Swiss Experience


New Glarus hosts a full complement of heritage-drenched festivals and special events all four seasons of the year. Traditional Swiss clothing, customs, history, cheese, language, music, folk arts, dance, customs, food and drink are featured. And, of course we wouldn't be American's Little Switzerland without Wilhelm Tell, the Heidi Festival, and Volksfest -- a celebration of Swiss Independence Day. Both are prominently featured.

New Glarus

New Glarus is where the rich Swiss character and flavor of Green County began. In 1845, a party of 108 emigrants from the Canton of Glarus arrived and formed the Swiss colony of New Glarus. Despite the passage of more than 150 years, New Glarus hasn't forgotten its roots. Flowerboxes filled with geraniums, folk art adorning the buildings, German-Swiss language street signs, shops bursting with Swiss goods, an Old World butcher shop, a bakery filled with the scents and tastes of Switzerland, restaurants featuring Swiss cuisine, chalet-style houses and businesses -- all reinforce the roots of this special community and county.

  • Listen carefully and you might hear the German-Swiss dialect being spoken on the streets.
  • Explore the Swiss church and museums.
  • Stop in Puempels Olde Tavern in the afternoon and watch the card game, Yass, being played.
  • Listen to the names. Notice all the Heidi's and Hans'?
  • Look at the names of the businesses: Chalet Landhaus, Glarner Stube, Edelweiss Chalet, Ruef's Meat Market, Hoesly's Meats, Puempels Olde Tavern, Blumenladen, and many more
  • See the proud display of Swiss canton shields and emblems of heraldry.
  • Check out the Brown Swiss cows dotting the hillsides.

New Glarus' ties with Switzerland remain strong. Swiss guests come visit their cousins -- and vice versa -- often. Remember, it's 4,444 miles to Switzerland, but just a short drive to America's Little Switzerland.

Food and Drink

Yes, we know you expect cheese -- and we have wheels and blocks and slices of delicious, Green County-crafted cheeses. But our Swiss restaurants also feature cheese and beef fondue, Schnitzel, Geschnetzelets, Swiss meatballs, Roesti potatoes, Spatzli dumplings, and much more. At Ruef's Meat Market, try some traditional Kalberwurst, Mettwurst, and Landjaeger. Swiss breads and pastries are, naturally, special features of the New Glarus Bakery right next door. (Come to think of it, how many American villages of 1500 have a butcher and a baker?)

At Ticino's, named for the Italian-speaking Canton in Switzerland, Swiss-style pizza -- surprise! -- is a treat. A Swiss-trained chef guarantees authentic cuisine at the New Glarus Hotel and Chalet Landhaus. And nearly every restaurant has a Swiss favorite on the menu...