Zurich Switzerland is affordable

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We left Dublin At 0740am and arrived in Zurich at 10.45 local, the public transport system is state of the art and very affordable.   We flew Ryanair and the ticket was less than 50 euro.   When we arrived in Zurich we proceeded straight to tourist information which tend to be excellent in mainland Europe and received all the information about transport etc here.  I decided a 72 hour pass was the way to go.  A one day pass would have been 13 Swiss francs but a 72 hour pass was 44, this translates to less than 40 euro and included in it was all trains, trams, boats and buses, the train from the airport included.  Trams go very regularly, every 7 or so minutes and when they finish at night normally about 12.30 pm there is always a night bus.  You are never stranded in Zurich.


My Zurich Kitchen in the 18 century house

For our accommodation I booked a private apartment, a 2 bed + kitchen with full facilities etc, washing machine etc.  Amazingly it had 2 espresso makers (I’m a complete coffee addict) not only that the owners stocked the fridge with fruit cheese, meats, milk, juice, jams, fresh bread 2 kinds, and they had bought me flowers and chocolates for my birthday.    All this for 78 euro a night in peak season and they even left me flowers and Swiss chocolate as it was my birthday.

Zurich June 2013 (13)I will defiantly stay with them again on my next visit.  Zurich has held the title of “best city to live in in the world” many times and in my humble opinion it truly deserves it.   It’s the best place I’ve been to for culture, safety, transportation, lifestyle, air quality, beauty, lakes, river, proximity to other countries, weather is excellent. The list is endless.  A lake in the middle of the city and its incorporated into the public transport system? A river going through the center of the city used also.

Day one, we walked from our apartment  into the city which took about 30 mins along the river which was breathe taking even though the river was the highest it had ever been and was close to bursting its banks, IMAG1472boats were not operating on it and as a boat person the current was so fast and furious it you fell in you were in trouble.   We stopped for coffee a must do in any European city and explored.  It was my birthday so I had reservations for dinner, we scrapped them and had dinner closer to our apartment.  There are so many great restaurants and cafes you will have many choices.  Zurich June 2013 (91)

Day 2 we started early, had breakfast at the apartment and headed for the city again.  We did a 2 hour guided walking tour and saw all the sights including a few museums.  There is 50% discount for a lot of the tours with the 72 hour travel pass so it is definitely worth having if you are in exploring mode, the museums are also free with the pass.  There are also many free walking tours all over Europe.  Here is one http://www.freewalkzurich.ch/

Zurich June 2013 (48)There are approximately 1200 fountains spread around Zurich and the water quality is 100% and tastes amazing also.  You can fill your water bottle all day long and that is what people do as restaurants and cafes typically charge 3 ch for tap water.

Zurich June 2013 (99)Still on Day 2 we bought our lunch in the supermarket, very good value and did what the locals were doing, sat on the grass and had a picnic in the sun.  we walked up and down the waterfront at the lake and decided to  jump on the boat which did the full circle,  I really recommend it.   It took about  3 hours and went around the complete lake and was actually a type of passenger ferry stopping at the most beautiful suburbs of Zurich and people getting on and off along the way, even more in love with this city now.  For tonight’s meal I had another reservation this time for a typical Swiss restaurant and in District 4, a cool vibe district hippy types sitting outside drinking wine and beer.   The beer here is excellent btw.  IMAG1480You do pay about 6 euro for a liter but I live in Ireland a pint of beer there can be over 5 euro depending on where you buy it.  This is a city so comparing it to Dublin I find it cheap.  Public transport is cheaper and 1000% more efficient.  Never lets you down.  The meal was outstanding, and I found it thanks to the little bit of research I did online before leaving. IMAG1481

Day 3 we slept in, we had seen the sights and wanted to relax in the lovely apartment.  We headed into the city for the late afternoon and just hung out, my son climbed the one tower of the church ??? all the way to the top, I went for coffee and booked our next stop, Liechtenstein for tomorrow.   We decided to cook this night and had a fabulous pasta night, I could not have purchased the ingredients for less in Ireland and so the common belief Switzerland is mega expensive to me is slightly rubbish, Yes I paid 6 euro for coffee in Starbucks however you could have gotten a great coffee in a lovely cafe for cheaper, I needed internet access and as I knew Starbucks have free wifi it was easier to go here, the location was excellent also and in Starbucks  I’ve paid similar prices in Dublin, NYC and Australia, probably more.  If your trying to see Switzerland on a budget then do self-catering and the supermarkets are great value.  The main people I hear complaining about cost are Americans, however besides Asia America is one of the cheapest countries I’ve been to for eating out etc.  Clothing is expensive and the most expensive street in the world is in Zurich.  Every main designer is here, I’ve been to Rhodeo drive and this is a higher quality in pristine safe surroundings.  During my entire trip I saw one homeless person, she was putting water from the free fountain into a bucket, I later saw her sitting in the park with the bucket washing her clothes, I have never seen this in my life.Zurich June 2013 (32)

We left Zurich on Day 4 at 10am and headed for Liechtenstein.  The quality of the trains is second to none, Swiss trains are amazing but no wifi (so far for us anyway) The prices of the trains here is steep.  Very steep.

Zurich to Milano Train June 2013 (22) Zurich to Milano Train June 2013 (23) Zurich to Milano Train June 2013 (18)

The only thing I want to do now is rent a car and travel the entire country, this area is without a doubt one of the most beautiful places in the world.

What it cost, I flew to Zurich from Dublin, ticket  cost 50 euro,  I paid 78 a night for a 2 bed apartment which was fabulous.  I also spent 44 on the train pass which saved money on tours and museums and was worth it.  I would not have opted for this if I was on a shopping trip or just hanging out.  All in all I had a great time and it was not the most expensive place I’ve been to despite the reputation, it can be done very cheap or middle of the road which is where we fell or you can spend an fortune.  So many people I’ve met have not gone to Switzerland because of this which is so sad as it is so worth a visit.

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About Sandra

Just a girl from Ireland who wants to live everywhere. Not a planner, a winger when it comes to travel. I don't even like people who plan too much. Without spontaneity there is no depth. A jack of all trades. A great friend, loyal and passionate and I expect the same in return. Always ready for the next adventure at a moments notice.
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