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Bern attractions

The city of Bern is the capital of Switzerland. It was founded in 1191 by Berthold V, Duke of Zehringen, on a peninsula in a deep bend of the Aare river. The Old Town (Arterbern) is completely preserved to the present day, and is of great interest to visit.

The peninsula where the Old Town of Bern is located was inhabited by Celts during the Iron age, in the 5th century BC. In the era of Ancient Rome, there was also a Roman quarter, but in the 3rd century, the inhabitants left it, and until the 12th century, there was no permanent settlement.

A high rock ridge inside the bend of the river allowed creating a well-fortified town, which quickly developed. After the death of its founder, Berthold V, Bern was declared an Imperial town. Thanks to the Golden Charter recognized by Rudolf Habsburg, Bern owned complete independence in government.

After its Foundation, the Old Town of Bern was bounded on the West by a fortress wall that ran in the area of the Zitglogge Clock Tower, built in 1218. However, by 1256, the fortress wall was moved 300 meters to the West, where the Prison tower is now located. In 1345, the third ring of defensive fortifications appeared.

Walking through the streets of Old Bern is a pleasure. The houses were mostly built in the 17th and 19th centuries, but they have completely preserved the appearance and style of the medieval town. In the most Eastern tip of the peninsula, near the bridge to Nydeggbrucke preserved many buildings of the medieval period. It is also location of the oldest bridge in Bern, the Untertorbrücke (Bridge at the Lower gate). The first bridge on this site was built in 1256, and the extant bridge was built in 1460.

On the opposite Bank of the Aare river, near the bridge of Nydeggbrucke, you can see the Park Bear Pit. The bear is the main symbol of Bern, so there is a spacious aviary built for them, where they live in their natural environment. From the Bear Pit, the road leads to a high hill. There is the famous Rosengarten Park, a rose garden where hundreds of varieties of roses, irises and rhododendrons grow.

On the southern part of the peninsula is the Bundesplatz. At the end of the 19th century, the Federal Palace was built here in the Italian Renaissance style. It is the seats of the Federal Assembly (bicameral Parliament) and the Federal Council, the Supreme authority of the Swiss Confederation. Nearby the Bern Minster is located, as well as a bridge that leads to the main museums of Bern.

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View of the Old Town of Bern from the observation deck in the Rosengarten Park
The Zitglogge clock tower, built in 1218, is a symbol of Bern
Layout of the city of Bern in the 15th century, in the Historical Museum
The spire of the Nideggkirche is built on the Foundation of the donjon tower of the Ducal castle of 1191
The bell tower of the Bern Minster rises 100 meters above the Old Town of Bern
View of the quarters of the Old Town of Bern from the bell towers of the Bern Minster
View of the houses on the South side of the Old city of Bern from the river Aare
The spires of the Church of Nydegger and Berne Cathedral above the Old Town of Bern
The oldest bridge in Bern is the Untertorbrücke (Bridge at the Lower gate), built in 1460
In the Old Town of Bern houses from the 18th and 19th centuries have been preserved
Bern Cathedral was founded in 1421
Bern Cathedral is built on the high bank of the river Aare in the southern part of the Old city of Bern
View of the Bern Minster from the Aare river side
Bears live in a Bear Pit - the symbol of Bern
Observation deck overlooking the Old Town of Bern in the Rosengarten Park
Prison Tower and Anna Seiler Brunnen in the Old Town of Bern
Federal Palace of Bern, where the Parliament and the Federal Council, the Supreme authorities of Switzerland, meet
Zitglogge clock tower and Prison Tower among the roofs of the Old Town of Bern
On the lower dial of the Zitglogge, you can see the days of the week, months, zodiac signs, moon phases, and a puppet show
The Protestant Church of the Holy Spirit in Bern was built in 1726
Fountain Zahringerbrunnen in front of the Clock tower Zytglogge in Bern
Fountain Eater of Children - one of the most famous in Bern
Galleries of Bern under the arches of houses on the main street Kramgasse
Bear square (Barenplatz) in front of the Prison Tower in the Old Town of Bern
The Federal Palace of Bern is located on the high Bank of the river Aare
The Catholic Church of Saints Peter and Paul in Bern was built in 1858 on the Town Hall square
Entrance to the Einstein Museum in Bern, symbolizing the substance of space-time from his theory of relativity
The city theater of Bern was built in 1903
The Town Hall of Bern was built in the 16th century in the Romanesque style
The Bern Casino was built in 1906 in a neoclassical style