Hello everyone and happy weekend!
I thought today I make a fun post about what I like and not so keen about being here in Switzerland. I have only lived here for nearly a year in Switzerland, so take this as my first impression of Switzerland. Of course, my opinion can change overtime. Anyhow, here we go!
What I LOVE LOVE LOVE about Switzerland
- Gorgeous Scenery
Obviously the first thing that comes into everyone’s mind is the beautiful scenery. The view here is mind blowing. You find the most aesthetic, gorgeous and accessible landscapes here in Switzerland, which includes mountains and lakes. Really it’s no surprise that Switzerland is known for its ski resorts and hiking trails. I yet have to go skiing, but from what I hear and see on pictures- it must be beautiful. It’s always nice to wake up to this kind of view!
- Amazing Geographic location
Living in Switzerland, I have the advantage of being in the heart of Europe. I can easily go to Germany, Italy, France and Austria. In the moment, I live in the French part of Switzerland (Lausanne), which would take me 4 1/2 hrs to go to Paris and 3 hrs to go to Milan (both by car). Despite being so close to nearby countries, I’m also close to other metropoles in Switzerland. Going to Zurich would take me 2 hrs, Geneva 1 hr and Lugano 2 hrs. That’s what I love about Europe. You can go from A to B in such a short amount of time and get to see and experience so many different cultures, languages and food (of course)!
This point can be viewed positive or negative depending on your perspective. For this part, I’ll obviously share my positive aspects of multiculturalism in Switzerland and in the latter part I’ll discuss with you the negative sides to it.
Overall, Switzerland’s official national languages include German, French, Italian and Romansh. Since there are four national languages, there are also parts in Switzerland that speak one of the preferred languages. For instance, in the German part such as Zurich, people mainly speak German or Swiss-German- whereas Geneva (French part) you see others speak primarily French or Swiss-French. What I find the most interesting about this is that each part has a different atmosphere and culture.
What I DON’T LIKE about Switzerland
- Very rich but expensive country
Let’s get straight to the facts. Switzerland is expensive. And with that I mean everything is expensive. In general, the wages are high, so you can definitely earn quite well here. Since the wages are on average higher than other countries, the living standards are also higher. You can easily pay for a Pizza Margherita 20 Swiss Franc, which is nearly 20 USD!
Since I moved to Switzerland, I really haven’t gone out much- especially eating out. And although I’m a big foodie and love to explore and discover new restaurants and food trends, it’s just not very smart when it comes to money savings. So, I usually buy my big groceries near the border, because it’s so much more cheaper- and smaller urgent groceries in Switzerland. Another fun fact, Switzerland has the most expensive Big Mac in the world for $6.44.
- Tight-knit community
So, remember how I said how multiculturalism is a good thing in Switzerland? It also can be seen as something negative here. Though Switzerland is overall a small country, there are surprisingly many different ethnic and cultures living here. Multiculturalism can be a great thing in terms of preserving one’s culture within a country, but it can also hinder cultural integration. Some may argue that assimilation of ethnic groups is the solution to become one single national identity.
As a foreigner, I find it difficult to fit in Switzerland at first. And my impression was that the Swiss community is a very tight-knit community. So far, the people I’ve met personally are foreigners as well- and they too shared their struggles and concerns socializing with Swiss people. I’m not particular certain why it’s this case.
- Lack of good food
Okay, so Switzerland is definitely not on my top three foodie list. Although it offers different cuisines, I still think they lack the creativity and curiosity in food. Besides their famous Fondue and Raclette (scraped melted cheese), it’s not the ideal place to try and experience new interesting food trends. The life in Switzerland is generally at a lower paste, so there’s no surprise that Street food had just arrived 2 years ago- considering other countries started this trend a long time ago. And not to mention everything is so expensive. So even if you want to try something new and crazy, be ready to pay a lot more than you are comfortable with.
I hope you guys enjoyed my post on Switzerland. Living here I have no choice, but learn to love it. Honestly, it’s a lovely country- so I’m really enjoying myself here. Have to make the best out of it, right?