Zurich Layover Guide (ZRH)
Zurich Airport (ZRH) is the main international airport in Switzerland that has non-stop flights to destinations all over the world. It is located on 13km (8 mi) from central Zurich. The airport has had international flights since 1947. Zurich is a global city, the economic epicenter of Switzerland and one of the largest financial centers of Europe.
Can you leave Zurich Airport (ZRH) airport during a layover? Do you need a visa?
It's possible for travelers to visit Zurich during a layover but in some cases a visa will be required. (more info).
Tours, Things to do, Sightseeing
Switzerland Organized Tours
Mount Titlis Day Tour from Zurich
This is the chance to enjoy a spectacular winter tour from Zurich over the Albis Pass and along Lake Lucerne’s beautiful shores. Take a quick but memorable tour of the city of Lucerne and their most intriguing landmarks. The next stop is Engelberg where you get to take a cable car up the alpine glaciers of Mount Titlis as you take in the one of a kind landscapes of eternal snow and glaciers. The panorama restaurant at the summit of Mount Titlis offers great food and views. There are many activities for adventure seekers in including skiing and using an inner tube. » book this tour
Zürich: 4-Hour City Tour by Ferry, Cable Car and Coach
Take an exciting city tour of Zürich’s Old Town and surrounding the city where landmarks like the Fraumünster Church, Bahnhofstrasse, the Limmatquai, and the Guild Houses that symbolise Zurich can be found. The almost banana-shaped Lake Zurich is framed on the southern side by the Albis and Zimmerberg hills and on the north by the Pfannenstiel chain of hills. The best way to discover the Lake Zurich area is by taking a boat trip and crossing with a ferry gives you an authentic experience of Zurich. Next is the aerial cable car ride to Felsenegg that provides unrivaled views over the lake and the snow-covered Alps. » book this tour
From Zurich: Day Trip to Jungfraujoch – Top of Europe
Don’t miss the stunning views of the triple peaks of Eiger, Mönch, and Jungfrau as you ride up the mountain to visit this UNESCO World Heritage Site. Exploring this area of snowlidden mountains in Jungfraujoch is a momentous journey through an ice wonderland which offers great views with the entire scenery of the Alps. Immersing yourself in the trip makes it all the more worthwhile and memorable visit. » book this tour
Switzerland Things to do / Sightseeing
Museum of Art (Kunsthaus Zurich)
The Kunsthaus Zurich is an art museum in the Swiss city of Zürich. It has one of the most prized art collections in the whole of Switzerland, assembled over a period of time by the local art association named Zürcher Kunstgesellschaft. The collection includes ones from the Middle Ages to modern-day art, laying emphasis on Swiss art.
Time required: 2 to 3 hours.
Airport to here: It takes an average of 10 minutes to get here by taxi or close to 25 minutes by train.
Often mistranslated to Church of Our Lady, the name of the protestant Fraumünster actually means Women’s Church, referring to the founding of an abbey here in 853 for aristocratic women of Europe by Emperor Ludwig for his daughter, Hildegard. Until the High Middle Ages, the head of the convent was also governor of the national city. Although the church itself is worth seeing, what makes it one of Zürich’s most popular tourist attractions is the beautiful set of five stained-glass windows in the chancel created by Marc Chagall in 1970. From left to right, the vividly colored windows show Elijah’s ascent to heaven, Jacob, scenes of Christ’s life, an angel trumpeting the end of the world, and Moses. The church is full of such beautiful art.
Time required: One may need an hour or more.
Airport to here: It takes 15 minutes by taxi or 25 minutes by train to get here.
FIFA World Football Museum
This magnificent Museum tells how the world’s football governing body has built football globally and made it the number one sport in the world indisputably. The association has certainly united countries and linked continents. As a place all fans must visit, this museum holds football’s ultimate prize. Mixed with attractions and thought-provoking exhibitions, the FIFA World Football Museum explicitly shows the impact football has had on fans and the world at large.
Time required: You will need about an hour to take in the beauty of football and its impact to our world.
