Where can I find a beautiful view in Bern to take souvenir photos or enjoy the sunset? We know the five best spots for breathtaking panoramic views of the city’s rooftops and the peaks of the Bernese Oberland.
#1 The Gurten
Standing on the grating at the top of the 23-metre observation tower on the Gurten might cause some shaky knees, even if you’re not normally afraid of heights. But you are rewarded with a fantastic 360° view of nearby Schliern, Köniz and Bern and across the Swiss Mittelland region all the way to the Jura mountains and to the famous peaks of Eiger, Mönch, and Jungfrau. Whether you take the red Gurtenbahn (funicular), go on foot or by bike: a trip to our local mountain is always worth it – and not just because of the view. Let out your inner child on the playground: operate the popular giant ball path, climb around on the large wooden structure and whizz down the slides to your heart’s content. Then find a quiet spot on the big meadow and enjoy a relaxing picnic.
Off to the Gurten
#2 The Bern Minster
Did you know that the steeple of the Bern Minster is the highest steeple in all of Switzerland? And just like most late medieval churches, it doesn’t have an elevator, and climbing the 312 steps to the top is not an easy feat. We think it’s the perfect opportunity to do some cardio – the spectacular view from the top is definitely worth the sweat. The rooftops of the charming houses of Bern’s Old City, the hills of the Bernese Mittelland and the peaks of the mountains Eiger, Mönch, and Jungfrau – when the weather is clear, you get everything you could wish for in a view. Our tip: Once you get back down, go around the Minster to its terrace to get a once-in-a-lifetime view of the turquoise Aare river and the historic Kirchenfeld bridge.
Head Up the Minster
#3 Rooftop Bars
Reach for the stars at Attika Bar at the top of the Hotel Bern or on the Sky Terrace of the Hotel Schweizerhof Bern & Spa with its 360° panoramic view. The two rooftop terraces are situated in the heart of the city – you will have a beautiful view of Bern and see the Parliament Building from an unusual perspective: it towers above the roofs of Bern’s Old City with the peaks of Eiger, Mönch and Jungfrau as its backdrop. Relax in the big, comfortable lounge cushions, order a freshly mixed “Gin Gin Mule”, one of the Schweizerhof’s signature drinks, or Attika Bar’s surprise drink “566 (M.ü.M.)”, accompanied by a hors d’oeuvres platter, and toast to the gorgeous view. Cheers!
TO THE FIVE-STAR VIEW
#4 The Zytglogge (Clock Tower)
130 steps lead to the top of this famous Bernese monument, past two gilded bells that used to regulate the inhabitants’ daily schedules by chiming quarter-hourly and on the hour – the clock face on the tower’s exterior wall wasn’t added until much later. Visiting the Zytglogge (Clock Tower) is a must for tourists, not only because of the massive bells and ancient mechanical clockwork. Once you get to the top, you should peer through the little windows: the view of the streets and rooftops of Bern’s Old City is absolutely charming. If you take a closer look, you’ll be able to spot quaint rooftop terraces with colourful flowerpots and lanterns. And if you’re up for a challenge, you can try counting all the chimneys!
TO THE ZYTGLOGGE (CLOCK TOWER)
#5 The Rosengarten (Rose Garden)
The Rosengarten is one of the city’s most popular places when it comes to great views. From here, you can see Bern’s most beautiful features: from the Old City, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and the Aare river that flows around it to attractions like the Parliament Building and the Bern Minster, and of course Bern’s local mountain, the Gurten. How to best enjoy the gorgeous view? Meet up with some friends, sit on the long wall, sip refreshing Bernese beers (Brauerei Felsenau’s “Bärner Müntschi”, for example) and enjoy the ambiance. Or how about a delicious Raclette al fresco? It’s as easy as can be: Pick up a Raclette backpack (filled with everything you need for some cheesy goodness) at Restaurant Lötschberg on 16 Zeughausgasse and then head to The Rosengarten.
TO THE ROSENGARTEN
Where to find the 5 best panoramic views in Bern
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