Switzerland’s breathtaking Unesco World Heritage sites

On June 11th and 12th Switzerland will stage the first ever World Heritage Days event, which aims to celebrate the country’s Unesco-protected sites with special events at each location.

Switzerland’s breathtaking Unesco World Heritage sites
The Aletsch glacier is among Switzerland's 11 Unesco sites. Photo: Andreas Gerth/

Comprising three natural phenomena and eight man-made cultural sites, Switzerland’s 11 world heritage sites span architectural gems, historic castles, religious buildings and railways, a record-breaking glacier and the country’s watchmaking towns.

World Heritage Days launches on Saturday in Bern – the medieval centre of which is one of the country’s 11 Unesco sites – with a free exhibition and market by the cathedral.

On Sunday each site will present a special programme to visitors, including guided tours of normally closed areas of the Müstair convent, walking tours of Switzerland’s watchmaking cities and an open house day in the Lavaux wine region.

Speaking to The Local, Kaspar Schürch of World Heritage Experience Switzerland, which is organizing the event, said the world-renown of Unesco status gives the 11 Swiss sites considerable tourist potential and helps the country “target new markets”.

These “outstanding phenomena,” reflect “authenticity, quality and diversity – values that are firmly rooted in the Swiss identity and mentality,” he said.

The first event of its kind in Switzerland, World Heritage Days aims to increase awareness of the country's Unesco sites  “which, thanks to the geographical spread of the 11 sites, are easily reachable for everyone from all over the country.”

So what are they? Click here to see The Local’s gallery of Switzerland’s incredible Unesco sites.

Details of all events at the 11 sites can be found here.

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