BEST DAY TRIPS FROM GENEVA, SWITZERLAND

FIND OUT ABOUT THE BEST GENEVA DAY TOURS 

Geneva is a great city to explore in a day. But after a day or two exploring Geneva and its main attractions, it is time to go on some fantastic day trips from Geneva. And this post is all about the best day tours from Geneva, Switzerland.

This beautiful city is located in the southwestern part of Switzerland, known for its stunning views of Lake Geneva and the surrounding Alps. It is a popular destination for people from around the world due to its rich history, culture, and breathtaking scenery.

However, it is also a great base for exploring the nearby French towns and cities, such as Annecy, Chamonix, and the world-famous Mont Blanc Mountain. 

These destinations are easily accessible – by train, car, or boat – making them perfect for Geneva day trips. 

Lake Geneva Grand Tour sign
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TIPS – PLANNING THE BEST DAY TRIPS FROM GENEVA

So, this post is all about these amazing day tours from Geneva for your Switzerland itinerary.

HOW TO GET AROUND FOR DAY TRIPS FROM GENEVA

When it comes to getting around for day trips from Geneva, there are a few options available.

One popular choice is to take a scenic road trip, which offers stunning views of the surrounding mountains and lakes. However, parking can be difficult in some areas, so it’s important to plan accordingly.

Public transportation in Switzerland is just excellent. Enjoy some amazing train rides when traveling from Geneva to other parts of Switzerland – or even France.

If getting around via public transportation, I highly recommend the Swiss Travel Pass, which offers unlimited travel on trains, buses, and boats throughout Switzerland.

The pass also includes access to many museums and attractions, making it a great value for those who plan to do a lot of exploring. 

CHECK OUT SWISS TRAVEL PASSES HERE

WHERE TO STAY IN GENEVA

Of course, staying in the city center of Geneva or on the shores of gorgeous Lake Geneva, ideally with a view of the Jet d’Eau – the Geneva Water Foutain – would be a good choice. However, hotel prices in this area are extremely high, so it will also depend on your budget which hotel you should pick. 

Luxury: Les Armures Hotel – Nestled in the heart of Geneva’s old town, the Les Armures Hotel occupies a unique 17th-century building that exudes historic charm and character. This boutique hotel offers guests a one-of-a-kind experience, blending luxurious accommodations with fine dining in an unpretentious setting.

➡️ BOOK YOUR STAY AT  LES ARMURES HOTEL HERE

Mid-Range – N’vY Manotel – There are some stunning hotels close to all the main attractions that won’t break the bank. My personal favorite is N’vY Manotel – a colorful hotel located close to the shores of Lake Geneva and the old town.

➡️ BOOK YOUR STAY AT  N´V`Y MANOTEL HERE

BEST TIME TO VISIT GENEVA

The best time to visit Geneva is during the summer months, which typically span from June to August. Summer in Geneva offers pleasant weather, with average temperatures ranging from 20 to 25 degrees Celsius (68 to 77 degrees Fahrenheit).

You can spend wonderful days at Lake Geneva, go on some outdoor adventures like hiking, experience a lot of festivals and events, and also have the long summer days which will allow you to soak up the beauty of Switzerland (and France) for much longer than in the shorter days.

However, I also love the fall season around Lake Geneva as the crowds leave and the fall foliage makes the area even prettier. It’s important to note that summer is a popular tourist season in Geneva, so it can be more crowded than at other times of the year.

If you prefer a quieter visit, consider planning your trip in the shoulder seasons of spring (April to May) or autumn (September to October), when the weather is still pleasant, and there are fewer crowds.

Winter in Geneva is also an amazing time to visit Geneva – thanks to its location, you can do some amazing winter sports activities or enjoy snow-capped mountains nearby.

BEST GENEVA DAY TOURS IN 2024

So, without further ado, here are my favorite day trips from Geneva.

MONTREUX

A visit to the Swiss Riviera is a must whenever you are in Geneva. The Swiss Riviera refers to the region along the shores of Lake Geneva (also known as Lac Léman) in Switzerland.

It is a beautiful area renowned for its stunning landscapes, charming towns, and luxurious resorts and stretches from the city of Lausanne to the eastern edge of Lake Geneva, encompassing several municipalities and villages along the way.

Montreux is part of this riviera and it is an absolutely gorgeous day trip from Geneva.

best places to stay in Montreux Switzerland,
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This charming town is nestled on the shores of Lake Geneva, offering stunning scenery, a lively promenade, and a famous castle, the Chateau du Chillon.

Hop on a train from Geneva to Montreux, and soak in the breathtaking views of the lake and surrounding mountains during the one-hour ride. Once you arrive, head straight to the promenade, a lively strip packed with restaurants, cafes, and shops.

Take a leisurely stroll while enjoying the stunning lake and mountain views. Next, it’s time to explore the iconic Chateau du Chillon, one of Switzerland’s most famous castles. The castle, which dates back to the 12th century, is located on a small island in Lake Geneva.

