Au crossroads of Switzerland, France and Germany, Basel is an essential cultural place. But she's more than that. As it is difficult to summarize, let us dare a parallel with its most famous ambassador: The Baslois Roger Federer. This is often described as "aesthetic". With a natural elegance, it has a very large register, it has the particularity of being good on all the land and throughout the year… Like him, his city is almost unanimous thanks to his eclecticism and personality. It is appreciated by classical art or architecture lovers as modernity enthusiasts. It has a rich current throughout the year on very different terrain: Arts, Sports (Tournament)indoor tennis in late October), festivities (carnival, fairs, etc.). Like its champion, Basel's international recognition does not make it a pretentious city, it remains accessible, simple and pleasant.
A unique cultural density
Let's not be afraid of words, Basel has an unequaled cultural offer for a city of about 200,000 inhabitants. Art is present everywhere, with forty museums, outdoor works of renowned artists such as the sculptures of Rodin or the fountains of Tinguely or Niki de Saint Phalle, or with architectural achievements among the most illustrious… When you are told about museums, difficult to be exhaustive, but there are for all tastes with themes as varied as toys, musical instruments, stationery, pharmacy… But Basel is known worldwide for its classical and modern art museums.
The first essential is the Fondation Beyeler which deserves a visit. So to the northeast of the city, take the tram for twenty minutes to go to the charming village of Riehen. There are three museums, including the Fondation Beyeler designed by architect Renzo Piano. Exhibited works are signed by artists you know: Monet, Cézanne, Van Gogh, Picasso, Warhol or Bacon. These paintings come together with original artifacts from Africa, Oceania and Alaska. Another essential visit: the Kunstmuseum, world famous by connoisseurs. There is also a remarkable collection in quantity and quality, so much so that its walls have become too narrow to accommodate the 3,000 works. More than three hundred carefully selected exhibitors make Art Basel the largest ephemeral museum in the world. Connoisseurs will continue to the Kunsthalle Museum and the Tinguely Museum. Designed by the architect Tessinois Mario Botta, he hosts the largest ensemble of works by Jean Tinguely, one of the most innovative Swiss artists in the twentieth century, known especially for his mechanical fountains. In another register, do not hesitate to make a detour by the Vitra Design Museum which is one of the world's most famous design museums. Located in the neighboring German town of Weil-am-Rhein, it is also known for its original architecture in the form of cubes that are built. There are internationally renowned architectural buildings such as Frank Gehry, Herzog & de Meuron and Zaha Hadid.
The Charm of Traditional Basel
Visitors will notice the meaning of innovation, very present in the city, through its buildings. Nearly one third of Pritzker's Pritzker Prize holders have already demonstrated their talent in Basel. If modernism has its place, the balance is due to the historical history of the city. You can even go back to the time of the Romans by visiting (a few kilometers from the city center) at the superb site of Augusta Raurica, with its theater and the largest treasure treasure of the end of antiquity.
Simply walk on the left bank of the Rhine to enjoy the charms of a medieval city. The cathedral, in the red sandstone of the Vosges, remains the emblem of the city with its blend of Romanesque and Gothic style. It overlooks a terrace where you enjoy staying to admire the Rhine and see in the distance the Black Forest.
The other flagship building is the elegant city hall with colorful red tiles and rich decorations. But the most unsettling is likely to be lost in the lanes of typical buildings to the carefully painted parts, stroll through idyllic courses where time has suspended, or climb steep slopes to override the city… For example, mount Bruderholz Hill, a green lung with beautiful views of Basel, or visit the typical Saint-Alban district. You will be able to walk along the 202 fountains of the city, as well as a pleasant and pleasant atmosphere. Finally, to give you another look on Basel, take a ferry and walk along the right bank of the Rhine. Relax at night on the well-exposed terraces along the docks. Enjoy the view over the high city and the majestic river where the Basins enjoy swimming from the «Badhysli» (furnished bathrooms) and even directly into the Rhine. The Tinguely Museum, on the shore of small Basel, is the favorite place for diving in the river.
Your program will already be busy, but try to enjoy the many Basel animations! Why not come back for example for the famous carnival or to shop in the chalets of the largest Christmas market in Switzerland? Music lovers will also find their happiness: This spring takes place the traditional Basel jazz festival, known well beyond the city's borders. Every autumn since 1986, the greatest names of the international music scene come to the Baloise Session. In the intimate atmosphere of the small rooms, the greatest artists, singers, songwriters and composers from pop, soul, rock, Latin scene, blues, R & B or contemporary jazz produce it and make unforgettable moments. With such a choice of activities, just enter the dance and fill out his ball book!
When is it? For great art lovers, you can advise in mid-June to visit Art Basel. For others, all seasons are suitable, depending on the many sports and cultural events.
Go there. By plane, train or car (via highway A 35/E 60).
BASEL STATIONS - More information on the site
BASEL-MULHOUSE AIRPORT - More information on the site
Useful. To prepare his getaway best.
BASEL TOURISM OFFICE - More information on the site