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When it comes to the world's most romantic places most of us think immediately of Paris with its Eiffel Tower, Champs Elysee and intimate restaurants. Maybe Venice with its gondolas and stunning architecture would also fall into the top three. Unexpected would be a mention of Geneva but the city has just been pinpointed as the most popular destination for Valentine's Day in a poll by Gatwick Airport.

The city in Switzerland known more for its orderliness and pocket busting prices, beat off competition from more likely suspects Barcelona and Dubai to scoop the top spot. Surprisingly the traditional romance capitals of the world did not even score a mention in the top ten Valentine's getaways.

Perhaps then the public polled were either anti-romance or prefer something a little less cliché to woo their loves.

The airport has tipped Valentine's week to be their busiest yet with almost half a million travellers passing through. So what have those heading for the passion poll-winner got in store?

Geneva is Switzerland's second largest city by population and third by size, although it is probably the country's most well-known cities. With the Alps a stone's throw away and Europe's largest lake, Lake Geneva in sight, Geneva has scenery a plenty. Getting there is easy with road, rail and air all offering straightforward routes in. The airport is serviced by budget and mainstream airlines alike. French is the first language although there is plenty of English and German spoken among other languages. The city has long been known as a centre for international diplomacy and this global influence in the region has impacted the local culture and lifestyles, one of the benefits being an incredible range of international and fusion cuisines to tempt the taste buds.

Getting around Geneva provides no worries either. The public transport system is as efficient as a Swiss time piece. Some of the key sights include the impressive although rather unimaginatively named, Jet D'Eau. This 'jet of water' is a 140 metre fountain of water that can drench anything within a half kilometre radius. The Old Town which sits alongside the city's huge Cathedral is a pleasant area to explore with winding streets, historical architecture and hidden antique stores. The Quartier des Grottes is also rather more appealing that its name suggests. This residential area was designed by architects who aimed to avoid straight lines and so a selection of weird and wonderful looking Gaudi-esque buildings were created. Of course if romance is on the agenda then stroll along the shores of Lake Geneva or a boat ride has to be the number one highlight.

It might have been a surprise winner in the romance stakes but Geneva certainly has a lot to offer visitors whether they have love in mind or not.

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