Destinations, Switzerland

One Day in Basel

The truth is, the only reason I really chose to go to Basel was I saw a steal on a flight and I had a slight hankering for the snow. I knew about Art Basel where the city comes alive with the best of modern and contemporary art, but other than that, I wasn’t quite sure what else there was to do. I only spent one day in Basel after staying for the weekend in Lucerne. In less than 24 hours, I couldn’t believe how absolutely charming the city was.

Basel Switzerland

I arrived on a Sunday afternoon and the town was more closed down than an Italian city during ferragosto. All the shops were closed, and I didn’t pass many people on the street after I walked a few steps past the train station.

Cafe Basel Switzerland

Basel SwitzerlandAfter settling into our hotel, we walked to the Basel Minister to see the main gothic cathedral. Then, headed to the Pfalz lookout spot and then crossed the bridge Mittlere Brücke. We strolled along the Rhine River on the northeast side. Oberer Rheinweg was the cutest street on the river lined with darling homes and cafes.

Basel Switzerland

Basel, Switzerland
Basel Switzerland

Stopping in for a drink here and there, we just wandered the quaint streets before heading to dinner at Restaurant Boo. I don’t get much Thai food in Italy; actually in Italy, it’s a challenge to come by much else other than Italian food. I can’t remember the last time I had Thai and this place was delicious.

Basel, Switzerland

My only beef with Switzerland in general is how pricey everything is. Coming from California, I never thought I’d pay almost $50 for Pad Thai and chicken fried rice. However, that is a pretty standard price for a meal in Switzerland. I thought someone was exaggerating when I heard the Swiss sometimes go to Germany or France to do their grocery shopping. Lucky for the people in Basel, both countries are just a few metro stops away!

Basel, Swizerland

Before my flight back to Italy, I only had enough time in the morning to pick up some chocolates. There is always time for chocolate in Switzerland. There are many chocolate shops in Basel, but be sure to swing by Gilgen or Confiserie Schiesser.

Have you ever been to Basel? Please tell me you went to all three countries in one day! I really wanted to do that! Last summer drove from Italy through Slovenia and into Croatia, and there is something weirdly satisfying about going to three countries in one day. If only there were more hours in the day!

Basel, Switzerland.

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26 Comment

  1. Reply
    Adriana Contreras
    February 17, 2017 at 3:20 am

    These photos are so beautiful!
    I want to visit there so badly!


    1. Reply
      Scarlett | Petite Suitcase
      February 20, 2017 at 5:07 pm

      Thank you, Adriana! Basel is quite lovely!

  2. Reply
    Kasie Chelanne
    February 18, 2017 at 2:20 am

    Basel looks absolutely gorgeous! I totally want to be in three countries in one day, how awesome is that?!

    1. Reply
      Scarlett | Petite Suitcase
      February 20, 2017 at 5:07 pm

      Right?!! My thoughts exactly!! ; )

  3. Reply
    February 21, 2017 at 7:38 pm

    Wow I’d love to be able to just hop off to another country for 24 hours! Basel looks beautiful in Winter and certainly looks like a charming city!

    1. Reply
      Scarlett | Petite Suitcase
      February 22, 2017 at 5:49 pm

      You can hop there and back in less than an hour. Seriously, France and Germany are just a few minutes from Basel, Switzerland! Thanks for commenting, Sarah 🙂

  4. Reply
    February 23, 2017 at 3:40 pm

    Wow, this is stunning! I will be adding this to wanderlust wish list for sure! Thank you for sharing!


    Monique Nicol || @monique_nicol

    1. Reply
      Scarlett | Petite Suitcase
      February 24, 2017 at 5:13 pm

      Basel is so charming!! Thank you!!

  5. Reply
    Nerissa | HejNerissa
    March 10, 2017 at 10:26 am

    Those pastel color! Nobody can get enough of pastel colored wall, right. <3

    1. Reply
      Scarlett | Petite Suitcase
      March 12, 2017 at 10:39 am

      Agreed! The colors of these streets are so darling!

  6. Reply
    March 27, 2017 at 6:18 pm

    Gorgeous photos! Never thought my home town is so pretty 😊 And yes, I have been in three countries in a day 😀 There is even a walk on the river side where you visit a corner of all the three. Next time perhaps?

    1. Reply
      Scarlett | Petite Suitcase
      March 28, 2017 at 11:22 pm

      Next time definitely! I wish I had more time there. Your hometown is lovely. Sometimes it just takes a fresh eye to appreciate it ; ) I do the same thing with my hometown.

  7. Reply
    March 27, 2017 at 7:15 pm

    Well we live round the corner from a number of your pictures in a historic building in the old town on the Kleinbasel side of the river. Been here years. Originally from Britain but have lived on orher places over the years. This is home. Love it.

    1. Reply
      Scarlett | Petite Suitcase
      March 28, 2017 at 11:25 pm

      Sarah, you are so lucky to call this area home! We absolutely loved strolling around this area. I love Britain as well. I lived in Bournemouth for about a year and fell in love with England. Thanks for commenting!

