The summer vibe is on ladies and gentlemen, welcome to my top choice of food spots, parties, and rooftops in Zurich!
This blog post will reveal spots you need to visit in the summer of 2021 in Zurich. No official travel guide will hit this very personal list I put together for you! Whether you are Zurich-based or visiting from abroad, profit from all discoveries listed exclusively for my blog readers!
Where to have Breakfast outdoors in Zurich
- Café Grande
The atmosphere at Grande reminds me a lot of Paris or Milano, taking a coffee here and observing the people passing by is what makes me feel on holiday! Try the chocolate croissant or their homemade lemonade! It’s a 5 min walk from the train station so perfect for a stop before heading to your next destination. More about this place is also in my coffee guide here!
- Café du Bonheur
A little pearl in Kreis 4. The Café offers a large terrace and delicious local food. The chance you’ll find a spot here is big so easily without reservation. They have a nice variation of brunch dishes such as egg Benedict and always a vegan option, too.
- Nude Café
This spot is located at the Letten river and is very peaceful. Their coffee is delicious, also their bagels are worth trying.
Working remotely? Then check out these beautiful spots!
- Seebad Enge
This Badi is small and cosy so go early, it gets full fast. There are power stations to recharge your computer and also tables. Working from here is tranquil because it’s not noisy. When it gets too hot, a jump into the lake refreshes your brain cells!
Find a daily changing lunch menu and delicious caffé freddo!
Entrance fee: 8 CHF, did you know that you can buy a season card for 110 CHF valid in all Badis (public pools) of Zurich?
- Panorama Flussbad Oberer Letten
This public Badi is for free and located at the river. Get here early and use their tables or sunbath spots to spend some hours of work. The view over the riverside from here is special.
This spot is familiar to many remote workers. I love their terrace a lot, it’s spacious and colourful. Lunch varies, too.
Tipp: bring your power bank, so you’ll never be out of battery!
Summer lunch with riviera feeling in Zurich
The Letten river is the place to be in Zurich. You can choose between Oberer Letten, this is the hang-out zone for Zurich hipsters. People come here to show their well-trained bodies, turn on the music loud and enjoy the summer vibes! You can lounge around on the wooden panels, play a game of beach volley or enjoy a cocktail from the container bar.
Go for the longest swim: the current takes you to the lifeguard at Pier West!
- Primitivo Restaurant and Primitivo Sonnenterrasse
At Primitivo you’ll have to try the tuna burger with wasabi sauce, it’s legendary! For a top view over the river, book a lounge at the Primitivo Sonnenterrasse and sip your Aperitivo while observing everyone else below on the wooden panels.
- Stazione Paradiso
This spot is only 5 minutes away from Oberen Letten. By following the beach volley fields and the skater’s park you’ll easily get there. A must-try here is the focaccia
- Float down the Zurich Limmat River! Take It’s a mild river and easy to navigate, with one small dam you need to walk around with your boat. The official float starts at Wipkinger Park. Take your colourful duck or flamingo, a six-pack of beer and a music pill – you’ll never forget about this experience!
Enjoy an Aperitivo Italian Style in Zurigo
How many of you know the typical Italian Aperitivo? You order a glass of wine and you get little tiny finger snacks like olives, pizzette, or a variety of prosciutto and cheese. Well, this kind of plate is available also in Zurich, of course, you’ll have to pay extra, sorry, nevertheless, I recommend trying them!
- Vineria Centrale
A spot in the side street of Langstrasse is truly Italian style. The Aperitivo plate is homemade and comes in a portion for two. The spot is a mall and super cosy. There is always a cool playlist that throws you back to your last Italian holiday. Find wines or Classicals such as Crodino or Aperol Spritz!
- Seelounge 8008 is the secret spot to have an aperitivo and enjoy the sunset in a very exclusive location. Check their events on the website and register to get your free member pass. It’s a “Member-only” Club.
- Il salotto
Salotto means living room in Italian, and that’s exactly the atmosphere you can expect inside and outside at their terrace. Ciccio and his wife serve high-quality homemade Aperitivi. Ingredients are mainly from southern Italy. I love their cheese and salami selection!
Dance and enjoy the sunset with top world’s finest DJs and…an Aperol Spritz!
- Secret Island
What comes to your mind, when reading this? No, it’s not a TV program, it’s THE summer spot in Zurich located at Tiefenbrunnen. Feel the sand under your feet and watch the sunset going down by sipping your cocktail. The place reminds me of a beach bar in Mykonos or Capri. On top of the lounges, there is a house where you can dance to the world’s finest sound of DJ’s as Stephan Jolk Andrea Oliva, or Ben Böhmer.
Get the program here, it’s on until the end of August.
How to get in: Have your covid certificate ready or get your PCR test in front of the entrance for free.
- Rundfunk Fm
An event that belongs to Zurich is the Riviera Feeling at Letten! Welcome to Rundfunk.fm. The inner courtyard of the Landesmuseum Zurich (just at the Main station) has been home to the Rundfunk.fm festival since 2004. Rundfunk.fm plays in the beautiful inner courtyard for 45 days, creating a fairy-tale atmosphere with contemporary music and creative elements to create a unique event experience. Find the program here. For Food: Hungry bellies find what their hearts desire, too. Find sausages from Francis, delicious Momo from Tenz, or the legendary Rundfunk Pizza! The entrance is free.
A good day ends with the perfect summer Dinner!
Zurich people, did you discover the new area around Zentralstrasse yet? It’s getting a new urban and cosy destination to chill and have some great food!
