Domestic goddess and backyard explorer with a passion for freelance writing!
Published October 24th 2014
A surprisingly romantic and educational city
Geneva, Switzerland's second most populated city second to Zurich and home to the headquarters of the United Nations, was an interesting pick for a romantic honeymoon. Definintely not the usual kind of destination one would have picked from the many choices of European cities available. My initial reaction was scepticism and some confusion. However, soon enough, that thought was put to rest and I was surprised to say I really thoroughly enjoyed myself.
Our trip was pretty short, from memory two days, but any more than that, and you might run out of things to see and do, again depending on your interests. One of the most important things to know is that Geneva is extremely expensive- the hotels, the food, shopping, everything. So be prepared. Secondly, Geneva is a very vanilla city, and by that I mean its extremely clean, green, peaceful, simple and globally known to be a very neutral and tolerant part of the world. However that also means don't expect to see too much culture, night life, vibrancy etc. that one might expect in a very cosmopolitan city like London, for example.
Firstly, we checked into our hotel - Swissotel, which was grand, majestic even with rich maroon carpets, displays of jewellery, watches, wines to purchase behind glass cases, and an overall very posh and sophisticated decor. Our room plus en suite was huge, with a large comfortable soft bed and I don't know, maybe ten choices of pillows. Until then, I had no idea one could choose pillow stuffings. Educational indeed. The wardrobe had bath robes, slippers and luxury items such as Hermes gels and shampoo were left for our use in the bathrooms, which by the way had a huge bathtub. I think at some point during our stay, the door to the ensuite was jammed and the Swissotel staff immediately dispatched a serviceman to have it fixed.
Stepping out into the street, it was hard to miss Lake Geneva, literally right outside our door, remembering that the whole city of Geneva rests on the edge of the lake and foothills of the French Alps, hence it is also predominantly French speaking. Walking along the bridge, we snapped a few pictures of the tallest water fountain in the world, Jet d'Eau, spouting out of the lake.
Having missed the start times of most of the winery/chocolate tours that morning, which are worth considering, we decided to make a day trip to Montreau and Lausanne instead, both lake side towns accessible by train. Other things worth considering are a day trip to the Alps for some ski action, however we passed this one.