Hiring a car in Geneva

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Hiring a car in Geneva

Whether you're having fun on the piste or sloping round the shops, pick up your hire car at Geneva airport and you're off. .

60-second guide to Geneva

in its own head

"We are the centre of the peaceful civilised world, the capital city of diplomacy!"

but more realistically

Yes Geneva is peaceful, but it's also so quaint, cheerful and sweet it actually hurts. Behind Zurich, a recent poll suggests that it has the second best quality of life in the whole world.

the vibe

Clean, fresh, classy and great looking.

the natives

Locals are reserved but courteous. It's a real melting pot too, with the foreign community making up 45 per cent of the population..

the weather

A reliable flurry of soft snow ensures the ski slopes around Geneva are kept packed with powder from December to May, while the summer months can push into the mid twenties.

the local speciality

Those who spent the 70s wearing polo necks and slacks will already be accustomed to a fondue - the gooey cheese mixture that's just brilliant for dipping.

the celebrity

In 1988 the performance artist/pop icon Yoko Ono, controversial wife of John Lennon, moved into town. Another Beatle, George Harrison, also lived nearby at one point.

did you know?

In some quarters Geneva is known as the 'Protestant Rome' after famous theologian Jean Calvin tinkered around with the local church in the 1500s.

they say

"Embedded between nearby Alpine peaks and the hilly terrain of the Jura, Geneva is known as the 'capital of peace'." - myswitzerland.com.

5 to see in town...

1. United Nations

Every year around 25,000 delegates visit this building to row hysterically with one another about world peace.

where to park?

Unless you've got some sort of flash security pass, you won't be allowed to park in the UN building. Try the meter parking on Avenue de la Pais instead.

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2. The Old Town

Just a spitting distance away from the hustle and bustle of the city centre is the old town, crammed with narrow passages, hidden treasures and good vibes.

where to park?

Don't bother actually driving into the Old Town, it's a headache. Instead park at the Parking Du Mont Blanc in Quai du General Guisan.

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3: Flower Cloak

For fans of floral art, great news - this is the biggest flower clock on the planet. The dial alone is made up of around 6,500 flowers.

where to park?

Also in the Old Town, if you have no luck at Parking du Mont Blanc try the Rive-Centre car park in Boulevard Helvetique. They charge CHF1 for 25 minutes rising to CHF35 for 12 hours.

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4: Saint Peter's Cathedrial

This gigantic house of God overlooks the entire city and accompanying lake, meaning that the views are pretty spectacular. But, be warned, it takes 157 steps to get to the summit of the north tower.

where to park?

The St Antoine car park on Boulevard Emile Jaques-Dalcroze is another Old Town option if Parking Du Mont Blanc is full.

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5: Place Neuve

A grand square, the kind of place where you'll find big buildings where they put on operas, earnest looking museums and a 'Conservatory of Music'.

where to park?

Use the Plaine de Plainpalais car park in Boulevard Georges-Favon. They charge CHF1 for 30 minutes rising to CHF33 for 12 hours.

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and 4 to drive to...

1: Chamonix

Beloved of skiers and snowboarders of all levels, the Chamonix ski resort sits amid breathtaking mountain scenery. The towering Mont Blanc is undeniably a high point.

how to get there?

Follow the A40 for around 34 miles and continue on the N205. Exit onto the D1506 heading towards Chamonix-Mont-Blanc. The journey will take around an hour.

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2: Megeve

One of the best-kept secrets of the skiing world, the picturesque resort of Megeve is a feast for all the senses, combining top-notch skiing facilities with Michelin-starred grub.

how to get there?

Follow the A40 for around 28 miles, take exit 20-Sallanches toward Megeve/Albertville, then follow the D1205 following signs for Megeve. The journey will take under an hour from Geneva.

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3: Morzine

The pretty village of Morzine stands in the gateway of a veritable winter wonderland, which is home to 650km of impressive slopes - perfect for skiers and ramblers alike.

how to get there?

Follow the A40 for around 19 miles, then take exit 18-Scionzier and pick up the D902 towards Morzine. The journey should take no longer than an hour.

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4: Lausanne

The Medieval city of Lausanne, situated on the north shore of Lake Geneva, is bursting with character - as well its fair share of hills. Prepare for steep streets but stunning views.

how to get there?

Follow the A1, then continue on the A1a, following signs for Lausanne-Ouchy/Lausanne-Centre/Lausanne-Sud. The journey should take no more than 45 minutes.

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