Zurich's shopping paradise
Bahnhofstrasse, Zurich's 5th Avenue
Swiss department stores — Jelmoli, Globus and Manor stand next to global and Swiss luxury brands like Grieder and Trois Pommes. Franc savvy shoppers find deals at H&M, Mango and Zara. The Bahnhofstrasse has it all!
A boutique boulevard with personalized service — We love Stereo Fashion, N°2, and Swiss handmade men's and women's laptop cases at Atelier Boule Rouge, as well as pregnancy bumps made fashionable at 9Months.
Kreis District 4&5
The "in" place — With young designers, local artists and trendy clubs, fill your shopping bag with trendsetting designs from Changemakers, Little Black Dress, the flagship Freitag Shop and Saus & Braus. Check out www.kreislauf4und5.ch for more.
Charming & cheerful — With the university close by and zigzagging cobblestone streets, don't miss formal dress shopping at Phase Eight or yoga apparel at Lululemon.
Markets & pop up shops
(Most) Saturdays at Bürkliplatz and Helvetiaplatz
Girlfriend Guide Tip: In January & July, all shops (yes, even Gucci!) slash their prices for a big, blowout sale! If you can't wait until then, try Trois Pommes Luxury Vintage Outlet in Wollishofen for year-round, high-end luxury outlet shopping.
A maze of shopping in Bern
By Marita Fuhrer
Down Bern's cobblestoned streets, there's an array of colorful and quirky shops waiting for you.
Located just around the corner from Bern's train station is Aarbergergasse — populated with funky clothes, shoes and gift shops for you to explore.
For the latest trends, check out Kitchener. It has a large selection of men and women's fashion plus some gorgeous outfits for kids. Find original gift ideas, stylish bags and backpacks, big brand shoes and everyday accessories.
Just across from Kitchener on Ryffligässchen, there's an old wooden door which leads up to the eclectic Fizzen. Bursting with cool gear, here you'll find vintage clothes and accessories for guys and girls, plus new fashion, gifts and a colorful selection for the young ones.
Looking for that perfect gift but need some inspiration? Head back down the street and on your left hand side you'll find Yamatuti, a heaven for unique gift ideas. It's jam packed with retro kitchenware, vintage frames and kid's toys — there's something for everyone.
To end your busy shopping day, unwind with a drink or tasty meal at one of the many restaurants situated down the street.
Finding the perfect gift in Basel
By Tatjana Galizia
From local stores to international brands, Basel is much more than than its famous "Basler Läckerli" and Christmas market.
In the old town, the center of Basel, you will smell and feel the city's vibe. If you're looking for luxury brands such as Louis Vuitton, Cartier and Apple, take a stroll through Freiestrasse. Make sure to stop at the Läckerli Huus to sample a sweet pastry before lingering at Marktplatz to enjoy the colors of the daily local market. You should also vistit Basel's beautifu year-round Christmas store Johann Wanner.
For mostly local brand shops and the widest selection of vinyl records, follow the multicultural streets from Kaserne towards Feldbergstrasse.
A stroll through Geneva
By Samantha Chapman
Recently arriving in Geneva for a short-term work assignment was sheer luck. Geneva comes alive in the summer months and most of the social life revolves around Lake Geneva. As the city heads into colder months, I am looking forward to sipping mulled wine while checking out the abundant shops around town.
If you're also new to Geneva and in search of holiday gifts, check out Rue du Rhône, Rue de la Confédération, Rue du Marché and Rue de la Croix-d'Or in this sophisticated city with deluxe taste. However, don't miss the hidden gems on the back streets so grab a bike.
While you are out, check out a few of my favourite spots to catch your breath.
Les Enfants Terribles: You'll find this gorgeous boutique cafe in a back street south of the river. Sip an espresso and pick up something lovely for your home.
Cafe du Soleil: Enjoy the trout tartare fresh from the Jura and the meringue with double cream from picturesque Gruyère.
Cottage Cafe: Tired of shopping? Stop by this quaint cottage and warm up with a glass of red wine and enjoy a wide selection of tapas.
Photos: 1st: © Zurich Tourism/Bruno Macor; 2nd: © Zurich Tourism/Martin Rütschi; 3rd: © swiss-image.ch/Christof Sonderegger; 4th: © Johann Wanner; 5th © swiss-image.ch/Christof Schuerpf