20 Lakes in Switzerland: 2020 (With Location & Activities)

Switerzland Lakes

Lake Lucerne , Lake Geneva , Lake Thun , Lake Lugano , Lake Brienz , Oeschinensee , Walensee , Lake Zurich , Blausee , Bachalpsee , Lake Constance , Riffelsee , Lake Maggiore , Lake Neuchâtel , Schwarzsee , Crestasee , Seealpsee Lake , and many more.

The
lakes in Switzerland come in many different shapes and sizes, from massive bodies of water that span across countries to tiny ones that sit in quaint hamlets! Swiss lakes are characterized by their strikingly blue water, striking Alpine backdrops and pristine natural beauty. In Switzerland, you will find frozen lakes perched on mountain sides, like Oeschinensee, warm ones sitting near marshlands, like Lake Neuchâtel and the ones formed out of rockslide, like Lake Crestasee.


Switzerland lakes, apart from being naturally stunning, also offer a great deal of fun activities! You will find everything from fun beaches, leisurely cruises, swimming spots to water sporting opportunities. You will find several tiny villages and hamlets dotting the shoreline which offer exquisite glances into the Swiss culture, old castles and fortifications that tell tales of Swiss history and plenty of vineyards and farms which have been in the area since a very long time.

Here is a list of lakes in Switzerland:

01

Lake Lucerne

Lake Lucerne

Lake Lucerne is the fourth largest lake in Switzerland and is known for its peculiar shape, twisting and forking out at several points throughout its geography. Locally known as the Vierwaldstättersee, Lake Lucerne flows right through magnificent Swiss Alps, offering a quintessential Swiss scenery.

When here, you can explore the hidden corners of the lake by hiring a boat, stay at one of the many luxurious resorts perched on the lake-shores or ride up to Mt. Pilatus to enjoy exhilarating views of the liquid cobalt below!

Location:
Lake Lucerne, Switzerland.

Activities:
-Take a boat ride to the far-end point of Lake Uri and go to the Rütli Meadow, which legend says is the birthplace of the country.
-Take a ride up to Mt. Pilatus to enjoy excellent views of the valley.

02

Lake Geneva

 Lake Geneva

Situated on the northern side of the Alps, shared between the neighbouring countries of Switzerland and France is this magnificent lake, known by the name of Lake Geneva. Where the eastern shoreline belongs to France, the rest sits nestled amidst the Swiss Alps and borders the metropolitan city of Geneva.

You can take scenic railway journeys from Geneva to Montreux which take you along the ancient shoreline with its dramatic castles, age-old vineyards and lakeside ‘beaches.’

Location:
Geneva, Switzerland

Activities:
-Visit the scenic beach at Plage de Préverenges.
-Take a walk along the Lake Geneva Shore Path.
-Visit the centuries-old Yerkes Observatory.
-Take a peek into history with the Chillon Castle.

03

Lake Thun

Lake Thun

This Alpine lake situated in the Bernese Oberland region of Switzerland offers a stunning aquamarine vista to the residents of the town of Thun.

The lake has several interesting features, including the fact that it was part of the same waterbody before it got separated from Lake Brienz in the 10th century. Also, from World War II to 1962, the lake was being used to dump unused munitions.

Location:
Lake Thun, Switzerland.

Activities:
-Visit the hilltop castle of Schloss Thun which dates back 900 years.
-Take a stroll along the old town riverfront of Thun Altstadt and wander alongside the 15th-century townhouses.
-Visit the beautiful botanical gardens of Schadau Park that stretch along the shoreline of the Lake Thun.

04

Lake Lugano

Lake Lugano

This glacial lake sits on the area lying in the southern end of Switzerland and the northern end of Italy! Wedged between two more popular lakes, Lake Como and Lake Maggiore, this Switzerland lake is a true hidden treasure!

When visiting the lake, you can do everything from dining at Michelin star lake-front restaurants, hike to the summit of dramatic peaks or go fishing in the lake!

