Jet d’Eau Fountain (Water fountain)
The 140 m/460 ft high water fountain in the center of the harbor has become the emblem of Geneva. Originally the Jet d’eau fountain used to be situated downstream on the Rhone and was nothing more than an insignificant physical phenomena caused each evening when the craftsmen switched off the hydraulic pressure taps.
The Floral Clock
This symbol of Geneva as the cradle of the watchmaking industry must be one of the most photographed sites in Geneva. Over 6'500 plants are required to decorate this 5 meter diameter "monument" whose floral harmonies are changed with the seasons.
Thanks to the generous donations made by wealthy families at the end of the last century, Geneva has the largest surface area of parkland in Switzerland. Throughout the summer, citizens and tourists alike can admire the splendor of the 40'000 roses that bloom in the parks and along the promenades. Many of these magnificent settings offer free concerts in July and August.
The Wall of the Reformation
This imposing wall, erected in 1917, runs along one side of the Bastions, the University Park. It is dedicated to the leading figures of the international Reformation movement: Jean Calvin, Théodore de Bèze, John Knox and Guillaume Farel and retraces the major episodes of the time. Geneva’s motto is "POST TENEBRAS LUX", (after the darkness, the light), in other words, after ignorance, understanding of the Bible (thanks to the Reformation).
The Town Hall
This is the administrative headquarters of the local government. The unusual square ramp of the staircase made it easier for messengers to arrive on horseback in days gone by. The "Alabama" plaque is a reminder that the Anglo-American conflict was the first international dispute to be resolved in Geneva. Do not miss the summer concerts, given in the interior courtyard.
The Botanical Gardens is located a few hundred meters below the United Nations building. The activities of its conservatory have won international recognition in the scientific world. The park contains several tropical greenhouses, one of which is in the shape of a dome; a park with deer, flamingoes, aviaries and ponds and an open air coffee shop as well as an interesting little shop with ecological articles. The more energetic visitors can walk the 10 km/ 6 miles along the lakeshore to Port-Noir while the less energetic can take a "Mouette", one of the small taxi-boats that provide a ferry service across the lake.
The United Nations Building
This enormous complex, which covers a surface area equal to that of Versailles, was completed in 1936. Since 1946 it has housed the Office of the United Nations, successor to the League of Nations founded by the U.S. President Wilson in Geneva in 1920. Guided tours permit visitors to admire the splendid rooms they have only previously seen on television. You may also sign the Golden Book for Peace.