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This is Switzerland's second largest city (behind Zürich), with 178,900 residents, and is heavily influenced by its French neighbors to the west and south. Here you'll find the quintessence or haute école of everything Switzerland stands for in the new century: beauty, wealth, education, international relations and culture, not to mention romantic scenery at its finest. One aspect of Geneva that is hard to miss is the Genevois' love of food. In fact, Geneva is home to more restaurants per capita (over 1,100 in total) than any other major city in the world including Manhattan. A visitor will also note that the Genevois serve an unusual proponderance of organ meat dishes, known as "abats." Everything from blood pudding "boudin noir" to pickled pigs feet are popular and commonplace here. Geneva has over 30 museums and private galleries, all of which contain prestigious private and public displays of art work, historical documents and cultural highlights. Geneva offers a diverse variety of cultural and sporting events such as classical music concerts, open-air movies on the lakeshore, as well as various trade fairs. Annually Geneva is home to the Inventions and New Techniques Fair, a rousing Automobile Show, an International Book and Press Fair and the High Watchmaking Fair. This is based on our comprehensive Adventure Guide to Switzerland, which is close to 600 pages in the print version. Here, we focus on Geneva and the surrounding area in Switzerland's western portion. Among the many towns described are Lausanne, Montreux, Neufchatel, Fribourg and Gruyeres. Also included is a detailed introduction with full information about what you need to know when visiting Switzerland. Nestled in the heart of Europe, Switzerland is a feast for the eyes, with azure-blue lakes that shine brilliantly against the greenest slopes of the surrounding Alps. Its picturesque villages and chic towns are accessible via high-speed trains, which whisk travelers around at amazing speeds, though many opt to travel by longboat on some of the country's tranquil waterways. It is one of the world's most advanced industrialized nations, yet its towns and cities are incredibly clean. It also has the distinction of being one of the oldest democracies. Part-time Swiss resident Kimberly Rinker has lived and worked here for years. She tells of little-known attractions as well as major tourist draws and everything in-between.

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