There is far more to Zurich than its airport, banks and Bahnhofstrasse. There are a thousand things to explore in the Niederdorf quarter, on the Rennweg or on the banks of the River Limmat and the lake. Winterthur is also worth a visit, with its museums and rich heritage. Lastly, the Weinland has superb half-timbered houses, castles and look-out towers.

Zurich is often seen simply as a chic and glamorous city, through the prism of its Bahnhofstrasse, Paradeplatz and zoo, without forgetting FIFA‘s headquarters. But that would be to forget that Switzerland’s financial capital is also rich in picturesque areas on both sides of the Limmat, such as the Niederdorf quarter right in the city centre. Why not take the time to get to know Switzerland’s largest city a little better through its cultural scene, events and museums?

We also find culture at Winterthur, just a few minutes away by car (exception-ally taking the motorway from Zurich Unterstrass). Live shows, cabarets and theatres abound here. This former industrial city, home to Sulzer, has been forced to reinvent itself over the last few decades. It has become an innovative city with an abundance of museums (the Oskar-Reinhart collec-tion, Technorama, the Swiss Foundation of Photography).

But let’s not spend all our time in towns! The road from Andelfingen to Schaffhausen takes us into the countryside at last. Take a look at the half-timbered houses in the Zurich winegrowing area at Marthalen, then make a little detour via the former abbey at Rheinau. Just outside Schaffhausen you will come across Laufen Castle (car park) and the Rhine Falls. Time to get out your camera!

The route
Motorway to Winterthur and the Zurich vineyard, then small roads from Andelfingen to the Rhine Falls and Laufen Castle.
Distance: 55 kilometres
Photo opportunity: Two watchtowers (Irchel and Wildensbuch) in a region whose landscapes are relatively little known. Pretty half-timbered houses in the village of Marthalen.

Excerpt from "Grand Tour of Switzerland" / Leg Zurich – Schaffhausen