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Lausanne Car Hire - Did You Know?

  • It’s the smallest city in the world to have a metro system.
  • Lausanne hosts the headquarters of the International Olympic Committee.
  • The city is on the shore of Lac Leman and looks across the lake to France.
  • The region around the city is an important wine producing area.
  • The city is built over an ancient river, now disappeared, but which has left a gorge running through the city.

Lausanne Mini Guide

Lausanne in a Nutshell
Lausanne is a city situated on the northern shores of Lake Geneva. It is 62 km from Geneva and in the French speaking part of Switzerland.

view of lausanne

How Would I get There?
From Europe and further afield you are most likely to fly into Geneva Airport and from there take the rail link which runs four times every hour to Lausanne, you’ll be in the city in 42 minutes. Alternatively you can use the CFF train service to travel from major cities in Europe. From Italy and France it is easy to drive there, using the A1 and A9 motorways. Once you are in Lausanne, you can use the metro system and buses to get around or you can hire a bicycle.

What can I see in the City?
Visit the old town and see the gothic Lausanne Cathedral and ancient marketplaces. The city has 25 museums to keep you busy including the unusual Collection de L’Art Brut (modern art) and the Olympic Museum (everything Olympics!) Palais de Rumine is home to five museums including one with fine art and natural history. For a more in-depth visit, collect a free audio tour guide of the city from tourist information or join one of the guided tours. You'll find out a lot more without having to read the guide books. Ouchy was once a fishing village but is now the city’s port area and bustling with restaurants and bars and a great place to watch the world go by. In the evening head for the arty Flon district, where you will find all the lively night life.

lausanne cathedral

What Else can I do?
Take a steamboat trip on Lake Geneva or a sunset dinner cruise – they leave from the port at Ouchy. Go explore in the Sauvablein Forest – look out for the tower, from the top you can see a 360 degree view of the lake and the Alps. Walk back towards the city through the park at the Foundation de L’Hermitage.

Where can I eat?
Creperie D’Ouchy is the oldest creperie in the city and has great views across the lake or try to finish the famous ‘Elvis blue cheese burger’ at Holy Cow! For classic steak and frites head for the Brasserie Les Trois Rois or for Swiss cuisine, visit Le Raccard.

Where can I Stay?
The Hotel des Voyageurs is a family run hotel with 33 rooms and free Wi-Fi. It is right in the heart of the city in the pedestrianised area.

Latest Update from Lausanne:

03/05/12 - The Festival Balalec begins shortly with over thirty performances from Europe's top acts. Tickets can be purchased in advance for 25 CHF but will cost 5 CHF more on the day.It's the 32nd time the festival has been held in Lausanne so if you miss it, there's always next year!

05/06/13 - From the 15th June and lasting for three months, you'll find over 350 free performances across the city. Varying from theatre to dance, classical music to rock, there's something for all tastes and all free of charge.

Driving in Lausanne

  • R

    Road Driving Side

  • 30-50kph

    Urban speed Limit

  • 80-100kph

    Rural Speed Limit

  • 120kph

    Motorway Speed Limit

  • 50mg

    Drink Drive Limit

  • CHF

    Currency

  • 23

    Min Rental Age

  • YES

    Tolls

Useful Links

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Lausanne is a great centre for exploring the region around Lake Geneva, called Lac Leman in French. The city is built on the slopes of the Swiss plateau and there’s over 1,500 feet difference in height between the lakeside and the highest point of Lausanne. If you’re not very fit or looking for a more relaxing way of getting around, hiring a car in Lausanne is a sensible choice for exploring the city.

Whilst there, a must-see is the headquarters of the International Olympic Committee based in Lausanne. The museum gives a fascinating insight into the history of the games. For a quiet day, catch one of the cruise boats that ply the lake from Lausanne.

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