From 18 July until 11 August, the annual Fêtes de Genève (Geneva festival) will bring music, food, fireworks, adventure, and culture to the lakefront. Stretching from Quai Gustave-Ador to the Quai Wilson, the festival is one of Geneva’s can’t-miss summer events!

The Fêtes, organized by the Geneva Tourism & Conventions Foundation and the Geneva Festival Organizing Committee, features guest of honor Portugal this year.

Along the lake 4226

Here are a few festival highlights:

  • The Grand Firework Display, themed “conquest and conquistador”, will light up the night sky on Saturday 10 August beginning at 22h00. The show lasts approximately 55 minutes and is set to music played over loudspeakers along the lakeshore (the music is also broadcast on radio station One FM 107). Buy tickets to the organized stadium-style seating in advance or claim a spot along the lake early that evening.
  • The Lakefront Festival on Saturday 3 August from 12h00 until 20h00 features waterskiing, boat races, jetski shows, and more.
  • The Miss Geneva Festival, Sunday 21 July from 18h00 until 20h00, is a competition to select this year’s Ambassador of Charm.
  • Waiters and Waitresses Race is held Sunday 11 August. Watch 100 local waitstaff race between Baby Plage and Quai Gustave-Ador carry trays with two glasses of water and two full bottles in one hand. Running is forbidden along the 1.8km route and participants must not spill any of the water. The record for the race, set in 2010, is 10 minutes, 23.57 seconds.

Balloon vendor 4227

Tips for making the most of your visit to the Fêtes:

  • Be aware of your surroundings. The area is popular with pickpockets and thieves, so keep money safely stowed, smart phones tucked away, and leave valuables at home. Click here for more festival-specific safety information.
  • Be prepared to wait, especially at peak times (weekends, evenings) for rides, drinks, and tables at any of the open-air restaurants along the shore.
  • Consider using public transportation. Traffic is notoriously congested around and across the Mont Blanc bridge, especially so during the Fêtes. You can plan your journey to and from the area with the TPG (Geneva’s buses, trams, and shuttles) homepage or smartphone apps. Click here for road closures and parking information.
  • Plan your visit in advance using the festival map and program available on the Fêtes de Genève website.

For more information, click here for the Fêtes de Genève homepage.


We are a group of international women living in Geneva, Switzerland.  If you would like to join the AIWC, please visit our website at http://www.aiwcgeneva.org/