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Where is Basel?

Basel is a city in the north of Switzerland bordering France and Germany. The city on the river Rhine is home to 172,000 people and the third-most populous Swiss city. The Swiss capital of Bern is an hour’s drive away.

Basel hosts Switzerland's and also Europe’s oldest university, the University of Basel, dating from 1460. Famous scholars such as Erasmus von Rotterdam, Paracelsus, Daniel Bernoulli, Leonhard Euler, Friedrich Nietzsche, Karl Jaspers, Tadeus Reichstein or Jeanne Hersch taught and studied there.

Basel is the international centre of the chemical and pharmaceutical industry and headquarter of Novartis and Hoffmann-La Roche. The city is also a world-renowned convention and exhibition centre as well as an important banking centre.

What’s the weather like in Basel?

Basel enjoys a Mediterranean climate and 300 sunny days per year. Life takes place outdoors at the riverbanks or at one of the many parks. The best time to travel to the north of Switzerland is June to September seeing nice and warm weather with pleasant temperatures and little rain. July is the hottest month of the year with an average temperature of 24 °C. Feel like visiting this charming city? Check out our live web cam on-site!

Swiss capital of culture

Basel is considered the Swiss capital of culture boasting about forty museums. The top ten museums are:

  • Fondation Beyeler
  • Kunstmuseum Basel
  • Museum Tinguely
  • Vitra Design Museum
  • Naturhistorisches Museum Basel
  • Historisches Museum Basel-Barfüsserkirche
  • Museum der Kulturen Basel
  • Antikenmuseum
  • Kunsthalle Basel
  • World of Toys Museum Basel

You cannot miss Barfüsserplatz square at the city centre as it is the most important tramway junction. Market square and the City Hall, seat of the Basel government, are prominent landmarks. During the week fresh vegetables, fruits and flowers are sold at the square. Basler Fasnacht (carnival) dates from the 14th century and starts at four o’clock in the morning on the Monday following Ash Wednesday and lasts exactly 72 hours. Dozens of fife and drum clubs parade through the city with fantastical masks and illuminated lanterns.

[Translate to 01_EN:] Basel im Winter
[Translate to 01_EN:] Winterurlaub in Basel

What’s going on in Basel?

Basel Old Town is one of the most beautiful and most original in Europe. But the city is open to new architecture: the Bank for International Settlements (BIS) by Mario Botta is only one of the many architectural landmarks. Basel Minster built of red sandstone and coloured roof tiles. The Middle Bridge opened in 1226 should be included in every sightseeing tour as it is one of the oldest existing bridge sites across the Rhine, between Lake Constance and the North Sea. 105 m Basel Trade Fair Tower by Morger & Degelo offers a breathtaking view of the city and to neighbouring Germany and France.

[Translate to 01_EN:] Basel im Sommer
[Translate to 01_EN:] Sommerurlaub in Basel

What to do in the summer in Basel?

The city’s cultural highlight is Art Basel: it is the most important international art fair providing a platform for about 300 galleries to show and sell their work. Artists, collectors, and an international audience meet and transform Basel into the centre of contemporary art.

FC Basel 1893, six-time Swiss champion and UEFA Champions League and UEFA Europa League participant of 2014/2015 plays its home games at St. Jakob-Park built by Jacques Herzog & Pierre de Meuron Architects, the largest football venue in Switzerland with 40,000 seats.

Basel Zoo is a popular place for a family outing. It was opened on July 3rd, 1874 and is home to a great number of animals.

Taking the plane from Basel?

Basel-Mulhouse-Freiburg Airport offers more than 70 nonstop flights within Europe, to North Africa, Canada, and Russia. The airport is only 10-minutes from the city centre by car or public bus.