Exploring Home: Lake Léman

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Between the Jura mountains, an old decreasing chain, and the Alps a youngand growing chain, you will find the Lake Léman region. Often mistakenly referred to as the Geneva lake, the region offers fabulous views and many different areas to discover, which will make you cross the border more than once. This valley is where I was born and raised. In a way, it is like being part of France and Switzerland but actually, you are part of the region which just happens to be separated between both countries. I sometimes truly miss the mountains, which feel like protectors, who also show you how small we are.

Credit: Christopher Conti

Sitting at the western point of Switzerland, Geneva is well known for being the home of several International Organisations such as the United Nations. It is a diverse and multicultural town but manages to keep its Swiss style and culture. Take a walk around the old town and its Cathedral overlooking the town from its hilltop viewpoint. Go and visit the U.N. building during an open day and walk through the amazing rooms they have there. Walk next to the lake and enjoy the view with the Jet d’eau and the surrounding mountains. As you walk around, go through the Botanic Garden of Geneva which is a peaceful and wonderful place where you will be able to discover many varieties of plants. Last but not least of the notable features you must visit, is the CERN, the European Organisation for Nuclear Research. It is not in the town and you will have to take a bus there but it is worth the detour as it is a huge complex which is known throughout the world for its nuclear research.

Before going further on towards the other side of the lake, you should have a short stop at the Fort L’Ecluse on the Jura in France where you will discover more about the history of the region while having a great view over Geneva. The Jura is a fascinating place where you will be able to walk around and truly surround yourself with nature.

Credit: Christopher Conti

The lake is big and its beauty lies in all of its different angles. As you drive towards the other end of the lake, still in Switzerland, you should stop at Nyon, Morges, Lausanne, and other villages which all have a lot of Swiss charm. Discover their beautiful views of the lake where Mont-Blanc sits just behind, overlooking all of the region with its fascinating white peak. As you drive through the motorway you will see all the vineyards sitting on the hillsides on the left and offer another beautiful view to devour with your eyes. As you get closer to Montreux, you will see that the mountains have crept up and will feel to be at arm’s reach. Montreux is a gorgeous little town which offers once again a different view of the region. A lonely tree will appear in the middle of the lake offering a poetic tone to the scenery. On the other side of the lake, in France, Ivoire is a beautiful village with a very nice old town, that you should definitely stop at to enjoy a nice meal of Filet de Perches a typical dish served anywhere around the region.

This could become an endless description of the Lake Léman as there are so much to see and enjoy. The activities vary depending on the season as well as if you are in the town or at the top of the mountain.

More articles in Exploring Home
  1. Exploring Home: Bridport
  2. Exploring Home: Paris
  3. Exploring Home: Shrewsbury
  4. Exploring Home: Bath
  5. Exploring Home: Eastbourne
  6. Exploring Home: Rediscovering the Ville Rose
  7. Exploring Home: Lake Léman
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