Tag: Switzerland Travel

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Sprint Up Skyscrapers and See the World with 'Vertical Marathons'

December 5, 2013 at 12:23 PM | by | Comments (0)

Lace up your runners and stretch out your hamstrings because though it might be winter outside, we have a good reason to keep up your fitness through the season and throw in some travel as well. From New York to Singapore, there are more options to race your heart out with Vertical World Circuit's stair running world tour.

Here are the details: the seven-race circuit of events begins in New York and circles the globe as racers ascend the stairs of some world's most iconic skyscrapers, all in the name of fitness and to have a crack at coming in first place.

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Road Tripping in Switzerland? Watch Out for the 'Sex Box'

August 28, 2013 at 3:43 PM | by | Comments (0)

While Americans debates whether their tax dollars should go to publically fund universal healthcare, the Swiss voted to saddle up and spend $2.6 million on a drive-in prostitution facility.

Legal in the country since 1942, the so-called “sex boxes” are the response to an on-going problem with the sex industry in certain neighborhoods throughout the city of Zurich. The facility is located away from the city center and serves as a bit of a safe haven for prostitutes and their clients.

The details are pretty incredible. The sex boxes, open “daily” from 7 p.m. to 5 a.m., are adjoined to a facility that is staffed by city social workers to look after the women. According to the AP, the sex workers must register with the city and “obtain a special permit, at a cost of 40 Swiss francs ($43) a year, and pay 5 francs ($5.40) a night in taxes, which helps the city offset maintenance costs.”

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Video Interlude: The (Time-Lapse) Comings and Goings of Zurich Airport

August 6, 2013 at 10:01 AM | by | Comments (0)

Today's Tuesday and, since we've successfully started another week, it's time to celebrate with a cool video. We could come up with a cutesy series like Tilt-shift or Time-Lapse Tuesday, but whatever we call it, the result is the same: a vid with lots of planes! This time around, it's SWISS' time-lapse romp of happy planes taking off and landing on a sunny morning at Zurich International Airport.

As expected, the video is filled with "pluses," both literally and figuratively. The first plus is watching planes of all shapes and sizes zip by the camera lens on their way to a gate or a new destination. Filmed with tilt-shift capabilities, the aircraft look as if they're all part of a tiny, model airport and make us feel as though we're kids again.

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The Little Things: Mini Chocolate Bars on SWISS

January 22, 2013 at 4:32 PM | by | Comments (0)

In the midst of the bustle of travel, it's all too easy to overlook the details. We're talking about special touches others have stressed over just so you can enjoy a unique experience, whether you know it or not. Every so often we'll highlight The Little Things like this, so now you will know.

The Little Thing: SWISS' chocolate bars.

If you've been around the world a few times, you've probably been presented with a complimentary sweet treat on a flight or two. For instance, we know Cathay Pacific occasionally passes out truffles and macarons, LAN loves mini bags of M&Ms, and Lufthansa little gingerbread stars, but there's one airline known for this little touch and it's SWISS.

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Watch This Stunning Swiss Alps Time-Lapse, Then Visit the Summit Yourself

November 6, 2012 at 2:18 PM | by | Comments (0)

Helvetia's Dream from Alessandro Della Bella on Vimeo.

Ever flown into Switzerland's Zurich Airport? You step off the plane and the soaring windows fill only with the expanse of blue sky all around. Then you step into the terminal transfer train and, in the darkness, there's the sound of cows mooing, cow bells clanking and alpine horns tooting from the speakers.

The first bit of the video below instantly brought us back to that moment at Zurich Airport, as it also features that typical Swiss soundtrack...before jumping into a rhythm to compliment the stupendous vistas in the time-lapse.

This video. named "Helvetia's Dream," comes from Swiss photographer Alessandro Della Bella and is an ode to his homeland and the landscape in which he grew up. He obviously headed to the top of a few mountains for the shots, but we're here to tell you that you can as well, and easily.

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Why Apple is in Trouble with the Swiss Federal Railway

September 27, 2012 at 12:27 PM | by | Comments (0)

Let's talk iOS 6. Passbook? Check. Maps? Check. iPad update? Hmm—let's discuss that just a bit, because there is a hidden tidbit in the update you may not have noticed, but the Swiss Federal Railway (SBB) sure has.

If you've got an iPad and you've upgraded the operating system to iOS 6, then one small change will have been the switch of clock icons. From the standard black-bordered clock, the icon has changed to a cleaner, whiter one. It's lovely—the only problem is that it's the registered design property of the Swiss Railway, who've used that particular analog clock face throughout the nicely neutral country flowing with chocolate and muesli.

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Prince William and Princess Kate Fly...EasyJet?

April 9, 2012 at 11:20 AM | by | Comments (0)

What shows the world that the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are just normal people? Flying commercial airlines of course. What makes that statement even bolder? Naturally, flying low-cost carrier EasyJet. Prince William decided to whisk his princess bride off to a ski holiday in the Swiss Alps and the airline just happened to have the perfect route.

The trip was meant to be a romantic week vacation after the Prince was away for Valentine's Day on official Royal Air Force duty, but it wasn't a total couples retreat; they traveled with Kate's parents, who paid for the getaway. It does sound as if someone splurged for the "speedy boarding" option; the royals had a police escort to the empty orange bird in Geneva, Switzerland. After the rest of the passengers boarded the aircraft, most were completely surprised to see the royal couple belted and ready for departure to Manchester, UK.

