In the heart of Switzerland lies its beautiful capital – Bern. Notoriously famous for retaining the historical features of Swiss culture and preserving medieval architecture, the Old City of Bern is a must-visit UNESCO world heritage site. You can explore medieval touches all over the city in the historic towers, narrow streets, sandstone facades, and elaborate water fountains.
While visiting Bern, you will find many bars, boutique stores, restaurants, and shops elucidating the old-world charm. The plazas of the city host weekly colorful markets for its visitors.
Bern is a wonderful gateway to the Alps as well and offers easy road connections with many cities in Europe. This central location makes Bern a perfect place for exploring Switzerland and much of Europe!
If you are planning on visiting Switzerland, nothing will beat staying in the capital because you will have access to the stunning landscapes as well as the vibrancy of a metropolitan city.
In this post, we cover the top 12 best places to stay in Bern to make the most of your trip to this Swiss paradise!
TIP: For traveling in Switzerland we highly recommend purchasing the Swiss Travel Pass which offers unlimited travel by train, bus & boat in more than 41 cities along with a 50% discount at many of the top mountain destinations. This pass will end up saving you a lot of money on your trip. Get the Swiss pass here!
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Best Places to Stay in Bern:
Hotel Schweizerhof is one of the best 5-star hotels in Bern and has been welcoming guests since 1859. The hotel’s interior is so chic yet comfy to make you feel at home here in Bern!
Hotel Schweizerhof Bern & Spa is located in the heart of Old Town and is regarded as one of the most magnificent places to stay in the capital. This luxury hotel focuses on providing an upscale experience to its guests and holds the title of having the top spa in the city for relaxing & rejuvenating.
Schweizerhof Bern & Spa has a total of 99 rooms and suites, each of which is elegantly furnished for a wonderful home-away-from-home feeling during the stay.
The lobby of the hotel has a lounge bar serving light meals and cocktails, while the sky terrace provides you with breathtaking views of Bern that you can enjoy while you indulge in delicious food prepared by culinary experts.
The Best Western Plus Hotel Bern is conveniently located in the center of Old Town just a few minutes away from the Bern train station.
The hotel has a grand historic facade with a stunning, modern interior. The rooms have been recently renovated and upgraded with all the necessary amenities for a comfortable stay.
The hotel provides its guests with an excellent starting point for their Switzerland trips. From here you can easily visit tons of tourist attractions and interesting downtown Bern buildings from medieval times.
The hotel’s Volkshaus 1914 restaurant and bar has excellent views of the city and provides delicious traditional dishes with locally produced ingredients.
The restaurant has a very stylish ambiance and is open all day. It also hosts a breakfast buffet in the mornings so you can start your day off right!
The Bellevue Palace Bern is a grand hotel that is the official guesthouse of diplomats, movie stars, and famous people traveling to Bern. It radiates history from the past 150 years and provides its guests with a luxurious ambiance and breathtaking views of the Bernese Oberland region.
The lobby of the hotel is a very sociable place to meet up with other travelers and have a chat over drinks and snacks. The Brasserie VUE provides its guests with a very chic French atmosphere and allows you to enjoy a modern take on the traditional dishes from the Brasserie cuisine.
The legendary bar in Bellevue is famous for connecting people from all over the world. The rooms and the suites of the hotel are filled with grand furniture, and views of the impressive Bernese Alps can be seen from most of the hotel’s windows.
Bellevue Palace also provides its guests with a Finnish sauna and state-of-the-art gym where you can relax and let the day melt away! All in all, this is one of the best hotels in Bern for a luxurious stay!
Moxy Bern Expo is famous for providing its guests and visitors with a lot of shopping and entertainment possibilities. The entire place has a very fun, modern vibe to it and is famous for having the best event arena in Switzerland!
The expo has 130 rooms, which are loft-inspired and filled with modern conveniences. Moxy allows its visitors to bring pets that can easily stay with them on the hotel premises. The hotel provides onsite parking as well.
