Travel Information and Tourism Guide
Berne is the capital of Switzerland, a diverse and beautiful city! Berne is a medieval city founded in 1191, on and around the River Aare. Berne has quite a few attractions and historic sites, as well as an active cultural life. It is here that Albert Einstein worked, the Toblerone chocolate bar is made, and Emmental cheese, known as Swiss Cheese, reached out to the world.
With its stately sandstone buildings, historical towers and 11 magnificent fountains, Berne is one the most impressive examples of medieval town architecture in Europe. Over the centuries, the townscape has been preserved virtually intact, and in 1983 the UNESCO inscribed Berne as a World Heritage Site. The noble dome of the House of Parliament presides above the city, just a few steps from the main station, and also from the Aare River, the Prison Tower and all the other places of interest in Berne. On most days, the doors of the House of Parliament are open to the public with visitors permitted to watch the live proceedings of the parliament.
Umbrellas made from stone...
One house after the other - shop after shop. Entire rows of houses merge into one integrated whole, all connected by long covered promenades - the arcades. Rain or shine, it is a pure delight to leisurely stroll along one of the longest shopping promenades in Europe.
The city of Bern was built with local sandstone in Gothic style with gables, bay windows, and more arcades than any of the city in Europe. Berne claims Switzerland's highest Gothic cathedral, the Münster-Cathedral, and the Heiliggeist-Kirche, a prime example of 18th century Protestant church architecture. Throughout the city are towers, arcades, and lots of old fountains. The Münster-Terrasse, a square in front of the Cathedral, has been a famous meeting place over the centuries.
The fantastic Clock Tower has puppets that pop out before the hour and perform a little skit. The Center Paul Klee exhibits the largest collection in the world of one of the greatest 20th century artists. The Swiss Alpine Museum displays a history of the Swiss Alps.
Bern's shimmering green river is named Aare. It twists and turns alongside the old town and offers countless restful havens. Only a few minutes' walk from the station will take you to tree-lined embankments surrounded by nature. The Aare attracts people of all ages. Especially in summer when the river's refreshing clean water invites you to jump in and cool off in the middle of town. Swimming then becomes the favorite pastime of the Bernese.