Wednesday, December 18, 2013

A stroll around Geneva

A couple of weeks ago I went to Geneva to take the exam that kept me away from this blog for almost a month and a half. It was a very exhausting trip which started early in the morning and saw me coming home only at midnight, as it takes three hours by train to get to Geneva from Basel and the four and a half hours of exam resulted in more than six hours including in-site registration, instructions and final directions. I think it was this long day what ultimately knocked me down and had me sick for the past two weeks. Now I'm almost feeling my best again, so thank you for all your nice wishes - I'm sure they had healing properties ;)

As you can imagine, I didn't have any time for sightseeing, though I could enjoy a nice dinner in good company. Luckily I had already been once to Geneva, which proved really helpful when I had to find my way through the city, so I needn't worry about getting lost in a French-speaking city foreign to me. Geneva is the second largest city in Switzerland and is in the French-speaking part of Switzerland. Known as an important banking centre and home to many international organizations, as well as the birthplace of the Red Cross, Geneva is a melting pot of cultures with people from all ove the world.


One of Geneva's trademarks is its lake and the Jet d'Eau which shoots water up to 140m high. The first time I visited Geneva with Boyfriend we started our sightseeing there. After that we crossed a bridge to the other side of the city and wandered around the small hilly streets of the city centre. We passed the beautiful Jardin Anglais with its famous flower clock (There is also a big flower clock in Tenerife so I wasn't impressed but it was still lovely to see). The cobble streets made way for old squares full of character, elegant shopping districts and an impressive cathredral. I found the Cathédrale St-Pierre to be a really interesting one as it was a tipically gothic building but with a neoclassical façade.





Finally, we drove to the northern part of the city, where the UN Headquarters and the International Museum of the Red Cross and the Red Crescent attract crowds every day. It is possible to take a guided tour around the UN Palace of Nations (I haven't done this so I cannot recommend it and the most parts of the building are undergoing renovation works, so it might not be the best moment to tour around). The charming gardens surrounding the UN buildings are dotted with presents from international governments, like the statue of Gandhi given by the Indian government.





Trivia fact - Though the UN European headquarters are located in Geneva, Switzerland only became a member of the UN in 2002. The Palace of Nations had been built for the UN predecessor, the League of Nations, and it would have been a waste to ignore those offices just because Switzerland reluctant to join the UN after the failure of the League of Nations.

8 comments:

  1. Toda una odisea esto que nos cuentas para poder hacer el examen en Ginebra! sin embargo ...todo sea por una buena causa, verdad, Irene? Las fotos que hiciste son muy bonitas. Me encanta la de los chorros de agua. Bss y espero que todo haya salido fenomenal y saques una notaza en tu examen.

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    1. Muchas gracias, Pilar! Me alegro de que te gusten las fotos :)
      Ya, todo sea por una buena causa, ya se sabe que estudiar es sacrificado pero la recompensa vale la pena!

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  2. Espero que el examen fuera genial a pesar del sufrimiento de las últimas semanas Irene, ya nos contarás.
    Nunca he estado en Ginebra pero tiene muy buena pinta, el reloj de flores es chulisimo, no sabia q hubiera otro en Tenerife.
    Y respecto a la visita a las Naciónes unidas, suele ser bastante interesante, yo la hice en el de Nueva York.
    Besote y feliz navidad guapa, a ver si me pongo con las galletas q aun no he podido este año.

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    1. Muchas gracias, Laia! No sé si me fue demasiado bien, pero me alegro de que haya pasado ya :)
      Seguro que las oficinas de las Naciones Unidas en NY son impresionantes, al menos en las fotos siempre lo parecen jeje.
      Un beso para tí tb, y feliz Navidad!!!

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  3. This is breathtaking Irene! Geneva is so pretty. I love that Cathedral and those flowers. Absolutely gorgeous. I'm glad the exam is over. You surely went through a lot girl. That would wipe anyone out. The trip in itself is daunting. Thanks for sharing these gorgeous pics :)
    http://www.averysweetblog.com/

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    1. It is indeed a long trip but a rewarding one if you're going to do some sightseeing - that's one of my favourite things about Europe, the possibility of doing so many daytrips :)
      And yes, Geneva is a lovely city, if only too expensive. But just like the rest of Switzerland!

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  4. How beautiful! I would love to visit Geneva, but its just so expensive to stay there!

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    1. It is indeed, just like everything in Switzerland. Painfully expensive! But sometimes the views are worth it :)

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