In the mornings you can enjoy the relaxed breakfast bar to satisfy your daily caffeine intake or indulge in several continental breakfast options. The hotel also has a fitness center where you can catch up on your workout routine while traveling.
The entire space is constructed and decorated in such a way that each spot lets you have Instagram-worthy pictures!
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One Suite Hotel – Zollhaus has to be one of the most unique and extraordinary hotels in Bern! Situated on the historical Nydeggbrücke bridge, this small boutique hotel provides easy access to visiting all the major attractions in the city including the waterfront Bear Park so you can literally sleep ‘next to the bears‘.
The boutique suite of Zollhaus is equipped with modern furniture and plenty of common spaces where you can sit, relax and take in the views of the Old Town of Bern and the Aare River. The private terrace is a great spot for enjoying stunning sunsets at the end of the day.
The One Suite Hotel – Zollhaus provides its guests with home-brewed beer, a friendly atmosphere, and spectacular views that can be experienced in the Altes Tramdepot restaurant.
If you are more inclined towards wine and fine dining, then Klösterli Weincafe offers 120 exquisite wines along with a delicious cheese selection and dried meat varieties. Overall, Zollhaus is a great place to stay for a romantic getaway for two!
If you want to explore the picturesque medieval squares and narrow streets of Bern, then Swissôtel Kursaal Bern is where you’ll want to stay.
The 4-star hotel is an excellent choice for any type of guest. Whether you are there for a business trip or a leisure trip, Swissotel Kursaal has everything to keep you entertained!
The hotel provides a direct connection to public transport and offers onsite parking & charging stations for electric cars. The rooms and suites in the hotel have modern furnishing and a calming, quiet atmosphere.
Swissotel Kursaal has several restaurants, including a garden restaurant and lounges with a variety of delicious dishes to choose from for every type of meal. The hotel has a gym too, which is fully equipped and gives its attendees the option of hiring a personal trainer.
Additionally, there are bicycles provided by the hotel, which you can use to ride around the city’s bike paths and explore all the major attractions without worrying about parking.
Hotel Jardin Bern is a family-owned hotel on the outskirts of the Bern city center. The hotel has been recently renovated and has all the amenities you could ask for a cozy and comfortable stay!
The hotel is situated in a very calm and quiet location. The rooms have been set up to minimize any audible distractions and to match up with the atmosphere of the serene surroundings.
The hotel provides its guests with a complimentary breakfast buffet in the mornings to fuel up before heading out to explore for the day. There isn’t an on-site restaurant, but guests can enjoy their meals at various eating spots within a short walking distance from the hotel.
One thing which sets Hotel Jardin apart from other Bern accommodations is that they provide you with bicycle rentals and a free ‘Bern Ticket’ which you can use on local public transportation until noon.
Regarded as ‘your home in Bern’, Hotel Bären am Bundesplatz is located in the center of the city only two minutes away from the main train station. Hotel Baren has been around for the past 170 years and is known for providing welcoming hospitality and friendly, helpful staff.
The lobby of the hotel is a great place to relax in between exploring the town. You can enjoy a cup of coffee while reading a newspaper or a glass of wine or beer at the end of the day.
The hotel has more than 60 rooms which are beautifully furnished with all the necessities. Along with that, you can also use the available amenities including the fitness room, laundry facilities, and ironing station.
The reception also provides its guests with free drinks. Hotel Bären am Bundesplatz is counted as one of the best budget-friendly hotels in Bern, providing outstanding service and experience!
9. The Bristol
The Bristol is one of the most relaxing and heartwarming hotels to stay at in Bern. This hotel has a very cozy atmosphere with a bit of a British feel to it.
The hotel rooms are intensively cleaned before each stay and provide guests with a comfortable place to rest after sightseeing.
The Bristol lounge is very much inspired by British cuisine. The lounge offers the infamous 5 o’clock tea, drinks, and a very hearty breakfast to all its guests.
