Are you planning a visit to the Switzerland capital Bern and looking for places to visit in Bern in one day? Bern the beautiful Swiss capital is brimming with life and history. The city of Bern enchants visitors with its well-preserved medieval architecture set along the Aare river with a gorgeous backdrop of Alpine views. The old town Bern is close to the train station so it is quite easy to explore Bern on foot so one day in Bern is good enough. Bern is a couple hour train journey from Geneva and around an hour from Zurich so makes it easy to visit on a day trip.
Top Attractions Bern Old Town
The post lists you information on what to do in Bern in one day. So here we go with the list:
Around 5 minutes walk from the train station is the large square Barenplatz that hosted a colorful market with ample variety of goods from food, flowers, and clothes. This market right in the heart of the city is believed to be satiating the shopping spree of Bernese for more than a century. Read More on markets here.
The Prison Tower (Kafigturm)
Barenplatz is dominated by 400 years old medieval tower, which stands in the place of a previously demolished prison tower. The tower also served as a watchtower and signal tower today hosts political exhibitions and discussion and is open to the public interested in political history.
It was a sunny day but as it snowed all night the whole city was washed white and breathed of fresh chilled air.
The clock tower is the iconic landmark of Bern and on top of things to do in Bern in one day. It is one of the oldest clocks in Switzerland and dates back to the 13th century. Four minutes before the hour the vibrant medieval figures turn and twirl around followed by chimes and loud applause from the crowd of tourists waiting for the show. One can climb up to the top of the tower for the best views of the city.
City of Fountains
Continue onto the same street along with the clock tower for gorgeous fountains all along the street. The elaborate fountains with intriguing and vividly colored figures and columns lining up the street depict the historical events from the Middle Ages. Bern has over 100 fountains, eleven of which are of great historical importance and date back to the mid-16th century. And all of them have potable water reserves.
Einstein House (Einsteinhaus)
Visit the Einstein house located in the center of the Old City a few hundred meters from the Clock Tower (Zytglogge). The second floor of the residence houses Einstein Museum Bern featuring furnishings and photos from the period Einstein stayed there with his family. The third floor has a film, which provides an insight into the life of Albert Einstein.
The gothic style building with exquisite facade is the seat of the cantonal government and is not open to the public.
Bern Cathedral (Berner Munster)
The medieval gothic style Cathedral has the highest church tower, beautiful stained glass windows and a remarkable main door portal with elegant carvings depicting the Last Judgment. The magnificent church is one of the popular places to visit in Bern in one day.
One can climb 344 steps up to the cathedral tower for magnificent views of the city roofs and the snow-capped mountains. Stroll around the park adjacent to the church for some of the best views of the city and the Aare River.
Parliament Building (Federal Palace of Switzerland)
The Parliament Building is the seat of the Swiss government and is open to the public when sessions are not taking place. A visit to the domed hall and debating chambers for would walk one through the history and the working of the Parliament. The Parliament square hosts a traditional weekly market and an ice rink for kids in winter. The parliament stands at the edge of Aare valleys and provides with best views over the Aare River and the Alps.
The cobblestone streets of the Bern Old Town are lined with arcades which Bernese call as the “Lauben” and are a great place for shopping for all seasons. One can find all kind of shops from brand shops, boutiques, traditional markets, antique shops, and shopping malls. Or choose to shop in one of the flea markets, artisan market or produce markets.
Things to do in Bern with Kids
If you are looking for activities that are must do in Bern with kids then you may want to visit the historical museum or the bear park or spend some relaxed time in one of the gardens. These attractions are not very far from the Bern Old Town. They are just 5 minutes bus ride from the popular Bern Old Town landmark Zytglogge.
Bern Historical Museum
Visit the historical museum for a walk through the historic and prehistoric times with exhibits from Stone Age to the present age. Visit the Einstein Museum and attend the animated films hosted for an understanding of the life and work of Albert Einstein.
Bern Bear Park (Barengraben)
The Bern bear park must make to the list of things to see in Bern in one day. The two residents of Bern bear park Bjork and Finn can be found frolicking along the Aare Riverside which fills the spectators with delight. The park has several walking paths along the river and is great for relaxed family time.
Rose Garden (Rosengarten)
The Rose Garden originally a cemetery is home to hundreds of variety of flowers mainly roses, irises, and rhododendrons. The garden houses a large pond, a restaurant and is a great place to relax.
Day Trips from Bern
If you have more than one day in Bern then plan a day trip to one of the beautiful places in Switzerland close to its capital Bern. Bern makes for a perfect base to explore major Swiss cities like Zurich, Basel, and Interlaken. Check out our posts on day trips from Bern and if you are looking for more on Switzerland here are 10 best places to visit in Switzerland.
Hope this post helps you with what to see in Bern in one day. Visiting Bern in winter when the city was covered in sparkling snow was one of our memorable trips etched on our mind forever. Have you visited Bern? What did you like the most about Bern? Share with us your travel experiences in comments.
Where to Stay in Bern?
The Swiss capital has a plenitude of accommodation options from hostels, luxury hotels to apartments located around the city center.
Bern Backpackers Hotel Glocke
Hotel Glocke is located in a historic building at a walkable distance from popular Bern attraction Zytglogge Tower. The hotel offers free WiFi and a fully equipped kitchen.
Best Western Hotel Bern
Best Western Hotel is only a 5-minute walk from Bern Train Station and a couple of minutes walk from the famous Bern attraction Zytglogge. The hotel is located in an Art Nouveau building comes with free Wi-Fi and free public transportation pass for the city of Bern.
Belle Epoque Boutique Hotel
Belle Epoque Boutique Hotel is located in a historic 500-year-old building in the Bern Old Town close to the Aare River and about 7-minute walk away from Bear Park (Barengraben). The rooms come with free wifi and guests benefit from free public transport in Bern.
Hotel Bellevue Palace Bern
The Hotel Bellevue Palace is located in a traditional Art Nouveau building and is a couple of minutes walk from the Swiss Parliament and about 5-minutes walk from the popular Bern Cathedral. The hotel offers free wifi and free public transport in Bern and includes a sauna and a fitness center.
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