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After the castle visit, head back to the promenade and satisfy your hunger pangs with a scrumptious meal at one of the many restaurants.

Take a relaxing boat ride on the lake and bask in the serene beauty of the surrounding mountains and the calm waters.

To reach Montreux from Geneva, you can take a train from the Geneva main station. Trains run regularly throughout the day, making it a convenient option. Alternatively, you can opt for a scenic drive along the lake, which takes about 1.5 hours, or hop on a boat and enjoy a relaxing boat cruise on Lake Geneva.

LAVAUX 

Get ready to savor some of the best wines in Switzerland as you explore the stunning Lavaux Vineyard Terraces!

Stretching for about 30 km along the south-facing northern shores of Lake Geneva from the Chateau de Chillon to the eastern outskirts of Lausanne in the Vaud region, these terraces are a sight to behold and a great place to visit from Geneva. It is so special it became a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2007.

Lavaux hike with wine tasting
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Although there is some evidence that vines were grown in the area during Roman times, the present vine terraces can be traced back to the 11th century. Back then, Benedictine and Cistercian monasteries controlled the area, and the vineyards were established to produce a highly valued wine that has always been important to the economy.

As you explore the lower slopes of the mountainside between the villages and the lake, you’ll witness an outstanding example of a centuries-long interaction between people and their environment. The vine terraces were developed to optimize local resources, resulting in the production of top-quality wines that are highly valued to this day.

So, get ready to take a stroll through the stunning Lavaux Vineyard Terraces and sample some of the finest wines that Switzerland has to offer. 

LAUSANNE

Are you ready for a day in another gorgeous city? Then take a day trip from Geneva to the stunning city of Lausanne!

Start your day by hopping on a train from Geneva to Lausanne. The scenic ride takes around 45 minutes, offering breathtaking views of the picturesque Lake Geneva and surrounding mountains.

Town Hall in Lausanne a must see in 1 day
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Once you arrive in Lausanne, head straight to the old town, a charming neighborhood filled with quaint cafes, shops, and historic buildings. Explore the magnificent Lausanne Cathedral, a Gothic-style structure dating back to the 13th century.

Take in the stunning views of the city and the lake from the cathedral’s tower. Take the time to visit the Olympic Museum, a must-visit attraction for sports lovers. The museum showcases the history of the Olympic Games and features interactive exhibits, making it a fun and engaging experience for all ages.

Stroll along the stunning Lake Geneva promenade and enjoy the serene beauty of the lake and the surrounding mountains.  Check out my Lausanne in one day itinerary for more tips.

To get to Lausanne from Geneva, you can take a train from the Geneva main station. Trains run regularly throughout the day, making it a convenient and cost-effective option. Alternatively, you can also take a scenic drive along the lake, which takes about an hour.

ANNECY

Are you ready for a day trip filled with adventure, romance, and beauty? Look no further than the stunning town of Annecy, France, just a short drive from Geneva!

Discovering Annecy with Puppygak
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Once you arrive in Annecy, prepare to be swept off your feet by the charming town’s narrow canals, cobbled streets, and beautiful architecture.

Explore the old town and marvel at the beautiful pastel-colored buildings, which date back to the medieval era. Take a stroll through the lively markets, where you can find fresh local produce, cheeses, and handmade crafts.

Next, it’s time to take in the stunning views of Lake Annecy, often called “Europe’s cleanest lake.” You can take a boat tour or rent a paddleboat to explore the crystal-clear waters and soak in the surrounding beauty. If you’re feeling adventurous, hike up to Annecy Castle and enjoy the panoramic views of the town and the lake from the top. The castle is also home to a museum that showcases the town’s rich history. Here is my Annecy travel post.

To get to Annecy from Geneva, you can take a train or drive. The train takes around 1.5 hours, and the drive takes about 45 minutes, offering scenic views of the lake and mountains along the way. Get ready for a day filled with romance, beauty, and adventure in the charming town of Annecy.

GLACIER 3000

Get ready for an epic day trip from Geneva to Glacier 3000, a stunning mountain peak that offers breathtaking views and thrilling activities! 

Once you arrive at the base of Glacier 3000, take the cable car up to the summit, where you’ll be greeted by stunning views of the Alps.

Walk at Glacier 3000, CH
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Once you’re at the top, experience the adrenaline-pumping activities Glacier 3000 has to offer. Try your hand at skiing, snowboarding, or sledding on the glacier slopes, or take a ride on the Alpine Coaster, a thrilling roller coaster that winds its way through the mountain peaks.

You can also try the Peak Walk, a suspension bridge that offers stunning views of the surrounding mountains. For a more relaxing experience, take a scenic walk on the glacier and soak in the stunning beauty of the Swiss Alps.

After a day of adventure, head back down to the base and indulge in some local Swiss cuisine at one of the many restaurants. You can also explore the charming village of Les Diablerets, located at the base of Glacier 3000.

