With everything from substantive legacies of art and crafts to ordinary everyday objects, the museum reveals the life of the Swiss, from prehistory to the present. Special exhibitions focus on socially relevant issues, offering a temporary change of perspective. Gustav Gull built the Swiss National Museum in 1898 to mark the 50th anniversary of the first federal constitution. The museum building, set between the main train station and the Platzspitz Park, is reminiscent of a fairytale castle.
Temporary exhibitions can regularly be seen at the Swiss National Museum. They pick up on historical, cultural or socially relevant topics and are supplemented with debates, lectures, readings or workshops. The museum offers e-guides, electronic quizzes and mobile tables where objects can be touched.
The e-guide is available in the “National Museum” smartphone app or on a special device you can hire from the Welcome Desk. It guides you to selected exhibits in German, French, Italian, English, Mandarin or Russian. The app is also available in Swiss-German sign language for people with hearing impairments.
The Zoo Zürich is a zoo located in Zürich, Switzerland and is considered as one of the best zoos in Europe. Opened in 1929, it accumulated a collection of 2,200 specimens of 300 species by its seventy-fifth year. It is located on Zürichbergstrasse, on the lower reaches of the Zürichberg in the Fluntern quarter.
One of its popular events is the penguin parade, which is performed daily after noon if the outside temperature is below ten degrees Celsius.
The most famous attractions are the Asian elephant exhibit and Masoala Hall, which are inside of a large dome. Guests can even view elephants from underwater. They are also known as the only and first European institution to successfully breed Galápagos tortoises. Over the course of the years, the Zürich attraction has sent the baby tortoises to more than two dozen other zoos. In 2005 the zoo discovered that the seven lemurs caught in Andasibe thought to be mouse lemurs were actually a new species later named Goodman mouse lemur.
The zoo made international headlines in July 2020 when a Siberian tiger mauled a zookeeper to death in front of members of the public.
Football makes the world go around – and has been for decades: The stars of the past, Pelé, Beckenbauer and Maradonna, have made way for Messi, Ronaldo and Bale. Within sixty minutes, visitors to the Fifa World Football Museum in Zurich experience ten magic moments of world cup history and their protagonists.
Strengths of this outstanding museum include the largest collection of work by Munch outside Norway, the most comprehensive museum holdings of art by Alberto Giacometti, and important paintings by Monet, Picasso, Chagall, Kokoschka, Beckmann and Corinth. The New York School – Pollock, Rothko and Newman – is also represented, along with Pop Art from Europe and America. The expressive innovation of the 1980s is best seen in the outstanding collection of works by Georg Baselitz. Other highlights of the museum include paintings and rare sculptures by Cy Twombly. Video installations and photographs by Fischli/Weiss, Pipilotti Rist and others continue the narrative into the 21st century.
Overview of the exhibition programme: Further information
The Zurich Toy Museum provides a brief yet informative insight into the children’s games of bygone days. It is the private collection of the family of toy dealer Franz Carl Weber (1855 – 1948). All manner of historic playthings may be viewed in the museum. Visitors learn how dolls have changed with the passing fashions. Doll houses have reflected European domestic life from the early 18th to the 20th century. Railways, steam engines and tin cars bear witness to just how technological progress has influenced the nursery.
There is a play corner for the children, and some of the more unusual toys can be purchased at the museum shop.
The museum combines science with cultural history and offers its visitors two exciting journeys through time. In the museum hall, the first journey takes you through 600 million years of evolution to the earliest civilizations. Experience the exciting evolution of life – starting with the first animals, and including the dinosaurs and prehistoric man, and right up to the present day. The second journey takes you through human life from conception to death. You will be amazed and informed as you enjoy the many unusual exhibits on display.
The open cloister on the ground floor of the Helmhaus was previously used as a courtroom and covered market but now functions as an exhibition space for young Swiss artists. The Helmhaus primarily features works by Swiss artists or creative artists living in Switzerland.
In addition to its exhibitions, the Helmhaus also offers a broad program of concerts, talks, tours and children’s workshops.
An exciting mix of new and old has been created in Zurich West on the Löwenbräu-Areal premises. Two new high-rises stretch above the old brewery and further emphasize the architectural shape provided by the silos. A black, elegant building 230 feet high and with an overhang giving it the appearance of a cobra looms up behind the old brewery. The industrial past is still very visible, and the characteristic historic building from 1897, the chimney and the steel silo all nicely preserved.
A unique mix of international artists, trades people and people who call this place home make best use of the premises.
The clock and watch museum in the premises of the Beyer Chronometrie shop on the Bahnhofstrasse in Zurich provides visitors with an impressive insight into the wonderful world of watches and the fascinating art of their manufacture. The exhibition includes rare and precious exhibits such as shadow sticks, sun dials, oil clocks, hourglasses, water clocks, grandfather clocks, table clocks, pocket watches, wrist watches, and scientific instruments for timing and navigation.