Gay Guide

Switzerland
Pink Star Rating

9

Capital

Berne

Other Main Cities/Resorts

Zurich, Basel, Geneva

Scene and Culture

Switzerland is a very conservative country but now has very progressive laws on homosexuality. The gay scene is centred in Zurich and Geneva where there are many bars, clubs, cafes, restaurants, saunas and organisations. On our visit to Geneva we found things a little quiet so you probably need to check when places hot up. Switzerland is of course a stunningly beautiful country which we love. If you haven't been go!

Gay Age of Consent

16

Lesbian Age of Consent

16

Straight Age of Consent

16

Legal Notes

Since the new Penal Code was introduced in 1992 hetero and homosexual behaviour is treated the same way under the criminal law. There is also no difference in the treatment of male and female homosexuality. In 1999 the Swiss government amended the constitution to extend the grounds against which there is equal rights protection to include 'Way of life'. In employment rights Article 328 Code of Obligations holds that the employer has to respect and to protect the personality of the employee. This includes his or her sexual orientation. Homosexuality in the army is no longer illegal. The Swiss government is Switzerland may be the next country to give legal recognition to same sex couples, after draft proposals were accepted in principle by politicians. In 2003 the House of Representatives agreed proposals giving civil union rights to Swiss gays and lesbians. The proposals would give partnerships legal status and improved financial rights but not adoption or marriage rights. In June 2005 these proposed measures were approved by referendum so new laws are likely to be introduced shortly.

Population

7.26 million

Currency

Franc SFr

Climate

The best time to visit Switzerland depends on what you want to do. January to March is best for skiing but otherwise the summer months of May to September if you plan to be less energetic. Switzerland has a temperate climate with conditions that vary with relief and altitude. Summers are generally warm with average annual precipitation varying from 600 mm to 2,000 mm depending on the region while winters are characterized by clear skies, although the central plateau experiences persistent cloud. Average temperature ranges in Zurich are from -3c to 2c in January to 13c to 24c in July.

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