This page is also available in Français !

24 ideas for Advent

Just like an Advent calendar, discover an outing or activity for every day in December in Geneva while waiting for Christmas.

visuel dessiné ambiance de Noël avec carrousel et sapins

Wednesday 1st: Enjoy yourself in the Jardin anglais

Eat a fondu in a chalet, drink a beer in a Christmas pub, shop at craft and designer stalls or ride the big wheel to enjoy the view over the city lights; Christmas in the Jardin means there is plenty to do this December in the Jardin anglais! 

personnes qui patinent dehors sur de la glace, entourées d'arbres sans feuilles

Thursday 2nd: Try some winter sports

The outdoor skating rink at les Bastions has been open since 20 November, launching the winter sports season in the heart of the city. All you have to do is hire your skates (CHF 2) and glide out onto the ice under the deadpan gaze of the Reformers.  

cortège avec immenses marionnettes en papier mâché et tambours

Friday 3rd: Join Père Fouettard on parade

Take part in the masked musical parade alongside Père Fouettard and Mère Chauchevieille, which ends around a bonfire in Parc Gourgas. 

personnes vêtues de blanc semblant danser. Au centre, une femme qui tient une boule de cristal

Saturday 4th: Put on your slippers at the Musée Ariana

The Musée Ariana is offering a festive weekend of dance, theatre, blindfold or silent tactile visits (or visits in slippers) and the chance to join in a choir or a story-telling session, all with a focus on inclusion. A way of exploring the museum in a way you fancy and that suits your sensory abilities. 

personnes dans salle sombre, dont les silhouettes se détachent

Sunday 5th: Think and act at the MEG

A whole day of activities for small and large visitors to the MEG about “thinking and acting” around the question of caring and repairing, with: 

dessin d'un Saint-Nicolas debout et d'un Père Fouettard à l'envers

Monday 6th: Celebrate Saint Nicholas's Day on the streets

On Saint Nicholas’s Day, the rue Chausse Coq and rue Piachaud offer the public a concert, crafts, parties for children and young people, chocolate and mulled wine, mandarins and peanuts; and let’s not forget Saint Nicholas himself, accompanied by Père Fouettard! 

dessin de traineau du Père Noël avec inscrit "Cirque de Noël"

Tuesday 7th: What a circus!

A non-prescription entertainment cure for small and large children to cheer themselves up under the big top of the Christmas circus at the plaine de Plainpalais

méduses t autres animaux marins en plastique

Wednesday 8th: Dive into the ocean

With Bouteille à la mer 2120. Te Ao Maori, the Maori artist George Nuku invites us to explore an underwater world where mutated life is entirely created from recycled plastic bottles and plexiglass. A way of thinking about ocean pollution and our relationship with nature.

Image bleutée comme un oiseau avec inscription: Nouvelle MRL

Thursday 9th: A shiver of polar excitement

For four days the Maison Rousseau Littérature is beating to the rhythm of a free festive programme, showcasing everything it can put on. The season opens on 9th December with authors Franck Bouysse, Joseph Incardona and Nicolas Mathieu for a polar evening.  

personnes en train de nager entre lignes dans une piscine

Friday 10th: Spend an evening doing lengths 

Did you know that some swimming pools in Geneva operate with extended opening hours in the evening? On 10 December, the pool at les Vernets is open until 10 pm!

personne en costume dans une galerie, éclairée par la lumière d'une torche

Saturday 11th: Visit the secret Passage de Monetier 

This is the time to visit the twisting remnant of an ancient path that ran beneath the walls at the end of the 5th century and allowed those defending the city to reach their fighting stations; only open to the public during the Escalade festival! From 10a, to 10 pm, more information on the website of Compagnie 1602.

image d'une peinture de Vermeer en projection géante


Saturday 11: immerse yourself in Vermeer‘s universe

The Jardin des Nations offers a 360 ° experience in a giant cistern equipped with a projection system on all its walls. This is the setting where will appear, as in a dream, the famous «The girl with a pearl earring» or «The milkmaid», taking us dizzyingly into the world of the Dutch painter Vermeer.

Sunday 12th: break the chocolate pot

'Ainsi périssent les ennemis de la République' (so die the enemies of the Republic): once the ritual phrase has been pronounced and as the custom dictates, break the Escalade chocolate pot together in homage to the courage of 'Mère Royaume' who, legend has it, scalded an enemy with her cauldron of soup. 

