Anne (from the blog Le chien à taches) and I are very lucky girls because thanks to My Little Paris and the Office of Tourism of Switzerland we spent 4 days in Switzerland! During these 4 days we discovered 3 cities : Basel, Zurich and Luzern.
I didn’t really know Anne before, I just saw her few times at some events but that’s it. When I knew I will spend 4 days with her I was really happy to get to know her but at the same time a bit stressed. It’s not easy to go on a weekend with someone you don’t know well, especially when you’re as shy as me.
Well, I can tell you that we got along pretty well, we have so much in common : we are stomaches on legs, we like to sing « Willkommen, bienvenue, welcome », we take pictures of the same things, we are “party girls”, we gaze at every street corner, we don’t choose the right clothes for the occasion (to walk under the rain or in the snow)… Anyway, it was a true pleasure to spend these 4 days with her.
Well I guess you’re not here to read about my life but to know more about our trip so let’s start with Basel, the 1st city we visited.
The city :
I didn’t know Basel or Zurich or Luzern but when I talked with people they all told me that Basel wasn’t the most pretty and interesting city so I wasn’t expecting much. Oh my god people are crazy or they are saying that so they can keep Basel to themselves because it’s maybe the city I loved the most! How can you not fall in love with this charming colorful city, inhabited by bicycles, bordered by historical houses from the XIIIth century, with picturesque paved alleys which invite you to stroll and beautiful fountains standing in the middle of cute squares…
Basel is a human-size city where you can stroll in complete peace and during summer you can even have a bath in the Rhine River safely. The city offers picture-postcard scenery which encourages relaxation.
In a few words, Basel is a must-see jewel!
Isn’t it charming ? It is so clean and cute that it looks like a doll village.
If you want to go from one bank to another go on one of the 4 ferries of the city that are ecological because they don’t consume any energy. How does it work then, do you have to row (that’s the question I asked to our guide actually ah ah ah).
The ferry is linked by a rope to a cable (you can see it on the picture above) and it travels sideway like a crab. It is quite curious when you see it for the 1st time but it’s very practical and fun. If you are not a fun person you can also just take one of the bridges (Boring!).
I would like to thank our Basel guide, she is such a super nice and vibrant woman and so interesting who managed to communicate to us her love for this city. We had the impression that we were with a friend, it really was great!
The culture :
Basel is a culturally rich city which offers a big variety of museums, theaters, open-air cinemas, events like the carnival and international fairs of jewelry, watchmaking and contemporary art. It is located close to the borders of France and Germany which makes it a city open to the whole world (160 nationalities live together in Basel).
For the story when Anne and I were looking for the tram to go to our hotel (or I should say “when Anne was looking for the tram while I was taking pictures”, a girl asked her which tram she had to take to go to Germany. You should have seen Anne’s face!
At the moment you can visit the exhibition of Gauguin at the Fondation Beyeler, a museum in a beautiful building in the middle of the nature where natural light comes in through the big skylights. This way, art can meet nature in total harmony.
The exhibition is very nice and interesting because it tells you more about this fascinating painter in a perpetual quest for a lost earthly paradise. Hurry up, the exhibition ends on the 28th of June 2015!
The museum also houses other works of art from other artists; it’s a very pleasant place.
Fondation Beyeler – Baselstrasse 101, 4125 BASEL
Les Gareçons :
It’s a very cool restaurant where we had lunch outside with our guide, the weather was so nice that we even took off our coats. I was a bit disappointed to not find any typical dishes (I like to eat local dishes when I travel) but the hamburger was absolutly delicious and the desserts too!
Les Gareçons – Badischer Bahnhof, 4058 BASEL
In the evening we finally had the opportunity to eat typical food which is sausage and rosti (dish made of grated potato) in this chic and design restaurant.
Volkshaus – Rebgasse 12-14, 4058 BASEL
The hotel :
I loved a lot our hotel the Krafft Hotel for its design, its wonderful tiles (yes you know my passion /obsession for old tiles now), its location on the banks of the river and the rooms were comfortable, spacious and tastefully decorated. From my room I had a fantastic view!
The breakfast was also very good so no bad points for this hotel. If I come back to Basel I will make sure to go back here.
And do you know what? At the reception they will automatically give you a card to use all the public transports of the city for free!
This hotel bears witness to a distinguished pass because the famous writer Herman Hesse stayed here and even wrote a big part of his book “Steppenwolf”.
Krafft Hotel – Rheingasse 12, 4058 BASEL
Anyway I would really like to come back to Basel during summer, it must be even more magical with all the flowers and I wouldn’t say no to a dive in the Rhine!
Voilà for our first day in Switzerland. For the next episode, take out your rain boots (walking all day long under the rain with sneakers is definitely not a good idea, unless you want a footbath) because Zurich had been much less forgiving with us…
Let me thank again My Little Paris and the Office of Tourism of Switzerland for this amazing trip and Anne for putting up with my forgetfulness and playing the guide to counter my lack of sense of orientation!