d'eau Geneva
Jet d’eau Geneva

Jet d’eau is a towering fountain on Lake Geneva that shoots to 140 metres and is an inescapable icon of Geneva.

Lake Geneva flows into the Rhone River. There, you’ll find the Pont Du Mont Blanc, a bridge on road Rhone, marking the end of Lake Geneva. Originally opened in 1903, but has seen many changes since, the name was given in honour to the mountains overlooking the city from afar.

The Swiss are known for always being on time and it’s no surprise when you see there are 50 public clocks in the city. The flower clock is one of the most beautiful. It was created in 1955, and redesigned in 2002 and is situated between the Pont Du Mont Blanc and the Jardin Anglais.

Take a leisurely stroll in Parc des Bastions, a park with a botanical garden, where you’ll find the company of many locals. Other parks include Parc des Eaux and La Grange Park. La Grange Park is located on the left bank of Lake Geneva and is famous for archaeological excavations.

Geneva is a city that offers a lot even on a budget. With its culture, diversity, natural beauty, terrific weather, good public transport, history, and relaxing ambiance, it’s easy to see why it’s such a popular destination. There are also many hostels in Geneva that offer rooms for as low as £20 per night for those of you who are looking for a warm and cosy atmosphere.

For a virtual 360° tour of Geneva visit and get a taste of this city that is rich in beautiful landscapes, monuments and culture.

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(Images: twiga269 ॐ FreeTIBET, YannGar Photo in Lausanne)

Geneva on a budget was last modified: October 23rd, 2015 by Oonagh Shiel
Author: Oonagh Shiel (3400 posts)

Content Manager at Cheapflights whose travel life can be best summed up as BC (before children) and PC (post children). We only travel during the school holidays so short-haul trips and staycations are our specialities!