WWF to open a new nature centre on the banks of Lake Zurich

WWF to open a new nature centre on the banks of Lake Zurich

Families in Switzerland will be given yet another experience to tick off the bucket list in the future, with the World Wildlife Fund for Nature (WWF) confirming that it will be opening a new nature centre on the banks of Lake Zurich at Halbinsel Au.

WWF and ZHAW to build new nature centre on Halbinsel Au

In a statement, the WWF confirmed that with the help of the Zurich University of Applied Sciences (ZHAW), it would be opening a new nature centre on the Au peninsula on Lake Zurich. The facility will be used to showcase local Swiss wildlife and how important a healthy ecosystem is for life around the lake. 

The exhibition itself will be housed in a coach house next to Au Castle, while interactive exhibits will also be installed in the old boathouse of the castle. This will include a so-called Water Parliament - where children are encouraged to ask and debate questions about the lake and the nature within it. Finally, an adventure course is planned, which will be built on the castle’s old tennis court.

Nature centre in Zurich promises to be fully interactive

While the specific exhibits are yet to be revealed, the university hinted that water would be the central theme of the project. ZHAW project leader Rahel Skelton wrote, "In order to make Lake Zurich accessible to everyone, we chose the so-called Narrative Environment exhibition format." In practice, this means that all the exhibits and displays will be fully interactive, not just information boards.

Speaking to the Tages-Anzeiger, WWF Zurich managing director Cornelia Hafner said that the “proximity to the lake and the diverse flora and fauna make the Au peninsula a unique location for a nature centre in the canton of Zurich.” She added that the location is ideal as the peninsula is ably served by regular public transport services between Au ZH and Zurich.

New outdoor escape game to launch on Halbinsel Au

The cantonal government is expected to contribute 600.000 francs to the project, with the remainder of the funding from donations and charging for guided tours, excursions and events. The new nature centre is expected to open in mid-2027.

However, Skelton announced that “as early as summer 2025, there will be an opportunity to explore the Au peninsula in a new way." This will take the form of an outdoor escape game, where visitors can explore the peninsula and use their mobile phones to solve puzzles dotted around the site.

Jan de Boer


Jan de Boer

Jan studied in York and Sheffield in the UK, obtaining a master's in broadcast journalism and a bachelor's in history. He has worked as a radio DJ, TV presenter, and...

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