Basel Travel Guide

  • The Rhein
    The Rhein
    by lifeisatrip
  • The Rhine River in Basel
    The Rhine River in Basel
    by Nemorino
  • Fasnacht
    Fasnacht
    by Kathrin_E

Basel Highlights

  • Pro
    Myndo profile photo

    Myndo says…

     very good public transportation, theatres, museums, ... 

  • Con
    Zorra80 profile photo

    Zorra80 says…

     expensive, mountains too far away 

  • In a nutshell
    angiebabe profile photo

    angiebabe says…

     I liked it a lot! especially as a base to fly into and travel off to elsewhere. 

Basel Things to Do

See all 192 Things to Do in Basel
  • Muenster Cathedral

    The Minster was once a Catholic cathedral, but now a protestant church. This fact tells us something about its central role in the Reformation. It was here that the last antipope, Felix V, was elected in opposition to the pope in Rome. Less than a century later the fires of Protestant Reformation swept Basel, and the cathedral was attacked and its...

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  • Rathaus

    The Rathaus (city hall) is an outstanding highlight of any visit to Basel. Its rich splendour speaks to the battle between citizens and church for the control of the city. It's a testament to the power of the people, through its guilds, through the outpouring of creative excellence in its deeply polished mosaics, proud statues and an outer facade...

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  • Zoo

    I visited Basel Zoo during a visit to the city in April 2007. It is said that Basel Zoo is one of the most impressive zoos in Europe and, from my limited experience of European zoos, this is quite possibly true. It stands in impressive gardens and offers a large variety of wildlife to its visitors. I paid my 16 CHF for an adult ticket and joined...

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Basel Hotels

See all 75 Hotels in Basel

Basel Restaurants

  • Museum Bistro

    Basel's culture museum has a little bistro with a perfect location overlooking Munsterplatz. For its location and for Switzerland the food and the prices are surprisingly good. Decent menu, good service and well presented food in a great spot for decent prices.

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  • Ueli stube

    Conveniently close to our hotel after a long day travelling. Large terrace with the bonus of live footie on the screen (Euro 2012 Ned v Den). Good food and friendly service, Mrs B particularly enjoying a rosti with a tasty schnitzel for me plus a couple of local beers to go with it, decent place to visit.

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  • Münster this

    We've eaten twice in this typical restaurant. This old 'hof am Münsterplatz' has been transformed in a classical restaurant with a modern touch. The menu has mainly Italian dishes which have been prepared with excellent fish, meat and vegetable. The wine cart also features Swiss wine, but we didn't dare to try these. Once we ate with seven and all...

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Basel Nightlife

See all 17 Nightlife in Basel
  • very bad

    awful place in the center of basel. everything was bad:- dress code elegant.- bodyguards at the entrance very stupid- long waiting times to enter- cocktails too expensive (24 CHF!)- I was probably the younger inside (and I'm 31!), so forget beautiful girls- at 3 o'clock (Fri) the club was empty.- only good point was music (mostly latest...

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  • Open air cinema on the Münster place (in...

    As several other cities in Switzerland, also Basel features in late summer an Open Air Cinema. It is nicely located in the middle of the city on the Munsterplatz.In the evening they will errect the big screen so you can view the films here.The dates and films you can find on the website below. Mostly they have newer films. On one evening they have...

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  • Great, but always crowded!

    Great to meet people and having fun!On Mondays Tropical music, Salsa and Merengue. On Wednesdays student party. On Fridays Kinky House party. Check out the program on the website!

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Basel Transportation

  • River Ferries

    A bit of an anachronism in today's Basel with its modern transport system whisking you through the streets in minutes, but they make for a fitting centuries old throw back for this ancient city. Typically, at least around the old town, where there's a bridge there's a ferry. You can spot the routes from the wires that dangle across the river. The...

