Illuminarium Light Festival in Zürich 2029
Nov 9 - Dec 30
By now, the Illuminarium Light Festival in Zürich is an institution.
Shorter days with longer nights equal more reasons to hang out at Christmas markets... As such, we are very glad that the Illuminarium Light Festival once again sparks joy in the courtyard of the Swiss National Museum.
Conveniently located at the Zurich main station, this is more than a Christmas market: it's rather a festival grounds of colorful illuminations, food and beverage vendors, music, and light projections. There are fondue stalls, attractions, and an eclectic bar.
2023 Highlights of the Illuminarium Light Festival
From November 9 to December 30, the (otherwise quiet) courtyard of the Landesmuseum is spreading the holiday spirit. Simply step through the large gate into this admission-free Christmas Wonderland. There, you will find various vendors offering everything from mulled wine to cotton candy.
We especially like the indoor bar with its living room atmosphere. The stylists have obviously put a lot of thought into the decorations, which made us feel "at home" while sipping on a generous 14-franc Hendrick's Gin & Tonic.
From prior years, we know that Illuminarium Zurich can get very busy as the after-work crowds gather. So, the earlier you can get there to reserve a standing table or lounge, the better... Seats at the indoor Fondue Palace should be reserved in advance.
CyberCity offers an immersive digital experience on the World Wide Web. Using advanced projectors, the Digital Art Show transforms the museum walls into a gigantic virtual canvas. Contemporary electronic music adds to the atmosphere of this digital universe, which can be enjoyed for an admission of roughly 10 francs.
In another admission-only area located a bit off to the side of the courtyard, there is a nightly projection of a Christmas story featuring Yuki. The main character is a sort of cyclope yeti who will surely steal your heart.
The larger-than-life story is projected onto three building surfaces of the Swiss National Museum. We found it very clever how the architectural features of the buildings were incorporated into the projections.
(Narrated entirely in Swiss German, Yuki's story is definitely targeted at younger crowds. As for us, we felt a bit underwhelmed after the 15-minute show.)
Good to know:
- Located at the courtyard of the Swiss National Museum in Zurich.
- Take the "Landesmuseum" exit at the Zurich Main Station or get off the tram at "Bahnhofquai/HB" and walk a few steps to the entrance.
- Children aged 0 to 5 enjoy free admission.
- It's open rain or shine, so show up with warm, weather-resistant clothing.
- The festival is entirely cashless, so bring your cards or digital wallets.
Check out our listing of Swiss Christmas markets.