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Google Maps Streetview Rides the Swiss Rails and Takes to Thai Roads

March 28, 2012 at 6:00 PM | by | Comments (0)

Did you know? Google Maps has just expanded their Street View capabilities to Thailand! A partnership with the Tourism Authority of Thailand brings 360-degree street views to Bangkok, plus the tourist-favorite destination of Phuket and Chiang Mai. Right now it's just of the roads, but Google's trike bike will be going offroad to capture more of the sites, which are now dry of the floodwater that engulfed the country last fall. Check out the highlights right here.

Did you know? Google Maps is even taking to the rails, adding Swiss train routes to their Streetview. It's impossibly breathtaking in some places, and remember that you're still sitting at home or at work, viewing these panoramas. Imagine actually being there. To check out the highlights, go here.

And! Did you know? All of the best views, landmarks and scenic roads so far captured by Streetview are easily browsed thanks to a collection of galleries on Google Maps itself. UNESCO sites! The Amazon! Famous businesses! Visit the gallery here.

[Photo: Google Maps]

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Zurich is Lucky It Has Its Looks

October 20, 2011 at 5:43 PM | by | Comments (0)

Disregarding Scandinavia for a moment, one of the most expensive cities you can visit in Europe is Zurich, Switzerland. This is the land of $8 lattes, pay-to-pee portapotties and four-star hotels asking four digits a night. In other words, it's not exactly for the budget traveler...until we drop the secret that direct flights to ZRH from the US often feature in those crazily discounted airfare sales. Getting a roundtrip for $350 sure defrays the cost of eating pretty little Swiss sweets every day.

Luckily for Zurich (and the rest of Switzerland, really), the scenery and atmosphere is so appealing and so intoxicating that it's easy to be distracted from your fast-emptying wallet. That $8 latte? Get it and walk down the River Limmat, and you'll look up from your caffeine to the scene pictured above. $8 doesn't seem so bad all of a sudden.

What we're saying is: when faced with excellent travel deals to expensive destinations, don't write off the idea immediately. Instead, plan. Your travel budget will be lower, so prepare for a higher daily budget. And—this is huge—do not complain about the inflated price of McDonald's. TACKY, especially when someplace like this is likely just around the corner.

[Photo: Jaunted]

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The Flagship Freitag Shop in Zurich, Switzerland: A Towering Mecca of Eco-Design

August 4, 2011 at 5:03 PM | by | Comments (0)

Down a street that's more like an alley along the railroad tracks to Zurich's Hauptbahnhof (main train station) sits a stack of colorful shipping containers. It's Geroldstrasse 17, the address of the flagship store for the homegrown Swiss brand Freitag and it's something of a shopper's mecca for those "in the know" in the design, fashion and eco communities.

Why so? Well, Freitag is a bag and accessories company begun by two brothers who were inspired by the tarps that cover semi-truck loads driving around Europe, delivering their goods. The boys would buy the used tarps, wash them and cut them to repurpose the durable material into messenger bags, backpacks, travel duffles, even wallets...until it caught on and became a proper business with a look desired the world over.

Freitag bags are easy to spot; just go to any college campus, design school or "cool" town (Portland and New York are great places for Freitag-spotting). Owners of Freitags have been known to nod at each other in passing, as if members of a secret club...yet all they did was invest a little money into a top quality accessory that originates here, in Zurich.

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Peeking into Wings Bar, the Zurich Pub That Thinks It's a Swiss Airplane

Where: Limmatquai 54, Zurich, Switzerland
July 12, 2011 at 4:40 PM | by | Comments (0)

It's a Swiss bar that looks like a plane! Or is it...a Swiss plane that looks like a bar? Oh c'mon you know it's the former, and you can step right into it yourself for a drink when you're next in Zurich, Switzerland. It's surprisingly easy to find, too; located on the main street along the River Limmat, Limmatquai, Wings Bar is a perfect spot for attracting regular folks and not just avgeeks.

Inside, the decor is proper Swiss Air red and white, which makes sense seeing as how the owners are former Swiss crew, who opened the place back in 2001 after Swiss Air went bankrupt and sold off some goodies at auction. You'll find those goodies tucked around the place; there's real airline seats here and there, fronted by cocktail tables for enjoying a drink from their rather large menu.

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Foreign Grocery Friday: The Brat to Order in Zurich is a St. Gallen

July 1, 2011 at 12:40 PM | by | Comments (0)

When we travel, one of our favorite things to do is to pop into a local grocery store and check out the food products and candies we'd never find anywhere else. So we're trying out this new feature, Foreign Grocery Friday, where each week we'll feature some of our (and your) favorite overseas treats. Got a recommendation? Let us know!

In Germanic Europe, every city, town and even individual restaurant is known for a special type of sausage. For example, the region of Bavaria is all about their weißwurst and the town of Nuremburg has its own smaller version, the Nürnberger Bratwurst. The trend continues further south in Austria and Switzerland, and in Zurich, you'll want to order up a St. Gallen Brat with a Gold Bürli roll. It's a traditional combination in the city, best served at a single heavily-touristed restaurant of course, but it's worth it.

The taste: A St. Gallen is about 6 inches of grilled, milky veal brat goodness. Be careful upon first bite, as the trapped hot juices could burn your tongue. Following this, the heat to beware is that of the mustard. This is a damned spicy mustard—though crazy tasty—and a comic drawing posted in the restaurant warns diner of it. A St. Gallen should be eaten by being dipped in the mustard, chased with a glug of good beer and a bite of the plain and crusty Bürli roll.

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