Location:
Lake Lugano, Switzerland.

Activities:

-Visit the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Monte San Giorgio, a mountain covered in woods.
-Hike to the top of Mount Brè.
-Enjoy site-seeing from the summit of Monte San Salvatore.

05

Lake Brienz

Lake Brienz
Image Credit : Image by Thomas Schmid from Pixabay

Lake Brienz is one of the most breathtaking lakes in Switzerland and is characterised by its shocking turquoise blue waters. The Lake weaves its way across the Alpine scenery and spreads over a length of 14 kilometres and breadth of 2.8 kilometres.

Situated in the canton of Bern, Lake Brienz offers several opportunities to go kayaking and boating in the pristine waters.

Location:
Lake Brienz, Switzerland.

Activities:

-Visit the open-air Ballenberg Museum and enjoy a glimpse into traditional buildings and architecture from around the world.
-Spend time at the Aare gorge and Reichenbach falls.
-Walk along the shoreline of the lake.

06

Lake Zurich

Lake Zurich

Lake Zurich is one of the most well-known and visited lakes in Switzerland. Situated on the southeastern side of the city of Zurich, this lake is fed from the Linth river which rises higher up, in the glaciers of the Glarus Alps.

The shimmering blue waters with the stunningly beautiful Alps rising in the background,  make it a breathtakingly beautiful sight to behold. You can choose to stay at one of the several lakeshore resorts to take in the beauty of the place.

Location:
Lake Zurich, Switzerland.

Activities:
-Ride a tram along the lakeside.
-Take a stroll along the promenade at Zurich Horn.
-Enjoy a dip in the lake on a sunny afternoon.

07

Oeschinensee

Oeschinensee
Image Credit : Image by Mintmount from Pixabay

Nestled in the Oeschinen valley, this namesake Switzerland lake remains frozen for around five months, attracting ice skaters. Since the lake is also home to fish species like the Arctic char, lake trout and rainbow trout amongst others, it is also a popular spot for ice fishing.

The stunning Alpine scenery that surrounds the lake and its proximity to the towns in Bernese Oberland makes it easily accessible yet a lesser-known spot. In order to reach the lake, you can take a gondola lift from Kandersteg to Oeschinen and then walk for another twenty-five minutes to reach the lake.

Location:
Oeschinen Lake, 3718 Kandersteg, Switzerland.

Activities:

-Ice fishing in the winter months of January to March.
-Ice skating from December to May, given the ice conditions.

08

Walensee

Walensee
Image Credit : Image by Christian Meier from Pixabay

The Walensee lake, shaped like a long finger, is shared between the cantons of Glarus and Graubünden. This Switzerland lake is known for the stunning scenery that surrounds it, from its towering limestone peaks belonging to the Churfirsten range.

The landscape also features upland pastures that interrupt the jagged fjord-like scenery to the thundering Seerenbachfälle falls.

Location:
Walensee, Switzerland.

Activities:
-Visit one of Switzerland’s highest waterfalls, Seerenbachfälle falls.
-Trek along the lakeshore and visit one of the many coastal hamlets and pastures that give the impression of being lost in time.
-Cruise along the calm waters of the lake and take in the scenery.

09

Blausee

Blausee
Image Credit : Image by Krampuschki from Pixabay

Situated in the Kander Valley above Kandergrund, this is one of the smaller lakes in Switzerland. You can easily reach Kandersteg and hike for five kilometres to reach this scenic lake or take the hourly bus that will bring you here directly.

This is a preserved natural area which is popular amongst tourists and locals alike. On the shore of the lake, you will find a restaurant that offers organic trout freshly caught at the lake amongst other delicacies.

Location:
Lake Blausee, 3717 Kandergrund, Switzerland.

Activities:
-You can enjoy a lakeside picnic if the weather permits.
-Hiring a boat and taking it out in the lake is another fun option.

