Rapperswil is widely referred to as the “Town of Roses”’ or “Rosenstadt”, thanks to the 15,000 rose plants that grow in its parks and public areas. However, its beauty is not simply restricted to these colorful blooms; Rapperswil is a historic town that harks back to the Middle Ages. In the old town, or Alstadt, visitors can explore winding car-free alleyways ancient stone structures, scenic wooden bridges, and chapels—notably the wooden bridge that links Rapperswil to Hurden and its incorporated chapel, Heilig Hüsli.
The 13th-century castle Schloss Rapperswil also contributes to the town’s medieval charm. Located on a peninsula, it towers over the lake—offering panoramic views of the Alpine scenery. Another interesting facet of Rapperswil’s history is its circus connection; the town has been the headquarters of the Circus Knie since 1919. Circus Knie operates a children’s zoo on-site with over 300 different animals. Rapperswil is also ideally located for multi-day guided tours of the region.