How to Spend 48 Hours in Zürich

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I first visited Zürich a couple of years ago for a few brief hours in transit and having instantly fallen in love with the Swiss city, I have since been longing to go back. Whilst planning a Eurotrip with my partner we decided the most logical choice for the destinations we wanted to visit would be to start and end in the same city, travelling in a continuous loop.

Flights with Emirates offered the cheapest fares flying in to Paris and much to my surprise, Zürich. I thus jumped at the opportunity to re-visit what I’m sure is one of Switzerland’s prettiest cities, and travel in a round-trip loop from Switzerland through Italy, France, and back to where we started.

With our Eurail Global Passes in hand, we decided to see and do as much as possible in the month of April and thus had just enough time in each city, but never too much (and quite frankly not enough if you ask me, but when can you ever have enough!?) So here is how we spent 48 hours in Zürich, our first destination on this year’s Spring Eurotrip.

48 Hour Guide to Zurich | World of Wanderlust
48 Hours in Zurich | World of Wanderlust 48 Hours in Zurich | World of Wanderlust

48 Hours in Zürich

Check In: Storchen Hotel

We landed in Zürich in the early afternoon so our first stop was to head straight to our hotel in the centre of town, drop off our bags, throw on a new shirt and head straight back outside to explore. I always find fresh air to be the best cure for jetlag, second to a quick shower (which, lets be honest, is as good as liquid sleep)… but with so little time in the city we didn’t even allow ourselves time to shower until nightfall, which at this time of year was around 7:00pm.

We checked in to the Storchen Hotel, which had caught my attention due to its favourable location on the river, within walking distance of all the main sights and of course, the Old Town. We also wanted a simple, no-fuss accommodation for our first stop in Europe and were both thrilled with the elegant but humble four-star hotel.

48 Hours in Zurich | World of Wanderlust Cremeschnitte in Zurich, Switzerland

Dinner: AuGust

For dinner that evening I really wanted to dive head first into the local cuisine, so we chose a nearby restaurant by the name of AuGust, which is stationed in an old butcher’s shop with a modern black and white checker theme and simple, hearty cuisine.

Being a vegetarian this might seem like an odd choice (especially given the heavily focused meat-y menu), but it was a chance for my partner to taste the local cuisine (which by default is heavily meat focused) and for myself to try some classic staples in the Swiss diet like rosti and potato au gratin.

For dessert I tried my first cremeschnitte, which is very similar to a vanilla slice back at home in Australia, though with a more doughy pastry and much more rich flavour in the creamy vanilla centre. The icing is super sweet but when eaten as a whole, it really brought the flavour of the pastry to life so be sure not to leave a crumb on your plate!

48 Hours in Zurich | World of Wanderlust 48 Hours in Zurich | World of Wanderlust

Exploring Zürich: Lindenhof Platz

While I could have easily spent a week or more meandering the alleyways of Zürich, I will admit that one full day exploring is ample time to see all the city has to offer, before heading onwards on your journey throughout the mountainous country that truly has so much to offer.

To start your day, make your first point of call Lindenhof Platz, a free viewing platform that offers views of the river and old town and allows you to get your bearings in the city. From there, the small winding alleyways in each and every direction are best explored without directions in any form, so be sure to allow some time to walk in whichever direction you fancy, stopping in to local chocolatiers and coffee houses along the way.

48 Hours in Zurich | World of Wanderlust


Arguably the prettiest street in Zürich and a personal favourite of mine is Augustinergasse, located off the main street (Bahnhofstrasse) but feeling a world away from the hustle and bustle just next door. The colourful buildings and centuries old architecture will transport you to another time and place instantly – exactly what I’m looking for on my Europe travels!

48 Hours in Zurich | World of Wanderlust 48 Hours in Zurich | World of Wanderlust

Cafe Schober

When it comes time to stop and people watch with a hot schokolade in hand, head straight to Cafe Schober, the most popular cafe in town and easily my favourite place to pass time in the cosy corners inside, or in the fresh air outdoors. Cafe Schober is located in the Old Town of Zurich (on the other side of Limmat river) and this is the perfect area to wander for a couple of hours, stopping in at a few chocolatiers on the way!

48 Hours in Zurich | World of Wanderlust 48 Hours in Zurich | World of Wanderlust

The Old Town

From Lindenhofplatz you have an incredible view of both the Limmat river and Zürich’s old town in the distance. Whilst much of Zürich has the same old town charm, the old town proper is for sure one of the most charming areas to wander at leisure. If you have an afternoon spare this is by far the most enjoyable way to experience this city – with less planning and more time wandering. Below are a selection of photos from our leisurely walks throughout the old town and below Lindenhofplatz on the other side of the river.

48 Hours in Zurich | World of Wanderlust 48 Hours in Zurich | World of Wanderlust 48 Hours in Zurich | World of Wanderlust 48 Hours in Zurich | World of Wanderlust 48 Hours in Zurich | World of Wanderlust 48 Hours in Zurich | World of Wanderlust


Emirates flies to Zürich three times daily from Dubai, with connections from over 150 destinations worldwide. We stayed at the Storchen Hotel Zurich and travelled onwards by train to Zermatt.

Brooke Saward

Brooke founded World of Wanderlust as a place to share inspiration from her travels and to inspire others to see our world. She now divides her time between adventures abroad and adventures in the kitchen!




    Kaili Willows

    May 19, 2016

    Looks like such a charming city!


    Hanuman Chalisa

    May 17, 2016

    I love Lucerne. That’s my favourite Swiss city.



