Situated in the Lake Geneva Region, the Canton of Vaud extends from the peaceful Jura mountains up to the fascinating Alps vaudoises or vaudois Alps and along crystal-clear and majestic lakes. Apart from the picturesque landscape, it also offers rich cultural and historical charm.
As the Olympic Tokyo 2020 fever is on, visitors coming to Lausanne should not miss the city’s most visited museum: the Olympic Museum to experience the Olympic spirit and sports in various interactive exhibitions.
The world’s only museum founded by the International Olympic Committee is situated opposite Lake Geneva and the Alps. The visitor’s journey starts in the 8,000m2 park, a green jewel between the lake and the city, dotted with sculptures inspired by sports, and continues on into the permanent exhibition, split over three floors.
Elected best European Museum by the European Museum Academy in 2018, Chaplin’s World in the hills above Vevey is Charlie Chaplin’s former residence for more than 25 years. Now, the place has been turned into a magical site dedicated to the life and work of the artist who is known throughout the world for his role as the Tramp.
In the Studio, where the streets of London have been recreated, it’s easy for visitors to take snaps of themselves in the most famous postures and sets of this great man of the 7th art. Each winter, the lighting effects and the magic of the Christmas season create an end-of-year dream atmosphere indoors and outdoors in the adjoining park.
Built on a rocky islet, the 12th-century Chillon Castle near Montreux seems to be floating on Lake Geneva. It’s Switzerland’s most visited historical monument that regularly offers exhibitions and cultural events.
The exceptional geographical location between the lake and the mountains surrounds the castle with a mystical and enchanting air. Looking at the fortress and the idyllic scenery, visitors not only can view the wall paintings from the 14th century, the subterranean vaults, parade halls and the bedroom which has been preserved in its original form, they can also imagine what life was like in the 12th century when the castle was built.
Chillon Castle can also been reached when visitors embark on a CGN Cruise. While onthe beautiful steamboat, visitors can adore the exceptional panoramas the canton of Vaud offers, from the La Cote vineyards to the terraced Lavaux UNESCO vineyards, always with the Alps in the background.
This unusual and relaxing mean of transportation allows visitors to see or land at many of the region's must-visit sites. From the historical castles of Nyon and Morges to the Gothic cathedral of Lausanne rising above the center of the old town, the travellers will also enjoy sculptures along their way. In the shape of a fork, a piece of art is standing opposite the Alimentarium in Vevey a few meters away from the statue of Charlie Chaplin. Whereas in Montreux, they will discover the statue of Freddie Mercury facing the lake.
Another highlight not to be missed is Lavaux UNESCO terraced vineyards. Formed more than 15,000 years ago, Lavaux consists of 830 hectares of steep terraced vineyards that stretch for about 30km along the south-facing northern shores of Lake Geneva from the Chillon Castle to the eastern outskirts of Lausanne in the Vaud region, covering the lower slopes of the mountainside between the villages and the lake.
Lavaux owes it splendour to the decline of the Rhone glacier and the Cistercian monks who, in the 12th century, built kilometres of walls and terraces that are carefully maintained by today’s winegrowers. It is an outstanding example of a centuries-long interaction between people and their environment and has been registered as UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2007.