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Things to do in

Bern

With its medieval old town, oriental hammam, and proximity to the Alps, the Swiss capital caters to all.

Our most recommended things to do in Bern

Bern: Zytglogge - Tour through the Clock Tower

1. Bern: Zytglogge - Tour through the Clock Tower

Conceived in the 1300s, the clock tower is one of the remainders of Bern's first city walls. For over 600 years, the clock has struck on the hour. Inside, time seems to stand still and cool solitude awaits. The reliable ticks of the Middle Age technology impart a steadiness to visitors. Approximately 130 steps to the top of the spiral staircase lead you to a lookout platform. From here, see the roofs of the old city and maybe even the Alps. Visit the clockwork with your guide and follow the puppet show step by step until the famous rooster crows.

Bern: 90-Minute Stroll Through the Old Town

2. Bern: 90-Minute Stroll Through the Old Town

On this 90-minute stroll through Bern’s Old Town, your local guide will tell you about the city‘s 8 centuries of history. On rainy days, you can still enjoy this atmospheric area, as the arcades provide shelter. Admire the late Gothic Cathedral (Münster) with its stunning portal and rendering of the Last Judgment. See the 13th-century Clock Tower (Zytglogge), where you can watch the fascinating show that happens on the hour. Who knows, you might even meet up with a member of the Federal Council in front of the Parliament building! Come along and discover the charms of the Swiss capital and this UNESCO World Heritage Site on a pleasant and leisurely walk.

Swiss Travel Pass: Unlimited Travel on Train, Bus & Boat

3. Swiss Travel Pass: Unlimited Travel on Train, Bus & Boat

The Swiss Travel Pass is a must-have for any traveler to Switzerland. You can enjoy unlimited access by public train, bus, and boat to over 90 cities and towns and benefit from free entrance to 500+ museums, discounted city tours, and access to private and scenic trains with a pre-requisite seat reservation. There are two broad types of Swiss Travel Pass: Continuous and Flexi, with an option to choose from 3, 4, 8, and 15 days. Apart from it being an ‘all-in-one’ pass which allows a traveler to access all modes of public transportation within the country, it also offers numerous other benefits on the mountain excursions. So be it the adventurous, the avid or the leisure traveler, you will have the chance to make the most of your Switzerland Travel Pass.

Bern: Tour with iPod Audio Guide

4. Bern: Tour with iPod Audio Guide

The iPod audio guide is a kind of personal tour guide. It will lead you through the city, to Bern's most beautiful spots and tell you everything you need to know about this UNESCO World Heritage Site through words and pictures. Enjoy this small multimedia experience and discover Bern in a unique way. Choose from two organized routes. Precise directions will lead you directly to the landmarks, while music by famous artists from Bern provide the soundtrack to your tour. This way of touring presents an all-encompassing experience of the Swiss capital; experience the real characteristics of Bern. Begin the tour at any time you choose and take breaks whenever you want. Follow the outlined routes or pick specific sights you want to see. The iPod Audio Guide is available from Bern Tourismus — the Tourist Information Center at Bahnhof Bern — and at Bärenpark. Leave a deposit, rent an audio guide and return it later.

Bern: Private 42-Minute Swiss Alps Helicopter Flight

5. Bern: Private 42-Minute Swiss Alps Helicopter Flight

Meet the friendly staff at Bern-Belp airport. After a short safety briefing, you will take a seat in the helicopter. The next 42 minutes will go by quickly as you experience a thrilling helicopter flight over the Bernese Alps and the Eiger, Monch, and Jungfrau mountains. The helicopter will fly you close to the Eiger North Face and past the Jungfraujoch with its impressive Sphinx. After a safe landing back at Bern airport, you will receive a souvenir. You will also be able to download pictures from your flight without any extra costs.

Bern: City Sightseeing Self-Guided Walking Tour Game

6. Bern: City Sightseeing Self-Guided Walking Tour Game

Get to know the beautiful old town of Bern at your own pace on this interactive scavenger hunt walking tour. You'll explore the city on foot and get points for solving different types of tasks: Find sights: You will use hints to find the best sights and hidden gems throughout the city. The map function in the app will help you get there. Solve questions: Once you’ve arrived at the place you’re looking for, you’ll be asked questions about the sight. Most of the time, the answers are hidden in signs, pictures, etc. A great and fun way to learn new things about the city. Have fun: During the adventure you can also expect exciting photo tasks that require a lot of creativity. If you master the snapshots, you will be rewarded with points. Along the way, you’ll reach amazing places like the "Bundeshaus", "Zytglogge", "Rathaus" and many more! After you book the game, you’ll get a game code via email with instructions on how to play. Head to the “ Käfigturm” and use the code to unlock the game in the app. The tour ends at the “Bärenpark”. The experience is not limited in time. You can explore the city at your own pace and take breaks. Just download the Explorial-App, go to the starting point, and you’re ready to start with the game. The tour lasts on average about 1-2 hours.

