|Former municipality of Switzerland|
|• Total||36.93 km2 (14.26 sq mi)|
|Elevation||437 m (1,434 ft)|
|Highest elevation (Rautispitz)||2,283 m (7,490 ft)|
|Population (December 2015)|
|• Density||110/km2 (280/sq mi)|
|Surrounded by||Glarus, Innerthal (SZ), Mollis, Netstal, Oberurnen|
|Twin towns||Bad Säckingen (Germany)|
Näfels is first mentioned in 1240 as Nevels.
In 1388, the Swiss Confederates beat the Habsburgs at the Battle of Näfels, a victory that proved to be decisive in the series of Swiss-Austrian conflicts that stretched through most of the 14th Century as, in 1389, a peace treaty was signed at Vienna. The losses were much higher on the Austrian side, with 2,500 Austrians killed and 54 Swiss. The town's Slachtkapelle was created as a memorial to the men who fell in battle, and the Näfelser Fahrt, a pilgrimage to the site of the battle, has been held in April every year since the battle.
Näfels has an area, as of 2006[update], of 36.9 km2 (14.2 sq mi). Of this area, 35.9% is used for agricultural purposes, while 37.6% is forested. Of the rest of the land, 4.4% is settled (buildings or roads) and the remainder (22.1%) is non-productive (rivers, glaciers or mountains).
Näfels is located in the Glarner Unterland on the left side of the valley, across from Mollis. It consists of the village of Näfels and the scattered settlements that make up the Näfelser Berg and the Oberseetal.
Näfels had a population (as of 2010) of 4,021. As of 2007[update], 19.3% of the population was made up of foreign nationals. Over the last 10 years the population has decreased at a rate of -0.6%. Most of the population (as of 2000[update]) speaks German (86.9%), with Italian being second most common ( 5.2%) and Albanian being third ( 2.9%).
Näfels has an unemployment rate of 1.59%. As of 2005[update], there were 94 people employed in the primary economic sector and about 39 businesses involved in this sector. 1,399 people are employed in the secondary sector and there are 62 businesses in this sector. 918 people are employed in the tertiary sector, with 140 businesses in this sector.
The historical population is given in the following table:
Näfels-Mollis railway station is on the Weesen to Linthal railway line. It is served by the Zürich S-Bahn service S25 between Linthal and Zurich, and by the St. Gallen S-Bahn service S6 between Rapperswil and Schwanden. Both services operate once per hour, combining to provide two trains per hour between Ziegelbrücke and Schwanden.
- Niklaus Franz von Bachmann 1740-1831, Swiss general in the Napoleonic Wars
- Karl Josef von Bachmann 1734–1792, Commander Swiss Guard for King Louis XVI of France, executed during the French Revolution
- Friedrich Schröder 1910—1972, German composer, born in Näfels
- Näfels in German, French and Italian in the online Historical Dictionary of Switzerland.
- Battle of Näfels in German, French and Italian in the online Historical Dictionary of Switzerland.
- Lambert, Anthony (2013). Switzerland Without A Car (5th ed.). Chalfont St. Peter: Bradt Travel Guides. p. 54. ISBN 978 1 84162 447 1.
- Swiss Federal Statistical Office accessed 14-Sep-2009
- Canton Glarus population growth (in German) accessed 9 September 2009
- "S-Bahn trains, buses and boats" (PDF). ZVV. Retrieved 2014-08-08.
- "S-Bahn St.Gallen Map" (PDF). S-Bahn. Retrieved 2014-08-08.
- "Ziegelbrücke–Linthal" (PDF). Bundesamt für Verkehr. Retrieved 2014-08-08.
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