Dating back to 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 anytime with curious tourists and passersby.
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 works of 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 walkthrough. Children and adults alike love this museum and various exhibitions which highlight works by other artists similar to Tinguely complement the permanent exhibits.
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.
The foundations for the Kunstmuseum were laid when the city of Basel purchased the Amerbachsche Kabinett. This private collection, which boasted works by Holbein among others, was the world's first publicly owned one. Works by Witz, Schongauer, Cranach, Grünewald and others showcase renaissance's rich artistic traditions. 19th-century art is also featured here with Arnold Böcklin's work at the forefront. He did after all come from Basel. Marble steps take visitors to the museum's upper floors. 20th-century art by greats such as Leger, Braque and Picasso can be found here as well as abstract expressionist and pop artworks. The building itself is almost cubic. Located near the Wettsteingbridge, it also houses a library and copper-plate engraving cabinet.
Two slender towers characterize this red sandstone church. Climb at least one to appreciate the stunning view. Although Münster Hill was already inhabited by the time of the Celts, the present late-Roman/early-Gothic building was mostly constructed in the latter part of the 12th century. In 1356, five towers were destroyed in an earthquake. The famed humanist Erasmus of Rotterdam is buried here. The Roman gate is notable for its many old stone figures.
Jewish Museum of Switzerland pays a fitting tribute to the Jewish culture by way of exotic displays that illustrate old world Jewish charm,thanks to a plethora of artifacts and objects. Explore the Jewish calendar, their way of dressing, facets of their daily life, tombstones among other interesting facts of their life. Glimpse into their historical-social backgrounds as you trace their development as a religious group.
Don't visit this museum if you shy away from dried frogs and other animal that have been reduced to a powder! Do visit if you want to find out what has been used for medicinal purposes in the past. Greats such as Erasmus von Rotterdam and Paracelus have worked in Zum Vorderen Sessel, the house in which the Swiss Apothecary Museum is today accommodated. Apothecaries, historic medicines, microscopes, laboratory equipment and a range of utensils displayed in display cases and glass-fronted cabinets bring the past to life as visitors make their way around the museum's nooks and crannies.
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.
Martinskirche or St. Martin's Church dates back to the 12th Century and is considered one of the oldest churches in the region. Though the chancel and the bottom of the tower date back to the 13th Century, the church was majorly damaged in the 1356 earthquake and was rebuilt to its present facade in the later part of the 14th Century. The interiors of this stunning church are adorned with many artifacts collected from over the centuries which lure many art and culture enthusiasts. Besides being a place of worship, this church is a venue for several music concerts.