BaselSwitzerland

Image for Basel featuring a river or creek and a city

Visit Basel

Explore the historic center and museums of this quaint Swiss town. It borders France and Germany and fuses all three cultures.

Basel is a historic Swiss city that lies on the country’s borders with France and Germany. It is home to many museums, galleries and a charming center filled with antique structures. The River Rhine divides the city into two parts. Grossbasel, which contains the historic center, is southwest. Kleinbasel has an active nightlife.

Visit the Basel Art Museum (Kunstmuseum Basel) which contains the largest assortment of artwork by the Holbein family, the German gothic and renaissance artists from the 15th and 16th centuries. International works date back many centuries. See paintings by Van Gogh and Cézanne in the 19th-century exhibits. Browse works by cubist and impressionist artists, such as Picasso and Braque.

Learn about five centuries of the history of melody and composition at the Music Museum, where you’ll find more than 650 musical instruments from the last 500 years. Find out about antique parades, dances and festivals and hear the intriguing sounds of Old World music. The remarkable museum is located in the cells of a former prison. See an old cell that has been left as it was when the prison was active.

Attend one of Switzerland’s biggest carnivals, Basler Fasnacht, which takes place on the Monday after Ash Wednesday and lasts for three days every year. Watch parades, singers and many acts and events.

The city is in the center of the Dreiländereck (Three Countries’ Corner) region in northwest Switzerland. Although the official language is German, many locals speak a dialect called Baseldytsch. You will find a lot of people who speak English and French as well.

Basel has warm summers and cold winters with a postcard-pretty skyline when its quaint landmarks are covered in snow. Basel is around 50 miles (80.5 kilometers) west of Zurich, Switzerlands largest city, and about a 60 miles drive to the north of Berne.

Where to stay in Basel

Basel featuring modern architecture

Basel City Centre

4.5/5Wonderful!(224 area reviews)

Museums, art galleries, and historic sites highlight some notable features of Basel City Centre. Make a stop by Messeturm Basel or Basler Muenster while you're visiting, and jump aboard the metro at Marktplatz Tram Stop or University Tram Stop to get around town.

Basel City Centre
A tram station in Basel covered in snow

Clara

Restaurants and river views are notable features of Clara. You might consider a stop by Congress Center Basel while you're exploring the neighborhood.

Clara
Basel Art Museum showing night scenes and street scenes

Vorstädte

If you're spending time in Vorstädte, you might enjoy attractions like Spalentor and Caricature and Cartoon Museum. You might also enjoy the neighborhood's ample dining options before hopping on the metro at University Tram Stop to see more of the city.

Vorstädte
The first all concrete church in Switzerland, built between 1925 and 1927

St. Johann

4/5Very Good!(9 area reviews)

Bars and casinos are notable features of St. Johann. You might consider a stop by Novartis Headquarters while you're exploring the neighborhood.

St. Johann
Christmas Tattoo in Basel
Christmas Tattoo is a military-band musical show with guests from Scotland, Russia, Lettland and many more.

Sankt Jakob

If you're spending some time in Sankt Jakob, St. Jakobshalle and St. Jakob-Park are top sights worth seeing.

Sankt Jakob
Basel had beautiful places to relax. Near the rein there are lots of parks.

Breite

Though Breite might not have many top sights, you can venture to the surrounding area to see attractions like St. Jakobshalle and Messeturm Basel.

Breite

Top Hotels in Basel

Estimated price for 1 night / 2 adults
Hyperion Hotel Basel
Hyperion Hotel Basel
4 out of 5
Messeplatz 12, Basel, BS
$108
per night
Feb 22 - Feb 23

Located in Basel City Centre, this hotel is steps from Rosentalanlage and Messeturm Basel. Basel Town Hall and Basler Muenster are also within 1 mi (2 km). Basel ...

4.4/5Excellent! (784 reviews)

"Walking distance to old town, friendly n helpful staff, clean and bright! 👍"…"

Reviewed on Dec 26, 2019

Hyperion Hotel Basel
Dorint An der Messe Basel
Dorint An der Messe Basel
4 out of 5
Schoenaustrasse 10, Basel, BS
Free CancellationReserve now, pay when you stay
$96
per night
Feb 8 - Feb 9

Located in Basel City Centre, this hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Musical Theater Basel and Messeturm Basel. Basel Town Hall and Basler Muenster are also ...

4.3/5Excellent! (1,039 reviews)

"Great property with an amazing location. Excellent service and very reasonable price."…"

Reviewed on Jan 9, 2020

Dorint An der Messe Basel
ibis budget Basel City
ibis budget Basel City
1.5 out of 5
Grosspeterstrasse 12, Basel
$68
per night
Feb 21 - Feb 22

Located in Sankt Alban, this hotel is within 1 mi (2 km) of BIS Tower and Basel Zoo. St. Jakobshalle is 1.3 mi (2.1 km) away. Basel SBB Station is 10 minutes ...

