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Happy New Year! Or as the Swiss would say, Guten Rutsch, meaning “have a good slide” (into the new year). And what a marvelous ride the last month has been.

December is a month of excitement, festivities and anticipation for the holidays in Zurich. The city is ablaze with Christmas lights in the streets, laughter in the air, decorations on store fronts and even a steady shower of snow…blanketing the sidewalks in white (thanks to Mother Nature). Adults and children, locals and tourists alike welcomed festivities like the Christmas parade; marveled at the sights and sounds; and visited Christmas markets looking for that perfect unique ornament.

Christmas parade in Zurich

Christmas parade in Zürich

Wonder of Christmas

The wonder of Christmas

Singing Christmas tree

Singing Christmas tree

 

Christmas market in HB

The Christmas market in Zurich Hauptbahnhof (HB, the main train station)

If you’re visiting Zurich in December, you must check out the Christmas market in the Hauptbahnhof (the main train station), see the Swarovski Christmas tree and watch the Christmas parade down the Bahnhofstrasse. Enjoy some glühwein (spiced hot wine) and heisse maroni (roasted chestnuts) from one of the many vendors and discover the magic of the season.

 

Swarovski Christmas tree

Swarovski tree

Lots of people waiting on the bridge for fireworks!

NYE – the city waiting on the bridge for fireworks!

All too soon, the flurry of Christmas buzz arrive then depart, only to be superseded by anticipation of the New Year.

Every year, the fireworks over Lake Zurich draw almost a million people to this otherwise quiet city. Clubs pulsate the streets in downtown with tunes while bars and street vendors eagerly serve libations ranging from Dom Pérignon to Feldschlösschen

At exactly 12:20 (they give you a full 20 minutes to celebrate the new year in order to get your undivided attention), an impressive display of fireworks colored the clear night sky.

Celebrating on the bridge

For 20 minutes, all eyes focused up as toasts were shouted and wishes whispered. Champagne flowed for the young and old. Hugs were shared. Cheers were sung. Kisses were bountiful. And there we were…sliding beautifully into the new year. Guten Rutsch!

 

Fireworks 1 Fireworks 2

Happy 2013!

My friend Jenni and I welcoming 2013!