Do you mark the passage of time based on whatever form the chocolate is taking in Geneva’s chocolate shop windows?  If yes, then keep your eyes peeled for chocolate pots (marmites) to soon make an appearance.


Yes, L’Escalade is just around the corner.  L’Escalade, one of the premiere Geneva celebrations, takes place in early December over two weekends.  The celebration commemorates the successful defense of the city from the Duke of Savoy’s invading soldiers in 1602.

The first weekend (November 30 – December 1) is reserved for the Course de l’Escalade, a series of races/walks that have an event for everyone, regardless of their athletic ability.  More than 45,000 runners participated in 2018.

A short 1.3 km race has been added this year for 4-5 year olds (starting them young!) . Until now, the youngest participants had to be at least 6 years old. The little ones will sprint up the Rue de la Croix-Rouge, complete a small loop in the Old Town, and finish downhill in Parc des Bastions.


Feeling like running full tilt through the Old Town 2-4 times?  Then check out the various adult races.  A new relay race has been added this year, as well as a ‘FlexiMix’ race, where runners can choose whether to run 2 or 3 laps around the Old Town.


For non-runners, or those who prefer a more leisurely pace, the 2-hour, 8.7 km evening walk from Veyrier to Parc des Bastions features live entertainment, heated rest stops, and food/drink each step of the way.  The atmosphere during this walk is fun and energetic, definitely not-to-be-missed!

Last of all, especially for those missing a widely-celebrated Halloween, then pour your costume-related creativity into the non-competitive Marmite race (3.6 km), held on Saturday, November 30th.  You will be amazed by the quality of the costumes, and even more by their wearers who somehow manage to run/waddle/roll across the finish line.


Registrations are open now until November 11, 2019.  For more details on each race, and how to register, visit

Have you participated in the Course d’Escalade?  Tell us about your experience in the comments!

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