In 1980 Basel hosted a garden show with the not very imaginative title of Green 80. This name stuck in the public's imagination and was also applied to the botanical gardens. The original name comes from a homestead, the remains of which are still visible. The small nearby castle, which served as Christoph Merian's summer residence, is now a cafe. The huge area of the park is ideal for sports, and kids love the enormous dinosaur statue (affectionately known as Dino), who quietly lets everything pass over him.
Who knows if Jean Tinguely would have believed, had you told him that his creations would once be housed in such noble rooms? The museum building was opened by Mario Botta in 1996, and is sponsored by the local chemical company, Hoffman La Roche. Even the garden of the tower houses work by Tinguely in the shape of a fountain. A bigger version can be found on the Theaterplatz. Tinguely loved to make things, and the museum is full of his moving machine sculptures, and sculptures that you can sometimes walk through. Children and adults alike love this museum and various exhibitions which highlight works by other artists similar to Tinguely complement the permanent exhibits. Check website for more details.
Built in the middle of a lake, the charming and historic castle of Bottmingen offers customers a beautiful and romantic experience unlike any other. Dating back to the 14th Century, this Swiss mansion has been carefully preserved and elegantly renovated in the past few years with the opening of a fine dining restaurant, a wedding venue and lovely terrace gardens. Famous for its sumptuous French cuisine, the castle's restaurant offers a prix fixe menu along with a normal one, with dishes such as the Vivers lamb, Chateaubriand, Marinated Loch Fyne salmon, Porcini flan with parsley and the lip-smacking desserts sure to leave your taste buds in amazement and wonder. It also an excellent location for functions such as weddings, parties, corporate dinners and other events with lavishly decorated rooms seating 8 to 300 guests and an attentive, courteous service by the friendly staff. It is especially worth visiting during Christmas when the castle is lit up with stunning decorations.
Built in the 14th century, the towers of the Rathaus or Town Hall, dominate the skyline of Basel. Through the centuries, this building underwent a series of renovations being expanded and painted over by the artist Hans Bock. The present day Rathaus has mixed elements of Art Nouveau style and the Renaissance Style. An often photographed building, this place is crowded at anytime with curious tourists and passersby.
Antikenmuseum Basel und Sammlung Ludwig is entirely devoted to the historical origins and the development of art in the Mediterranean region. A range of special displays and temporary exhibitions make for a worth trip back into the history of the region. You will find a range of exotic displays ranging from 4B.C to 6 A.D that will allow you to delve deeper into Roman, Egyptian, Greek and Etruscan cultures.
The Naturhistorisches Museum (Natural history museum) has been located in this former Augustine monastery since 1849. What began as a collection of curiosities is now a center for science and research. Most of the eight million objects in the colletion are on display, and the museum's strengths lie in paleontology, mineralogy, zoology, entomology and anthropology, but you don't need a degree to visit. The other exhibits, including early man, dinosaurs and insects, will appeal to visitors both young and old.
An intriguing yet extraordinary museum of art, Skulpturhalle Basel features some of the most popular statues and sculptures. While most of what is housed here are replicas of the originals that can be found around the world, the installations found here are not any less fascinating than their original counterparts. With a collection of over 2,200 casts of Roman and Greek masterpieces, this is believed to be the largest of its kind. While catching a glimpse of the original works might cost you much more time and money, this museum enables you to experience it all in a single visit.
The expansion of the city in the 19th century meant the end of the medieval walls and its seven entrances. However, the most beautiful of them, the Spalentor, remains. Erected in the 14th century, this gate still possesses a very impressive oak portcullis. Just inside lies a copy of the city's customs decree of 1795, a great piece of history. The gate is adorned with beautiful glass tiles and humorous 15th-century figures. The originals can be viewed in the Museum of History.
Stampa gallery was established in the year 1969 by art lovers Gilli and Diego Stamp. The gallery focuses on Swiss contemporary art and has featured some of the brilliant artworks of Gerda Steiner, Marcel Odenbach and Zilla Leutenegger to name a few. It has its own book shop, where you can engross yourself in books on design, fashion, photography and architecture.
Xoco Tour Basel is an entertaining as well as an educative tour that takes you around the wonderful city of Basel. You can get to see the charming old town, where some of the most delicious chocolates take birth. All those who have a fetish for Swiss chocolates, can now indulge in it as much as they want. The tour also organizes a tasting session for you to decide, before buying your favorite chocolate. Their local tour guide will leave no stone unturned in making you comfortable and happy.
Galerie Carzaniga specializes in contemporary art from Switzerland, France and Italy. Get awestruck looking at the works of Samuel Buri, Susi Kramer, Lorenz Spring, Bruno Suter and many such stalwarts, who have achieved a well-known name in the field of art. The gallery takes part in various art fairs such as Kunst Zurich and Art Basel. Some of their services include art-consulting, insurance and art-appraisals. Their main aim is to educate the common man and spread art awareness across Europe.