‘Activities in and around Geneva’
by Ms. Jade Robert, Master of Arts in International Relations 2016-2017
There are plenty of them! I would like to first talk a bit about the ones related to my studies, before talking about leisure options in Geneva. By being part of the GSD community, it gives you the opportunity to be part of the Geneva International Model United Nations (GIMUN). GIMUN is a Geneva based Non Governmental Organization (NGO), and has Special Consultative Status with the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations. This NGO is run entirely by students and its aim is to promote the ideals and principles of the United Nations by giving students a chance to participate in educative events.
I’ve personally been the Head Delegate (HD) of the GSD delegation during the academic year 2016-2017. This position meant that I, together with another HD was giving class, every two weeks, to GSD students in order to inform them about the rules of the proceedings of an official conference at the UN. We chose a topic to debate on, with the main goal of writing a resolution. For example, this semester we created a representation of the Committee on Disarmament and International Security on the topic of: ‘Terrorist empowerment: preventing financing, arms trade and enhancing international regulations’.
By participating in our meetings, students become familiar with the procedures and mechanisms of such conferences, and gain knowledge, confidence and the necessary skills to actively participate in Model UN meetings of any size. We will teach them anything they need to know before participating in MUN Conferences. At the end of the semester we send the participants to a MUN Conference in Switzerland or elsewhere. Last year we sent a delegation to Oxford, Reims and Milan. I have to emphasise the fact that it is definitely an amazing experience to improve your skills.
And now about leisure activities in and around Geneva, there are so many that I don’t know which ones to choose! First, you must visit Geneva, enjoy the lake and the famous ‘Jet d’eau’ fountain. You also have plenty of museums to visit, such as the museum of Natural History or the watch museum ‘Patek Philippe’.
Geneva, and Switzerland in general is, of course, full of beautiful landscapes. You must go to the point of view in Cologny from where you can see the whole lake. Obviously you will also enjoy nights out in Geneva, but you will need a budget! Enjoy the cocktails at the ‘Apothicaire’, or the very good red wine at the ‘Leopard Room’. And of course, how could I forget, you have to try the Swiss chocolate. I warmly recommend you the ‘Amendes princesse’ from Auer, which are truly delicious!
Geneva is also a central place for traveling; by plane you’re really close to Vienna, Barcelona, Paris, Lisbon, Prague… the list is too long to quote every single European capital!
Personally, I would recommend you to go to Gruyères (in Switzerland), which is around one hour and half by car or train from Geneva. Enjoy the double cream of Gruyères and the traditional ‘fondue’, which is not the best food to eat if you are on a diet, but is damn good for the moral! This little village is absolutely cute and very typical Swiss.
I also recommend you to go to Lyon, in France, which is quite close to Geneva (less than two hours by car or train). Cross the ‘Passerelle du palais de justice’, from the city center to the old town. Here you will find the old city of the ‘Ville des Gones’; you will enjoy the monuments such as the ‘Cathédrale Saint-Jean’ or the ‘Basilique Notre-Dame de Fourvière’. You can also visit the museum of silk, as Lyon was the first country to produce it. Obviously, you will enjoy the food in France, and since Lyon is the capital of gastronomy, I highly recommend you to try the ‘Quenelles de Lyon’, from Giraudet and the “Rosette de Lyon” which are very typical dishes of this town. And last but not least, do not forget to try the ‘Brioche à la pralines’ called: ‘Praluline’ from Pralus (32 Rue de Brest, 69002 Lyon) and the ‘Macarons’ from Sève (29 Quai Saint-Antoine, 69002 Lyon).
With all these recommendations, don’t forget to study:). I hope you will enjoy your time in Switzerland and at the Geneva School of Diplomacy!