In the Geneva region you'll find this king of sports, the town of Lausanne. The International Olympic Committee has been based here for over a century. Set up by Pierre de Coubertin in 1894 the IOC now houses the Olympic Museum of Lausanne, the only Olympic museum in the world. Lausanne has officially been the Olympic capital since 1994 and now houses more than 20 international sporting organisations as well as organising high level competitions such as the international Athletissima meeting. Beside Lake Leman and close to the snow-capped Alps, urban development is very much tied up with sport, culture, research and sustainable development, making it a very pleasant city to visit.
To get the feel of Lausanne, take a walk, following the "sports route". This 4 kilometre route will lead you past all the major sporting institutions where you can learn all about the history of the Olympic Games as well as the history of sport generally. And of course there is plenty to do if you want to get active yourself. You can enjoy sailing and all kinds of watersports on the lakes, or perhaps you'd prefer some peace and quiet rambling along country paths: cycling, horse-riding and golf are also on offer. Or scale the craggy mountains and then take to the skies with a paragliding flight. In winter, hit the slopes for skiing and snowboarding.
With 22 museums and 40 art galleries, culture is a way of life in Lausanne. The Swiss Cinémathèque in Lausanne is one of the five best cinematheques (film library and art-house cinema) in the world.
Set in a green area of parkland, the Hermitage Foundation boasts an internationally renowned collection of works of art from throughout history, with a particularly fine selection of 19th and 20th century works.
Discover the refined and varied restaurants in Lausanne. Amongst the many Swiss cheeses, it is the Tome cheese which is the local speciality, and of course Switzerland is home to the finest quality chocolate. If you're a chocoholic - sorry, partial to the odd square - check out the Chocolaterie Durig, for 100% natural organic, handmade chocolate.
If you're visiting with the family in tow, indulge them with a trip to La Vallée de la Jeunesse or Valley of Youth. This rose-filled park with its pretty lake is popular with skaters, and the Nestlé Garden will no doubt be heaven for children of all ages. The Invention Space will allow your mini Einstein space to flourish.
The calm waters of the Lake Léman, are perfect for a little romantic boat trip, with such stunning views you'll imagine yourselves back in the Belle Epoque. Alternatively, a dance performance by the Béjart Ballet Lausanne is a real treat for the senses, while the shop Dual Time, will help you adjust to Swiss time, with its wide range of watches.
A naturally beautiful and dynamic city, travel to Lausanne for an active - and cultural - experience.
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