4/5Very Good! (748 reviews)

"Good location, no thrills does the job for a weekend away and reasonably priced for Switzerland"…"

Reviewed on Dec 16, 2019

ibis budget Basel City

Popular things to do in Basel

Messeturm Basel
Image for Messeturm Basel

Messeturm Basel

4.5/5(24 reviews)

You can learn about the local history of Basel when you make a stop at a top site like Messeturm Basel. Experience the area's museums and art scene.

Basel Zoo
Image for Basel Zoo

Basel Zoo

4.5/5(23 reviews)

Spend hours walking around one of the country’s most impressive zoos .Marvel at the thousands of animals roaming around their large enclosures.

Basler Muenster
Image for Basler Muenster

Basler Muenster

4.5/5(59 reviews)

Admire its exquisite architecture, peer from the towers over the city or just soak up the atmosphere of Basel’s most important house of worship.

Beyeler Foundation
Image for Beyeler Foundation

Beyeler Foundation

4/5(24 reviews)

Art enthusiasts set up a foundation to collect modernist pieces in the 1980s. Now, a large complex with a scenic garden hosts the inspiring collection.

Vitra Design Museum
Image for Vitra Design Museum

Vitra Design Museum

5/5(8 reviews)

You can study the exhibits at Vitra Design Museum, a museum with a story of its own, during your travels to Weil am Rhein. Experience the museums and art scene in this walkable area.

Marktplatz
Image for Marktplatz

Marktplatz

4.5/5(81 reviews)

You can learn about the history of Altstadt Grossbasel when you stop by Marktplatz. Experience the area's museums and art scene.

Top activities in Basel

Glacier Express 1-day-tour with private tourguide from Basel
Image for Glacier Express 1-day-tour with private tourguide from Basel

Glacier Express 1-day-tour with private tourguide from Basel

$520

Meet your tour guide at your per-arranged time in the lobby of your hotel. Toigether with your tourguide you will tranfer to the train station in Basel. You will board an intercity train, which will take you via Zürich and along the lake Zürich to south-eastern Switzerland.

Lucerne city tour & lake boat cruise - starts in Basel
Image for Lucerne city tour & lake boat cruise - starts in Basel

Lucerne city tour & lake boat cruise - starts in Basel

$383

Begin your tour by meeting your guide at your hotel and make your way to the train station in Basel. An intercity train will take you within one hour into central Lucerne. Close to the main station, the concert hall designed by Jean Nouvel is located.

Mount Titlis day tour from Basel
Image for Mount Titlis day tour from Basel

Mount Titlis day tour from Basel

$476

Begin your tour by meeting your guide at the hotel and make your way together to the train station in Basel. An intercity train will take you within 50 minutes to Lucern, where you will have to change on a local train.

Zermatt & Gornergrat (Matterhorn area) from Basel
Image for Zermatt & Gornergrat (Matterhorn area) from Basel

Zermatt & Gornergrat (Matterhorn area) from Basel

$518

You will start the tour by meeting your tourguide at your hotel and make your way to the trainstatin in Basel. From there, an intercity train takes you within two hours to south-Switzerland, where you change onto the Matterhorn-Gotthard-raillway.

Zürich city - full day tour from Basel
Image for Zürich city - full day tour from Basel

Zürich city - full day tour from Basel

$339

You will meet your and together you'll transfer to Basel train station, where you will board an intercity train, which will take you within 50 minutes to Zürich. The tour will start with a transfer by tram in the direction of the Opera house, the first stop of the tour.

From Basel to Freiburg:The full day tour to the Black Forest!
Image for From Basel to Freiburg:The full day tour to the Black Forest!

From Basel to Freiburg:The full day tour to the Black Forest!

$169

Itinerary This is a typical itinerary for this product Stop At: Freiburg im Breisgau, Freiburg im Breisgau, Baden-Wurttemberg Enjoy a walking tour in the historical city's center. Some free time will give you the opportunity to visit the local street food market (closed on Sundays) & the famous “Minster” (cathedral).

Reviews of Basel

4.5

Top Destination

5 - Excellent
133
5 - Excellent 60.18099547511312%
4 - Good
71
4 - Good 32.126696832579185%
3 - Okay
14
3 - Okay 6.334841628959276%
2 - Disappointing
2
2 - Disappointing 0.9049773755656109%
1 - Terrible
1
1 - Terrible 0.45248868778280543%

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveler

Jan 8, 2020

Loved the old city, full of character. We visited during Christmastime and they have two charming Weihnachtsmarkts. Fantastic food. And you can ride the buses for free when you stay in a hotel!

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveler

Dec 22, 2019

Unexpectedly beautiful. Great walking City and gorgeous river views. Lovely old town area. Best Italian restaurant ever..Fiorentina. Amazing transportation system so easy to get around. Fun Christmas markets and lively shopping. Really lovely.

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveler

Dec 8, 2019

Friendly city and look forward to visiting for an extended time

3/5 - Okay

Verified traveler

Nov 27, 2019

Most expensive country in Europe.

5/5 - Excellent

PhilipL.

Nov 10, 2019

Great city. Very cosmopolitan. A lot of history, great restaurants, bakeries and the people are friendly. Mass transit easily available.

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveler

Nov 8, 2019

Lovely city

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