Here are a few recent panoramas from Zurich and Geneva. Two are from Uetliberg, a mountain that overlooks Zurich and provides a 360 degree view of the center of Switzerland. One panorama is of Zurich and Zurichsee, the lake. We’re just a little bit north (left) of where the lake turns into the Limmat river. In the direction of the lake you can barely see Jungfrau, a huge mountain about 100km away. Interestingly, the lake water is supposedly clean enough to swim in and even drink untreated. The other less pretty one shows Lucern, a smaller city just southwest of Zurich. The third panorama is Lake Geneva taken from near the botanical gardens just north of the city center.

They were made with Hugin, which is free and open-source, and there’s a decent tutorial here. I usually take them by hand rather than lug a tripod around, and if the subject is far enough away then any misalignment won’t be noticeable (the mismatch on these was about a quarter pixel on average). The most important thing is to find a good shutter speed and aperture setting first, and then set it manually so that all of the pictures have the same lighting for later. On MacOSX it’s key to install the mono framework and autopano-sift, which makes the process take just a minute or two versus a couple of hours for large panoramas. Check out the full sized versions for more detail or in case you need something to print on a billboard. There are a few panoramas from Costa Rica online too, in case you’re interested.