Near Zürich and Liechtenstein, you’ll find the charming city of St Gallen to the south of Lake Constance (German: Bodensee) in beautiful Switzerland. Although the city is not a touristy type of place, the architecture is something that might interest a lot of world travelers. You will find buildings in both modern and more traditional styles. The city has a few ‘hidden gems that most travelers are a bit aware of, so let’s go explore:
The video below is an overview of the (east) City. Even though you might not understand the language, you will still be able to enjoy the beauty of everything on offer. It will give you an idea of what to expect.
Visit the Library and the lapidarium of the convent.
The Abbey Library of St Gall – ‘The Abbey Library of St.Gallen is the oldest library in Switzerland and one of the largest and oldest monastery libraries in the world. Its extraordinarily valuable book collection documents the development of European culture and the St.Gallen monastery from the 8th century until the abbey was abolished in 1805.’
St Gallen is home to the Abbey of St. Gall / St. Gallen Cathedral (also known as the Cathedral of St Gall). This beautiful complex includes a monastery, an interesting library, and a twin-towered cathedral. A visit to the Abbey of St Gall is definitely something you should have on your itinerary.
Visit and explore nearby Werdenberg with its beautifully decorated buildings. Balconies with petunias and geraniums, stunning craftsmanship, and hand-painted wording and decorations on buildings, immediately draw your attention. The area is also filled with beautiful gardens in the summertime and the area is known for its old town buildings with bay windows.
The nearest recommended international airport is Zurich (ZRH) which is 60.8 km away.
From Zürich to St Gallen: 1 hr (86,2 km) via the A1, by car.
Getting to St Gallen from Zürich is easy if you have your own vehicle.
It will be a good idea to rent a car as the city is quite big and you might want to explore the region of the Bodensee (Lake Constance) while you’re there. But while in the city itself, the transport infrastructure is excellent and you will not have a problem getting around without a car.
Other airports nearby:
There are loads of hiking options in the area and hiking is very popular amongst locals as well as tourists.
This 8.2-kilometer hiking trail starts at the train station in St. Gallen – Haggen and leads to Spisegg. What is special about this route? The fact that it passes 18 viaducts, (wooden and concrete bridges and suspended walkways) along the river landscape of the Sitter and Wattbach nature reserve (Sitter and Wattbachlandschaft), makes it a beautiful hike. There are various restaurants along the way and the route is well signposted.
A cute and peaceful pond area along St Georgen Strasse. On the west side of the pond, a jetty with a small house at the end protrudes into the water. Unfortunately, the little house is not accessible, but it still makes a very nice Instagram photo spot. From here you can also do the Philosophentalweg and many more. The area offers trails from light early morning walks to trails for the more confident hiker. In my opinion, autumn is a beautiful time of the year to enjoy St Galler’s hiking trails.
Only 1 hour (50 km) from St Gallen is the beautiful Mainau Island. Definitely worth a visit. Read more about it.