A Travellerspoint blog

Geneva August 2016 and 2017.

Looking back at day one August 2016.

We have been to Geneva for the final days of our last two summer holidays. Our first visit there was fairly hectic, because it was a new destination for us; our second visit was more relaxed. We were tired we had been travelling for a full seven weeks and we just wanted to swim and relax.

On both visits we stayed in the Ibis Airport Hotel in Cointrin. It is easy to get to from the airport as it has a free shuttle bus and once you have checked in you get a free transport pass for your whole stay. This is not something unique to this hotel. It seems to be all over Geneva and possibly all over Switzerland. From the Ibis Airport Hotel bus number ten will take us into the centre of the city where we can then use our pass on four boats that cross Lake Geneva, trams, buses and trains. Pretty good, I think.

Our hotel had been refurbished this year, but I did not take any new photos of it, as I say I had more or less switched off from tourism. I have a photo from last year, though.

Our room.

Our room.

On our first visit we began by heading straight towards Lake Geneva. On the way we encountered the Basilica of Notre Dame of Geneva, the main Roman Catholic church in Geneva. It is quite close to the main railway station. It was built using a design by Alexandre Grigny between 1852 and 1857. it is attractive from the outside. We did not actually go in.

The Basilica of Notre Dame of Geneva.

The Basilica of Notre Dame of Geneva.

Geneva is a city on the water. It is situated at the southern end of Lake Geneva and is also on the confluence of the Rivers Rhone and Avre. As soon as we reached the lake we could see the famous Jet d'Eau shooting up into the air on the other side. The Jet d'Eau is a huge Fountain on Lake Geneva. It is one of the tallest fountains in the world. It was built in 1886 to control and release the excess pressure of a hydraulic plant at La Coulouvrenière. Later it became a tourist attraction and the city's symbol. The fountain can pump 500 litres of water per second to a height of 140 meters. There is a bridge leading out to it which we visited later on.

Jet d'Eau.

Jet d'Eau.

We walked along the banks of the lake then crossed the road when we saw a fairly ornate monument. This was the Brunswick Monument, a mausoleum built in 1879 to commemorate the life of Charles II, Duke of Brunswick who lived from 1804 to 1873. He left his fortune to the city of Geneva on condition that a monument be built in his name. The monument is based on the Scaliger Tombs in Verona, Italy.

The Brunswick Monument.

The Brunswick Monument.

The Brunswick Monument.

The Brunswick Monument.

After looking at this monument, we crossed back to the lake which was a wonderful shade of blue. In the distance we could see tall mountains, some with snow and Geneva's old town with the Cathedral of Saint Peter perched on top of its hill.

Across the lake towards the old town.

Across the lake towards the old town.

Across the lake towards the old town.

Across the lake towards the old town.

Looking towards the mountains and Jet d'Eau.

Looking towards the mountains and Jet d'Eau.

Next we encountered some lovely statues next to the lake. The last of these statues is in memory of Empress Elizabeth of Austria, commonly known as Princess Sissi. She was stabbed to death here on September the 10th 1898 by 25-year old Italian anarchist Luigi Luccheni.

Statue by the lake.

Statue by the lake.

Statue by the lake.

Statue by the lake.

Statue by the lake.

Statue by the lake.

Statue in memory of Sisi.

Statue in memory of Sisi.

Then we took a little boat across the lake towards the Jet d'Eau. It was one of the four routes we could use free with our pass. In the end we used them all - several times. The boat is the yellow wooden one in the next picture.

Boat across the lake.

Boat across the lake.

Jet d'Eau from the other side.

Jet d'Eau from the other side.

Jet d'Eau acting as a prism.

Jet d'Eau acting as a prism.

A bit later in the English Gardens we found a statue of two women. It is called La Combourgeoisie and commemorates the joining of Geneva to the rest of Switzerland in 1814. The two women symbolize the Republic of Geneva and Helvetias.

La Combourgeoisie.

La Combourgeoisie.

We walked through the English Gardens then headed back home. We were both tired from our flight there and the intense heat. Actually we both felt like we had had way too much sun. If there is something Geneva lacks it is shade.

Posted by irenevt 01:34 Archived in Switzerland

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Comments

The free transport pass is unique to Geneva, as far as I know. I had one from my hotel, but only used it for the yellow boats, since I had a bicycle for the rest of my travel.

by Nemorino

It is a great idea I think and makes an expensive country like Switzerland much more affordable. All the best, Irene

by irenevt

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