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Montreux, on the shores of Lac Léman, is the chief resort of the Swiss Riviera. A beautiful city with a Mediterranean climate, it has long been popular with famous expatriates, including the novelist Vladimir Nabokov, and is now a haven for tourists. The city is also home to the internationally known Montreux Jazz Festival.
The Château of Chillon, considered the most spectacular castle in Switzerland, is within walking distance of the city. Parts of this well-preserved medieval castle date back 1,000 years and it is one of the most photographed castles in Europe.
The city was expanded greatly during the 19th century and hence much of it retains the feel of an Edwardian town. During its heyday it hosted such visitors as Tolstoy, Ruskin, Flaubert and Dostoyevsky. Many tourists simply wander the old city and marvel at its charms.
Today the city functions chiefly as a resort, and in this capacity it has many diversions. Along Lac Léman during the summer there are many opportunities for swimming, paddle boating, and other beach activities. Also, in addition to many fine restaurants, hotels and pubs, Montreux offers a gambling casino. And of course don’t overlook the Jazz Festival that happens every July. This event has featured the likes of Bob Dylan, B.B. King and Sting in the past.
Just on the other side of the lake from Montreux is Villeneuve. This village and the countryside that surrounds it have been the object of many paintings including several by Oskar Kokoschka who once lived here. The village and the area around it make for a very pleasant drive.
This city is well connected by rail to other major cities in Switzerland, France and Italy. From these cities flights to cities worldwide can be obtained.