Most of Montreux is located along the shores of Lake Geneva. The formerly separate villages merged into a single band of urban settlement in the late 19th century. The city of Montreux consists of 30 districts, villages, and hamlets.
Thanks to its climate and optimal sun exposure, Montreux also enjoys a worldwide reputation as a wine growing location. Grapes are grown on the slopes above Clarens and near Chailly and Brent on numerous small vineyards. The higher elevations are dominated by agriculture, dairy farming, and livestock. Located in the alpine uplands, Montreux also has extensive alpine meadows for grazing.
Thanks to Montreux’ climate and sub-tropical vegetation, as well as the surrounding mountains that are easy to reach for tourists via funicular railways, the city has been a popular destination for illustrious personalities like the empress of Austria, aristocracy, artists and philosophers. Names like Pjotr Iljitsch Tschaikowski, Leo Tolstoi, and Vladimir Nabokov are closely associated with Montreux. Nabokov, the Russian-American author and influential storyteller of the 20th century, lived in a luxurious suite at the Montreux Palace from 1961 until his death in 1977.