The romance of Shahrukh Khan and Kajol in Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge (DDLJ) on the snowy Swiss Alps added Switzerland on my Europe’s bucket list since the ’90s. And so visiting Switzerland was one of my most cherished travel dreams. When I find got my hands on my ticket to Paris, I knew I had to visit nearby Zurich, even for 2 days. No amount of money or time constraint can stop me. So, I traveled to Paris and planned to spend two days in Zurich on the weekend. However, now I know 2 days in Zurich are definitely less, but enough to make you fall with the entire country.
Things to know before planning your 2-day in Zurich excursion
Currency – CHF (Swiss Francs). Euro’s are accepted but with an exchange rate.
Language – German, French, Italian & Romansh. Swiss German is a widely spoken language in Switzerland.
Public Transport – Excellent transport system including trams and buses.
Expense – Zurich is pretty expensive, especially if you’re going from India.
Travel Pass – The Swiss travel pass is extremely useful & gives access to numerous museums.
Water – Tap water is safe for drinking.
Safety – One of the safest countries in the World.
Punctuality – One word – Highly! Everything, buses, trams or trains run right on time!
Savoring two days in Zurich amid all the snow
Pondering the places to visit in Zurich in 2 days, I decided that I want to see at least one of the famous Alpine range. So, my 2-day Zurich itinerary also includes a day trip to Mount Titlis. Why mount Titlis? I loved DDLJ when I was a teenager, so it instantly became my bucket list item. So, here’s how I spent my two days in Zurich –
2 days in Zurich – Day 1
Walk in the Old Town
To be honest, I walked a lot around a lot in the old town. One of the mistakes I made was to book a hotel outside of the main town, but I tried to turn that to my advantage. I started my day early and didn’t return to my room unless I had to! Even the snow couldn’t stop me. The pretty homes, cobbled streets, and the high-end retail kept me occupied. Believe me, it was the best time during my stay of two days in Zurich.
The 9th-century church is one of the landmark icons of the city and trends on the top places to visit in Zurich in 2 days. The Fraumünster Church isn’t as grand as the ones I saw in Vienna or Prague. But the five huge stained glass windows are major attractions of the church. The best part of these windows is that each one of the windows has a colored code theme.
The two-towered church is another iconic symbol from Zurich. According to legends, the cathedral is built on the site of graves of city’s patrons making it one of the top places to visit in Zurich in 2 days.
One of the odd things here is that the entry charge for the Grossmünster Cathedral, even as low as 5 Swiss Franc feels out of place for a religious place to me. Although, if you like city views, you can climb the 187 stairs of the cathedral for a view of Zurich city.
Zurich lake is one of the most popular places to visit in Zurich. You’ll not wonder why when it’ll awe you with its beauty, views of the Alps and a chance to hang out with locals chilling at the lake shore.
Like swimming? You can swim in the Zurich Lake mostly during summers. The Zurich lake is usually the center point of various activities take place in the city. Apart from the usual, I’d recommend finding a restaurant to enjoy a meal with the view of the lake.
Zurich Opera House
When you’re near the lake, I’d suggest taking a quick detour to glimpse at the 19th century Zurich Opera House. If your time permits, you may even enjoy a show here, if not, then the building is worth appreciating.
The outflow of the Zurich Lake goes into the Limmat river where cruises & boating can be done. If you have purchased the Zurich card, then the cruise on the Limmat river is covered.
Ride the Tram
The public transport of Zurich (& Switzerland) is excellent and the trams are a delight to commute. My 2 days in Zurich included a lot of tram rides back & forth. As I stayed a bit outside of the city, I had to take the bus from the last stop of the tram. Even the buses here run on time, are comfortable & a wonderful means to travel in Zurich.
Shopping… err Window Shopping
There’s no doubt that Switzerland is an expensive country. I roamed around in the city center gawking at the showrooms. Every time I set foot in one of the brand’s showroom, I came out empty handed. However, I managed to buy a watch for my brother from here which I luckily found within my budget 😀 It’s all comes down to our budget. If you have the budget & heart to spend on the stuff from a fancy showroom, then I can say Zurich has an amazing collection.
2 days in Zurich – Day 2
Switzerland is home to some of the highest mountain range in Europe, including Jungfraujoch, known as Top of Europe. The travel time from Zurich to Jungfraujoch is almost 10 hours, so I decided to go for Mount Titlis. If you’d like to visit Jungfraujoch, I’d recommending basing your self closer to the mountain range.
It only takes almost 2 hours to reach Mount Titlis from Zurich by train. The train ride is as memorable as the Mount Titlis with the panoramic views of the snow-covered mountains and Swiss countryside. From Zurich, there are two interchanges, one at Zurich and the last stop at Engelberg. From Engelberg, a bus takes us to the Gondola base station… Oh wait, didn’t I mention there’s a Gondola ride to the top of Mount Titlis? The gondola is almost the best part of this trip to Mount Titlis. The 360° rotating gondola is a charm taking you from the snow-capped mountains till you reach the top of Mount Titlis. The views from the Gondola are mesmerizing, I’d suggest, pick a spot by the glass window to enjoy the views.
On the top of the Mount Titlis, it is freezing, literally! I forgot my gloves and all I could do to keep myself warm was through a coffee cuppa. There’s the highest suspension bridge of Europe at Mount Titlis, called Titlis Cliff Walk. Despite freezing temperatures, I went ahead to enjoy the cliff walk, that’s a thing I’ll never forget my entire life. It’s snow everywhere, believe me, the scene will never leave your memory. If you don’t forget gloves like me, then play in the snow for a while or ski back down. Take your pick!
Don’t rush to go back, spend some time here, enjoy a meal at the restaurant of the Mount Titlis. Though you’ll not find many vegetarian choices here, I chose fries & coffee! In the end, it’s all worth it when the time is well spent amid such scenery.
Your second day from 2 days in Zurich will go mostly from & to Mount Titlis. If your time permits, I’d suggest walking in and around the city center around the main station. It’s amazing to see the local life here.
Where to Stay in Zurich
I stayed in Hotel Ibis Zurich Adliswil – The hotel was not exactly in the city but a bit outside. It is suitable for business travelers and solo travelers like me for a budget hotel. It was snowing in Zurich even in March, gave me a view like this in the mornings from my window –
Though if your choice is to stay in the city here for your 2 days in Zurich, here are some options on where to stay in Zurich –
Hotel Glockenhof Zürich – A hotel with beautiful exteriors in the old town of Zurich should be on your list. Apart from the location, I give another point to the room choices available here.
Hotel Schweizerhof Zürich – Excellent room right in the city center, gorgeous architecture of the hotel makes it amazing in itself. Hardly 15 minutes walk away from Lake Zurich, this should be on your radar.
Fleming’s Hotel Zürich – A decently priced hotel in Zurich’s old town should be your choice if you’d like to stay in a residential area. If you’re traveling with your partner, then Fleming’s is a great choice.
Hotel St. Josef – A 3-star hotel with Zurich main station only 10 minutes away. A welcoming staff, amazing breakfast choices, and numerous restaurant options make St. Josef hotel a perfect choice.
Sorell Hotel Seidenhof – A 3-minute walk from Zurich main station and near the shopping street in
HAVE YOU TRAVELED TO ZURICH? DID YOU SPEND 2 DAYS IN ZURICH OR MORE? WHAT DID YOU LIKE MOST ABOUT IT? TELL ME IN THE COMMENTS BELOW!
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