Ville de Genève


Mise à jour: 07.07.2016

Cultural Trail around the Old Town

The Old Town, Geneva’s historic centre, chronicles 2000 years of history and reflects the economic, political and religious development of this lakeside city over the centuries.

You can download the printable version of the Trail at the bottom of the page or listen to the audio guides below, which include interviews.

St. Peter’s Cathedral

St. Peter’s Cathedral, long before it became the symbol of the influence of Protestant Rome, was initiated in 1160 by the first Prince-Bishop of Geneva, Arducius de Faucigny, and its construction took over a century to complete. In June 1535, after Catholic mass had been abolished in Geneva, the cathedral became a place of Protestant worship and was renamed St. Peter’s Temple. Of modest proportions, it owes its current appearance to additions, modifications and major restoration work in the 18th and 19th centuries. The monumental façade, with its Neoclassical portico inspired by the Pantheon in Rome, dates from the 1750s. Comprising six Corinthian marble columns surmounted by a pediment bearing the coat of arms of Geneva and by a dome, it was the work of Benedetto Alfieri, architect to the Duke of Savoy. The copper spire that gives the cathedral its slender silhouette was added in 1895.

Cour Saint-Pierre 6
Tél. +41(0)22 311 75 75
Open daily 10.00 – 17.00

Download the audio file "St. Peter’s Cathedral" [mp3 1.37 Mo]

International Museum of the Reformation

Created in 2005, the MIR showcases the living history of Geneva and the Protestant Reformation. Through many archival documents and a wealth of illustrations, the non-denominational MIR tells in detail the story of the Reformation from its origins to the present day.

4, rue du Cloître, Cour Saint-Pierre
Tél. +41(0)22 310 24 31
Open Tuesday to Sunday 10 .00 – 17.00

Download the audio file "International Museum of the Reformation" [mp3 1.39 Mo]

Maison Tavel

This remarkable example of medieval civil architecture in Switzerland, is also the oldest private Genevan residence. It houses a museum on six floors showing engravings, paintings, maps, models, furniture and other objects dating from the Middle Ages to the 19th century that reveal the urban development of the city, as well as different aspects of the lives of its inhabitants in times past.

Rue du Puits-St-Pierre 6
Tél. +41(0)22 418 37 00
Open Tuesday to Sunday 11.00 – 17.00

Download the audio file " Maison Tavel" [mp3 1.58 Mo]

The Hôtel de Ville and public authorities

This architectural complex, built in several phases between the 15th and 18th centuries, has been the permanent seat of political power in Geneva since the late Middle Ages. From the long stone bench on the pavement outside the Hôtel de Ville, judges dispensed justice until 1829. The accused and witnesses were installed on a platform facing the public tribunal.

Rue de l'Hôtel-de-Ville 2
1204 Genève

Download the audio file "The Hôtel de Ville and public authorities" [mp3 1.49 Mo]

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