Things to do for families in Fribourg
Fribourg is a small, beautiful city with lots of fun activities to offer to families. Keep an eye on the Hello Switzerland Events page to learn about upcoming events in your area. You can also stay up to date by visiting Fribourg Tourism and reading local newspapers.
The city organises several interesting themed walking tours around Fribourg. One excellent tour is of the fountains of Fribourg. Another fun outing is to take a ride on the Fribourg funicular, which happens to be the oldest of its kind in Switzerland! Find more walking and activity suggestions on Balades en Famille (FR).
There are several family friendly seasonal festivals in the area to take advantage of. During September and October is the Désalpe. This is when the cows are taken down from grazing in the alpine pastures for the winter. Around the same time of year is also the Bénichon, a gastronomic celebration with drinking and dancing. Saint Nicolas is the patron saint of Fribourg, so naturally the Saint Nicholas celebration in the beginning of December is a massive event in the city. It is a wonderful event for children and families. In summertime it's fun to visit Slowup (FR) on Lakes Murten/Morat and Gruyères. Take your bikes or simply walk around the lakes, enjoying the good weather and food for sale. Another good fair weather activity is visiting Gruyères Castle and cheese factory.
Find more ideas in the Enjoying Fribourg article.
Outdoor family activities in Fribourg
The infrastructure for summer holiday camps in Switzerland is outstanding. It is a good idea to book early. Passeport Vacances Fribourg (DE/FR) offers programs over school holidays for children around the ages of seven to 12. You can also sign up your child to a Scouts troupe (DE/FR). WWF (FR) also has lots of information about courses, walking trails, and events in Fribourg.
On beautiful days there is nothing better than taking a boat cruise on Lake Murten/Morat or Lake Neuchâtel or visiting one of the lake beaches. There are also nice swimming pools in Murten/Morat and Charmay. Hallen-Schwimm (DE/FR) has a pool, swimming school, sauna and solarium. The Fribourg Mini Treasure Hunt makes for quite a fun day for families as well.
Fribourg's Urban Golf course is great fun for the family and is open all year round. The Botanical Gardens (FR/DE) are a nice place for a stroll and a picnic. During the summer, climb the steps of the Fribourg Cathedral and take in the view. Take a tour of Old Town on the Fribourg tiny train.
For winter sports, there are plenty of options for ice skating in the region. There are also several nearby destinations for skiing and snowboarding, including La Berra (DE/FR), Lac Noire in Schwarzsee, Moleson (FR), and Charmey. Les Paccots has a small slope that is suitable for children and beginners. You can also snowshoe and hike there. Tip: enjoy a family sunset snowshoe hike between 30 and 40 minutes in Les Paccots. There is the possibility for sledding in all of these resorts. In Plaffeien (near to Lac Noire), there is night sledding, which is quite an experience!
Rainy day activities with children in Fribourg
There are lots of interesting excursions to take with kids on a rainy day in Fribourg. For those with a sweet tooth, visit the Villars Chocolate Factory, which also has a boutique where you can buy chocolate and coffee. There is also the Chocolate Cailler Museum in Broc and the Artisan Chocolate Workshop.
Several theatres in Fribourg have special programmes for children. Once a month Nouveau Monde (FR) organises a brunch followed by live children's entertainment. The Théâtre des Marionnettes (FR) in the Marionette Museum puts on shows that will be enjoyed by both children and adults. Also check the programmes at Theatre Nuithonie (DE/FR), Théâtre Crapouille, and Théâtre de l'Arbanel (FR).
For museums, the new Natural History Museum in Fribourg is fantastic for children. They also host scavenger hunts and birthday parties. The Espace Jean Tinguely – Niki de Sainte Phalle is a sculpture museum that is a good option for older kids. Fribourg Swiss Puppet Museum (DE/FR) has an interesting collection, as does the Gutenberg Museum (French/German). The Swiss model railway at Chemins de fer du Kaeserberg Museum is very fun and interactive for kids. Make sure to call ahead as they have limited opening times.
Essential tips for planning family activities
- Check with SBB/CFF for special discounts and family tickets. SBB/CFF trains also sometimes have family carriages.
- Become a member of the Touring Club Suisse (DE/FR/IT) for security while travelling by car.
- Check the Swiss weather forecast in order to plan your activities.
Photo: © swiss-image/Marc-André Marmillod