Navigation

Skiplink Navigation

Subsites

Main Features

Myth busting Who cares if cuckoo clocks are not a Swiss invention?

Embed code

Contrary to popular belief, cuckoo clocks did not originate in Switzerland. They were first made in Bavaria, and the Germans continue to dominate the market for high quality wooden clocks. (Julie Hunt, swissinfo.chexternal link

It’s estimated that 200,000 mechanical clocks are sold around the world every year. At least a half of these come from Germany's Black Forest region.

Lötscher, the main Swiss manufacturer of high quality wooden clocks, produces 30,000 per year, 40% of which are exported abroad. The only other Swiss manufacturer, Koo in Renens near Lausanne, makes just 400 cuckoo clocks annually for the Swiss market.

Lötscher, based in the picturesque alpine village of Brienz, uses locally sourced materials for its hand-made chalet-style clocks with musical chimes. swissinfo.ch visited Lötscher and a popular gift shop, Casagrande, in the tourism hub, Lucerne, to find out which clocks the visitors prefer: German or Swiss.