Arriving at Basel airport was like choosing which exit to leave at a subway station, but this time the options were a lot more fun – our three choices were Switzerland, France or Germany! We were there to explore the Basel part of the border so we swiftly entered into Switzerland. Fun Fact – the city is pronounced “Bah-sal” in German or “Baal” in French – definitely not “Basil” like the famous Faulty Towers character…!
So with just 24 hours to explore this small beautiful city, this is what we got up to…
Brunch at Les Trois Rois
We started the day at one of Europe’s oldest and most beautiful hotels, located right on the banks of the River Rhine.
Sightseeing the Old Town
We explored the Old Town on foot, walking down the winding cobbled roads. It’s great to soak in the atmosphere, but we stopped to see three sites in particular:
Basel Munster – this was one of our favourite buildings to visit in Basel. It’s a stunning cathedral with two towers, red sandstone walls and colourful rooftop tiles. We decided to climb to the top of the tower to see incredible views of the city and Rhine River.
Gate of Spalen – the gateway into the Old Town from the Medieval times. The roads leading up to the gate have cute little shops you can visit (including an amazing Christmas Tree decoration shop open all year round!)
Rathaus Basel-Stadt – an eye-catching red building which is used as the Basel Town Hall even today. Walking around this building gives you a great combination of architecture, art and politics.
The River Rhine
Fondue at Walliser Kanne
Okay, you cannot visit Switzerland without trying the famous Swiss fondue. The ingredients are all of the best; cheese, bread, wine! We went to this famous, highly recommended restaurant in the heart of the Old Town and it was delicious!
Basel was the city of innovative Museums it turned out and we were really spoiled for choice. We opted for “Cartoonmuseum” which is devoted to cartoons, comics and caricatures! They had a special feature on an artist called Jacques Tardi, who specialised on comics during the two world wars. We did our best to interpret the work, with all the blurb was in German/French!
Swiss Chocolate Shop
Switzerland is the home of chocolate, and Basel is no exception! With chocolate shops scattered all over the town, we were spoiled for choice but chose a cute little cafe with a million different types of chocolate and hot-chocolate to choose from. It was delicious!
Andrea Bocelli Concert
We were lucky enough to see one of the great legends live in concert, performing a mixture of classics and new songs from his latest album Si. As much as we loved Bocelli, he brought along a number of supporting acts (all beautiful women!) who were equally – if not more – talented! Overall, great night!
The Bird’s Eye Jazz Club
After dinner at an authentic Italian restaurant (best Burrata ever!), we ended the night at one of the most popular jazz clubs in Europe. We enjoyed listening to some great performers in a small and intimate vibe – too bad the bass player fell asleep at one point! After a few bottles of vino, we were also ready to head to bed by this point.
P.s. Happy Birthday to my mum, whose special day we were celebrating! Hope you had a lovely time xxx