Things to do while in Zurich

Zurich, Switzerland. (Shutterstock)
Updated 25 August 2018
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Things to do while in Zurich

To escape the Gulf summer, you might want to consider a trip to Zurich in cool, mountainous Switzerland. It’s just a short flight from the Middle East and there are always deals, but beyond bankers and fresh water, what does this lakeside city offer the weekend visitor? Arab News went to find out.

Walk the old town

Start your weekend with a stroll through the city’s pedestrian-only district of Niederdorf. Lined with bars and restaurants, Niederdorfstrasse – the cobbled street that winds through the neighborhood – is the most characterful street in the city. It is an ideal place to unwind after a long flight.

Eat Swiss-German food

Let’s be honest, Swiss-German food is not the finest cuisine in Europe, but in Zurich it’s more about where you eat, rather than what you eat. And for that, there’s nowhere finer than the Zeughauskeller, a Swiss-German restaurant with a six-foot cannon over the main door.

Picnic at Lake Zurich

Zurich is blessed with its star attraction, Lake Zurich, and Zürichhorn Park on the banks of the lake is the finest spot in which to relax and picnic. Swimming is permitted, but be prepared for rather chilly waters: Unless you’re feeling particularly brave, staying dry might be a better option.

Visit a quirky museum

Zurich is liberal yet conservative. That doesn’t mean it lacks those quirks you find in every city. In the Moulagenmuseum, you can see wax models of diseases and injuries that were previously used by health professionals. But if this too much, then try the Pegasus Small World toy museum, which boasts 700 Steiff teddy bears.

Ride the cable car

Switzerland is well known for its Alps and hilly landscapes. So why not venture up one? There’s no need to dig out the hiking boots, because you can enjoy the grace of a cable car effortlessly climbing the Felsenegg and enjoy the views from above the city.

Drink from a fountain

It’s important to keep hydrated – we all know that. But in Zurich you can do it in style, with 1,200 individually unique and ornate water fountains that provide drinkable water 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Not just good for an Instagram photo: You’ll also save money on bottled water.


Malaysia welcomes its first durian-friendly hotel

An overview of the Durian Research Center. (AN photo)
Updated 16 July 2019
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Malaysia welcomes its first durian-friendly hotel

  • Tan sees the resort’s agritourism ecosystem as a long-term goal toward creating a platform for durian research and cultivation

KUALA LUMPUR: Durians are known for their distinct, pungent smell, which many foreigners describe as a combination of rotten onions and old socks. As such, most hotels in Asia forbid the fruit on their premises.
But with the rising popularity of durians among locals and foreign tourists, Malaysia is welcoming its first durian-friendly hotel and resort.
Situated an hour from Kuala Lumpur’s city center, the beautiful, scenic Bangi Golf Resort includes a hotel overlooking a golf course, and an agriculture farm.
“When you first go into any hotels, you usually see the signs ‘durian is not allowed’ or ‘durian is forbidden’,” said Tan Ban Keat, director of the resort. “We soften the tone for the hotel to be ‘durians are allowed in durian-friendly zones’.”
Hotel patrons can buy, eat and bring durians to designated zones throughout the resort.
“We’re actually the first hotel to practice that,” said Tan, adding that he does not believe the move will prompt other hotels in Malaysia to follow suit.
“It doesn’t do anything to their business. We do it because we grow durians on the premises. We have the annual durian festival … and we’ll include the Durian Research Center in the near future,” he said.

FASTFACT

Musang Kings are considered premium durians due to their intense yet well-balanced, custardy sweet taste. They are the premier durians for export to China and other overseas markets.

Tan expressed his hope that the center, which is under construction, will become a premier research hub for better durian breeds.
“I hope to create a Super Musang King,” he said. Musang Kings are considered premium durians due to their intense yet well-balanced, custardy sweet taste. They are the premier durians for export to China and other overseas markets.
Tan sees the resort’s agritourism ecosystem as a long-term goal toward creating a platform for durian research and cultivation.
“These durian-friendly zones are created to be a platform for agriculture. Durians have a place in many people’s hearts. They’re a national treasure,” he added.