There is also a gym present in the hotel, or you can head on a quick run along the beautiful jogging routes located just steps from the hotel’s doors. The Bristol also provides its guests with free bicycles so you can explore the nearby attractions around the Old Town.
10. Hotel La Pergola
This three-star budget hotel has a very homey and charming atmosphere. Hotel La Pergola has several spacious rooms designed to accommodate every traveler’s needs!
The service of the hotel is simply outstanding and professional. The staff goes above and beyond for its guests, and the hotel has been given the title of ‘the friendliest hotel in Bern‘.
If you have friends or family living in Bern, be sure to take advantage of the Host Package that Hotel La Pergola offers! With this package, Bernese residents can book a hotel room for their guests, and the hotel lets them accompany them for free breakfast the next day.
Guests can also use free Wi-Fi services throughout their stay, and they are also granted a complimentary ‘Bern Ticket’, which gives them easy access to roam around the city.
Stay KooooK Bern Wankdorf has impeccable style with beautiful photo-worthy accents throughout the property. The rooms are equipped with contemporary furniture and are decorated in lively, bright colors.
The accommodations are quite impressive with an option to book a studio, a family studio, or a business studio. Some of the rooms come with a kitchen, washing machine, and coffee machine.
The hotel also offers a sun deck, a shared lounge, and bicycle rentals. Overall, this hotel is an excellent budget-friendly accommodation and a great choice for traveling families!
Sorell Hotel Ador offers visitors a comfortable place to stay in a great location close to the train station, bus stops, and old town. This modern and vibrant hotel offers single rooms, double rooms, and triple room options.
The hotel’s common spaces are filled with cheerful décor and colorful furnishings. All of the bookings include a delicious, complimentary breakfast and a snack bar. The rooms also come with Nespresso coffee machines to start the mornings off with a kick!
As Switzerland’s Capital City, Bern is one of the most popular travel sites to visit in the whole country! It is also a great base from which to explore nearby Swiss towns such as Thun, Interlaken, Grindelwald, and Lauterbrunnen.
Go on a walk through the Old Town, marvel at historic buildings, indulge in delicious food, or take in serene views of the Aare River – there is so much to see & do in this historic city!
To help you more with trip planning, here are some frequently asked questions about visiting Bern:
Best Things To Do In Bern
Planning to visit Bern for a day or two? Here are some of the top things to see & do in Bern’s city centre:
- Kramgasse. This is the Main Street that travels through Old Town Bern with shops and restaurants lined along both sides.
- Zähringerbrunnen – a beautiful historic 16th-century water fountain featuring the city’s founder surrounded by bears.
- Zytglogge – ornate medieval clock tower from the 1300s. You can even go on a guided tour of the Zytglogge to see the inner workings of the clock and enjoy views of Bern from a lookout platform at the top.
- The Cathedral of Bern – grand Gothic cathedral at the center of Bern’s downtown.
- Bear Pit Park. This is a unique riverfront animal park that houses several bears. With the Old Town as its backdrop, the Bear Pit zoo is a must-see, especially for families with little kids.
- Kirchenfeldbrücke bridge. From this bridge, you can enjoy some of the best views of the Aare River and the downtown.
- Einstein Museum. Bern was home to the world-famous scientist Albert Einstein for 7 years. At the Einstein Museum, you can explore various historic, scientific, and archeological exhibits centering around Swiss culture and history.
- Go on a walking tour of Old Town Bern. During this 90-minute tour, you’ll be able to learn more about Bern’s history and visit some of the most popular landmarks.
How Long Do You Need In Bern, Switzerland?
For visiting Bern, you can spend as little as a few hours or stay for a few days to see everything that it has to offer!
We stopped by Bern for the afternoon during our 7-day Switzerland trip. This historic medieval town made quite an impression on us and we hope to return for a longer stay!
How Much Does It Cost To Stay In a Hotel In Bern?
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