    May 16, 2016

    Love this! Zurich is up there on my travel bucket list!


    Kate Newman

    May 16, 2016

    This reminds me so much of my time in Zurich (only 48 hours also). You really have captured it’s beauty!



    May 15, 2016

    Fantastic post, Zurich is indeed a beautiful city. My best friend lives just on the outskirts of the city and she took me there and showed me around. I really liked to gaze upon the lake and see the mountains with snow on their peaks!

    P.S.: Those pictures of the meal that you had, really make me hungry!



    May 14, 2016

    Do you have a post about this whole month long trip. It sounds fantastic.


    Gayatri Mantra

    May 14, 2016

    I love zurich. My favourite city as well


    Melissa M.

    May 13, 2016

    I love Zurich! This was the first place my Mom & I ever visited in Switzerland almost 6 years ago. I’ve been lucky enough to also visit Interlaken, Luzern, Bern, and Geneva. My friends and I are planning to go to Zurich next year. They have never been to Switzerland and I’m excited to visit spots I never got to see the first time around. Thanks for the post!



    May 13, 2016

    Zürich was never really on my radar but after this post I need to add it to my bucketlist! Love the colors of the buildings and all the food you mentioned sounds amazing



    May 13, 2016

    Zurich has been one of my favorite places to visit! The gorgeous buildings, the exceptionally kind people, and the amazing cheese made it hard to leave!



    May 13, 2016

    I was so fascinated by Switzerland during my last visit! We’ve landed in Zurich and went into the mountains, but I wish I had a chance to explore everything in the city! Thanks for your guide, will use it one day:)




    May 13, 2016

    Such a lovely post and great pictures! I definetely have to visit Zurich soon!:)


    La Caleya

    May 13, 2016

    Can’t wait to go there and share it through my Nikons and!!!


    Swati ( The tales of a Traveler)

    May 13, 2016

    Switzerland has been on our wish list for so long… But way too expensive 🙁 May be we can do a stop over or be there for just a day or two .. Useful guide , bookmarking it for future 🙂


    Jennifer @ This Off Script Life

    May 13, 2016

    I live in Zurich, and Cafe Schober (Peclard) is also my favorite place for hot chocolate. And don’t miss a walk along lake from Bellevue/Opera House to the China Garten. It’s beautiful in spring/summer.


    Shannon Off Duty

    May 12, 2016

    Great post as always. Although Zurich is incredible it is pretty expensive. How did you budget yourself?



    May 12, 2016

    Great collection of crisp photos. What a great place!



    May 12, 2016

    Lovely photos and a great place to visit!



    May 12, 2016

    Great guide! I visited Zurich with my parents many, many moons ago and have been dying to go back! You photos make it look absolutely stunning!

    Kate |



    May 12, 2016

    I love Zurich, but next time stop by in Schaffhausen and Stein am Rhein in northern Switzerland!!! My hometown has so much to offer, old town with beautiful house paintings, the river and the waterfall, best italian Gelato in Stein am Rhein, a little castle and so so much more 😉 Would be a pleasure to be your travel guide, Brooke 😉



    May 12, 2016

    nice spots! next time you should come in summer and check out poly terrasse or take the train to uetliberg – the views are even more incredible there. afterwards go for a swim in the limmat at werdinsel and then on to gerolds garten or rimini to enjoy a beer with the locals. by the way, also after night fall zurich has a lot to offer. ☺️

  22. Brooke Saward

    May 12, 2016

    Totally agree on the expense! By the time we left Switzerland we had blown our budget for the entire trip!!! Otherwise it is a beautiful country to explore 🙂 x



    May 12, 2016

    I had the opportunity to visit Zurich last year, it’s honestly one of the most beautiful cities I’ve ever been too. Definitely somewhere I’d like to visit again. I can’t get over the old town area and the view across the lake of the Swiss Alps. The only thing was how expensive it was!

    Sally – DiagonSally



    May 12, 2016

    Zurich is beautiful but I am an expat living in Luzern and I have to say that Luzern is the “prettiest city in Switzerland”. The backdrop of Mt Pilatus is stunning and dramatic and the Vierwaldstattersee is beautiful. Try Luzern next time you visit. 🙂



    May 12, 2016

    No comment about the Zürich See/ Lake, which is one of my absolute favs in Zürich



    May 12, 2016

    Visited Zurich on bus tour of Europe, glad to see some of the city,only taken to the lake and a small garden. Not a happy traveler.


    the adventurer

    May 12, 2016

    I can’t even count the number of times I have flown through Zurich on my way to Prague! Although I have never stayed there for more than a few hours (never leaving the airport) I would love a chance to explore the city. Beautiful photos!



    May 12, 2016

    Such a lovely post! Hopefully I will get to visit Zurich in the near future since I live just hours away.

  29. Brooke Saward

    May 12, 2016

    Agree – the cities and towns all have such a nice feel about them! <3

  30. Brooke Saward

    May 12, 2016

    Haha I’m a foodie so I can’t help but to try a little bit of everything in each city! Check the recipe section if you want to recreate some of the dishes I find around the world 🙂 Will have some newbies coming soon from my Europe trip! xo



    May 12, 2016

    I need to stop reading this blog right before dinner…the food always looks too delicious! Definitely bookmarking for a future trip. I am in love with the clock in the last picture <3


    Minna Lee

    May 12, 2016

    Absolutely loved my time in Zürich and was one of my favorite city guides to write for my blog! Augustinergasse is one of the most charming little streets I think I’ve ever walked through- Switzerland is just so dreamy.

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