Newly Swissed Online Magazine

Swiss Watching by Diccon Bewes (2023 Review)

So, you thought you knew Switzerland? Think again!

The bestselling book Swiss Watching by Diccon Bewes brings an eye-opening and engaging account of this small yet influential country that goes way beyond chocolate, watches, and neutrality.

A Journey Inside the Land of Milk and Money 🏔️

Bewes takes us on a fascinating adventure, exploring various aspects of Swiss life, including its political system, languages, history, and popular culture.

The book's aptly phrased byline "Inside the Land of Milk and Money" is a precursor to the kind of witty writing you can expect. Swiss Watching is a comprehensive and entertaining account of Switzerland that'll make you rethink common clichés.

Notable Nuggets of Swiss Wisdom 🧠

Swiss Watching is full to the brim with memorable quotes that shed light on Switzerland's unique characteristics. These nuggets of Swiss wisdom offer a glimpse into the key insights that Swiss Watching provides, helping readers better understand and appreciate Switzerland's fascinating culture, history, and identity:


The idea of Swissness is a central theme in the book. It's a mind construct that goes beyond geographical borders. Swissness is about embracing the values, culture, and identity that make Switzerland unique.

Direct democracy

Direct democracy plays a vital role in shaping Switzerland's policies and decision-making processes. The author highlights the importance of citizen involvement and its impact on the nation's political landscape.

Small but mighty

You will find Bewes touching on interesting contradictions throughout the book. Despite its small size, Switzerland has established itself as an influential player on the global stage.

Learn how Switzerland leverages its small size to create a global presence. Think United Nations, diplomatic services, or the watch industry.

Language diversity

Switzerland's linguistic diversity is one of its most remarkable features. Bewes emphasizes how the four official languages of Switzerland coexist harmoniously, a testament to Swiss tolerance and unity.


Switzerland is known for its policy of neutrality, and the author reminds us that neutrality doesn't mean inaction. The country actively engages in diplomacy, humanitarian efforts, and global cooperation while maintaining its neutral stance.

What We Like About Swiss Watching 😍

Swiss Watching was one of the first books I picked up when I moved to Switzerland. And in the decade since I have gifted the book, I have recommended it and re-read it at least once.

This book stands out from many others about Switzerland for Bewes' engaging writing style. I particularly love the author's focus on debunking popular Swiss stereotypes.

Bewes shares thorough research applicable even a dozen years after the book's publication. And you'll love the many insightful observations about the Swiss. Have you ever noticed their preference for red shoes? You will after reading this book!

While other books offer more academic and historical perspectives on Switzerland, Swiss Watching provides a contemporary and personal view.

Who Should Dive into Swiss Watching? 📚

Swiss Watching is for you if you're curious about Switzerland, its culture, and its history! It's perfect for readers with little to no prior knowledge of the country. Or for those looking to expand their understanding of this unique little nation.

Swiss Watching by Diccon Bewes 2023 Book Review

Swiss Watching

  • Entertaining and insightful for Switzerland newbies and curious readers
  • Paperback, EN, 336 pages

A fresh perspective on Switzerland, full of culture, history, and Swissness!

Here's about the time we've met the author, Diccon Bewes, in person:

Diccon Bewes - Swiss Watching Meet-up

Watch this insightful interview with the author of Swiss Watching:

Our Verdict ⛰️

Diccon Bewes, a British-Swiss author who has lived in Switzerland for over a decade, uses his background in travel writing to offer a comprehensive and engaging account of Swiss culture and history. Thanks to the author's deep understanding of the nation, you're in for a real treat.

Now in its third edition, Swiss Watching was first published in 2012 by Nicholas Brealey Publishing. It's a captivating and insightful exploration of Switzerland's culture, history, and identity that challenges stereotypes and offers a fresh perspective on this small yet influential country.

Dimitri Burkhard

As the founder, editor, and community manager of Newly Swissed, Dimitri owns the strategic vision. He is passionate about storytelling and is a member of Swiss Travel Communicators. Dimitri loves discovering new trends and covers architecture, design, start-ups and tourism.

Dimitri Burkhard

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