Things to do in Zurich during your first weekend there

Zurich is an amazing city, with so much to see and do! Here are some of our favorite museums, parks, and getaways, plus great places to eat.

Editorial Team

By Editorial Team

View of the Bernese Oberland mountains

Switzerland is truly one of the world’s bucket-list destinations. Millions of people visit the country each year for the incredible mountain scenery, great hiking and skiing and sophisticated urban culture. Chances are if you’ve moved to Zurich — or you’re just thinking about it! — you already have a few plans for what to see and do.

It’s even easier to experience the best that Zurich has to offer when you live in a turnkey Blueground home. Every one of our furnished apartments in Asia, Europe, the Middle East, and North America is designed to let you feel at home in a new city from day one. Our homes are laid out by our in-house team of interior designers, ensuring maximum comfort in a high-design setting. You’ll also enjoy fast Wi-Fi, a fully equipped kitchen, and a comfortable work-from-home setup.One of the best things about choosing a fully furnished apartment is that you can spend your free time exploring your new city, not shopping for new dishes or bedding. Ready to start the adventure of a lifetime? Here are just a few of our favorite things to do in Zurich.

Friday: Dinner and a Movie

Spend your first night in Switzerland in the comfort of your own apartment. You can either use your very own kitchen to prepare a simple meal, or download a must-have app like Smood or Just Eat to have delicious food delivered to your new apartment.

Your TV is all set up in your apartment, so get comfortable and take a cinematic tour of Switzerland from your new home. If you want a taste of Alpine adventure, there’s no better movie to watch than the 1969 James Bond classic On Her Majesty’s Secret Service. Britain’s most famous gentleman spy, played in this instance by George Lazenby, finds himself chasing baddies throughout the country. (Avengers and Game of Thrones fans will also be excited to see a young Diana Rigg as Bond’s love interest.)

 schilthorn murren

In just over two hours, you’ll see Bern, Grindelwald, Interlaken and jaw-dropping shots of the beautiful Lauterbrunnen Valley. The action really heats up at a purpose-built revolving restaurant atop the fictional Piz Gloria, in reality the Schilthorn peak. Today this is one of the country’s most-visited spots — and the destination for tomorrow’s big adventure.

Saturday: Alpine Adventure

If you’re willing to get up early, you can take in a panoramic view of the Alps from the Schilthorn by lunchtime! One of the best things about Switzerland is the country’s extensive rail system, which lets you get pretty much anywhere within a day. You can reach the observation platform of this remote peak in a little under four hours on public transportation from Zurich!

The 9,744-foot (2,970-meter) Schilthorn is not only one of Switzerland’s tallest mountains, it offers 360-degree views of the famous Eiger, Jungfrau and Mönch mountains. You can also see more than 200 other peaks from the outdoor observatory. This is all without climbing anything more arduous than a short staircase! (Just be sure to pack a jacket, even in summer!)

travel to murren

Head to the nearest train station with service to Bern — which is worth a visit in its own right. You will then transfer to a smaller train for the jaw-droppingly beautiful trip into the Bernese countryside. Eventually you will need to transfer to an even smaller train, then a cable car to complete the journey. Once you arrive in Mürren, you will need to purchase a separate ticket for admission to the Schilthorn cable car and observatory, or you can reserve ahead online.

You may want to spend the night in one of the small, car-free villages of the Lauterbrunnen Valley. It’s logistically possible to take the train back to Zurich after visiting the observatory and arrive as night falls. That said, small Alpine towns like Mürren and Wengen offer some wonderful hiking and even skydiving, so if you can swing a night away, go for it!

person looking at snowy mountains

Of course, if this grand train trip sounds too ambitious there’s plenty to do right in Zurich. Head to Zurich’s HB, the city’s largest train station. This is an ideal jumping-off point for a walking tour of the city’s historic core. Make sure you capture the perfect selfie — or maybe three or four, just to be safe. Then, spend the afternoon shopping for chocolate, jewelry, and designer wares along the Bahnhofstrasse, one of the city’s most exclusive areas.

The surrounding neighborhood is also the perfect place to sample traditional Swiss cuisine at restaurants like Zeughauskeller, where you can dine in a converted 15th century arsenal. You can also pick up tickets for an evening show at the Zürich Opera House or the Schauspielhaus Zürich theater.

Sunday: A Brush With History

Even if you spent half of the morning in the beautiful Lauterbrunnen Valley, there’s still plenty of time for a visit to the historic Swiss National Museum. For more than a hundred years, this cultural showplace has helped Swiss citizens and visitors explore the unique trilingual heritage of the country.

swiss national museum

Exhibits range from classical sculptures to archeological finds to robots! The permanent collection is extensive, so be sure to budget plenty of time for your visit! (There are also private guided tours of the museum available by appointment.) All visitors to the museum should be prepared to show proof of vaccination or recovery from Covid-19 with a COVID certificate that is valid in Switzerland.

If you’re feeling peckish after your day at the museum, there are plenty of wonderful restaurants nearby. Get a taste of traditional fondue at Swiss Chuchi, a boutique restaurant situated within the Adler Hotel.

a blueground apartment in zurich

If you have already experienced flexible living in one of Blueground’s turnkey furnished apartments, you already know why people are giving up on year-long leases. But if you’re still renting the old-fashioned way, you owe it to yourself to find out more about the Blueground experience.

Editorial Team

Editorial Team

The Blueground editorial team covers the best things to see, do, and experience in our cities around the world.