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Winterthur, Switzerland

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Winterthur, SwitzerlandWinterthur, Switzerland
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authorshipSimon Aughton
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Winterthur is an industrial city to the northeast of Zürich, in northern Switzerland. Covering 67.93 sq km (26.23 sq mi), Winterthur has a population of 101,200 people (2011 estimate). Locally called Winti, Winterthur is situated 30 km to the northeast of Zürich, at an altitude of 439 m (1,440 ft). It is the second largest city in Zürich canton and the sixth largest in the country.

Although it has an industrial economy, Winterthur has a lovely Old Town that is worth a visit. You can strolled through its leafy streets, passing medieval fountains and open public squares.

The history of settlement in Winterthur goes back to Roman era. The Romans established a settlement here called Vitudurum around AD 70. The present city dates back to the 7th century. The city began to industrialize during the 19th century, and today specializes in service, rail and high-tech industries. The Union Bank of Switzerland (UBS) was founded in Winterthur, and is today the largest bank in Switzerland.

St Arbogast Rectory, a half-timbered house in WinterthurSt Arbogast Rectory, a half-timbered house in Winterthur
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authorshipRoland zh
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83% of the population of Winterthur speak German as their first language, with Italian being a distant second (4.9%). 36.9% of the people here belong to the Swiss Reformed Church while 26.7% regard themselves as Roman Catholic.

Visiting Winterthur

Take the S-Bahn from Zürich or Zürich Airport to reach Winterthur. If you are going there by road, take the A1 expressway out of Z¨rich and exit it at Exit 68.

Sights & Attractions in Winterthur

  1. Fotomuseum
    One of the best museums of photography in Europe providing the history of photography as well as a comprehensive range of photographs.
  2. Kunstmuseum
    Local art museum showcasing the works of local and international artists, including Monet, Van Gogh and Picasso.
  3. Kunsthalle Winterthur
    Originally the "weigh house", this historic building is today an exhibition hall.
  4. Marktgasse
    Main street through the Old Town, today a pedestrianized shopping street.
  5. Museum Oskar Reinhart am Stadtgarten
    Museum exhibiting the vast collection of art amassed by wealthy industrialist Oskar Reinhart (1885-1965).
  6. Rathaus
    Winterthur's town hall was built in 1782-4 in the Neo-Classical style. The ground floor was converted into a shopping arcade in 1878.
  7. Sammlung Oskar Reinhart am Römerholz
    The former residence of Oskar Reinhart, today also exhibiting his art collection, mainly French Impressionist paintings by painters such as Manet, Degas and Renoir.
  8. Stadthaus
    The main concert hall of Winterthur built in 1865-9.
  9. Stadtkirche
    The parish church of Winterthur, built in the Gothic style, dates to the mid-13th century. It was erected on the site of an 8th century shrine.
  10. Villa Flora
    Mid-19th century villa today exhibiting the art collection of Hedy and Arthur Hahnloser-Bühler.

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