Passing the day in the air of a good museum is a joy known to travelers everywhere. In Zurich, the experience can be particularly pleasant. The following institutions are sure to improve any visit to Switzerland’s largest city, and best of all, admission is free.
1) The North American Native Museum (NONAM)
Formerly known as the Zurich Indian Museum, the NONAM features Native American art and artifacts from America’s northeastern woodlands, sub-arctic region, arctic, northwest coast and the southwest. It may seem peculiar that a museum dedicated to this subject should flourish in Switzerland, of all places, but NONAM is well curated and very evocative.
2) The Centre Le Corbusier
Situated in Zurichhorn Park on the shores of Lake Zurich, this striking, modernist structure was the brainchild of Le Corbusier’s greatest patron, Heidi Weber. The building itself is striking, and the museum’s collection includes other architectural works, sculptures, paintings and writing, all arranged with great man’s intentions in mind.
3) Paleontological Museum
The University of Zurich’s Paleontological Museum houses one of the world’s most important collections of marine reptiles and saltwater fish from the middle Triassic Period (230-240 million years ago). Collected in and around southern Ticino, the specimens provide valuable insight for scientists and laymen alike into what the life forms that once inhabited this area looked like and how they lived.
4) Spielzeugmuseum (Zurich Toy Museum)
Located in one of the oldest parts of the city, this relatively small museum houses more than a thousand antique toys from all over Switzerland and much of the rest of Europe as well. Perfect for kids, the entire collection can be thoroughly explored in as little as an hour.