10

Bachalpsee

Bachalpsee
Image Credit : Image by Albert Häsler from Pixabay

Bachalpsee is a stunningly beautiful lake perched at an elevation of 2,265 m (7,431 ft), in the Bernese Oberland. In order to reach the lake, you can take the cable car from Grindelwald to First and then walk up to the lake in less than an hour.

This small mountain lake is split by a natural dam, cutting the lake in two halves. If you visit the lake in spring or summer, you can witness the shimmering waters surrounded by wildflowers growing with abandon.

Location:
Bachalpsee Lake, 3818 Grindelwald, Switzerland.

Activities:
-Follow one of the several hiking trails along the lake.
-Sit down for a relaxed lunch if the weather allows.

11

Lake Constance

Lake Constance
Image Credit : Image by Ingo Jakubke from Pixabay

Lake Constance is a massive lake in Switzerland that is situated at the meeting point of Switzerland, Austria and Germany. This freshwater lake goes on for 63 kilometres, having a total shoreline of 270 kilometres, dotted by picturesque villages and lakeside towns.

Lake Constance has long enjoyed a reputation of a watersports hub, with sailors and windsurfers from across the world flocking the waters.

Location:
Lake Constance.

Activities:
-Visit the quaint, little town of Konstanz and spend time in the old part of the town.
-Explore Lake Constance on a boat cruise.
-Go hiking on the Lake Constance Trail, from Bodensee to Rundwanderweg.

12

Riffelsee

Riffelsee
Image Credit : Image by Jachen Dorta from Pixabay

Perched at an elevation of around 2,757 metres above sea level, Riffelsee lake is one of the lakes in Switzerland situated above the southern canton of Valais, in Zermatt. This small lake can be easily reached by hiking along mountainous trails that start from the town of Zermatt or take a cog railway up to the Rotenboden station and then walk for another ten minutes.

Once at the lake, you can enjoy unparalleled views of the Matterhorn peak reflected in the calm waters, especially in the early mornings and late nights.

Location:
Riffelsee3920 Zermatt, Switzerland.

Activities:
-Enjoy nature photography at the lake.
-Walk amidst rare alpine flowers.
-Take the cogwheel railway.

13

Lake Maggiore

Lake Maggiore
Image Credit : Image by Th G from Pixabay

Located in the south of the Alps, Lake Maggiore is the largest lake in South Switzerland. The lake is divided between the Swiss Canton of Ticino and the Italian regions of Piedmont and Lombardy.

On the Swiss side, the lake’s shoreline is home to some well-known holiday resorts, including Locarno which enjoys around 23 hours of daylight and Ascona, a chic and romantic town with plenty of boutiques and galleries.

Location:
Lake Maggiore.

Activities:
-Ride a pleasure boat on the lake from holiday towns like Locarno, Ascona or Brissago.
-Book a seat on the narrow-gauge railway along the lake, from Locarno to Centovalli.
-Go hiking along the Gambarogno Riviera.

14

Schwarzsee

Schwarzsee
Image Credit : Image by combuschtel1 from Pixabay

Locally known as Lac Noir, Schwarzsee is a small lake located in the Canton of Fribourg, Switzerland. The dramatic scenery surrounding the lake is characterised by the peaks of Schwyberg in the West, Les Reccardets and Spitz Flush in the South, along with Kaiseregg.

The lake is popular amongst visitors for its pristine natural landscape and characteristically warm and mineral-rich waters which attract swimmers. Certain sections of the lake have also been declared natural reserves for their exceptional natural beauty.

Location:
Schwarzsee, Switzerland.

Activities:
-Mineral-rich, dark emerald green waters which attracts swimmers from across the continent.
-Boat hire services that allow you to enjoy a leisurely afternoon at the lake.

15

Seealpsee Lake

Seealpsee Lake
Image Credit : Image by Hans Braxmeier from Pixabay

Seealpsee is a Swiss lake located in a tranquil spot in the canton of Appenzell, sitting at an elevation of 1,143 metres. This remote lake can be reached by foot from the towns of Wasserauen or Ebenal.

