Lausanne | Switzerland

10 Not-to-miss Events in Lausanne in 2018

Situated on the shores of Lake Geneva, Lausanne offers a wealth of seasonal events for lovers of visual art, theater, jazz, sport, and gastronomic delights as well. Home to the International Olympic Committee headquarters; Lausanne also hosts the Olympic Museum and Olympic park. Wander the charming shop-lined streets amid centuries old cathedrals and soak up the historic, yet cosmopolitan atmosphere. Lausanne is the ideal spot to tour the many museums and galleries and partake of cultural events of all kinds from the world-famous Montreux Jazz Festival to the Lausanne Marathon.


1.Dec 7, 2017 - Apr 22, 2018

Lausanne - Museum

Go for the Gold at the Olympic Museum! This one-of-a-kind museum is devoted to the Olympic experience and its history, and is one of Lausanne’s most popular attractions. The exhibits feature interactive screens to give you an immersive experience. Each of the three floors illuminates an aspect of the modern Olympics. Don’t miss the special exhibition on Korean culture, “PyeongChang 2018: South Korea Between Tradition and Modernity” appearing on level one through April 22, 2018. Afterwards take a break in the TOM Café on the top level of the museum decorated with Olympic memorabilia and offering spectacular city views of Lausanne, Lake Geneva and the Alps.

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2. Mar 14, 2018 - Mar 25, 2018

Theatre and Shows |Programme Commun

Ten days of performance art, dance, theater, and visual arts are on the slate for the fourth edition of Programme Commun—the festival of performing arts featuring the best of cutting-edge Swiss arts scene. The Théâtre de Vidy and the Arsenic, co-creators of the festival, are joining forces with Théâtre Sévelin 36, Manufacture, ECAL and the Cinémathèque Suisse to share their programs and exhibitions in contemporary and performing arts. Directed by some of the finest chorographers of dance in Lausanne and in Switzerland, each collective will stage shows that incorporate their ideals with an emphasis on the fundamentals for young artists. 

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3. Mar 30, 2018 - Apr 15, 2018

PâKOMUZé – Exhibition

 The thirteenth annual PâKOMUZé expands its cultural program to forty museums and cultural institutions from Lausanne, Pully, Yverdon, Nyon and the Lake Geneva Riviera. The program offers a large and varied range of activities for very young and older children, teenagers and families. Highlights include: Maison du Basket, the House of Basket devoted to how basketball has evolved from its creation to the present and the star athletes of the international basketball scene. The great outdoors is the spring theme, with activities for kids to learn about the flora and fauna of the lake and participate in a treasure hunt at the Museum of Leman.

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4. Apr 04, 2018 – Apr 21, 2018

Cully Jazz Festival

Wine and music lovers listen up! If you love Jazz, the 36th Cully Jazz Festival offers nine days of performances located in the quaint wine-growing village of Cully on the shores of Lake Geneva. Over 100 free concerts are offered in small venues spread around fifteen cafés and wine cellars throughout the village and feature young Swiss Jazz musicians; many of whom often find themselves headlining the main festival stage a couple of years later. The ticketed concerts are held on three stages – Chapiteau, Next Step and Temple – check the program for this year’s roster of internationally acclaimed Jazz artists.

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5. June, 22-24 & 26-28, 2018

Béjart Ballet Lausanne

The Béjart Ballet Lausanne became an international sensation of the dance world under the direction of Maurice Béjart. Now, with Gil Roman leading the company, the repertoire remains faithful to Béjart and returns this season to the Beaulieu Theater of Lausanne with two new works 空 Ku and Éclats – creations by guest choreographers Yuka Oishi and Julio Arozarena, and the revival of Syncope by Gil Roman. Maurice Béjart’s Un cygne d’autrefois se souvient que c’est lui will also be performed. Plan now to secure your seat at the one of their limited appearances this June. The performances are sure to be a highlight of the cultural season.

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6. Montreux Jazz Festival

52nd Montreux Jazz Festival to be held from 29 June to 14 July. Program Announcement & tickets on 17 & 18 April, 2018.

Think Switzerland, and chocolate may be the first thing that comes to mind. But when it comes to Jazz—the first thought is Montreux Jazz Festival—synonymous for world-class performances both traditional and experimental. The 52nd Montreux Jazz Festival will be held June 29th to July 14th along the Lake Geneva shoreline. This highly acclaimed event is one of the largest jazz festivals in the world. With multiple venues from small, intimate clubs, to state of the art auditoriums, and open-air park settings, the Montreux Jazz Festival is the heartbeat of the lake. Festival line-up and tickets will be released April 17 & 18th 2018. 

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7. July 10, 2018 – July 15, 2018

Fun and Festivals - Festival de la Cité

There’s no better way to experience the charms of Lausanne then during 47th Annual Festival de la Cité held in the historic city center neighborhood. Urban, modern and diverse, the Festival de la Cité presents a multitude of free events from traditional to edgy. The events encompass all modes of the performing arts including dance, theater and music, as well as visual arts, literature and even the circus arts. This off-the-wall festival promotes a friendly, sociable spirit and aims to create a dialog between art, public space, and society. Spend a few days exploring the city and enjoy the vibrant work of local artists and international performers. 

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8. October 10, 2018     

Lausanne Marathon

The Lausanne Marathon boasts one of the most scenic courses in the Switzerland as it winds down the shoreline of Lake Geneva and back again. First run in 1993, the Lausanne Marathon has grown into a world-class international event with over 15,000 runners. Running the full 26.22 miles of a marathon not your thing? No problem! Four different races are offered – a 13-mile half marathon, a 10k (6miles) and a 6.5-mile walking/Nordic walking race. It’s fun for spectators too with a pre race exhibition and finish line viewing area in front of the Olympic Museum. There are events for children too, with special races for kids of all ages.

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9. February 2. 2018 – May 21. 2018

Fondation de l’Hermitage

Twenty years ago the Fondation de l’Hermitage received the famous Degas pastel Danseuses au repos from his repertoire of ballet studio scenes. This spring the Fondation de l’Hermitage is celebrating the beauty of pastel with a new exhibition: PASTELS FROM THE 16TH TO THE 21ST CENTURY LIOTARD, DEGAS, KLEE, SCULLY...

The retrospective will present a historical overview of the use of pastel and feature over 150 masterpieces from private and public collections in Switzerland. This exhibit presents an unparalleled opportunity for visitors to discover the power and grace of pure color and experience the splendors of pastels—a fascinating medium halfway between drawing and painting.

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10. November 21, 2018 – December 31, 2018

Bô Noël

Experience the magic of Christmas, at the legendary Bô Noël Lausanne Christmas Market. Here you will find booths filled with sparkling Christmas novelties, handmade crafts, home goods and clothing. Visit the Terre Vaudoise Market for authentic Swiss grown and made products where you’ll find fondue, wine and even a cannabis bar! Stroll the grounds and enjoy the sights and sounds of the season in a warm and festive atmosphere with a glass of Glühmost. Attend a workshop on candle making, or view demonstrations of the production of famed Etivaz cheese and Vaud beer. Bring the kids to the children’s village for storytelling, and treasure hunts.

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