If you’re thinking of relocating to Switzerland, you probably wonder where you should move to. Geneva, Basel and Zurich are some of the more popular places for foreigners to live in and with good reason; all three cities are modern, vibrant and multicultural.
However, Switzerland has so much more to offer and with a state-of-the-art public transportation system, it is worth to look around. If you’re ready to move to Switzerland, you have plenty of options. Here’s the canton that matches your personality:
BERNE for the Explorer
Berne is the capital city of Switzerland and rightfully so: it combines the best of both worlds. It’s a beautiful, modern city with a breath-taking nature in its front yard. Fantastic slopes, great hiking spots and a river in the middle of the city that will cool you down in summer: the Aare, recently crowned one of the best 20 places for swimming in the world by the CNN. The outskirts of Berne are famous worldwide: Interlaken, Lauterbrunnen, Gstaad. All part of the canton of Berne and right there for the taking.
You can reach Zurich and Basel from Berne in less than an hour.
AARGAU for the Budgeteer
This canton might not beuber-famous, but it has become quite the insider tip amongst expats! Here’s why: its capital city Aarau is a hidden gem in terms of cost of living. It is easy to find great apartments for very reasonable prices. I also know first-hand that there’s a legendary English expat community living and meeting in Aarau quite regularly.
Aarau is especially interesting for people working in Zurich: it’s only 25-minute away, with numerous train connections throughout the hour.
VAUD for the Culture Vulture
Montreux. Do I need to say more? Actually, yes! Vaud has much more to offer than Jazz. Its capital city Lausanne is famous for its vibrant clubbing scene and some of the best local wine comes from the Vaud region. The vineyards on top of Lake Geneva are a delight for sophisticated hikers with a taste for reds and whites, while the bars and clubs in the city are everything young expats dream of.
Lausanne is less than 40 minutes away from Geneva and the morning commute along vineyards and the lake is breath-taking.
SOLOTHURN for the Traveller
Alright, hear me out. Olten is arguably one of the best cities to move to for people who frequently travel through Switzerland. 27 minutes to Berne, 30 minutes to Zurich, 35 minutes to Lucerne, 40 minutes to Basel: Olten is where the handy train connections are. An inside tip par excellence with inexpensive apartments. The canton of Solothurn might be a pragmatic choice, but it’s definitely worth a thought for people who have to travel for work.
FRIBOURG/FREIBURG for the Multi-linguist
Switzerland has 4 national languages: German, French, Italian and Romansh. If you come here to master more than one, I might’ve found the perfect spot for you. Fribourg/Freiburg is one of only four cantons that is fluent in two national languages. 2/3 of the people speak French, 1/3 German, which means that you can learn both at the same time. Fribourg is in the western part of Switzerland and only 49 minutes away from Berne and 56 minutes from Lausanne.
Honourable mentions for remote workers
If you don’t have to commute daily, Switzerland is your oyster! Here’s cantons that are arguably not ideal for daily commutes, but might be perfect for people mainly working from home:
GRAUBÜNDEN for the Adventurers
Here’s where the cool kids gather over the weekend to dive into all sorts of outdoor sports. Lakes that will take your breath away, national parks to explore and mountains that are meticulously prepped for Snowboarders and Mountain bikers alike, Graubünden is where the adventure starts.
VALAIS for the Soul Searchers
The canton of Valais is quite difficult to reach, but once you’re there, you don’t want to leave. Trust me! Zermatt, with the Matterhorn, is just one of the places that will stay with you forever. If you’re looking for a tranquil place with an endless supply of fresh mountain air, the Valais is the right fit for you.
TICINO for the Sun Worshipers
Nicknamed the “sun-parlour” of Switzerland, it’s italianità at its finest. From food to sights to the famous Mediterranean vegetation, the canton of Ticino is the perfect spot to hide from the cold. Some of the most stunning Swiss hiking areas are in the Italian part of Switzerland, and because the weather tends to be better in the south, chances are you won’t need a raincoat.
One thing’s for sure, wherever you end up living and working in Switzerland, there’s a lot to discover! If you can’t live in the canton that matches your personality best, no need to worry. Your little corner of paradise is always just a comfortably short train ride away.
Ready to make a move? Check our open jobs and apply! We are looking forward to meet you here.