The strikingly blue waters, breathtaking mountain scenery and an equally beautiful approach, make the place a popular attraction in the region.

Location:
Seealpsee, 9057 Schwende District, Switzerland.

Activities:
-Stop for a cup of coffee or a meal at the Seealpsee Berghaus.
-Hire a rowboat and row across the lake.
-Walk the periphery of the lake.
-Enjoy a picnic spread on the shore.

16

Champex-Lac

Champex-Lac
Image Credit : Image by pozziss from Pixabay

Lac de Champex is a small lake which lies on the shores of a small village named Champex and sits in the Valais region of Switzerland. The idyllic lake perched high up in the mountains offers a peaceful escape into the woods.

When at the lake, you can hire a boat and spend your day boating, go swimming if the weather permits, cycle along the lake or simply go for a hike!

Location:
Champex, 1938 Orsières, Switzerland.

Activities:
-Go on mountain bike tours along the lakeshore.
-Try Stand-Up-Paddling at the lake.
-Follow hiking trails along the lakeside.

17

Caumasee

Caumasee
Image Credit : Image by Tim Ulrich from Pixabay

Caumasee is another of the lakes found near Flims which was formed as a result of Flims Rockslides. The lake is sourced from underground sources of water and its natural beauty makes it a popular spot amongst travellers.

When at the lake, you can spend your time swimming, lounging and sunbathing. Since the lake is surrounded by forest on three sides, it also opens up plenty of opportunities for hiking and an on-site restaurant offers delicious food with excellent views.

Location:
Caumasee7017 Flims, Switzerland.

Activities:
-Enjoy swimming in the lake.
-Go for a meal on the on-site restaurant.

18

Lake Neuchâtel

Lake Neuchâtel is a breathtakingly scenic lake which sits mostly in the French-speaking canton of Neuchâtel in Switzerland but is also shared by the cantons of Vaud, Fribourg, and Bern. This Switzerland lake sits in the southern foothills of the Jura Mountain Range

The landscape is dotted with picturesque vineyard landscapes and enchanting marshlands. The shoreline is characterised by several quaint villages that can be easily accessed through tour boats.

Location:
Lake Neuchâtel, Switzerland.

Activities:
-Take a leisurely cruise through the lake.
-Indulge in bird-watching in the marshland area.
-Sample scrumptious meals as you ride on your boat through the lake.
-Go swimming in the lake if you happen to be there in summers.

19

Crestasee

Crestasee is a small lake situated in the easternmost Swiss canton of Grisons which is a well-known spot for swimming and several other fun activities. When here, you can hire a boat and have a relaxing cruise along the lake or follow the forest trails to reach the Ruinaulta gorge formed by the Rhine river.

The entire landscape is characterised by the gigantic Flims Rockslide which created this lake, including several others.

Location:
Crestasee, Switzerland.

Activities:
-Take walk through the forest to reach the Ruinaulta gorge.
-Go boating in the lake.
-Indulge in nature photography.
-Enjoy a meal at the lakeside restaurant.

