Located at the north end of crescent-shaped Lake Zurich, the largest city in Switzerland is more than the country’s financial centre. Zurich is a diverse tourist destination with loads to do on and off the water, especially during the warmer months. Here are a few fun things to do in Zurich with kids during the summer months.
On the Water
Ride a Ferry on Lake Zurich
Passenger ferries depart from the dock at the Bürkliplatz, and you can select from a range of tour options and duration. The boats run on a regular basis and stop at various places along Lake Zurich. Choose to remain on the ferry for the entire journey or disembark at a lakeside village and catch another boat back to Zurich.
Rent a Pedalo
Explore Lake Zurich under your power in a four or five-person pedalo (pedal boat), available from many of the boat hire companies along Lake Zurich. You can purchase cold drinks from the rental company or bring your own and explore the lake at your leisure. We rent pedal boats from Lago, located at Utoquai 6 near the Zurich Opera House. The minimum rental period is 30 minutes. I recommend a one to two-hour rental – this allows enough time to cruise to nearby beaches, swim from the boat, and enjoy the action on Lake Zurich.
Swim in the lake (average summer temp of 20 C), in one of the heated badis (outdoor pools), or designated parts of the Limmat River.
Off the Water
Explore the Old Town
Wander amongst the unique buildings and cobbled lanes of Zurich’s Old Town. In this part of the city, there are chocolate shops, boutiques, and family-friendly cafes.
Shop the Bahnhofstrasse
Stroll along the tree-lined Bahnhofstrasse stretching from Zurich’s central railway station to the Bürkliplatz at the head of Lake Zurich. Here you will find well-known luxury shops, jewelry stores, and Confiserie Sprüngli, serving sweet treats for over 175 years.
Wander the Lake Promenade
Gravel pathways, walkways, and green space make up an area known as the Lake Promenade along the lower portion of Lake Zurich. From the city, head towards the lake to connect with the Lake Promenade and join the locals for a walk, picnic, or meal at one of the outdoor restaurants.
Eat and Drink
Babu’s Bakery & Coffeehouse
Stop by Babu’s Bakery and Coffeehouse for a sweet treat, coffee, or meal. Take a seat at a unique table before placing your order at the counter.
Possibly the first vegetarian restaurant in the world, Hiltl was founded in 1898. The multi-level restaurant offers around 500 dishes available à la carte or buffet-style. Hiltl is busy, so be sure to book a table in advance.
Favourite Things to do in Zurich With Kids Travel Tips
- The Park Hyatt Zurich is an excellent hotel located near Lake Zurich, Old Town, and the Bahnhofstrasse.
- If you are flying Zurich, you might be interested in learning more about flying SWISS (Switzerland’s national airline).
- Consider stopping in at the SWISS Arrivals Lounge at the Zurich Airport if you arrive early in the morning and are flying in Business or First Class on Swiss or Lufthansa, or meet any of the other criteria listed on the SWISS website.
Have you been to Zurich? I would love to hear about your favourite things to do in Zurich with kids or without them.