Geneva is a large cosmopolitan Swiss city with promenades, an impressive fountain and historic Old Town called the Pâquis. It is home to government and international organisations and has an abundance of hotels, international restaurants, jewellery and chocolate shops. Geneva is in the French speaking part of Switzerland.
A good time to be in Geneva is from May until October when the climate is mild for Switzerland. Winters are mild too. Travel to Geneva for year-round holidays and festivals. At the beginning of May is the Marathon and the Regatta "Bol d'Or" is in June. During August, the Summer Festival "Fêtes de Genève" is held on Lake Geneva with spectacular fireworks and performances. On the 12th December, "L'Escalade", commemorates the city's defeat of the Savoyer with parades, music, processions and road running.
Geneva is an expensive city; the cost of living here is high. A restaurant meal will cost from about 20 CHF and a beer is priced at about 7.50 CHF. Try the local speciality, "Longeole", a type of raw sausage. Hire cars are a good choice for exploring the mountains.
Air passengers can travel from Aéroport International de Genève to central Geneva by public transport free of charge. A ticket can be used for 80 minutes and is available only with a valid boarding pass. Purchase tickets from machines by the baggage reclaim. The fastest train to the main station, Gare Cornavin, takes 7 minutes. Without the free ticket the journey costs 3 CHF. The Line 5 bus and Line 10 Trolley bus are much slower taking about half an hour. They also cost 3 CHF without the free ticket. A taxi costs about 35-45 CHF and some hotels will offer guests a free shuttle-bus service.
Hostel accommodation is available for approximately 25 CHF per person per night. Three star hotels near the train station cost around 135 CHF.
There is an efficient local transport system and those staying at hotels, youth hostels and campsites are given a "Geneva Transport Card" for free public transport in the city. For other users fares cost roughly 3 CHF for a single trip. A day pass for public transport costs 8-10 CHF and a weekly pass 38 CHF or thereabouts. Taxi fares are expensive in Geneva. Cycling is easy except in the old town centre that has hills. Free bike hire is available during summer for a refundable deposit of around 20 CHF and ID.