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The 30 best things to do in May

Delve into our guide to some of the best things to do in May.

Our round up of things to do in May across Switzerland, including popular events, festivals, attractions, free activities, stuff for kids to do, entertainment and more.

Bateau Lavoir • Geneva
1/17

Bateau Lavoir • Geneva

Moored on the river as it flows out of Lake Geneva, Bateau Lavoir is a lovely spot to go for a drink, a light lunch or an apéro as the sun goes down. Throughout the year the boat hosts live music events too.

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Rive Gauche / Left Bank
Dive in from May 14 • across Switzerland
© Ursula Perreten
2/17

Dive in from May 14 • across Switzerland

Summer is truly underway in Switzerland when people start to take to the rivers, lake “beaches” and badis (public bathing areas at the lake) in their droves. So whether you're looking to swim yourself fit or simply take a refreshing dip, nothing beats a swim in the open air. The summer season opens on May 14, 2016.

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By: Time Out contributors
Chaplin’s World by Grévin • Corsier-sur-Vevey
STUDIO CURCHOD
3/17

Chaplin’s World by Grévin • Corsier-sur-Vevey

Part museum, part theme park, Chaplin’s World is set on the very domain where Charlie Chaplin lived with his family during the last 25 years of his life. Take a walk through the life and the films of the world’s best-loved movie character.

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Vevey
CGN • Lausanne-Ouchy
© Christof Schuerpf
4/17

CGN • Lausanne-Ouchy

Making the most of its position on one of Europe’s largest lakes, Lausanne’s ferry port at Ouchy offers cruises to many destinations around the lake.

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Ouchy
Lac de Joux • Jura
© Roland Gerth
5/17

Lac de Joux • Jura

The huge Lac de Joux in the Jura valley of the same name is a draw for outdoor enthusiasts at any time of year.

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Jura
The Castles of Bellinzona
hotel-paladina-tessin.ch
6/17

The Castles of Bellinzona

Among the most famous monuments of Ticino are the impressive collection of medieval castles at Bellinzona, the capital of the canton, just north of Lugano. 

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Bellinzona
Dampfbad • Basel
©Dampfbad Basel
7/17

Dampfbad • Basel

Whether you are local or in town for shopping, a meeting or an event, the Dampfbad in northern Basel’s St. Johann is the perfect retreat. 

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St. Johann
Walliser Alpentherme & Spa • Leukerbad
8/17

Walliser Alpentherme & Spa • Leukerbad

Well known for its thermal waters, the pretty alpine village of Leukerbad has several spas, but this is one of the best. 

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Leukerbad
Monte San Salvatore •  Lugano
montesansalvatore.ch
9/17

Monte San Salvatore • Lugano

At 912m and popular with climbers, dramatic Monte San Salvatore looms above the city, one side forest, the other sheer rock face. 

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Lugano
Katzensee •  Zurich
© www.zuerich.com
10/17

Katzensee • Zurich

The natural reserve around the Katzensee is just minutes outside the city and an all year round hotspot for bird- and nature-watching. 

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Affoltern
Bike hire • Zurich
11/17

Bike hire • Zurich

Leave a CHF 20 deposit at one of the Züri rollt containers and enjoy the city on two wheels. 

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City
Pedalos • Zurich
12/17

Pedalos • Zurich

Don't just stand there on the promenade admiring the lake, get out and enjoy it. 

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Kreis 2
Museum Tinguely •  Basel
© Christof Schuerpf
13/17

Museum Tinguely • Basel

Kinetic sculptor Jean Tinguely is one of those artists you either love or hate. The central hall alone houses 20 huge machine-sculptures in a handsome, hangar-like structure purpose-built next to the Rhine by Ticino architect Mario Botta.

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Kleinbasel
Botanischer Garten •  Zurich
Elisabeth Real
14/17

Botanischer Garten • Zurich

Take an early morning stroll across the vast grounds or just sit and relax for a while on a sunny afternoon. The botanical garden is rarely crowded and can deliver instant peace and happiness when you stumble upon a pretty flower or watch the branches of the old trees swing with the wind.

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Weinegg
Sévelin 36 for contemporary dance • Lausanne
15/17

Sévelin 36 for contemporary dance • Lausanne

Théâtre Sévelin 36 is both a showcase and breeding ground for dancers. Workshops are organized throughout the year, including with children. On 8,9 and 10 May, it will be one of the main venues for the nationwide Dance festival open to anyone who loves dance.

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Flon
Paddleboard • Geneva
Tropical Geneva
16/17

Paddleboard • Geneva

Hawaii's current craze for stand-up paddleboarding comes to Lake Geneva. There are plenty of other watersports, such as windsurfing and wakeboarding, on the lake.

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Geneva
E-bike hire •  Basel
17/17

E-bike hire • Basel

Switzerland's popular e-bikes or pedelecs have a bit of extra va-va-voom. These electrically-assisted bikes can be rented at the rail station and are a nippy way to get around town.

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Basel

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