by train to Bern
The trains will take you directely into the very centre of town and from there you will get to Zytglogge-tower and/or to Bundesterrasse with the stunning view of the alps in the distance withing just 10-15 minutes in an easy walk, so it really makes sense to step out of the train and make a stop of maybe 2-3 hours there and you will see most of the important sights of this quite small city, that is the capital of Switzerland.
Interlaken and the famous mountains of Eiger, Moench and Jungfrau are less than 1 hour away from Bern by train !
Inside the Hauptbahnhof in Bern you will find a lot of shops and supermarkets, an outlet of mac-clean, where you can take a shower or a bath
- Family Travel
Marzilibahn: the 2nd shortest funicular in Europe
Marzilibahn takes you from the Aare to the Bundeshaus and it dates back to 1885, it was built within just 4 months and has a length of just 102 meters. After a funicular in Zagreb with a length of just 62 meters, Marzilibahn is the 2nd shortest funicular in Europe. Something else that is important: this funicular works with "Water-power" as a large tank is filled with water at the top-station and this way the lower wagon is taken up.
Take a look at my main photo here and you will see the lower station on the left and the upper station on the right of my pic. The hill is quite steep there and so the city of Bern decided to build a funicular there for all of the hardworking people in the Swiss parliament.
- Arts and Culture
- Historical Travel
This is the funicular which goes up to Gurten park, Bern's local mountain where the best panoramic views of Bern, the surrounding countryside and the Alps can be had.
This is a very old tram, from 1899, but was reconstructed in 1966. It is a nice red tram, and is said to be Switzerland's fastest funicular, running at 5.7 meters per second.
To get to the Gurtenbahn, from Bern's main street in front of the central station, take tram No. 9 in the direction of Wabern, and get off the stop called Gurtenbahn.
- Hiking and Walking
- Mountain Climbing
I really advice to rent a car and drive around Switzerland. There is so much to see ans the distances between the places are usually small.
As for moving around inside the Cities, there are very good public transportation Services, and walking is still the best choice, if you can manage it.
- Road Trip
Driving to Bern
We drove to Bern from our hotel and parked before we crossed the Nydeggbrucke (Nydegg Bridge). There are pay box style meters but since it was Sunday parking was free.
We did drive through most of the town before parking, maybe it's just open on Sunday to car traffic because I imagine it's horrendous trying to dodge tourists when the city is at its peak. The whole city is walkable and rather compact.
Bern is best reached by train...
Bern is best reached by train or car. But you can also get there by plane.
The timetable of the train you can find online at www.sbb.ch
Most of the interesting parts of the city can be reached by feed. But there is also local public transportation you can use. Information about the public transportation can be found at www.bernmobil.ch.
During the summer you can borrow bikes to get around and that for free!
If you dont feel like walking: trams
Although Bern is a very easy place to discover by walking, there are some places which you will have to go by tram: for example, Paul Klee Zentrum. Perhaps it will be a good choice to take the tram to go to Museum Area too, although it is at walking distance. But if you visit Bern at winter, to move around by tram is very convenient. Fast, easy to use and environmentally friendly , tram is an interesting option for getting around in Bern.
Aunque Berna es un lugar en el que uno va andado facilmente a casi cualquier lugar, hay algunos sitios a los que tendras que llegar en tranvia, por ejemplo, el Paul Klee Zentrum. Quizas sea una buena eleccion tomar el tranvia tambien para llegar a la zona de los museos, aunque se puede ir caminando. Pero si visitas Berna en invierno, el tranvia es un medio muy conveniente para circular. Rapido, facil de usar y poco contaminante, el tranvia es una opcion interesante para moverse por Berna
- Historical Travel
Public transportation takes you everywhere
If you want to travel around Bern, best is you use buses and tramways. They run often and take you to almost every corner of the town and beyond. If you stay in Bern just one day, and travel a lot, you'd best take a day card. It will cost you 12 francs for the entire town, 32 francs if you want to go further. Otherwise you might take a multiple trip card. It can be used by several persons and you'll pay only 5 trips for travelling 6 times. Hot tip : tickets can also be bought at the train station ticket machines and can be used in the local trains as well (provided you don't go further than your ticket allows...)
