A capital air

The canton of Vaud has more museums per square kilometre than just about anywhere else on earth. This is not just a tourist slogan but also true. No less than 110 museums are squeezed into the region: the Olympic Museum, the Musée de l'Art Brut, the Vine and Wine Museum, the Musée de l’Elysée photographic museum, the Food Museum, the Maison d’Ailleurs, the Swiss National Museum, and so the list goes on. You can visit all of them with the Swiss Museum Pass. Not to mention more than 60 galleries and numerous permanent and temporary exhibitions in Lausanne, Vevey, Montreux and Yverdon-les-Bains.

The arts similarly get the red-carpet treatment in the canton of Vaud, with a variety and quality of event that can stand comparison with plenty of other places: Lausanne plays host to the Theatre de Vidy, Espace Théâtral Européen, in a spectacular site on the lake shore. It stages more than 20 productions and 300 annual performances in co-production with prestigious European theatres. 

For more than twenty years now, Lausanne has played host to the Béjart Ballet, one of the most famous and acclaimed dance troupes in the world, which performs on the great stages in Paris, London, Tokyo and New York.

The Orchestre de la Suisse Romande (OSR) and Lausanne Chamber Orchestra stage musical performances of the very highest calibre. Lausanne has its Opera, Vevey its Grand Theatre with 750 seats, and the Aventicum Opera in the Roman amphitheatre in Avenche is a treat not to be missed if you like that genre. 

When it comes to festivals, the canton of Vaud runs some of the most important in Europe, including the Montreux Jazz Festival, the Festival International de Musique et d'Art lyrique in Montreux/Vevey and the Paléo Festival in Nyon (see the link “Events and happenings”).