Glacier 3000 sign in August
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Glacier 3000 sign in August

To get to Glacier 3000 from Geneva, you can take a train or drive. The train takes around 2.5 hours, and the drive takes about 1.5 hours, offering scenic views of the Alps along the way.

Guided tours are also available, offering a hassle-free and informative experience. 

NYON & YVOIRE

Are you ready for a day trip filled with charming towns, stunning views, and cultural experiences? Start your adventure in the beautiful Swiss town of Nyon, and then head across the border to the French town of Yvoire!

Begin your day by exploring the charming town of Nyon, located on the shores of Lake Geneva. Stroll through the old town and marvel at the stunning architecture, and then head to Nyon Castle to learn about the town’s rich history.

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Next, it’s time to cross the border into France and visit the charming town of Yvoire. This medieval town is located on the shores of Lake Geneva and offers stunning views of the lake and surrounding mountains.

Explore the winding streets and picturesque gardens, and take in the stunning views of the lake. Visit the Jardin des Cinq Sens, a beautiful garden that showcases the five senses through its design and plants. You can also explore the Chateau d’Ivoire, a historic castle that dates back to the 14th century.

Most beautiful medieval village in south-east France Yvoire
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After a day of exploration, have lunch at one of the town’s restaurants, which offer stunning views of the lake and the surrounding mountains.

To get to Nyon and Yvoire from Geneva, you can take a train or drive. The train takes around 20 minutes to Nyon. Then take a boat ride to Yvoire, which takes about 20 minutes. The drive takes about 45 minutes, offering scenic views of the lake and mountains along the way.

Get ready for a day filled with charm, beauty, and cultural experiences in the stunning towns of Nyon and Yvoire!

CHOCOLATE WALKING TOUR

Immerse yourself in the world of Swiss chocolate with a delightful walking tour in Geneva. While not technically a day trip from Geneva, this experience is a must for any chocolate lover. Switzerland is renowned for its Alpine peaks and stylish watches, but it is chocolate that truly takes center stage – believe me, I know chocolate! 

Auer Chocolats store in Les Rues Basses, Geneva. Benoit GVA, Shutterstock.com Arzo Travels
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Led by an expert tour guide, this chocolate-themed walking tour allows you to explore Geneva by land and water.

Along the way, you’ll visit artisan chocolate shops where Swiss chocolate is crafted using traditional methods. Indulge in the pleasure of sampling various award-winning chocolate creations, and experiencing the delicious flavors and textures firsthand. The tour provides fascinating insights into what makes Swiss chocolate so special.

As you wander through Geneva’s charming streets, your guide will share captivating stories and anecdotes about the history and art of chocolate-making. Discover hidden gems and lesser-known sites of the city while savoring the finest chocolate treats. 

A short boat ride adds an extra touch of charm to the excursion. If you’re passionate about chocolate and eager to explore Geneva’s chocolate culture, the Chocolate Flavours Tours Geneva is a delightful 3-hour adventure that combines delectable tastings, sightseeing, and an immersion into the world of Swiss chocolate. For more information and booking details, visit the following link.

CHAMONIX & MONT BLANC MOUNTAIN

Experience the awe-inspiring Mont Blanc Mountain, the highest peak in Europe, by embarking on a guided tour from Geneva to Chamonix Mont Blanc. Instead of navigating independently, indulge in a hassle-free journey with reliable transport and attentive service.

Most beautiful places in France CHAMONIX MONT BLANC village
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Hop on a comfortable bus and relax during the scenic 75-minute drive through the picturesque Arve Valley, leading you to the charming Alpine village nestled at the foot of the remarkable and majestic Mont Blanc.

Upon arrival in Chamonix, immerse yourself in the captivating ambiance as you stroll through its quaint streets, brimming with charm. Explore local shops and indulge in a fondue or raclette at one of the many renowned restaurants in this renowned ski resort town.

Learn about Chamonix’s historical significance as the birthplace of the first Winter Olympic Games in 1924.

Mont Blanc must-see France and Switzerland itinerary
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Situated at the border between France and Italy, Chamonix is notable for its tunnel that connects the two countries beneath the mountain. Delight in the various activities available in this picturesque town before returning to Geneva.

If you choose the cable car option, revel in a breathtaking ride to the summit of Aiguille du Midi, where panoramic views will leave you mesmerized. In the afternoon, take advantage of the mountain train to discover the captivating Ice Sea (Mer de Glace), offering an unforgettable glimpse into the icy wonders of the region.

FINAL THOUGHTS ON THE BEST DAY TOURS FROM GENEVA

Geneva offers many exciting and engaging day trips that cater to a variety of interests. From exploring charming Swiss towns like Nyon and Montreux to embarking on outdoor adventures in the French Alps at Chamonix and Glacier 3000, the options are endless. 

Whether you’re looking for relaxation, adventure, or cultural experiences, there is something for everyone to enjoy. With convenient transportation options, including trains and scenic drives, it’s easy to explore the beautiful surroundings of Geneva.

So, pack your bags, and embark on some amazing day trips from Geneva that you won’t soon forget!

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