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  • Euroairport

    While Euroairport is built completely on French soil, it is, like the Centralbahnhof, jointly operated by Germany and Switzerland as well. It's one of the few airports operated by three nations in the world. The Swiss have their own customs and immigration area on the side closest the border, with its own self-enclosed road. It's a busy airport...

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  • Train

    Basel's Centralbahnhof is a trinational station, merging Swiss lines with those of Germany and France. Trains coming in from abroad still arrive at special enclosed platforms separated from Basel by an immigration building, but nobody mans the checkpoints anymore as Switzerland is part of Schengen and has no borders with its neighbours. Trains run...

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Basel Shopping

See all 15 Shopping in Basel
  • Condomeria

    Basel is the second Swiss city, after Zürich, to have a specialty shop devoted entirely to condoms. Well, not entirely, since they also sell other contraceptive devices such as diaphragms, the pill and spirals.Their website includes a lot of good advice (unfortunately only in German), for instance they recommend trying out various sorts of condoms...

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  • For Jelly bear lovers

    Ok, I confess, I am a junky for jelly bears or "Gummibärchen" as they are called in german. This is the shop where I get my "fix". The shop has everything in jelly, not only bears. It has fruit shaped, animal shaped, phantasy shaped ones. It has variations with natural fruit juice, without sugar, without gelatine, for people with zoeliakie and...

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  • Shopping in Basel

    Located as it is at the heart of a geographically compact region - albeit divided by frontiers - Basel offers a wealth of shops of every kind. Daily needs are mainly catered for by two major distributors which cover the whole area. One is Migros, the other is Coop the latter with its headquarters in Basel.    Normal opening hours for urban...

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Basel Local Customs

  • Graettimaa

    I was surprised to find a tradition here so alive which was almost extinct in some other parts of the German-speaking world. For long time, it was a tradition to bake and give away little men baked with sweet bun dough on St. Nicholas' day (December 6th). They were often decorated with raisins and recieved a non-eatable pipe. Known as „Stutenkerle“...

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  • Fasnacht - Basel's So Special Carnival

    I am astonished to see that VT's opulent Basel travel guide does not, so far, contain much about Basel's so special carnival. The Fasnacht is the most famous event in the city. Basel locals, please forgive an outsider, who has never really been 'in' it, the description from an outsider's point of view. My experience is limited to two visits on...

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  • Vogel Gryff

    the "Bird Griffin" - Vogel Gryff seems to be yet another of the dragons in Basel. It is one of the three Signs of the three "Ehrengesellschaften" of Basel. Guilds would be the english word (thank you JTF). They come from the old Zuenfte, where the Workers of Basel were put together. That was some sort of a union to help the workers.The three...

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Basel Warnings and Dangers

  • TRAMS and EMERGENCY NUMBERS = 112

    Watch the trams and the cars when you cross the streets.Telephone Numbers in Switzerland:112 - SOS, Distress Call117 - HELP, Police118 - FIRE143 - Need144 - Ambulance, DOCTOR, Medical Emergency147 - Child HelplineYou need a doctor 24/7 :061 261 1515Air Rescue = 1414IWB Service = 0800 400 800A Hand in Need = 143Child Help Line = 147

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  • Apparently this is unusual for Swiss...

    This warning tip is really an inside joke between MYNDO and myself. When we visited the Tinguely Fountain near the Elisabethan Church, we noticed the pictured sign underneath the surface of the fountain's water... It advises visitors to NOT drink the water. Do you really have to tell people NOT to drink water from a public fountain?? Well,...

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  • James Wong

    Look at this guy... after hanging out with me for more than 5 days, he decided to try on my stuff. If I had stayed for another 5 days, I'm sure he would try on my undies and my bra too. Perhaps 1 more week, it would have been the end of his reputation...Pretty scary...

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Basel Tourist Traps

  • It is quiet place for have a meeting!

    Because it is near the Rhein and down town (at least 5 minutes by walking) it is good hotel for staying in basel.

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  • I couldn't find any tourist traps in...