Dessin de soldats casqués qui montent une échelle, avec une inscription "La nuit de l'Escalade"

Monday 13th: The Escalade continues, in pictures 

To prolong the festivities, come to the Couloir des coups d’oeil at the BGE library to see or remind yourself of the most striking images of the famous night of 11th-12th December 1602, taken from illustrated works from the beginning of the last century. 


chalets avec illuminations au-dessus de la tête des gens qui déambulent

Tuesday 14th: Shop in a Christmas atmosphere

Plunge into the atmosphere of end-of-year parties by strolling among the little wooden chalets of creative craftworkers in la Fusterie, where the Christmas market got under way a few days ago! Other Christmas markets are organised all over the City.

façade d'un bâtiment

Wednesday 15th: See the BAC of tomorrow

Housed in the buildings of the former Société genevoise d’instruments de physique, the Bâtiment d’art contemporain contains MAMCO, the Centre for Contemporary Art and the Centre de la Photographie and is going to be renovated. To give an idea of how will look in future, an exhibition at the Forum Faubourg is showing all the architectural designs submitted, along with the winning entry. 

image d'une façade avec colonnes, illuminée d'une couleur rose

Thursday 16th: Enjoy an after-work event in the museum

This Thursday, the Museum of Art and History (MAH) stays open until 9 pm and is celebrating Christmas earlier. Santa and Mrs. Claus will be visiting for the occasion and there will be also theatrical and offbeat tours in the museum. Further info on the MAH website

Jeune qui se tient devant une oeuvre lumineuse accrochée au mur

Friday 17th: Discover the artists of tomorrow

Illustrations, design and video: come and see creative works by young artists at the Comédie de Genève as part of Primart, a festival of urban art running until 19th December. 

personnes déguisées dans l'eau

Saturday 18th: Encourage chilly swimmers

More than 3,000 people, some in costume and some not, will be setting off in the swimming race in the bay. The water will be between 3 and 9°C, so the chilly swimmers deserve some warm encouragement! 

Maison vue d'en bas

Sunday 19th: Meet around the fire

Mulled wine, soup, craft stalls, concerts of jazz, percussion and Cuban music and fire juggling displays will be raising the temperature at the Champel community centre and warming hearts for the festivities. 

moutons à tête noire

Monday 20th: Meet the residents at the Bois de la Bâtie

Come to the Bois de la Bâtie to get to better acquainted with our furry and feathered friends from the wildlife park and those who live in the surrounding woods. Playful new signage at child height offers information and a chance to do a fun quiz. Feeding the animals is strictly forbidden, in the interest of the animals’ health.

gros plan sur un oeil fermé

Wednesday 21th: Listen up at the MSH 

The exhibition “Hear See (Ecoute voir)” at the Museum of Science History is a way of learning more about sound through play, while waiting to hear Santa's reindeer bells.

grand écran avec une personne qui touche un mur tactile

Wednesday 22nd: Playing with biodiversity 

A huge tactile wall allows people to see how biodiversity waxes and wanes over time and discover the mechanisms of evolution in a playful way. Taking place as part of the exhibition “The Great Evolution Bazaar”, entrance is free from the cabinet of curiosities in the Conservatory and Botanical Garden (enter through the Botanic Shop). 

Deux personnes déguisées avec des branches de sapin et des lunettes en sapin

Thursday 23rd: Jingle bells 

The Feu de Dieu collective are putting on a show at the Eaux-Vives community centre: “Clochi, clochette, Noël c’est chouette!” (“Ding dong, Christmas is fun!”). Christmas stories with a great smell of pine wood and gingerbread, sprinkled with music and love, to delight those aged 6 and over. 

Garçon avec bonnet devant des sapins de Noël

Friday 24th: Buy your Christmas tree at the last minute

Anyone who has left things to the last minute but still wants to put their presents underneath pine branches will be able to find their ideal tree in one of the five Christmas tree markets scattered all over the city.

... And much more

Find more events for all audiences in our online agenda or let yourself be inspired by our ideas for weekly outings, to receive every Thursday in your mailbox, with the What to do in Geneva newsletter!

Terms of participation in events

We invite you to inquire directly with the organizers before participating in an event.

Prior registration and / or the presentation of a COVID certificate and an identity document may be required to access certain places or participate in an event. Due to the rapid evolution of the health situation, certain events mentioned here may be modified or canceled. We please you to check the conditions of participation with the organizers of events and to ensure, more than ever, the respect of the barrier gestures.

Article modifié le 13.12.2021 à 15:14