Living in Switzerland: Best Swiss cities to live and work

Looking where to live in Switzerland? Here's a guide to the best Swiss cities, including a short description of each major city in Switzerland.


Besides the cultural-packed top places to visit in Switzerland, the country has much to offer expats from quiet Alpine living to bustling, cosmopolitan Swiss cities. Many expats find Zurich's high quality of living makes it the best place to live in Switzerland – although it comes as a price – while multicultural Geneva and Switzerland's capital city Bern are other Swiss cities often noted in lists of the best cities to live in Switzerland. This guide describes the major Switzerland's cities to help you choose the best city in Switzerland for your lifestyle.


  • Living in Bern


With a population of 131,554 in 2015 (half the size of Zurich), some expats are surprised to learn that Bern is the capital city of Switzerland. World charm, the city also possesses one of the longest shopping promenades in Europe, making it one of the best cities in Switzerland for expats seeking a mix of history with modern conveniences. Residents living in Bern enjoy frequent and reliable transport connections to other major Swiss cities through various motorways, an extensive rail network and an airport nearby. Cultural World Heritage Site and still retains elements of its 12th century origins.




  • Living in Zurich

Zurich is often considered the economic powerhouse of Switzerland. The city was recently ranked third in Mercer's cost of of living survey due to its high standards of education, health and transport. The cost of living remains high, especially in the city centre, despite the authorities’ efforts to expand the city by building new suburbs. expats. 

The city is arranged in 12 districts, which contain one to four neighbourhoods each. Main sights include the Kunsthaus, a classic modern art museum, Bahnhofstrasse (considered the Champs d’Elysees of Zurich), and Grossmunster, a church built in the 9th century.


  • Living in Geneva

Geneva's multicultural vibe makes it one of the best cities to live in Switzerland for expats. It hosts the headquarters of numerous international organisations including the United Nations, the Red Cross and the World Health Organisation. Due to the high numbers of diplomats and high-ranking politicians working and living in Geneva, as well as the rich history and stunning scenery, the cost of living in Geneva is just under Zurich's. In addition to the international organisations, which are open to the public, the main attractions include the large shopping district, the preserved old town and Lake Geneva with its famous fountain. Transport links to Geneva are very good, with a large international airport and connections to the Swiss and French rail and motorway systems. In the winter months, residents living in Geneva have an easy acces to the Alps’ best ski resorts.

  • Living in Basel

The city of Basel, located in northwest Switzerland, offers its inhabitants a great geographical position to enjoy France and Germany. It is considered a European cultural centre despite its small size – making it a great home base for expats. Small, winding backstreets in the old town connect shopping districts, museums and heritage sites. Those living in Basel are treated to picturesque views over the River Rhine, which can be seen from numerous spots across the city. The river plays an important role in exporting and importing goods, since Basel is Switzerland’s only outlet to the ocean.


It is no secret that Switzerland offers some of the best skiing resorts in the world. Expats living in Switzerland have the fortune of having close access to the hundreds of kilometres of well-kept pistes that thousands of tourists flock to each season. There are numerous skiing locations in each linguistic region whether you are living in Zurich, Bern or Lugano.

Reaching the slopes is easy, with airports located in and around the main resorts. Geneva, Berne, Zurich, Lugano, and Milan (Italy) airports are well-connected to the mountains via train and bus.

Source: Expatica, 2018


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Wednesday May 9, 2018