Travel alert: Escalade in Geneva (update)

Escalade 2009_101203

Wishing this year’s runners better weather than they have had some years for the Escalade!

GENEVA, SWITZERLAND – Geneva starts to celebrate its annual pre-Christmas wintry fête, the Escalade, this coming weekend with its famous races, two days of walking and running. City police remind drivers that traffic will be a problem starting Thursday evening and parking options in the city will be sharply reduced.

Note that the Escalade parade and larger festivities, featuring chocolate cauldrons and hot soup, is 15 December. The Escalade recalls the surprise attack by Savoyards in 1602, who were pushed back from the walls of what is now the Old Town. Popular history has it that cauldrons of hot soup poured over the soldiers who were trying to scale the walls did the trick.

Escalade races

The Walking and Nordic Walking events are Friday and the Escalade race is held Saturday.

The following regulations are in effect:

  • Friday 6 December from 19:00 to 23:00, between Veyrier and the centre of Geneva
  • Saturday 7 December between 07:00 and 21:00, in the Old Town, Place de Neuve, UNI Bastions and rue Basses.

Drivers must follow special event signposts and instructions from the police as well as traffic wardens and officials for the race.

Suggested parking: plaine de Plainpalais, UNI II-Dufour, Rive and Saint-Antoine. Also follow the suggestions provided by police and race organizers at the site.

Any cars parked on roads where parking is banned, or on the roads where the race is run or next to them will be removed, at the owner’s expense.