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Geneva, international city of culture

The smallest of the major Capitals

Geneva is the second-most-populous city in Switzerland (after Zurich) and is the most populous city of Romandy, the French-speaking part of Switzerland. Situated where the Rhone exits Lake Geneva, it is the capital of the Republic and Canton of Geneva. While the municipality itself (ville de Genève) has a population (as of August 2011) of 191,803, the canton of Geneva (République et Canton de Genève, which includes the city) has 464,677 residents (as of July 2011). In 2008, the urban area, or agglomération franco-valdo-genevoise (Great Geneva) had 890,000 inhabitants, two-thirds of whom lived on Swiss soil and one-third on French soil.

Geneva is a global city, a financial centre, and a worldwide centre for diplomacy and the most important UN international co-operation centre with New York thanks to the presence of numerous international organizations, including the headquarters of many of the agencies of the United Nations and the Red Cross. It is also the place where the Geneva Conventions were signed, which chiefly concern the treatment of wartime non-combatants and prisoners of war.  - Source: Wikipedia


Tercentenary of Jean-Jacques Rousseau  1712-2012

In 2012, Geneva will be celebrating the Tercentenary of Jean-Jacques Rousseau, a famous figure and leading light of his times, who had a major influence on the history, art and culture of Geneva.



Altitude

373 m (1,227 ft) above sea level

Climate

Average temperatures: winter 3°C (35°F), summer 18°C (64°F)

Driving

In town 50 km/hr. (some zones 30 km/hr.), outside built-up areas (national roads) 80 km/hr., motorways 120 km/hr. A tax sticker, "vignette", is compulsory to drive on motorways and semi-motorways. Valid for 1 year at CHF 40.– (on sale at post offices, garages and customs posts). The wearing of seat belts both in front and back seats of vehicles is compulsory.

Electricity

Voltage 230 volts

Languages

Official language: French
Other languages spoken: English and German

Currency

Swiss franc (CHF). 1 CHF divided into 100 centimes.
Average rate: 1 Euro = CHF 1.20
-The exchange rate for the Euro and the Swiss Franc is not officially fixed and is subject to daily market fluctuations. Conversion rate is available at exchange offices, banks and in newspapers.

Tipping

Prices in hotels, restaurants, taxi fares, etc., are calculated to include taxes and service. A tip, therefore, is not indispensable, but justified for good service.

Population

City and Canton: 444 444 inhabitants
City of Geneva: 185 431 inhabitants

Area of the canton

282 km2 (107 sq ml)

Vaccinations

No vaccinations are required to enter Switzerland.

Veterinary

The import of domestic animals from urban rabies free countries may be imported into Switzerland without permit. A veterinary certificate confirming that animals have been vaccinated against rabies must be submitted. The vaccination must have been carried out within the last year and at least 30 days prior to entry. For more information please consult www.bvet.admin.ch

Visas

Travellers requiring a visa to enter Switzerland should ensure that it entitles them to re-enter after having visited neighbouring countries. A valid passport is essential for excursions into France and Italy and, for certain nationals, visas must be obtained beforehand.