Bern,Old City. Photo: TES.

Swiss World Heritage

Switzerland knows various World Heritage sites recognized by UNESCO. The year of recognition is mentioned between brackets. Bellinzona’s impressive medieval castles Castelgrande, Montebello and Sasso Corbaro are among the best surviving examples of medieval military fortification (2000). The medieval centre of Berne bears witness to the ambitions of the once most powerful canton (1983). La Chaux-de-Fonds and Le Locle are the result of innovative town planning in the service of the watch making industry and made possible by the devastating fire van 1794 (2009). The Lavaux cultural landscape consists of terrasses of fourteen wine producing villages (2007). Monte San Giorgio’s rocks and its fossils (dating back 240 million years) shows the subtropical world of long ago (2010). The Swiss Alps Jungfrau-Aletsch shows spectacular mountain landscapes, valleys and the largest glaciated area in the Alps (2007). St. Gall, its abbey and abbey library are mirror of the splendour of medieval Europe in this region (1983).

The Tectonic Arena Sardona offers insights into how these mountains were formed (2008). The Benedictine monastery St. Müstair was founded by Charlemagne after his successful conquest of northern-Italy in the 8th century and later converted into a convent shows treasures from more than 12 centuries (1983). The Swiss pile-dwelling settlements of the period between 5000 and 500 B.C. have been recognized as well (2011).

Two of 17 as World Heritage recognized Le Corbusier buildings are located in Switzerland: La Petite maison au bord du lac Léman in Corseaux and l’Immeuble Clarté in Geneva (2016). In addition, the Engiadina Val Müstair (2010), a mountain valley south of the Ofen Pass, together with the Swiss National Park, and the Biosphere Reserve (2001) belong to the World Heritage as well. (Source and Further Information: