Bern Things to do – Travel Guide Blog

Bern, Things to do in bern
Posted by: Abdul Muqeet Waheed Comments: One Comment

Are you thinking of a visit to Bern and unsure of how to organize your itinerary? Here, we’ll introduce to you the top attractions, dining options, and activities for a quick day trip to Bern.

Switzerland’s capital, Bern, is a beautiful, quiet city with a lot to offer. Due to its extraordinarily long history and magnificent old town, Bern has been designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site throughout its history. A magnificent Parliament Building and various towers, including the Christoffel Tower, the Prison Tower, and the Clock Tower, can be seen in the Old Town (Christoffelturm). It is quite simple to go there from Switzerland because of its central location in the nation. In addition to being in a great position, Bern is ideal for day trips as you tour the nation.

As part of our journey to Switzerland, we went to Bern. We traveled to Bern on a train that carried us there in one hour from Interlaken. The ancient town is full of picturesque streets that are surrounded by beautiful buildings.

Are you unsure of how to organize your day in Bern? This blog’s travel advice for Bern will help you make the most of your time in this stunning Swiss city. Let’s begin!

Here are a few brief pieces of advice for preparing your schedule for Bern before discussing the top attractions.

How to get to Bern?

The most convenient way to travel to Bern is via train, available from most major Swiss cities. From Geneva, it takes two hours, while from Zurich, it takes roughly an hour. The main train station in Bern is situated right in the center of the city.

Getting Around the Bern

Compact and ideal for day trips, the city is small. The majority of the sights are found in Altstadt (Old Town) and are close to one another by walking. Once in Bern, you may explore all the sights on foot without using any kind of transportation.

Bern has a fantastic public transportation system that substantially covers the city and its surroundings, but sometimes you simply need a quick respite. simple to use. Both at the main station and at the ticket machines are available.

What season is ideal for traveling to Bern?

It’s actually never a bad time to travel to Bern because it’s a place that can be visited all year round. However, if you’re unsure of the best time to visit Bern, we advise going there between the months of May and September, which are the hottest and have the sunniest days.

How long do I need to stay in Bern?

Bern is a somewhat small city that is accessible by foot. You can get a decent sense of the city by spending half a day there.

Is Bern Worth Visiting?

It’s very worthwhile. The gorgeous city of Bern, which serves as Switzerland’s capital, is the ideal place to visit if you want to learn about the history and culture of that region.

Things to do in Bern

If you do not even feel like walking around a bit, especially if you only have a day or a few hours in Bern, you can see all the great sights.

Considering the top activities in Bern, let’s look at:

1. Wandering around the old town of Bern

The Old Town of Bern has been designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. When you visit Bern, you’ll notice the calm, gentleness, antiquity, and allure of this city. Compared to the Zurich or Lucerne I’ve been to, it is very different.

The paths are cobblestone and are surrounded by towers, a covered arcade, and gorgeous fountains from the 16th century. You should visit this picturesque region because it has a lot of some well medieval buildings. Additionally, you may explore a tonne of charming stores, cafes, restaurants, and undiscovered gems.

Take advantage of the opportunity to explore the cobblestone streets and see how the medieval area has been transformed into the modern world. Keep an eye out for the renowned fountains that line the main avenues as you travel.

the old town of Bern things to do in Bern
the old town of Bern

The locals appear to live quite simply, with warmth, friendliness, and togetherness. Even when they don’t know one another, people frequently make eye contact, smile, or even greet strangers travelers like me. While I was waiting for the bus, I frequently received a warm smile from a middle-aged woman or a sibling-like nod from a bus passenger who appeared to be at work.

From the city’s main station, the Old Town’s four main streets—Spitalgasse, Marktgasse, Kramgasse, and Gerechtigkeitsgasse—run eastward. It nearly seems like one long and winding road when you are walking them; you barely notice when one street merges with the next. While it isn’t totally classified as a pedestrian area, there is typically little traffic and the sidewalk is broad enough to allow for comfortable strolling (but be careful when crossing the street because buses may be there).
Don’t miss the Rathausplatz, where the Bern Town Hall and the Church of Sts. Peter and Paul are located and be sure to explore the remainder of the Old Town as well. There are several side streets that are equally picturesque and generally less crowded than the main route. There are also several truly lovely houses and town squares that are well worth visiting.

Altstadt, Bern
Altstadt, Bern

The old town is a genuine pleasure to stroll through. It is advised to allow two to three hours to explore and take in Old Town Bern’s history, cuisine, and culture.

2. Bern Fountains

Bern has an incredible 100 public fountains in Bern. Many have unique backstories; others provide thirsty onlookers with free drinking water.
However, the 11 Renaissance fountains in the city’s center are the most well-known of all of them. These waterfalls, which Swiss artist Hans Gieng claims, were created in the sixteenth century. They all have pedestal-mounted polychrome statues.

Some of the statues depict ancient nobility from Bern, while others depict symbolic characters like Lady Justice or real heroes like Moses (Mosesbrunnen). The latter is visible from the summit of the Gerechtigkeitsbrunnen (Fountain of Justice).

A particular mention should also be made to the Zähringerbrunnen (Zähringen Fountain), which is beside the Zytglogge clock. The statue of a bear wearing full armor and carrying weapons is placed on it. Another well-known landmark, the Läuferbrunnen (Runner Fountain), was constructed as a tribute to Bern’s might.

These magnificent stone fountains were constructed to replace the city’s ancient wooden fountains. They had a significant impact on society and served as a gathering spot for residents to share rumors. They continue to be a major attraction in Bern today, with some serving as locations for holiday markets and others for events like political rallies.

Kronenbrunnen, a sculpture known as a fountain without a sculpture on top, is located in the Postgasse. You may climb the stairs to the top and stand where the monument would be, making it a popular location to pose for pictures.

Useful Note

3. Swiss Parliament House (Bundeshaus)

The Parliament House (Bundeshaus) is one of Bern’s most prominent sights and is placed on the Federal Square, which lies on the edges of Old Town Bern. The Swiss Federal Assembly and the Federal Council are housed in this commanding structure, which also serves as the headquarters of one of the earliest modern democracies in history.

You may join a guided tour to view the building and discover more about Swiss history and the Swiss government. The Bundestag website requires online registration three days prior to the tour, which is free of charge.

Due to a lack of time in our itinerary, we decided against taking a tour. However, it’s still worthwhile to visit Parliament House to view the magnificent structure and surroundings. Good restaurants and cafés are nearby where you may eat or have a cup of coffee.

Additionally, Tuesday and Saturday mornings are market days at Bundesplatz, when many residents purchase fresh regional goods. It is quite vibrant and packed with several events attended by individuals from all walks of life. We did enjoy the little event, and it was wonderful to experience local life.

Bundeshaus is a short, straightforward five-minute walk from the Bern railway station. A great place from which to explore Bern’s Old City.

4. Clock Tower – Zytglogge

Bern is not excluded from Switzerland’s love of clocks in this area.

The Zytglogge Clock Tower, which lies in the center of the old town, is easily accessible by foot. It is a medieval clock tower that was constructed in 1218 and used as a defensive city tower. The remarkable mechanical clock was constructed in 1530, and the original clock mechanisms are still in use and being maintained today. You may even take a trip inside the Tower of the Clock if you’re very interested in learning how it works.

Small medieval figures show on the Zytglogge (Clock Tower) hourly, and music plays for a short while. Although not particularly entertaining, the clock show becomes considerably more fascinating if you discover its significance and history.

clock tower
clock tower

A stunning piece of workmanship and beauty in use that demands admiration.

Daily tours of the Zytglogge clock tower are offered between April through October, with the exception of Tuesdays and Thursdays. It often only operates on Saturdays during the slow season.

Important information

5. Visit Einstein House (Einsteinhaus)

The Einsteinhaus (Einstein House), which is now a museum, is the official home of Albert Einstein and is situated on Kramgasse No. 49 in Bern. From 1903 to 1905, Einstein resided in Bern and worked on the development of his Theory of Relativity, making him one of the city’s best-known citizens ever.

Albert Einstein’s residence in Bern, where he resided, is open for visits. Finding out about Einstein’s personal life, living arrangements, and the difficulties he encountered along the way was fascinating. It’s quite fascinating that he was labeled a failure at different moments during his journey.

One of the greatest minds in history, Einstein, can be covered in less than an hour. when visiting Bern, an excellent place to stop briefly.

6. Visit the Rose Garden to see the city (Rosengarten)

The Rosengarten is a lovely rose garden situated on a hillside across from an ancient town and the lovely river that rounds the old section of the town. One of Bern’s most stunning parks, it is renowned for the variety of flower species it contains. Locals may arrange to meet, hang out, and engage in outdoor activities there.

The rose garden itself is wonderful, but the incredible views of the city are the true draw. From here, one can view the Aare River encircling the whole city. The greatest observation points from which to see Bern are found at a few distinct locations. Additionally, there is a little café where you may enjoy a coffee while taking in the view. A spot to unwind and take in the scenery.

Naturally, spring and summer when each of the plants is in bloom are the greatest seasons to go to the Rosengarten. It’s a wonderful vantage point to watch the Bern sunset as well.
The charming Restaurant Rosengarten serves delicious meals, or you may bring a picnic and have lunch here. With a huge sun patio and some amazing views, it is fairly priced.

Pay attention to the Einstein bench that is next the restaurant and has a view of the city. One of Bern’s four Einstein benches, now this makes a good backdrop for photos. The Bern Historical Museum/Einstein Museum, which is noted below, houses a second Einstein seat that is prominently displayed.


7. Explore the Bärengraben bears (Bearpit)

You may access Bärengraben, one of Bern’s icons, by crossing the Aare River from the Old Town. Visitors may enjoy seeing some of the cute bears’ behaviors in the room-sized, circular bear pit.

The bear has served as Bern’s sign since according to local mythology, the city’s founder swore to name Bern after the first animal he would hunt. When you go to the bear pit, you may take photographs of the bears as they explore their surroundings and goof about. An enjoyable trip to view the bears in Bern.

Bearpit, Bern
Bearpit, Bern

There are a number of gorgeous pathways in the region of the Pit, and an elevator connects the top and lower floors. From the top, you can see the most.
Byörk, Finn, and their offspring Ursina and Berna are the only bears now kept here. If you’re lucky, you could get a glimpse of them playing combat or enjoying their preferred fruits, melons, and apples. The bears were relaxing in the enclosure’s woodland area when we came. We were able to see them even then, although it took some time.

It’s useful to know that bears hibernate from October to March. Therefore, if you’re in Bern during the winter, the only way to see them is via a webcam.

Hotel Options in Bern

Here are some suggestions for your finest stay in Bern if you’re thinking about staying there:

Premium Range: The Boutique Hotel Belle Epoque is your best option for a relaxing stay in Bern. This four-star hotel is well set in the center of Bern and is housed in a 500-year-old structure in the Old Town, just steps from the Aare River. Beautiful furnishings with plenty of personality and attention to detail.

Medium: The Kreuz Bern Contemporary City Hotel is a good option if you’re visiting Bern with family. It is a trendy hotel located in the historic Old Town. Excellent location, affordable pricing, and spacious room. For one or two days, you have everything you require.

Funds: Although Bern isn’t known as a cheap city, the Bern Backpackers Hotel Glocke is an excellent place to stay nearby. This hostel is situated in a convenient place beside the clock tower in the center of Old Town and offers clean, roomy dormitories and private rooms. a preferred option for budget tourists.

A map showing Bern’s major attractions

We actually made this map of Bern, Switzerland, containing all of the locations and points of interest mostly found in this article, to assist with navigation. Along with the major attractions, we have listed all the fountains, vantage spots, etc.

For your journey to Bern, you may find more valuable details below.

Use of This Map: To zoom in or out, use your mouse or fingers on a computer. For further details of each location, click the icons. For the index, choose the arrow in the upper left corner. The map may be added to your Google Maps account by clicking the star next to the title of the map. Open Google Maps, choose the menu option, and select “Your Places”/”Maps” to view the stored map on your smartphone or computer.

Some Clicks from my favorite View

bridge view, things to do in bern
bridge view
bridge view

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Comment (1)

  • Juliet Elliott Reply

    Hi Abdul
    We are staying g in Geneva and wanting to get the train to bern, would you get tickets before?

    October 21, 2023 at 2:32 pm

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