Zurich is the home to the official headquarters of FIFA, the world governing body of football. When I discovered there was an interactive FIFA Museum in the city, any chance of getting out of Zurich without a visit for the sport mad Itchy Feet children was near impossible.
Whilst not a football (soccer as we call it in Australia) mad family, we do enjoy sports and could appreciate the value of a visit - and it was a wise choice, we were impressed.
This is not just any old stuffy museum, clearly a sizeable amount of money was invested in the build - which you would expect nothing less of from either Zurich nor FIFA. The displays are impressive to say the least - interactive and high tech. And the memorabilia collection would have a sizeable insurance premium upon it.
Spread across three levels this museum covered everything from the history of the sport, memorabilia, statistics presented in a myriad of ways as well as interactive skill testing fun.
From learning a celebration dance using an interactive life-size screen, to commentating from a media sound booth the final minutes of a close game, there was plenty of displays that required much more than just reading a plaque next to a display.
The museum also incorporates a fantastic display on the human elements of the sport with life size screens presenting monologues from around the world of people who have had life-changing moments through football.
From the English grass roots coach who has seen the sport teach children discipline and team work, to the beach football team from a tiny island in Thailand who represented their nation on a world stage, and Brazil’s ultimate fan who vowed to spend his whole life in the colours of his team for the remainder of his life - the human stories were well presented and a great alternative display.
Then to top it all off, an interactive play area where the kids (and adults) got to practice their skills in skill tester games including accuracy challenges, dribble against the clock and life like pin ball with soccer balls.
With so much to see and do, you really could spend a whole day here. We squeezed in as much as possible over 3.5 hours and both adults and kids enjoyed the time invested.
The museum was accessible via the public tram system, just a short ride from the city centre. And at a cost of CHF 64 for a family of four - roughly $AUD85 - a fair investment in the ultra expensive city of Zurich.
Whether you are a football fan or not - If you happen to be in Zurich - check it out. Further details can be found at www.fifamuseum.com
Itchy Feet Family
Before visiting Zurich we knew it had a reputation of being expensive - however we had no idea just how much so this was going to be. Dropping AUD$1,000 in less than 24 hours was done without even trying!
You know you are in trouble when a cup of water in a restaurant cost you AUD$7 - why can’t kids just drink beer - it was cheaper!
The city is beautiful - with the river Limmat running out of Lake Zurich through the middle separating the old and new town - and snow capped mountains in sight - it really is stunning. The architecture is ornate and conjures up memories of story books, it is one of those picture postcard cities.
But is it worth the cost for the Australian traveller? This is how, without even trying, less than 24 hours in this city cost us AUD$1,000.
Accommodation - $500
We didn’t even stay in the city centre - room only at the Renaissance hotel on the outskirts of town.
Lunch - $140
Four burgers, one serve of fries, two beers, glass of water and a lemonade. Yep, that was it!
All Day Transport - $40
We used the tram and train network to get around all day. The network was extensive and we had a stop right next to the hotel. It took 15 minutes from our hotel to Old Town. We purchased all day travel cards for the family.
FIFA Museum - $85
This was actually quite good value - we spent a good three hours in this interactive museum. And the kids (and parents) loved it.
Afternoon Beers - $50
After the museum we visited a Beer Garden on the river - nothing fancy, self service and find a seat in the garden. Two beers, two slushes and a serve of fries.
Dinner - $170
We stumbled across a Food Truck Festival that we opted for dinner. Two serves of Pad Thai, a Mango Salad and a Wrap washed down with two beers and two waters and topped off with four gelato. All self service sitting on plastic chairs in the sun.
As you can see - without even trying - this city really adds up! We did not eat at fancy restaurants, take taxis or buy any souvenirs. We simply kept fed and watered and explored the city by foot and public transport.
The beer is good, the city is gorgeous and was fun to explore, but I don’t think I will be back in a hurry.
We did stumble across a supermarket and purchased bottled water for AUD$3, so I am sure you could do the city on the cheap if you really tried. However it would be hard work!
Penny - Itchy Feet Family
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Penny, an avid Trip Advisor Reviewer, is the author of ITCHY FEET FAMILY. A family of 4 living in Adelaide, Australia, and taking every opportunity to travel and explore the world.