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If you like to watch television indoors all day, then Switzerland is probably not the place for you. This is a destination of intense natural beauty for travelers who revel in the outdoors, from high peaks to rolling meadows and pristine lakes, and are pleasantly surprised by the cultural treasures of its cities. The main attraction: The Swiss Alps, whose full impact is hard to appreciate until you have stood in their shadow. Walking, hiking, and driving along scenic routes and paths are all possible if you want to unlock a landscape that almost seems too beautiful to be real.

Sure, there’s cheese, chocolate, clocks, and that oft-noted Swiss emphasis on diplomacy and punctuality, but there’s also cosmopolitan cities and a vibrant, multilingual populace that speaks at least a little English along with at least one of the four official languages. It’s more of a melting pot culture than you might expect, and that is one of the many joys of entering Swiss borders.

The varied landscape means weather patterns vary greatly, but summer is a terrific time to visit with warm and sunny days. For skiers, sledders and snowboarders, December and March offer the best powder — along with the best hot chocolate you can imagine.



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