Bern Highlights Self-Guided Scavenger Hunt and City Tour

7. Bern Highlights Self-Guided Scavenger Hunt and City Tour

Solve riddles and find clues on a self-guided scavenger hunt and walking tour through Bern. Using a tour app on your phone, explore the sights of Bern at your own pace, starting and stopping whenever and wherever you want. After downloading the app onto your phone (instructions received via email after booking), set out on an adventure that will take you to 10 attractions in Bern by using integrated maps. As you explore, solve a location-based riddle at each attraction and unlock the next location you need to visit. The app includes facts and information about each location you stop at, so you'll gain local know-how about the city. Put your skills to the text and work as a team and use logic, imagination, observation, and problem solving to make your way around the city. Along the way, you can stop for a coffee, lunch, or a break at any time. Start your tour at the Church of the Holy Spirit, Switzerland's largest Protestant church! Visit the Swiss Parliament House, the home of the Republic in Bern. Photograph the Käfigturm while learning about its history and admire the Stadttheater Bern with its excellent acoustics. Then the Old City of Berne looks like something out of a fairy tale, don't forget to take pictures. The Zähringerbrunnen will leave you speechless with its beauty. Admire the City Hall with its heavy symbolism! The Nydeggkirche is worth your time and phone memory for its beautiful architecture, while the Cathedral of Bern, the impressive Gothic church will be another addition to your indelible memory. The icing on the cake of this unique tour will be the Bernisches Historisches Museum / Einstein Museum with its endless exhibits.

Bern: Hammam and Spa Admission

8. Bern: Hammam and Spa Admission

The Bernese Hammam has been installed in a former building which was home of one of the first Gas boiler in Switzerland, an octagonal building. The oriental spa represents the latest magnificent manifestation of a tradition spanning two millennia. Enjoy a unique bathing experience across four floors.  The bathing ritual is based on the gradual warming up and cleansing of the body and follows a fixed course. Begin with the so-called "pestemal", a cotton cloth that binds to the body. In the first herbal steam room , Sogukluk, feel your body being warmed to 38 degrees Celcius.  In the second room, Kese, your body is scrubbed with a rough glove to remove dead skin cells.  "Sicaklik" is the central room in the middle of the octagon with the warm relaxation bath.  After the bath, the next step is the steam room. In the "Bingül" your pores open to the hot herbal steam at 48° Celcius. In the fifth room, "Lif", the second exfoliation with soap takes place. On a big warmed umbilical stone let your body relax and dive into the comfort of the hammam.

From Zurich/Lucerne: Berne Capital and Countryside Day-Trip

9. From Zurich/Lucerne: Berne Capital and Countryside Day-Trip

Enjoy a small group tour of the Swiss capital of Berne, with round-trip transfers by air-conditioned minibus from either Zurich or Lucerne. Drive along scenic roads through stunning landscapes, and get a flavor of the rural highlights of the Entlebuch Valley (Switzerland's first UNESCO Biosphere) and Emmental Valley. See some of the many farms scattered across the pristine moors and Alpine pastures. Cross the border to the idyllic Emmental Valley to reach Trubschachen. Here, enjoy a biscuit tasting at the Kambly Experience and discover the origins of Switzerland's best-known premium biscuit brand. Learn the fine art of biscuit making and watch master confectioners at work. Indulge in the unique flavors of Kambly's biscuits, tasting as many of the tantalizing varieties as you like. Continue through typical Bernese back country en route to the capital. Upon arrival in Berne, burn off some calories on an informative walking tour of the charming Old Town. Marvel at the late Gothic architecture of the cathedral (Münster). Stroll under characteristic arcades to the Zytglogge (Clock Tower). Pay a visit to the Parliament building overlooking the beautiful River Aare. Then, enjoy some time at leisure for lunch (not included) and some souvenir shopping. Continue in the afternoon through the fascinating rural landscapes of the Emmental Valley. Admire the vast roofs that shelter prosperous Emmental farmhouses. Glory in the red of the geraniums in their windows. See grazing cows on green hills producing the best milk; the principal ingredient for Emmental cheese. Stop at the Emmentaler show dairy for the highlight of the day. Tour the show dairy on the audio-visual "King's Way" and learn more about the history of the world's most famous cheese. Marvel at the gigantic wheels of cheese in the impressive cellar before indulging your senses during a cheese tasting only an arm's length away from the master cheesemaker's workplace. Take a picture stop with amazing views over the gentle green hills of the Emmental to the triple peaks of Eiger, Mönch and Jungfrau. After, drive back with a goodie bag full of Swiss delicacies collected at the visited attractions throughout the day.

From Zürich: Glacier Express Train Round-Trip Private Tour

10. From Zürich: Glacier Express Train Round-Trip Private Tour

Travel on the worldwide known Glacier-Express-Train with a private guide. Enjoy a round trip by train and spend four hours on the panoramic coach from Chur to Brig, crossing 291 bridges, passing 91 tunnels, and climbing up to approximately 7000 feet (2033m) above sea level by train. Experience travel on the Glacier-Express while passing spectacular valleys and mountains. According to your preferences, a short walk around in Chur or Brig can take place (while transfer times to/from Glacier Express). Your guide will show you the changing landscape, answer your questions about the country and its people, and show you a few places away from the tourist flow.

Frequently asked questions about Bern

What top attractions are a must-see in Bern?

What are the best day trips and excursions from Bern?

The best day trips and excursions from Bern are:

Interlaken

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Other Sightseeing Options in Bern

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What people are saying about Bern

Overall rating

4.5 / 5

based on 499 reviews

We had a great time and learned a lot along the way. A great quick tour to show you what you need to see. The town is beautiful. The tour guide was very helpful and knowledgeable. I would highly recommend this tour.

Easy purchase-validation process! Just take a screenshot of the barcode of the pass and the train regulators will scan it :)

We were easily able to travel around all of Switzerland on trains, trams, busses and boats. Great value!

Oliver was amazing and informative. Very professional. Would highly recommend

Had a fantastic trip. Very easy to get on the bus, boat or train.