Ahead of this month’s flame-lighting ceremony for the Winter Youth Olympic Games (YOG) Lausanne 2020, olympic.org looks at some of the highlights of the highly anticipated Torch Tour that will visit all 26 cantons of Switzerland.
The Olympic flame is set to light up Switzerland later this month, when the Lausanne 2020 Torch Tour begins its journey around the country ahead of the 3rd Winter Youth Olympic Games.
Following a traditional lighting ceremony in Athens (Greece) on 17 September, the Olympic flame will travel to Switzerland, where it will embark on a four-month tour through all 26 Swiss cantons before reaching the Lausanne 2020 Opening Ceremony on 9 January.
The tour will give members of the public the chance to view the Olympic flame, helping to build excitement ahead of the 3rd Winter YOG, which will be held from 9 to 22 January and mark the first time since the Olympic Winter Games St Moritz 1948 that the country has hosted an Olympic sporting event.
“The Lausanne 2020 Torch Tour is a unique opportunity to bring the Olympic spirit to all regions of Switzerland for the first time in more than 70 years, since the Olympic flame was last lit for St Moritz in 1948,” said Virginie Faivre, President of Lausanne 2020.
“We are so proud to be taking the torch to all 26 cantons, where communities will be able to engage with the spirit of the Youth Olympic Games in the lead-up to Lausanne 2020.”
Along its journey through the YOG host nation, the Olympic flame will visit several of Switzerland’s most iconic sites, including the mountain resort of Zermatt – home to the renowned Matterhorn peak – and the Olympic host city of St Moritz, which staged the Olympic Winter Games in 1928 and 1948.
The flame will also visit the Swiss Parliament in Bern, the United Nations Headquarters in Geneva, and the Château de Chillon – the famed island castle located on Lake Geneva.
“The Torch Tour finally lights the fire for the 2020 Youth Olympic Games in Lausanne,” added Jürg Stahl, President of the Swiss National Olympic Committee. “This event is a tremendous opportunity to engage with the youth of Switzerland and to live the Olympic spirit with them. At each stage, we will celebrate together the Olympic values of respect, friendship and excellence, which remain extremely relevant today.”
As well as viewing the flame on its journey, members of the public are being given the chance to engage with the Lausanne 2020 Torch Tour on social media, with a series of animated GIFs being launched on Giphy and natively on Instagram, TikTok, Twitter and Snapchat.