Switzerland Geography and Climate

At any time of the year, Switzerland is a great holiday destination, where the unique beauties of nature and the outstanding creations of human hands are concentrated in a small space. This country speaks many languages and accommodates several cultures within its borders. No wonder this country is called Europe in miniature. Switzerland is famous for ski resorts, alpine lakes, banks, Swiss watches, that is, everything that is associated with high quality. Of course, Switzerland owes much of its wealth to its main capital – a unique landscape that has attracted here, since the 19th century, a lot of tourists from around the world. Switzerland is one of the most beautiful countries in the world, it is not for nothing that Queen Elizabeth II of Great Britain said during her visit to Bern: “Switzerland is a paradise.”

The choice of the best time of the year to visit depends on the purpose of the trip. It is best to relax on the lakes from June to September (but keep in mind that prices are quite high at this time). Ski resorts are open from late November to April.

The Swiss constitution names German, French, Italian and Romansh as official languages. Almost every inhabitant of this country speaks two languages. Nowadays, English is widely used.

Geography in Switzerland

According to top-engineering-schools, Switzerland is located in the heart of Europe. It borders Germany in the north, France in the north and west, Italy in the south, Austria and Liechtenstein in the east. The area of the country is 41.3 thousand square meters. km. Most of the territory is located in the Alps, only in the north you can find flat lands. The height of the Alps exceeds 4000 m, so their peaks are covered with glaciers that give rise to mountain rivers. The highest point is Dufour Peak (4634 m). In the northwest rises another mountain range – the Jura. He’s not that tall. Its highest point within Switzerland, Mount Tandre, is 1679 m. In the central part of the country is the Swiss Plateau.

The country has no access to the sea, but it is rich in rivers and lakes. The largest rivers are Rhine, Rhone, Inn, Aare, Ticino. What Switzerland is truly famous for is its lakes. They are of glacial origin, therefore they have an elongated shape and great depths. There are about 600 lakes in total, the largest are Geneva, Constance, Zurich, Neuch√Ętel. The lakes are amazingly beautiful and clean.

Climate in Switzerland

Switzerland belongs to the temperate continental climate region. But, speaking about the climate of this country, it should be borne in mind that about 60% of its territory is occupied by mountains, so here you can get from winter to summer in two hours. The Alps are a kind of barrier that prevents the flow of cold arctic masses to the south, and warm subtropical masses to the north. In the northern cantons, winter is mild and lasts about 3 months: from December to February. At this time, the minimum temperature is -1…-4, the maximum +2…+5 degrees. In summer (from June to August) at night it is usually +11…+13 degrees, in the daytime the air warms up to +22…+25 degrees. There is quite a lot of precipitation throughout the year. Their maximum falls on the summer period (up to 140 mm per month), the minimum for the period from January to March (slightly more than 60 mm per month).

In the south, winter temperatures are almost the same, and summer temperatures are higher. The average minimum temperature is +13…+16, the average maximum temperature is +26…+28. There is more rainfall in this area. From March to November, more than 100 mm of precipitation per month falls here, and from June to August this amount approaches 200 mm. The least precipitation falls in January and February (about 60 mm).

The weather in the mountains depends on the altitude of the area. It is snowy in the highlands in winter. The temperature for most of the year (from October to May) is negative both at night and during the day. In the coldest months (January and February), at night the temperature drops to -10…-15, during the day – to -5…-10. It is warmest in July and August (2…7 degrees at night, 5…10 degrees in the daytime). The maximum snow height is observed, as a rule, in early April. At an altitude of 700 meters, it lasts 3 months, 1000 meters – 4.5 months, 2500 meters – 10.5 months.

Best time to visit:
Choosing the best time of year to visit depends on the purpose of the trip. It is best to relax on the lakes from June to September (but keep in mind that prices are quite high at this time). Ski resorts are open from late November to April.

Switzerland Geography