Basel Green Travel Guide

Basel: the perfect place for an holiday between art and culture, festivals and traditions that you can experience every year along the streets and squares of this center, the most northerly in Switzerland!
houses and buildings along the river
Basel - Mariano Mantel via Flickr

Basel is the oldest university town in Switzerland, capital of the canton, a city located near the border with France and Germany, along a bend of the river Rhine. In every corner you will experience art and culture: there are museums, sculptures in parks and even graffiti on the walls. A city where ancient traditions coexist with modernity and also where nature lovers will not be disappointed, thanks to the magnificent landscapes surrounding this center.

1. What to see in Basel

a red decorated building with a tower surrounded by other buildings
The Town hall - Márcio Cabral de Moura via Flickr

The historic center of Basel can be easily crossed on foot or by bicycle. Among the many historic buildings to admire you will find the Main Market Square, the Town Hall in red sandstone and richly decorated and the late Romanesque and Gothic cathedral. Along the streets of the center you will find many interesting shops, which will certainly attract your attention!

coloured graffiti on the wall
Graffiti - Rosanna Galvani via Flickr

Basel is defined city of museums; they are about 40, more than in any other Swiss town. Well known and definitely not to be missed are the Kunstmuseum (ancient and modern art), the Museum of the sculptor Jean Tinguely, the Beyeler Fondation and the Museum of Cultures. Even the architecture in this town developed with modernity: an example are the works of Herzog and de Meuron, scattered throughout the city.

the river passing under a wide bridge made of white stone
Rhine River - Rowena via Flickr

The Rhine River which crosses the city is very dear to the people of Basel. On its banks you will meet parks and large green areas, ideal to do some sports or relax in the nature. In summer the river is also perfect for a refreshing dip and a swim! You can also decide to make a boat trip to see the city from the river.

2. Local traditions and celebrations

three people with masks walking and playing an instrument
Carneval masks -

The Basel Carnival is one of the most anticipated events of the year, which attracts many visitors. People work all the year to organize these four days of wild celebration, including traditional costume parades, dances, music and so many goodies to be enjoyed. The city is also well known for its Christmas markets, the largest in Switzerland, perfect to dip yourself in a magical atmosphere. The two main squares, Barfüsserplatz and Münsterplatz are filled with colored lights and perfumes thanks to the many stalls that you absolutely have to visit!

3. Basel and surroundings


people enjoying the sunset in a field
Laufental -

The area around Basel is a paradise for lovers of hiking, bike and nature. Hills of Baloise Jura, the vast plateaus and verdant Laufental in the south, is crossed by numerous paths, well-marked, perfect for long walks through woods, meadows and fields. Here you can dip yourself in the quiet of small villages inhabited by farmers and taste genuine local products.

4. Traditional Flavors

different types of bread
Bread in Basel - Jennifer Woodard Madera via Flickr

Carnival is not only one of the most waited events in Basel, it is also a time when you can taste some of the typical dishes of this Region. In this particular period you can taste the Basel flour soup, accompanied by local cheese and onion pie. Not to be missed are also the Läckerli, small cookies made with honey and covered with icing. Typical autumn candy are Massmogge, colored sugar filled with hazelnuts. Switzerland is also known for the many varieties of bread that are baked daily by skilled bakers. In Basel you will find golden and crispy loaves, seasoned with different varieties of seeds .

5. Where to sleep in Basel and surroundings

two people with a bike standing in a crowded square
City centre - Jennifer Woodard Maderazo

During your holidays in Basel you will find many solutions for a green stay! Comfortable hotels, B&B or apartments, taking care and respecting the environment, supporting the local economy and enhanceing their territory.

Discover all eco-friendly accommodations of Basel


Author: Anita Cason

Cover Image: Messe Basel - Herzog & de Meuron, Andreina Schoeberlein via Flickr

Eco-friendly accommodations

Lebensgarten Erdweg

Freiburg (Baden-Württemberg)

Starting from 38,00 €
Hotel EDEN im Park

Rheinfelden (Aargau)

Starting from 287,00 €
Hotel Schützen Rheinfelden

Rheinfelden (Aargau)

Starting from 143,00 €
Hotel Schiff am Rhein

Rheinfelden (Aargau)

Starting from 146,00 €