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Top Rated Attractions in Basel

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Merian Park (Brüglingen Botanical Gardens)

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.

Museum Tinguely

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.

Bottmingen Castle

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.

Natural History Museum of Basel

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.

Palazzo Basel

As you enter Palazzo Basel, the beautiful and ornately done up interiors are sure to catch your attention. But that is not the only attention-drawing factor of this 'gourmet theatre'. The delectable delights that feature on the menu put together by celebrity chef Peter Moser is sure to be a hit with any conoisseur. But the real treat is enjoying some fantastic performances as you appreciate the thoughtful four-course meal! Palazzo Colombino, the popular event, is as extravagant as it gets; acrobats and magicians, musicians and artists, all come together for a spectacular show full of color and excitement. All in all, the Palazzo Basel rates high on fantasy, high on entertainment and high on culinary satisfaction!

Fondation Beyeler

Ernst Beyeler is without doubt one of the world's most renowned gallery owners and collectors. Rarely do you find the work of so many masters under one roof. Beyeler, with the help of his wife Hildy, has accumulated over 180 modern classics. Important works by Cézanne, Van Gogh, Picasso, Warhol and Bacon highlight the collection. The museum shop offers a wide range of high quality books, art cards and special design objects.

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