Geneva Old Town (Vieille Ville)
Attractions in Geneva’s Old Town include the International Museum of the Reformation, St. Peter’s Cathedral, and the Museum of Art and History. At the entrance to Old Town is the English Garden and the Flower Clock, made of more than 6,500 living flowers. Many visitors to Old Town explore by themselves and go at their own pace. It’s also possible to join a guided walking tour or Segway tour that includes other Geneva attractions.
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Things to Know Before You Go
A combined ticket is available for the cathedral, the archaeological museum in the basement, and the Reformation Museum.
The Museum of Art and History is free to enter.
There are many antique shops and art galleries on the Grand-Rue in the Old Town.
How to Get There
Geneva’s Old Town is situated on the left bank of Lake Geneva (Lac Léman). Cars and other vehicles are not allowed in most of the Old Town, so plan to walk or cycle around the neighborhood. Between May and October you can borrow bikes for free for up to four hours from Genèveroule, outside the train station. The city also has buses, trolley buses, and trams for traveling longer distances.
When to Get There
Many museums throughout Geneva are free on the first Sunday of the month, so this is a good time to visit the Old Town’s museums. Geneva is especially nice during the warmer months (May to October), and strolling with an ice cream through the Old Town and along the lakefront is a popular pastime of locals and visitors alike.
Visit Bern’s Old Town
For more Old Town history and culture, visit the Altstadt in Switzerland’s capital city, Bern. Most of it was built in the 15th century, after a fire devastated older buildings. There are more than 3.5 miles (6 kilometers) of covered arcades, as well as 11 decorative fountains.
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- Tavel House (Maison Tavel)
- Maison de Rousseau & de la Littérature (MRL)
- International Museum of the Reformation (Musée International de la Réforme)
- Barbier-Mueller Museum (Musée Barbier-Mueller)
- St. Peter's Cathedral (Cathédrale St-Pierre)
- Geneva Museum of Art and History (Musée d'Art et d'Histoire de Genève)
- Bastions Park (Parc des Bastions)
- Baur Foundation, Museum of Far Eastern Art
- Flower Clock (Horloge Fleurie)
- English Garden (Jardin Anglais)
- Rath Museum (Musée Rath)
- Rousseau Island (Ile Rousseau)
- Patek Philippe Museum
- Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art (MAMCO)
- Geneva Contemporary Art Centre (Centre d'Art Contemporain Genève)