Newly Added Switzerland Experience

Switzerland Top Attractions

Places To Visit In Switzerland
03 March 2020
Excellent
The place has got a good amount of rich historic background which was really good to learn about. The guide was very knowledgeable about the place and made the entire tour a lot interesting. The Lucerne Walking tour is something I would to mu friends and family.
12 December 2019
Excellent
It was an enjoyable trip from start to finish! Right from pick up to drop off, we did not have to worry about a single thing! Everything was arranged, and the train journey over the Albis pass took my breath away! We also had a short stop at the Lion Monument, and we got a good lot of time to explore Lucerne properly! The train journey offers glimpses of the Alps throughout, and you wouldn’t feel bored for a minute.
13 November 2019
Excellent
I had planned the tour of Grindelwald and Interlaken with my family. The tour operator took care of all the essentials, Thanks for all the support.
23 December 2019
Excellent
I booked this tour for me and my 4 friends and we had a blast of a time. We did not even saw the time once as we were enjoying the amazing and its places. We took a lot of pictures of the various places and especially the beautiful old buildings.
21 February 2020
Excellent
The Black Forest and the Rhine Falls were in my bucket list for so long. I was excited to visit these places and I loved the place. Not only did I enjoyed my visit but also loved learning the craft of Titisee. This was a new experience that I had in my life and I cannot forget learning this craft. The best part of the trip was having a black forest cake in the black forest. I would totally recommend you to plan your trip to the Black forest.
08 February 2020
Excellent
The cogwheel train ride was amazingly good. Gazing out of the window, the elegant landscapes just mesmerized me. The Mt Pilatus Trip is a must-try for everyone. Me and my family I had a great time enjoying the cogwheel train ride. It was an exciting experience, especially for my parents. The local guide was really knowledgeable and he was a great help when it can to leaning new things about the place.
24 January 2020
Excellent
I got children tickets for my 15-year-old and 2 adult tickets for my parents although I was not there, the guide was really helpful and my parents and kid had a lot of fun. I recommend that if you are planning to visit Lucerne then you can go through Thrillophilia. Great discount on tickets and overall management is very professional.
24 January 2020
Excellent
I got children tickets for my 15-year-old and 2 adult tickets for my parents although I was not there, the guide was really helpful and my parents and kid had a lot of fun. I recommend that if you are planning to visit Lucerne then you can go through Thrillophilia. Great discount on tickets and overall management is very professional.
05 January 2020
Excellent
I can certainly say that there is nothing more exciting than spending some time with your friends in a racing boat. The instructer was very polite and extremely knowledgeable. He did some cool tricks with the boat and nowhere did we feel that our safety was not in the balance.
18 January 2020
Excellent
Comfort, beauty and pleasure; three words that describe my E Tuk Tuk Experience. Totally worth the price. This awesome experience took us to some of the best places in Zurich like Sechseläutenplatz, Niederdorf, the National museum and many other places. Enjoyed the picturesque steers of Zunich and loved capturing the beautiful buildings.

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People Also Ask About Switzerland

  1. Which is the most beautiful lake in Switzerland?

    Lake Geneva: Situated in the northern side of the Alps, shared between the countries of Switzerland and France Lake Lucerne: The fourth largest lake in the country, situated in central Switzerland Lake Thun: An Alpine lake in Switzerland's Bernese Oberland region Lake Lugano: A glacial lake situated on the border of Switzerland and Northern Italy Lake Zurich: Lake in Switzerland extending southeast of the city of Zurich Riffelsee: An Alpine lake situated in the lake town of Zermatt Klontalersee: A natural lake situated in the canton of Glarus
  2. How many lakes are there in Switzerland?

    Switzerland has around 7,000 lakes in total with 103 lakes with an area of more than 30 hectares. Around 58 lakes have a surface area of more than square kilometre.
  3. Can you swim in the lakes in Switzerland?

    Yes, several lakes in Switzerland allow swimming, including areas of bigger lakes like Lake Zurich, smaller Alpine lakes like Lake Riffelsee and several naturally warm places like Lake Schwarzsee.
  4. Why are lakes in Switzerland so blue?

    Switzerland lakes get their blue colour from the presence of glacial particles called ‘rock flour’ which reflect the blue-green portion of light, giving them a vibrant, turquoise blue colour.
  5. Is Lake Geneva safe to swim in?

    The water quality of Lake Geneva is considered largely safe for swimming. In a survey conducted in the year 2010, only one out of the 116 public beaches on the lakeshore was considered unfit for swimming. Apart from the water quality, the water temperature of the lake remains suitable for swimming from June to September.
  6. Can you swim in Lake Zurich Switzerland?

    Yes, you can swim at several spots in Lake Zurich. Having said that, it must be remembered that you must be a good swimmer to be swimming in natural lakes and rivers.

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