Airport to here: It takes 15 minutes by taxi or 20 minutes by train to get here.
Zoo Zürich is Switzerland’s largest and most frequently visited cultural and educational institution. This is a wonderful way to enjoy yourself or better still in the company of your partner as you appreciate the beauty of nature. Who knows! You may become a friend to the lovely creatures here. The motive behind this zoo is to encourage people to play an active role in nature conservation and the protection of species.
Time required: 2 to 3 hours.
Airport to here: It will take 15 minutes by taxi or 45 minutes by train line 6 tram.
Confiserie Sprüngli (A Confectioner’s Café)
One look at the stacks of temptations in the window, and you’ll be drawn inside to at least feast your eyes on the displayed fresh truffles, bonbons, cakes, and their signature macarons, called Luxemburgerli. The retail shop is on the street, while the upstairs café-salon serves breakfast, lunch, and afternoon desserts in genteel surroundings. Sprüngli House was opened in 1856, and today, the confectioner’s café on Paradeplatz is a favorite stop for locals and tourists.
Time required: About an 1 or 2.
Airport to here: it may take 15 minutes by taxi to get here or 30 minutes by train.
Zurich Opera House
Located at the Sechseläutenplatz, it has been the home of the Zurich Opera since 1891 and also houses the Bernhard-Theater Zürich. It is also home to the Zurich Ballet. Then again, Zurich Opera House is the home of the International Opera Studio (in German: Internationales Opernstudio IOS) which is an educational program for young singers and pianists. You may learn a thing or two right here!
Time required: 2 to 3 hours.
Airport to here: It takes 15 minutes to get here by taxi or 20 minutes by train.
Uetilberg is accessible all year round, but it’s recommended in the spring when the mountain flowers begin to blossom. From this mountain,you can take in panoramic views of the city, Lake Zurich and the not too distant Alps. Now that’s too good an opportunity to miss.
Time required: Full day.
Airport to here: Using the line 10 train, it takes 50 minutes. On average, it takes 30 minutes for taxi.
Zurich’s Chinese Garden Park
Gifted to the city in 1993 by its Chinese partner town Kunming, Zurich’s Chinese Garden is dedicated to the “three winter friends” of pine, bamboo and winter cherry. Sitting pride of place next to Lake Zurich, the Garden is considered one of the best Chinese Gardens outside of China itself.
Time required: 2 to 3 hours.
Airport to here:It takes 15 minutes to get here by taxi or 30 minutes by train.
Swiss National Museum
The Swiss National Museum holds the country’s best collection of artifacts that date to the very start of civilisation to the present day. It’s the most visited museum in the country for a good reason and shouldn’t be missed out on.
Time required: 3 to 4 hours.
Airport to here: It takes 10 minutes by taxi to get here or 15 minutes by train.
Things to Do in Zurich Airport (ZRH)
Relaxing and Sleeping
Airport Lounges and Relaxing
The airport has many lounges in each terminal. » view all lounges or buy a lounge pass or membership online
Hotel and Sleeping
There are many hotels close to the airport and one transit hotel. » view all or book an airport hotel online
Rest Area and Sleeping in Airport
Resting areas are found in Transit Area D
WIFI/Internet and SIM Card
WIFI/Internet: Free WiFi is available at the airport for 2 hours. Connect to the “ZurichAirport” network.
SIM Card: There are several shops within the airport that sell SIM cards. » buy a global sim card for Switzerland, Zurich that you can use for other countries as well!
Transportation to/from airport
Taxi: The airport taxi ranks are situated in front of Arrival Halls 1 and 2.
Train: There’s a train service run by Swizz Federal Railways (more info).
Bus: There are local and regional buses that operate from the airport's terminal which connects all over Switzerland. (more info).
Shuttle: The airport has special bus services.
Car rentals: Car rentals are available and can be booked online. » view available cars or rent a car now online
Parking: There is parking available and it is possible to book a parking space in advance.
Luggage Storage & Lockers
There are left luggage storage rooms and lockers available. » book a luggage storage or locker at Zurich Airport (ZRH) online (subject to availability).