For centuries, this popular square in Geneva’s old town has served as a meeting place. Dine in a bistro, visit antique stores and admire the architecture.
As far back as Roman times, locals have been coming to Bourg-de-Four Square to shop, eat, and socialize. Geneva’s oldest square is in the center of the old town and is a delightful place for a scenic stroll or to relax on one of the café’s outdoor terraces.
Bourg-de-Four Square began as a Roman forum and cattle market, and later served as a medieval town square. In the 16th century, many Protestants settled here after escaping religious persecution in other European countries.
When you arrive in the square, walk over to admire the 18th-century marble fountain at its center. Look to your east for the Palais de Justice, which has housed the city’s courts of law since 1860. Opposite the police station, you can spot a narrow staircase leading up to St. Peter’s Cathedral.
Located near most of Geneva’s popular attractions, this square is a perfect place to take a break during a day of sightseeing. Find a table on a café terrace and admire the bourgeois houses that surround the square. Many of these beautiful old homes date from between the 16th and 18th centuries. After you’ve had a chance to relax, browse the art galleries, book stores and antique shops that are also found around the square.
Be sure to visit the square at night, when its bistros and bars are filled with the after-work crowd and those making a start to their evening out. If you are in Geneva at Christmas, come for the festive lights.
Bourg-de-Four Square is located in the heart of Geneva’s old town, on the left bank of the Rhone River. There is metered car parking nearby, or alternatively, take the tram to the Palais Eynard stop. While you are in the neighborhood, visit the 16th-century Promenade de la Treille to sit on the enormous wooden bench that runs along its length.