Practical Information

Staying in Geneva

Estimated Budget

  • Housing: CHF 300 - 600 (Swiss Francs) for 2-3 weeks
  • Food: average of CHF 25 per day
  • Various expenses: CHF 150

Dress Code - Equipment

  • Casual and Business Casual for visits of International Organizations, such as the United Nations
  • Please bring your hiking equipment (especially shoes) and your bathing suit for your free time.


  • Average temperature in Geneva in summer: 12°-24° (June) and 14°-26° (July) with peaks as of 35°-38° during heat waves
  • NB: all university buildings belong to the Geneva State and, as such, don't have any air conditioning.


Leisure & Cultural Activities


Find out how to make the most of your stay in one of the world's most dynamic, multicultural and international cities.

On or in the water
Around the Jet d'Eau (Geneva's famous fountain), you find quite a few places hiring pedal boats and canoes, if you want to use your own strength to get across the lake. If you'd rather a place to enjoy the sun and have a swim, the Baby Plage (a little further along the lakeshore past the Jet d'Eau), is free and offers a small, sandy beach. The Bains des Pâquis has a 2.- entry fee but provides changing rooms, toilets and showers, as well as a longer stretch of beach, a diving platform, and a more protected stretch of water. You can also swim in the Rhône. From the Pont Sous-terre to the Jonction, you can drift with the current (experienced swimmers only).

Le Salève
Active people will love the hike up this local mountain, just on the other side of the French border. Not-so-active people can take the téléphérique (cable car) up, and still enjoy the breathtaking view over Geneva and the lake. There are a number of restaurants and cafés once you get up there, ranging from the affordable to the “special occasion” price.

From early July to the end of August, every Friday, Saturday, and Sunday evening free films are shown at nightfall at the Parc de la Perle du Lac – near the Jardin Botanique. Watch a movie...or just watch the lake and the hills and mountains on the far side. Their programme usually includes a number of English-language films. Pack a picnic and get there early, or you will end up on the other side of the road!

Fête de la Musique
End of June you are likely to experience one of the most amazing music festivals of Switzerland - for free! Go to the area between Place de Neuve, les Bastions and the old town with 30 stages hosting 555 concerts, workshops and dance shows and enjoy. An amazing three-day festival heralding in the summer season.

Fêtes de Genève
Not to be confused with the Fête de la Musique, the Fêtes de Genève are a whole programme of festivals and activities, starting on the 3rd of August and finishing the 13th of August. Think world music, dancing, carnivals, fireworks, parades, outdoor clubbing...there's a huge choice of things to do. Check out the website for times, places, and prices, although many of the activities are free!

Musiques en été
Two stages welcome a various bunch of artists during July and August: the Cour de l’Hôtel de Ville with classical and jazz concerts and the Scène Ella Fitzgerald with more ethnic and pop events. All the concerts are free!

Outside Geneva
The Lake Geneva Region is an exciting and beautiful place to be in summer. The Swiss stretch of the lakeshore boasts kilometres of vineyards that usually offer wine tasting and local produce.

Lausanne, 35 minutes away by train, is the home of the International Olympic Committee, and thanks to its student population (there are over 20 000 university students living in the city of 135 000), is one of Europe's most active cities, and has a thriving nightlife.

Further afield is Montreux, home to the famous Montreux Jazz Festival, running this year from 30 June to 15 July. Check out their website for all the acts and schedules. Beyond Montreux, there are countless music and other festivals going on in cities, towns, and the countryside in Switzerland – something for every taste!