From cycling lanes to hiking trails, Zurich’s urban landscape has always catered well to the active traveller, but now its man-made environment is catching up.
Today, juice bars, rooftop workouts and vegan eateries litter the skyline and they’re proving there’s more to the capital than dull business centers and stuffy suits. But, with the emergence of so many hip and healthy venues, which lycra populated dens and superfood stocked cafes are worth the visit?
Fortunately wellness blogger Victoria Sardain, of sailingthroughfitness.com, agreed to sweat, stretch and sip her way around the city in order to find out.
Here are the top spots according to Victoria:
Hiltl | Historic vegetarian restaurant
The Hiltl holds the Guinness world record for being the world’s oldest vegetarian restaurant. Suffice to say that with over one hundred years experience in the business, these guys know what they’re doing.
A completely vegetarian, family-owned chain with 4 locations in Zurich, The Hiltl offers a wide variety of cuisines – stretching from Middle-Eastern, Asian and Indian to Mediterranean, French and Spanish – making it a place that accommodates to every taste.
The venue on Sihlstrasse is classy but cozy and every allergen imaginable is catered for both on the a la carte menu and the buffet.
My top tip: make sure you save room for dessert – a full range of dairy and gluten-free treats await.
Sihlstrasse 28, 8001 Zürich
Booster Pilates | Pilates Studio
This new, trendy and alternative studio opened its first location only last June and its second this summer, however it’s already widely popular. The 50-minute, high-intensity, low-impact Pilates class is carried out on reformer machines and combines Pilates, strength training, cardio, stretching and balance. The studio provides semi-private classes with a maximum of 5 students in its Forum location, and a maximum of 8 in its Seefeld location. The class coach makes sure you don’t get away without feeling the burn and you really won’t. Trust me.
Seefeldstrasse 281, 8008 Zürich
Roots and Friends | Healthy vegan fare
Roots and Friends was founded by 3 uber cool Zurich-native guys: a barista, a musician and a cook. The trio dreamed of bringing something new to Zurich’s vegan scene and they’ve suceeded. This cute restaurant-come-café offers great healthy options if you’re looking for an easy lunch stop, a breakfast outside in the sun or a place to grab a smoothie to-go. Everything is plant-based, healthy, and 100% delicious.
Lintheschergasse 15, 8001 Zürich
Fit n’ tasty | Cold-pressed juice delivery
This cold-pressed juice company is based in Lausanne, Switzerland, but ships countrywide. All the ingredients are completely organic and provided by small local producers. Offering different cleanse packages for 1, 3, 5, or 7 days, all the juices are cold-pressed by hand, bottled (the same day), and then delivered right to your door. Check out the website to get your hands on a grape, carrot, kale & lemon or pumpkin, apple & cinnamon bottle.
Balboa | Cross-training studio
Balboa Garage is a cross-training studio that looks so hip you won’t be able to stop yourself from taking a peak inside. Offering a variety of classes each day, such as Kettlebells & Weightlifting, Calisthenics, Interval Training and Power Yoga, the atmosphere is really what makes Balboa what it is – a community. The instructors are really friendly, but don’t be fooled, they’ll kick your butt into shape.
Zollstrasse 80, 8005 Zürich
Sasou | Juice bar
Sasu juice bar sells cold-pressed juices, fresh juices (to be consumed within 8 hours) and smoothies, as well as healthy vegetarian dishes such as açai bowls, sandwiches, wraps and salads. The raw, vegan, soy and gluten-free desserts are all worth sampling, but it’s the famous ‘Power Balls’ that really steal the show.
What makes Sasou different from all the other juice bars is the “make your own” option, which allows the customer to pick the size, base liquid, fruits, vegetables and superfoods, for a custom-made smoothie. The fresh produce is then cut and blended or put through a juicer, for an individual juice pressed right in front of their eyes. It doesn’t get much fresher than that.
Neugasse 41, 8005 Zürich
Pop-up Yoga | Yoga classes
Pop-up yoga was founded by the New York-trained, Swiss yogi, Deddou. The motto is “Exhilarating yoga in exciting places” and that’s precisely what it is. Why do yoga in a classic studio when you can find yourself on a rooftop, gallery or museum?
Some locations are planned in advance, but others are emailed to the participants the night before, making it all the more exciting. And just in case doing yoga with a view of the city isn’t quite exhilarating enough, Deddou’s classes are far from traditional. Based on Vinyasa Flow, Deddou’s take includes funky playlists, themed classes and pretty much anything that revolves around the unexpected.