One of the things on my to do list as we prepare for our big summer trip to Switzerland is to find books about Switzerland that my girls will enjoy reading now. I have been combing through Amazon and reading lots of reviews to find the best of the best, and to help other families who might be traveling to Switzerland or who might just be learning more about the country. These are my top picks for books that features Switzerland, both in fiction and nonfiction categories. I hope the list helps you find the perfect book!
This is, hands down, my top book recommendation. Heidi is a classic tale that kids and adults alike will love. Switzerland, itself, is a bit of a character in this book, painted in such rich detail by the author. We’ve read it once before and will read it again before we leave!
2. Switzerland (Blastoff! Readers)
A perfect nonfiction guide to the country for the 7-9 year old range.
3. Nice Snowing You! (#4 Magic Bone)
Hoping to escape the cold in his backyard, Sparky chomps on his magic bone–only to find himself in snowy Zermatt, Switzerland. He befriends Lena, a Saint Bernard rescue dog with a terrible sense of direction. The two, in search of food, quickly get lost. But Lena and Sparky might just be in the right place at the right time for Lena to complete her first ever rescue mission!
4. Switzerland (Enchantment of the World)
We snagged a copy of this from our local library. Excellent guide to the country and what kids can expect to see there.
This book is a Newberry Honor Award book winner, and tells the Swiss folk tale of William Tell from the perspective of his son. Perfect for the 10-12 year old range to read independently.
In her castle lair, high in the mountains of Switzerland, lives a terrible dragon. In the village below lives a little girl called Mimi. When Mimi finds a baby dragon in the woodshed, she makes a brave decision that will bring joy and peace to the village forever. This heartwarming holiday adventure for the whole family is the perfect combination of magic, adventure, and Christmas cheer.
Describes many things that originally came from Switzerland, including inventions, food, animals, sports, transportation, and medicine.
8. Dogs in the Dead of Night (Magic Tree House series)
Beware of avalanches! When the magic tree house whisks Jack and Annie back in time to the highest pass in the Swiss Alps, they discover an ancient monastery filled with monks and Saint Bernard dogs. Annie can’t resist offering to train a wild young dog named Barry, but he is quite the handful! Before the night is over, Jack and Annie will be forced to use some crazy magic!
Florina lives in a valley in the Swiss Alps with her mother, father, and brother Ursli. One day, while walking in the mountains, she finds a tiny bird that has lost its mother, and Florina takes the bird home to care for it. The girl and the wild bird soon become best friends. She makes food for it using her doll’s tea set and gives it a special basket for a bed. When the bird grows up, its wings grow larger and it wants to fly. Florina must decide whether to keep the bird or release it to fly back to the mountains.
Each 80-page Christmas Around the World book includes full narratives explaining the customs of the region covered, photography and illustrations, special sections of native songs, recipes, and fun-to-do crafts.
This is the third in a series of 10 books for children entitled ‘Rollo’s Tour in Europe’. Each one is a stand alone story. Jacob Abbott (1803-1879) educator and author of the immensely popular Rollo series of books for children, sends his hero Rollo Holiday, his parents, his brother Thanny, his cousin Jane and Mr. George, his uncle, on a geographical tour.
An excellent introduction to the history of Switzerland and the Swiss people. Richly illustrated throughout to enhance the reading experience. I especially love the kindle price for this one!
13. Mandie and the Singing Chalet
The very ancient, very large Swiss chalet Mandie and her friends stay is known for unusual things happening. Will Mandie solve the mystery? Ages 8-13.
14. A Bell for Ursli
“A Bell for Ursli” is a classic Swiss children’s story, with pictures by award-winning Swiss illustrator Alois Carigiet. Ursli is a little boy who lives in the Swiss Alps. He must find a big cowbell so that he can lead the spring procession through his village, so he goes alone to his family’s chalet high up in the mountains. There, he spends a lonely, scary night. Generations of Swiss children have grown up with Ursli but this is the first time his adventures have been widely available in English.
Alexandra, a girl in the city, receives letters all year long from her grandmother who lives in the mountain village of Torbel, Switzerland. As Christmas nears, her grandmother eagerly awaits Alexandra’s visit. Dear Alexandra gives readers a fun and unique insight of a different culture, and a sense what life might be like for a child growing up in Switzerland.
Eight-thousand feet above sea level, in the treacherous pass in the Alps between Italy and Switzerland, the monks of the hospice of St. Bernard have, since the 11th century, kept dogs to help them rescue travelers lost in the snow. In time, these dogs became a breed unto themselves, named for the hospice. They are responsible for helping over 2,000 travelers who might otherwise have frozen to death.
Angelo, the Italian boy of ‘Angelo Goes to the Carnival’, goes to Switzerland and meets Marie-Louise of ‘The Cow Concert’ and ‘The Cow Voyage’. Professor Bartoli, an absent-minded mineralogist, takes Angelo along with him because he likes the way Angelo sings, but the Professor forgets Angelo and leaves him in the mountains. It takes a double feature concert to bring him back.
Dive into adventure with Ren, Rome, Jake, Libby and Tiffany as they discover an ancient coin and a mystery connected with a cuckoo clock which takes them to the beautiful land of Switzerland. In their quest to solve the puzzle, they unearth some fascinating history and recover a lost fortune.
Great book for kids and adults alike!
Newbery Medal winner Sharon Creech crafts a truly endearing story, one that is imbued with happiness, wonder, and an appreciation for all the little things that make life big. In the winding stone tower of the Casa Rosa, in a quiet little village in the Swiss Alps, lives one very unlikely angel—one that is still awaiting her instructions from the angel-training center. What happens to an angel who doesn’t know her mission? She floats and swishes from high above, watching the crazy things that “peoples” say and do. But when a zany American girl named Zola arrives in town and invades the Casa Rosa, dogs start arfing, figs start flying through the air, lost orphans wander in, and the village becomes anything but quiet. And as Zola and the angel work together to rescue the orphans, they each begin to realize their purpose and learn that there is magic in the most ordinary acts of kindness.
I’d love to hear in the comments which of these finds you purchase or check out from the library!