Top 10 Things Switzerland is Famous for

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Switzerland is located at the crossroads of Europe. Switzerland is that one place which occupies a top position in the wish list of all travel buffs. Although a small country, it has great elements and features that make the country so very famous. It is a country known for its stability, multiculturalism, and prosperity. Switzerland has one of the lowest crime rates of all industrialized countries,  it hosts the CERN, the European headquarters of the UN as well as the headquarters of the WTO, WHO and many other international agencies. It has amazing natural beauty with lakes, 2 mountain ranges (Jura and the Alps), many historical monuments and some of the cleanest cities in the world. It is the only country in the heart of Europe to resist Fascism. Besides, all these there are sundry other reasons why Switzerland is so famous. Here, is a list of top 10 things Switzerland is Famous for:

10. Skiing

If you are after high altitude skiing with marvelous scenery, exquisite picturesque Alpine villages coupled with immaculate service and hospitality, then skiing in Switzerland has to be the destination for you. Switzerland is a country of classic ski towns. And if you visit Switzerland ever then you must try skiing there. Zermatt, Grindelwald, Verbier, Arosa, Davos, Klosters and St.Moritz, are some of the famous ski resorts in Switzerland.

09. Swiss Trains

“Der Kluge reist im Zuge,” a famous quote of the Swiss Federal Railways might be translated to: “Those with brain take the train.” Trains in Switzerland use ultra-clean hydroelectricity and some of them generate energy-saving electricity as well. Each and every Swiss town is connected to the train system. Trains here can take one from Zurich airport to the top of Europe-Jungfrau. The most famous routes, from where you get to see some exquisite scenes, include: Golden Pass, the Wilhelm Tell express, the Bernina and the Glaciers express (the Glacier Express is famous for its panoramic views of snow-capped mountains, breathtaking rivers, peaceful alpine pastures, magical castles, and charming villages) that smoothly snake in the Swiss alpine fields. Railways have played an important role in boosting the economy of the country right from the beginning and still continue to do so.

08. Democracy

Switzerland is the only democracy in the world practicing direct democracy. Direct democracy is a form or system of democracy where citizens have an extraordinary amount of participation in the legislation process and have a maximum of political self-determination. In simpler terms, people have the last words on everything, they can vote on laws, government spending and launch popular initiatives that are binding for government. In Switzerland direct democracy has been a traditional system. The origin of this democracy can be traced to the late middle ages and have been practiced in parts of the country since the founding of the old Swiss Confederacy in 1291.

07. 4 national languages

Switzerland is a multilingual country. The four national languages include: Italian, French, German and Romansh. The German speaking part of the country comprises of 65% of the Switzerland (North-Western Switzerland, Eastern Switzerland, Central Switzerland and most of the Swiss plateau and greater part of the Swiss Alps). The French speaking Swiss are called Romands. The French speaking part of the country covers areas of cantons of Geneva, Vaud, Neuchâtel and Jura and also the parts of the cantons of Bern, Valais and Fribourg. The Italian speaking part of the country includes cantons of Ticino and southern part of Graubünden and in the Gondo valley in Valais. Romansh is the official language only in the trilingual canton of Graubünden. Important communities of Romansh speakers are in Surselva, the lower Engadin, the Oberhalbstein valley and the Val Mustair.

06. Swiss army knife

Swiss knife or the Swiss army knife is another thing that makes Switzerland so very famous. Switzerland is the official home of the Swiss Army Knife. This thing might look a single knife but when you open it you will realize that it is actually a set of oh-so-important tools that one requires in daily life. The name Swiss army knife was termed by the US soldiers after World War II. Swiss army knife was first produced in 1891 in Ibach after the company, Karl Elsener that later became Victorinox, won the contract to produce the Swiss Army’s model 1890 knife. The original Swiss army knife has four things mainly viz., bottle opener, can opener, knife and spike but now it is being constantly modified and includes can opener, nail file, tweezers, corkscrew, bottle opener, pliers, scissors etc. The design of the knife and its versatility has both led to worldwide recognition. Victorinox and Wenger are the two leading Swiss army knife brands.

05. Swiss Bank

Well, we all have heard about this bank and it definitely needs no introduction. It is famous or rather I must say it’s notorious for storing all the black money in the world. Switzerland is known for its sophisticated and discreet method of banking. Financial institutions and banks play an integral role in the Swiss economy. The Swiss franc is one of the most stable currencies. Two largest Swiss banks – UBS and Credit Suisse – are among the world’s leading banks. As the economy of Switzerland is Lassie-faire or functions without government interference, the Swiss Banks proceedings are totally legal.

04. Red Cross

The International Committee of Red Cross (ICRC) is a private humanitarian institution founded by Henry Dunant and Gustave Moynier in 1863 in Geneva, Switzerland. It was founded to protect human life and health, to ensure respect for all human beings, to provide humanitarian help for people affected by conflicts and armed violence and to protect the victims of war. The committee consists of 25-Swiss members and employs some 12,000 people across 80 countries. The ICRC was awarded the prestigious Nobel Peace Prize in 1917, 1944 and in 1963.

03. Swiss watches

Switzerland is the watch-making capital of the world and when you wear on these Swiss beauties your personality and status both shoots up to sophisticated and higher level. The quality is top notch and the style is just awesome. Switzerland is renowned for making excellent quality watches and some big names include: Rolex, TAG Heuer, Tissot, Breitling, Rado, Blancpain, Longines, Franck Muller, Omega and the list goes on and on and on. Swiss watches are reliable, water and shock proof, elegant and their technology is unmatched. This industry began in the middle of the 16th century and since then Switzerland has been providing the entire world with some first class, fabulous and superior quality watches.

02. Swiss cheese

Switzerland is the home of about 450 varieties of cheese and 99% uses cow’s milk and the rest uses sheep’s milk or goat’s milk. Emmentaler or Emmental the real name of Swiss cheese (that has holes in it) has been widely imitated. These holes in the Swiss cheese are called “eyes” and any Swiss cheese without eyes is referred to as “blind”. Switzerland is the oldest and most well-known cheese manufacturers. Emmental has been produced in Switzerland since 1293. Five different cheeses that are unique to Switzerland are Appeneller, Sbrinz, Schabziger or Sapasago, Tilsit and Vacherin- Fribourgeois. The most famous dish made with cheese here is fondue.

01. Swiss chocolates

Last but not the least the thing that makes Switzerland the most famous is the delicious, yummy Swiss chocolate. This industry during the 17th century and in the 18th century chocolates was produced only in certain parts of Switzerland. However, in the second half of the 19th century Swiss chocolate started to spread abroad. There is wide variety and flavor of chocolates produced in Switzerland: black chocolate, white chocolate, dark chocolate, chocolate truffles and lots more. The oldest chocolate factory in Switzerland, which is still operating today, was built in 1819 by Francois-Louis Cailler near Veyey. Switzerland is now one of the leading chocolate manufacturers in the world and some leading, Swiss chocolate, brands include Cailler, Suchard, Chocolat Villars, Favarger, Confiserie Sprüngli, Lindt, Frey, Toblerone and many more.

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