- Santa Sete
Means holy thirst translated. This Italian Restaurant has an open kitchen and prepares classical dishes with a very own touch as a special version of the parmigiana (with ricotta & mozzarella) or Cacio e Pepe. They do also have a variety of fusion dishes as the pikeperch in a coconut soup or a guinea fowl leg. The cocktail menu is very creative! Find a drink called Santo Papa (holy pope) that I tried and liked a lot! In the restaurant, you find funny Italian sayings all over the walls. It conquered my heart in 3 seconds. The food they prepare is humble. You get good value for money.
Check the menu here.
My favourite Japanese restaurant with a large garden terrace! I tried several Japanese restaurants in town, Yu-An is the one I opt for when it comes to fresh and authentic Japanese cuisine that is affordable. Their menu varies with seasonal dishes. I love their hot pans: „Yakiniku“ (CH Rib-Eye) is a must-try if you love meat.
Keep always space for their dessert: The Yu-An Macha Mille Feuille brings you to another level of happiness right away! It’s located close to Stauffacher. Find a more detailed review of my blog here.
Ceviche is one of the most famous dishes in Peruvian cuisine, and that’s the one dish I recommend trying at Puente. They know how to season it best so that all flavours unfold. Find a variety of dishes such as grilled octopus or the Fluffy Chinese bun with pork belly. The Pisco Sour is a must!
The location is small and cosy, I love the dimmed light! At Puente, you get good quality for an honest price.
It’s located in Kreis 5 a 10 min. walk from the Main station.
Nikkei cuisine, by the way, is the combination of Japanese and Peruvian culinary arts that inspires tremendous creativity.
Dining with a design and cosmopolitan flair. This is what I feel when at Brera. That’s why you need to check it out at least once! The interior reminds me of a cool restaurant in Milano! Choose from a small menu with fresh products. They also have pizza & homemade pasta. Besides “Vino” we try their cocktails and homemade lemonades. The music they play comes from their vinyl box! Buon Appetito!
- Coco & Grill
In the mood for meat on a hot stone and a very natural chic surrounding? Then Coco & Grill is the place to go! The restaurant is hidden in a tranquil spot just 2 minutes from the busy Paradeplatz. What makes this place special is the direct interaction between the staff and the Chef. This spot is famous for meat on the charcoal, choose your piece directly from their counter. The ambience is idyllic and fills you directly with maritime vibes!
Don’t forget: Zurich people love to dine out, so make sure you get your table reservation ahead!
Are you a gelato lover?
Check my preferred gelato places in Zurich in this blogpost!
Must visit Rooftops in Zurich
Zurich has lovely apartments with rooftops! In case you don’t owe one, there are some options!
- La Muña
The place is located on the 6th floor of the Hotel Eden au Lac and offers a 360° view of the historic centre with the lake and the Alps in the distance. They have an exquisite summer lunch menu with Ceviche and Tiraditos. Ideal to spend a romantic dinner, too. Discover the whole menu here.
- The Nest
I will reveal to you, why this spot is called The Nest – It’s on the rooftop of the beautiful Hotel Storchen, and guess it’s the cosy nest of the stork!
The rooftop overlooks the memorable towers of Zurich, the Grossmünster. The rooftop is open every day for an Aperitivo or breakfast on Sundays. I am a big fan of their focaccia. Never go wrong with a “Swiss Plättli” offering traditional Swiss cheese and different dried meat. Various products they offer are grown on their farms Terreni Alla Maggia in Tessin and are truly delicious.
- Freitag Tower
This place is not for food or drinks but for a fantastic view over the industrial area of Zurich!
Freight containers stacked on top of each other inspire city explorers and Friday bag lovers in Zurich West. It’s located in the Freitag Flagship store at Geroldstrasse 17 and accessible through the shop. Means you have to walk up some stairs until you get to the viewpoint, but it’s worth every step promise!
Opening hours are Monday – Friday. 11:00 – 19:00, Saturday, 11:00 – 18:00.
How to spend an entertaining summer evening outside
- Rote Fabrik open air cinema
Are you in the mood for some open-air cinema at the lake? I suggest stopping by at Rote Fabrik. Have a look at the program here. They are showing old movies such as “Night of the living dead” for example.
It’s running every Thursday (and once on Friday).
Film start ca. at 21.30 – Admission is for free // Collection at the place. In case of bad weather, they have an indoor room.
- Theater Spektakel
This is one of my favourite late-summer events. The atmosphere is very special here, guess it’s the freedom you feel in the air observing artists like clowns or fire-eaters moving around the Landiwiese. Stroll through the program and get a feeling of what the shows have to offer. The Festival is from 18.8 – 4.9.2022. Some shows are
The festival will be characterized by theatre, dance, performance, installations and other art forms.
- Allianz Cinema
August wouldn’t be as fun without the open-air cinema organized by Allianz Cinema. It takes place from 21.7. – 21.8.2022. The location is Zurichhorn. Movies start as soon as the sun is down, around 21.30.
Cozy summer evenings with a magnificent backdrop lure film fans outdoors. National and international delicacies are screened under the open sky
Believe me, experiencing the sunset and counting the seconds until the big screen goes up is an exciting feeling! Movies on the program are mixed, current and older ones even from the ’90s, for example, The Peanut Butter Falcon, (500) Days of Summer (2009). Explore the program here. The normal price for the ticket is 24 CHF for adults, 21 CHF for students.
Happy summer everyone! Stay safe and enjoy the beautiful city of Zurich!