- Budget Travel
If you would like to travel around Bern on the local transport, you can purchase a special ticket at the Tourist Information Centre for about CHF10. This would allow you to travel on any type of transport which also include special discounts to certain tourist attractions.
However, if you only intend to walk within the Town itself, then you will not need this ticket. Just purchase a map from the office for CHF1 and you will be able to explore the town on foot, which I think is more enjoyable and allow yourself time to enjoy the scenery as you go along.
Travel by train to Bern
The full price return ticket between Bern and Zürich costs 83 CHF. Where as the full price one way ticket is 41.5 CHF. The journey takes about 1 hour 13 mins. There are direct train connections available as well.
A few full price return journey train fares from Bern are following:
1. To Geneva: (2h 06min) 101/- CHF
2. To Schaffhausen: (2h 34min) 116/- CHF
3. To Lugano: (4h 02min) 160/- CHF
4. To Basel: (1h 06min) 67/- CHF
- Budget Travel
Trains to Bern
The best way to get to Bern is by train. The railway station (Bahnhof) has excellent connections to and from all major cities in Switzerland and is the gateway to Berner Oberland and Wallis. Parking space in Bern is scarce and expensive so it's best to leave the car behind.
Bern is a walking city. Get a map from the tourist office (located in the railway station)(ask for a walking guide map) and go for a walk. If you are not much of a walker, the trams and buses will take you everywhere - all of them start around the railway station and the tourist office can provide you with the necessary information. Renting a bicycle is a fun way to see the city but only recommendable at summertime.
It's summer! Well, not quite, but summer is coming I have been told....do your bit and keep the air in Bern from getting too mucky this summer - rent a bike.
In Bern and in Thun from the first week of May until the end of October, the BernRollt! team is again at work, making us as mobile as we want to be, with city bikes, electro bikes (great for the not so fit at heart), skate boards, kick boards, trottinets and the rather deadly mini scooters. All you have to do to get transport is:
In Bern, you will find the Bern Rollt team by the railway station on Bahnhofplatz or on the Kornhausplatz. In Thun, on the Aarefeldstrasse by the railway station. This service is now also available in Zürich (Velogate Hauptbahnhof (Gleis 18), Opernhaus, Globus, Bahnhof Enge,
Bahnhof Hardbrücke, Bahnhof Altstetten) and in Geneva (17 Place Montbrillant (derrière la gare Bains des Pâquis
Plaine de plainpalais, à côté du skatepark
Place du Rhône).
How it works:
Bring an ID/Passport, pay a Sfr.20.- deposit - there is no additional hire charge - and away you go from 07.30 in the morning until 21.30 at night. The electric bikes can only be hired for 4 hours. You have to return the bike/board on the same day as you have hired it but you can always go back the next day and perhaps try something else.
Help give Bern back some clean air!
If you are travelling from London it may be worth flying from London city airport as it is closer to central London and the flights are often cheaper than from Heathrow or Gatwick. You can get to London City Airport on the specially designated bus that leaves form Liverpool Street station or Canary Wharf.
Tram & Bus
The Bern public transport system is very good. From just about everywhere on any bus or tram to just about anywhere on any bus or tram costs CHF 1.70 (EUR 1.20). Buy your ticket before getting on the bus or tram, at the red machines beside the stop. If you are caught without a ticket, you will have to pay an immediate CHF 60 fine! There are bus & tram maps everywhere, and all lines can be boarded near the Hauptbahnhof (main railway station). Each line runs every 6 minutes at peak, every 10, 15 or 20 at other times.
If you want to go out of town, it can be helpful to hire a car, but public transport is very well.
There are excellent connections with the train to all the other Swiss cities.
In the city you feel better without car, because there are few possibilities to park the car, and the parkings are expensive.
The easiest way in the town is with buses or tramways.