Weekend getaway in Basel
This central European city is both a great weekend getaway for those who live near and a good entry point to Switzerland and the surrounding areas for first-time visitors to Europe. Basel is an orderly place with buildings as old as the hills, but also great modernist and contemporary architecture. Lots of the houses are marked with their construction date and it’s amazing to marvel at how lovely they still are, hanging in there from 1100.
I love visiting Basel in the summer when the weather is balmy and kids and grown-ups alike wear their swimming suits and go for a dip in the Rhine. It’s actually quite cool to do as the locals do and jump in! I can’t find a better way to get a full glimpse of the city while the water is carrying you away. Fish balloons for clothes and essentials are recommended.
Oh the Rhine, it must be one of the most iconic European rivers after the Seine and the Danube. Each bank has its own character as you will soon come to realise if you walk around a bit. In this sense this is not only a river but a border, separating Large Basel from Small Basel. A long time ago there was even some rivalry between these two parts of the city, with highbrow Gross Basel people smirking at their Kleinbasel neighbours for being
A great way to explore is to start from the Munsterplaz on the hill, on the Gross Basel side. Get some breakfast in Zum Isaak. Soak in the lovely view from the Pfalz and then take the little boat which will carry you to the other bank. This is the Klein Basel side where the look and feel is slightly more “Berlin”. This is my favourite part of Basel, home to amazing museums (namely the Tinguely and the Beyeler Foundation – both not to be missed) and great little coffee shops such as the Hirscheneck, an anarchist collective that serves the best hot chocolate in town
Where to sleep
It's difficult to think a hippest hotel than Nomad, situated very close the Fine Arts Museum
Where to drink coffee
As the name implies this space was once a factory Turbinehaus
Where to eat and drink
What not to miss
Where to shop
Don't miss out on Soeder* which stocks amazing locally designed and mostly made in the EU products such as apparel, beauty and home. Almost next door you will find Street Files which stocks the best sportswear in town including Sandqvist bags and Braun watches. Everything in Viu screams fashion, from the cool frames designed by Swiss and German talent to the achingly minimal interior with the warm wood and white tiles.
Click here to check my personalised map with all the information on Basel