  8. Reply
    March 27, 2017 at 7:19 pm

    I can call myself a lucky person as I am living in Basel! It is beautiful indeed and I am deeply in love with this (rather small) city.
    If you consider visiting the Fasnacht (traditional and very mytstic carnival only to be found in Basel) is really worth experiencing! It starts in the middle of the night and is accompanied by lanterns and beautiful masks and flute and drum music for 72 hours. All is based on thousands of volunteers!

    Further it is worthwhile visiting in summer. That is when half of the population is spending its leisure time at the river Rhein. We have special swimming bags called “Wickelfish” (in the shape of a fish and waterproof) and people float through the city for over 5km and next to the large container boats!
    Basel is also among the most sunniest cities in Switzerland! (We actually hardly ever have snow…)

    Come visit and you will fall in love!

    1. Reply
      Scarlett | Petite Suitcase
      March 28, 2017 at 11:32 pm

      Wow! That sounds like an awesome carnival. I grew up near a river and loved floating down it in during the hot days of summer. That sounds like so much fun to do in Switzerland. How do you choose a season to visit when it sounds so amazing all year!? Thank you so much for commenting!

  9. Reply
    March 27, 2017 at 7:57 pm

    You managed to find my favourite house in Basel on your very first day here! I live in Basel and often walk along the Rhine. I love to see how the same scenes change and evolve through the year. The charming yellow house, in photos 2 and 3, marks the seasons and holidays with its changing decorations to mark the seasons and holidays..

    1. Reply
      Scarlett | Petite Suitcase
      March 28, 2017 at 11:35 pm

      I loved that little yellow house! That whole area was so darling! Sounds like a great community.

  10. Reply
    March 27, 2017 at 9:16 pm

    Even though i live in Basel, i sometimes forget how beautiful and charming this city is. Thank you for reminding me😊. Wonderful photos. I enjoyed reading the text😊

    1. Reply
      Scarlett | Petite Suitcase
      March 28, 2017 at 11:28 pm

      Sometimes we don’t see the charm in things we pass each day. I do the same thing in Italy! Glad you enjoyed this post and thanks for commenting 🙂

  11. Reply
    Rosie Wennink
    March 27, 2017 at 10:44 pm

    I actually live in Basel as I study in the Musik Akademie here. When I first arrived I wasn’t won over instantly but slowly the place has carved out a little home in my heart.

    Basel is beautiful in the winter but it truly comes alive in the summer. As I’m writing the sun has come out over the city, which turns the banks of the Rhine into beaches full of people barbequeing and relaxing after swimming in the river. There are so many hidden spots here to discover that it’s worth staying a while to find out about Basel’s secrets: she doesn’t give them up easily! After all this is a city where the best bar in the world, hung with painted tapestries lit from behind like lanterns and buried deep underground, only opens for three days a year during the Fasnacht festival and then closes, hiding under the streets of the old town. And in the humble Unternehmen Mitte coffee Shop, a regular meeting place for Basel’s hipsters, on Sunday nights couples dance Tango in candlelight until the early hours.

    I really liked your post on Basel and I am glad you liked it. Come back for longer next one because I promise you she has a lot to give. I am glad I gave her a chance!

    1. Reply
      Scarlett | Petite Suitcase
      March 29, 2017 at 3:42 am

      Rosie, I am loving everyone’s tips! It sounds like Basel certainly has some secrets spots : ) We loved our day in Basel and summer seems like a fabulous time to return! Thank you so much for commenting!

  12. Reply
    Thomas Mathys
    March 28, 2017 at 8:43 am

    You should come back in summer, when you can sit relaxed at the Rhein, drink a beer or two, grill on one of those single use grills and take a swim in the Rhein (it’s definitly clean enough). Also, you can visit the “Dreiländereck”, where all Germany, France and Switzerland boarder on each other 🙂

    1. Reply
      Scarlett | Petite Suitcase
      March 29, 2017 at 3:38 am

      That sounds lovely, Thomas! I’ll definitely have to visit again!

  13. Reply
    Lisa Lorenz
    March 28, 2017 at 10:08 am

    Hi Scarlett, just found your blog. 🙂 Beautiful and a Great write about my home Basel (ex Canadian girl living here now) and pictures. Yes, you can do all three in a day no problems. I have gone to France (St. Louis) to do some shopping and then over to Germany for more and then dinner out in Germany at a nice Gasthaus. Much cheaper then Switzerland. I will have to try Restaurant Boo. I have not tried it yet and I miss Thai as well sometimes. Where I live in Oberwil (BL) I can walk to France and have a nice lunch. Its about a 2.8 km walking path. So its a nice hike and you arrive in Neuwiller France for a nice lunch and then walk back (its hike down so that’s better for the way back after a nice lunch with some wine) in May I will be going to Italy for a week vacation to Portofino and Santa Margherita. I just love Italy as well. Must be amazing to live there. 🙂 best wishes to you! Love California as well!

    1. Reply
      Scarlett | Petite Suitcase
      March 28, 2017 at 11:21 pm

      Hi Lisa! If you miss Thai, definitely give Restaurant Boo a try. Walk to France for lunch?! That sounds divine! I’ve heard Portofino is gorgeous. You will have a lovely time… especially with the weather in May 🙂

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