    Honestly, Basel is at the top of my list of favorite places.It is open and friendly, and really clean! I love clean air, clean streets and privacy,so I love BASEL!

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  • The Co-op and Migros at the...

    The Co-op and Migros at the train station are the only shops open here on Sundays. Unless you really need food don't bother as they are significantly more expensive than their other branches in the city centre.

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Basel What to Pack

  • Jumping into the Rhine creates a need

    This waterproof bag will hold your street clothesso you can undress and jump into the Rhine with your bathing suit and then get out and put on your clothes again. Purchase the special bag when you arrive in Basel.

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  • Four seasons

    There are 4 seasons in Switzerland - from cold winters to hot summers. I have experienced every season here, so dress adequately!!!

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  • Packing List

    Study Abroad Things that are essential if you are working/studying abroad for a significant period of time (ie more than a few weeks:1. Comfortable day pack - I love my Vango one.2. Personal CD player/mini disc and travel speakers, I'd be lost without them.3. Guide book for the country you are living in, mine is now looking severely battered and...

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Basel Off The Beaten Path

  • Strasbourg

    When the French re-occupied Alsace after World War 2 in 1918, barely 2% of the population spoke French. They spoke Alsatian, a German dialect, which many still speak today. It's a German city, in France. You can see it in the architecture, the faces of the people, the surnames, the pork heavy dishes and now, after suppressing the language for many...

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  • Mulhouse

    Mulhouse has made the most of its industrial heritage by building not one but two of the greatest vehicle museums in the world. The Cité de l’Automobile has an enormous collection - around 520 cars in all. Its sister museum, the Cité du Train, has exhibits spread out of 6000 square meters. If all that isn't enough you also have Electropolis - the...

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  • Colmar

    Venice gets everywhere. Hamburg is just one Venice of the North. There's well over a dozen Venices of the East. There's a Venice Beach in California. Venezuela is Spanish for "Little Venice". And here in the Alsace, Colmar has its own little Venice, like London and Bamberg. But Colmar, with its half-timbered buildings, steeped roofs and crooked,...

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Basel Sports & Outdoors

  • Swiss Indoors

    Are you a tennis fan? If so, then Basel in Oct/Nov is a *must* for you. The Davidoff Swiss Indoors is one of the biggest (indoor) events on the ATP tour. You get to see many of the famous tennis players like Roger Federer, Andy Roddick, Novak Djokovic etc.I saw the opening ceremony - which was quite impressive with a local orchestra playing...

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  • FC Basel

    FC Basel is Switzerland's leading football (soccer) team in our days. They also scored some points in the European leagues (like Champions League), so they are really pretty good. If they play during your visit you might want to see the match at the St. Jakob Park stadium. Tickets are not overly expensive, mine was 35 Sfr. for a match vs. AC...

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  • Fan Zone Basel

    The European Football Championships were just coming to an end when I was in Basel in the summer of 2008, and the "Fan Zone" bleachers in the city center were still in place. This was where people could come to watch the games together on large screens, as a substitute for not being in the stadium itself.The championships that year were held in two...

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Basel Favorites

See all 38 Favorites in Basel
  • Very Public Toilets

    Well if the drunks are going to pee in the street, you might as well give them somewhere to pee instead of having them stink the place up.

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  • Excursions: Riehen

    When (if!) you have enough of bustling city life it is just a quick train ride to Riehen, a "suburb" of Basel in the north of the city. Riehen is located on the right bank of the Rhine river at the foot of the Black Forest mountains. Until the early 20th century it had been a village with a few manors owned by the leading Basel families. Now Riehen...

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  • Excursions: Mariastein

    First mentioned in 1434 Mariastein is nowadays the second largest pilgrimage site in Switzerland. As the name "Mariastein" indicates, people go on pilgrimage to "Maria" in the "stone", meaning a grotto in the rock formations high above a valley where the actual chapel with a figure of Maria, the "Black Madonna", is.In 1648 the Benedictine monks...

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