After mountains, the best outdoor things in Switzerland relate to the rivers and lakes, in which Zürich doesn’t make an exception. It’s been quite of an heatwave this week and I’ve found myself almost every day in one of the badi‘s in town. Earlier this week, I tested the free official one and the free not-official one, which offer active playgrounds for cooling down. And yesterday, in a need of quiet, relaxed self-care day, I tested Frauenbad Stadshausquai, which charmed me right away. This women-only badi (bath) offers for 8CHF all the necessities for a perfect bath experience, as well as good views of the Zürich old town and even of the snowy Alps. Not to forget the art nouveau design of the bath itself.
Chilling river, topless sunbathing, food and good poolside bar in Zürich centre? Here you have it. Picnic is possible too (you may find Sprüngli around the corner). But sorry men, there’s nothing to see for you in here during the daytime, as this is a women-only experience. Official opening hours of the bath during the summer season from May to September are around 9am to 8pm, depending on the weather. Nevertheless, the Barfussbar – barefeet bar – at the same location welcomes the other gender too after 8pm.
For me, relaxing in the bath and swimming offers a well-needed break and care for the muscles tired from all the moving, running, hiking and biking. I still have problems staying still for a long time, but in places like this, I can quite easily survive a day or at least a half. Following the loosely structured routine: read – nap – swim – drink – eat – swim – read – nap– repeat. Moreover, the place would offer nice remote working and studying possibilities too in the shadowy corners. Though I might want to keep this as a no-working zone. But a notebook is good to have, as creative moment easily happens in this kind of a situation; in Finnish having a drink can be even called a “neuvoa antava,” loosely translated as “giving an advice”. And yesterday, this aperol spritz clearly said: pause, woman.
Where: Frauenbad Stadshausquai, Stadthausquai 12, 8001 Zurich
Ps. Fun Wikipedia fact: “Zürich’ government decided in 1837, to build a public bath for women, to prevent that “they are no longer forced to bath at night in the fountains” and to protect them from the eyes of men.” With these tropical nights in Zürich this week, I salute these brave ancestors who bathed in the fountains when nothing better was available. Women, claim your space. Always.