Espl. des Particules 1, 1217 Meyrin, Switzerland

Scores of sci-fi geeks, space gazers, and physicists worship this iconic particle physics lab. Founded in 1954, CERN (Conseil Européen pour la Recherche Nucléaire) is located just five miles (8 km) west of Geneva and is open to the public. The lab’s main attraction is the Large Hadron Collider, a particle accelerator that shoots protons around an almost 17-mile (27 km) circular tube, which in turn creates new matter. Other permanent exhibitsl emphasize CERN’s current projects. Two-hour guided tours in English require advance reservations up to 15 days ahead and require a photo ID.

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