Holidays in Switzerland. A selection of proposals for a great vacation together

swiss train

Switzerland is an extraordinary country, and its uniqueness extends to the school schedules throughout the academic year and holidays.

For example, the school year starts in different cantons at different times. In the past, in the German-speaking part, the school year started in the autumn, while in Romandy, it began in the spring. But now, everyone starts school in August, albeit on different days.

The number of holidays in each canton also varies. In Aargau, for instance, children have four breaks a year, while in Thurgau, it's six. In addition to the standard spring, summer, autumn, and Christmas holidays, they also have sports and Easter holidays. Sometimes, the Easter holidays are combined with the spring holidays.

This schedule is primarily designed to relieve the places where children spend their holidays. The holiday schedule is known several years in advance and is posted on online resources.

By following the links here and here, you can familiarize yourself with the holiday schedule in different cantons.

Exciting holiday offers

Now that we've figured out the schedule, the question arises of how to spend your free time with benefit and enjoyment, especially since the autumn holidays in most Swiss regions take place in early October. It's time to decide where to go.

Let's talk about travel.

Traveling with children in Switzerland is very interesting and educational; the main thing is to choose the right place!

These could be short trips to the nearest zoo or park, or you can plan long, extensive, more impressive trips. Choose what suits you best.

Parks and Zoos

Switzerland boasts numerous fantastic parks that offer plenty of attractions for children, including various activity areas and opportunities for biking, among other things. It's always a fun experience. We've decided to suggest locations with animals.

Zurich Zoo: Here, you'll find over 380 species of animals in natural habitats, like the lion savanna, the tropical forest of Masoala, and the elephant park Kaeng Krachan. Your kids can observe animals and learn how to protect them and their natural environments. Note that there is a discount every Monday, and the ticket price for adults is only 7 Swiss francs.

We also recommend the Basel Zoo, which offers free admission with a Ukrainian passport. It's a true green oasis in the heart of the city, home to over 500 species of animals from all continents.

Marmot Paradise, located near the resort town of Montreux on the shores of Lake Geneva in the canton of Vaud, offers a lot of enjoyment. It's a wildlife park where several marmot species reside, sure to melt your heart. Visiting here is free.

The Swiss National Park, situated in the canton of Graubünden, is a UNESCO-protected reserve. It's a vast area with hiking trails of varying difficulty, incredible natural beauty, and a stunning display of colorful foliage in the autumn. Overall, it's home to many animals, with deer particularly prominent in the autumn.

Bear Park in Bern: The bear is a symbol of Bern, which derives its name from the German word "Bär," meaning bear. It used to be a small bear pit, but now, the bears have an entire slope by the river to roam freely. You can admire the bears completely free of charge.


We wrote about 10 magnificent castles in our article, but I'll tell you about one separately since I visited it with my family.

Chillon Castle: Enchanting, unusual, and impressive, this castle offers Ukrainians free admission. It is perhaps the most famous castle in Switzerland, celebrated by Lord Byron in his novel "The Prisoner of Chillon." François Bonivard was imprisoned there for six years starting in 1530 and served as the inspiration for Byron's hero.

Undoubtedly, this is one of the largest and most beautiful castles, located on the shores of Lake Geneva, a 20-minute walk from Montreux.

There, you'll be able to see feudal life with your own eyes, wander through galleries, descend into the dungeon, and even trace how the buildings changed over the centuries.

The location of the castle is also interesting. It is situated on a rocky island opposite the road from Italy, squeezed between the lake and a mountain, which gives it strategic importance.

The castle houses a collection of furniture, weapons, and ancient artifacts discovered during archaeological excavations on the site.

To enhance your impression of this magnificent structure, reading Lord Byron's poem "The Prisoner of Chillon" will be helpful. Do it with your children in advance, discuss it, and then look for where Byron's hero endured his punishment in the castle.

A brochure with a description is provided when purchasing a ticket.


Museums in Switzerland

Interesting places in Switzerland are not limited to castles and parks. There are many museums.

Technorama in Winterthur

Technorama allows you to explore hundreds of natural and technological phenomena. Here, you can touch everything, play with everything, and experiment. Learning occurs through hands-on exploration of natural phenomena, moving art, and the creative process of craftsmanship, engineering, and invention.

Switzerland in Miniature in Melide

This park offers a fantastic opportunity to see all the major landmarks of Switzerland in one day, albeit in their small-scale replicas. Numerous castles, churches, traditional houses, and even train stations and airports with moving transportation are recreated at a 1:25 scale. In total, 121 objects have been assembled.

This park-museum is located in the town of Melide, in the canton of Ticino.

Swiss Transport Museum

This is one of the largest museums of its kind in Europe. It comprises several pavilions dedicated to aviation, railways, water, and road transport. You can even "fly" on a flight simulator. There are educational films, interesting guided tours, and numerous educational programs for schools.

Gletschergarten Ice Garden in Lucerne

This museum is created by nature itself, providing direct evidence of the existence of a glacier in these places 20,000 years ago. There are numerous locations, programs, and tours. But most importantly, we can literally touch the multi-millennia history, back to a time when humanity did not yet exist.

Delicious Locations

Who doesn't love chocolate, especially children? Would you like to see how it's made? Then don't miss the opportunity to visit a chocolate factory.

Nestlé Chocolate Factory

A sweet adventure awaits you at the chocolate attraction Maison Cailler in Broc. It's here, by the way, that milk chocolate was invented!

You'll find a fantastic installation showcasing various stages of chocolate production and its history. And, of course, at the end, there's a chocolate tasting.

A wonderful idea is to make chocolates yourself, so consider signing up for chocolate workshops.

You can visit the chocolate factory as part of a tour on the Chocolate Train from Montreux (from May to October).

Ticket to the chocolate factory: children up to 16 years old - free, but only when accompanied by an adult.

Lindt Chocolate Factory in Zurich

Here, you can immerse yourself in the multi-dimensional world of chocolate with all your senses, from its creation and cultural significance to tasting and making your own chocolate bar.

And despite Switzerland's reputation for being expensive, they try to make entertainment for children as affordable as possible. Children under 6 years old usually have free entry. And they travel for free as well.

Children aged 6 to 15 are entitled to a 50% discount on public transportation. But you can save even more: SBB offers an annual pass for children for just 30 francs.

And if you have a Swiss Pass, you can get an STS Family card for a child under 16, and they'll travel with you for free!

So, choose how and where to spend the holidays with your children and enjoy this time together.


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