Leisure activities in Geneva

Things to do in Geneva on weekdays and weekends
Updated 2019-07-31 15:17

Surrounded by lush nature, including mountains and lakes, Geneva is a beautiful city where you won't ever get bored. You can discover the city both on weekdays and weekends thanks to a wide range of leisure activities for all tastes.

Language classes

If you don't speak French when you arrive, you might think that there is not a lot for you to get involved with. Naturally, there will be more for you to participate in if you speak the local language; there are many language classes in the city and are a great way to meet other people while also learning to integrate into the culture. Migros Ecole is one of the most affordable language schools in Geneva and offers both weekday and weekend classes for every language ability.

Things to do on weekends in Geneva

On weekends, many people head outside the city to go hiking in summer or skiing/snowboarding in winter - but there is plenty to do in Geneva!

Because the grocery shops shut so early on weekdays (usually by 6pm) and are closed all day on Sunday, a lot of people go shopping on Saturday, so the centre of town and the surrounding malls can get quite busy.

Palexpo - Geneva's expo arena - hosts a wide range of events throughout the year, including the very popular annual Geneva Car Show and the Salon du Livre.

Planpalais' weekend markets are also a popular pastime for local residents who flock to the flea market on Saturday and antiques market on Sunday. (There are some great markets across the border in Anncey and Ferney-Voltaire too, if you are feeling more adventurous!)

Many of the city's museums are open over the weekends. Musée d'ethnographie (MEG), MAMCO, Natural History Museum, Barbier-Mueller Museum, Art and History Museum are all open on Sunday, too!

Vitam Park, just across the border in St-Julien-en-Genevois, is a great place to spend a weekend. It is a family-friendly indoor waterpark with slides and a water circuit, and a private adults-only relaxation area - making it perfect activity both in summer and winter!

Things to do on weekdays in Geneva

As many people live outside of the city centre, after-work drinks Monday through Wednesday is not really a popular pastime. In fact, the streets are mostly empty by 10 pm. However, in summer, you will find swathes of people having afterwork drinks and tapas at La Terrase, Bains du Paquis or La Barje, enjoying the mid-afternoon sun everyday of the week.

In summer, there are also early weekday morning music concerts by the lake - a very atmospheric breakfast before you go to work!

On weekdays, there are many gym classes that you can join. The city council runs a variety of sports classes - including aqua bike, running, ice hockey and sailing - throughout the weekdays at very competitive prices.

Pub quizzes are quite popular among international people in Geneva, and some workplaces will have informal teams that compete every week. Many employees from international organisations will head down the road to Mr Pickwicks on a Monday to test their knowledge.

Throughout the year, Geneva hosts a range of film festivals - including the International Film Festival and Forum on Human Rights (Fifdh) in April and Geneva International Film Festival in November - show movies and host talks throughout the week during their run.

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