Basel Community


It’s summer in Basel again—those long hours of daylight, holidays, spending time catching up with friends, and enjoying the weather, whether rain or shine!

One of the many fun ways in downtown Basel to pass the evening with friends is relaxing by the beautiful Rhein river, and from 28 June till 1 September, you can do that at Chill am Rhy—”Chill by the Rhein”—from 5pm until 1am. With two bars set up on either end of the Basler Rheinufer in the area just underneath the Münster, Chill am Rhy offers cold beer, a selection of cocktails and wines, and a choice of gourmet pasta dishes.

The area is set up with an assortment of colourful chairs and benches; lanterns and white canopies; and purple, blue, red, and green lights which reflect on the water and light up the area for everyone to see.

If you haven’t stopped by, make sure to plan a night out with friends before the season ends.

For more information, visit:

Imagine Festival Basel © thegrid-ch //
Imagine Festival Basel © thegrid-ch //

The 11th Imagine Festival in Basel—the concert against racism—is underway! From 18:15 tonight until just before midnight tomorrow night, the festival takes place in Barfüsserplatz in Basel Stadt and hosts bands from all around Europe, workshops on social issues, art contests, panel discussions, and of course, food and drink.

For more info and programme listings, check out the official webpage at

Education. One of the most important (and often daunting!) decisions you can make, whether for yourself or your children. If you’re planning a move to Basel and are wondering about schooling, here are the most popular schools with expats to help you in your decision-making process.

International School Basel

Fleischbachstrasse 2
4153 Reinach BL
Tel: +41 61 715 33 33 (Main school)

Probably the most popular school among expats is the International School Basel.

Here’s what ISB says about itself:

ISB is an IB (International Baccalaureate) World School, offering all three education programmes: the Primary Years Programme (PYP) for our younger students, the Middle Years Programme (MYP) for students aged 11 to 16, and the Diploma Programme (DP) for our senior students in the final two years of their school careers. The IB programmes aim to support and develop inquiring, knowledgeable and caring young people who will actively participate in creating a better and more peaceful world through intercultural understanding. To this end the IB Organisation works with schools and other institutions from around the world to develop challenging programmes of international education and rigorous assessment. These programmes underpin our vision at ISB, and encourage students across the world to become active, compassionate and lifelong learners who understand that other people, with their differences, should be valued equally as human beings. This is what we want for our young people.

Swiss International School

Erlenstrasse 15
4058 Basel
Tel: +41 61 683 71 40

Also an IB School, the Swiss International School is an option for parents looking to place their children in a bilingual (English and German) learning environment. The school states, “SIS is a unique alternative to state and classic international schools. The students experience a bilingual school education in which local culture is embedded but also a wider global perspective is achieved.”

SIS, Basel; Swiss International School… by astramedia

Academia International School

Schifflände 3
4051 Basel
Tel: +41 61 260 20 20

Another bilingual school, AIS placement goes according to the student’s ability rather than age. For ages 4 to 13, they have two possibilities: a full-day programme, or part-time for Preschool and Primary School. Their goal is to supply the students with as many opportunities as possible to reach their potential.

Older students are also provided abundant opportunities to pursue and excel in subjects in which they are naturally gifted. AIS offers the British exam system—IGCSE, AS- and A-Level.

Their website says that Academia International School is designed for:

  • Students who wish to have internationally recognised qualifications that will enable them to go into further education or the workplace worldwide
  • Students who are gifted in certain subjects and wish to develop them according to their ability
  • Students who want clear recognition of their academic achievement in each subject which can reflect their real ability
  • Students who would benefit from extra time or extra input in some aspects of their education
  • Students who wish to integrate into a successful academic programme at any time of the academic year and at any level.


Black Forest Academy

Hammersteinerstrasse 50
Kandern, Germany
Tel: +49 (0)7626-91610

The world-famous Black Forest Academy is located in nearby Kandern, Germany. Although not as convenient as the local schools for expats, BFA provides another option for parents looking for a Christian learning environment for their children. The BFA is accredited by the Association of Christian Schools International (ACSI), the Council of International Schools (CIS), and the Commission on Secondary Schools of the Middle States Association (MSA).

From their website:

Our mission is to provide a quality, international Christian education that equips students to influence their world. Since 1956, Black Forest Academy has been carrying out this mission, changing lives, and developing globally-minded students who are equipped for leadership.

Early Learning Association

Gartenstrasse 93
4052 Basel
Tel: +41 61 313 05 80

Many very happy parents highly recommend ELA, which currently operates from three schools at two locations in Basel.

Says their website, “The Early Learning Association has been working with children in Basel for nearly twenty years. With a focus on Education and Development, we are proud of the strong relationship we have built with the people of Basel. Based in Gartenstrasse, and nearby Malzgasse, ELA is at the heart of Basel, within easy reach of all the main employers. We draw our children from over thirty countries, 40% of our children being Swiss/German.

“ELA is unique in having a programme that extends from the baby years to the junior range. We presently operate a childcare centre with over 120 approved places from 3 months to 4 years and a primary school for children from 4 to 11 years that operates in English and German.”

Local Swiss Schools

If you are planning on a long stay in Basel, enrolling in the local Swiss schools are always an excellent choice. Many expats who have their children attending these schools are satisfied with the learning experience their children receive. Additionally, children learn the language quicker and are better able to integrate with others in their communities. Special classes are provided for students from other countries to help them learn German.

One of the cautions English-speakers offer is to be consistent about speaking English at home, and to ensure that your children are reading and writing English. This will help them maintain their English language skills and is a big help when visiting relatives back home. This way, you won’t have your parents or in-laws complaining that they don’t understand what their grandchildren are saying!

Homeschooling in Switzerland

Homeschooling is possible in Switzerland but varies from Canton to Canton. According to the HSLDA:

Homeschooling in Switzerland is legal in most cantons and is growing as a movement. Switzerland has 26 cantons (similar to states in the U.S.) and each canton has its own education law. Many cantons allow home education while some require a teaching certificate and others forbid home education. Home education requirements are implemented and enforced at the local level.

Whichever route you decide is best for you and your family, a first-rate education in Basel is just around the corner or down the street. So don’t forget to do your homework and check out some schools for yourself. You’re sure to find the right fit.

For more information, visit: For a full list of Basel’s schools (in German), visit:

Muba 2011 ©
Muba 2011 ©
Have you ever wished there was a place you could go in Basel where you could find everything?

Well there is—and it isn’t a department store.

With commodities like furniture, toys, jewellery, and clothing, to services such as fitness for seniors and the Swiss Red Cross, to cultural exhibitions on sport, music, and exotic destinations, the Muba 2012 (Mustermesse Basel) is on this month, 13 to 22 April at the Messeplatz Basel. 

What Is It?

A trade fair open to everyone, the Muba is an invitation to experience all that Basel is and does, within its national borders and beyond. Virtually every store and organization in the city participates. With around 800 shops and numerous exhibitions and showcases, no matter what your passion, you’re sure to find it here. You can purchase a new dining set, watch a fashion show or cooking show, see ‘Landart’ artists create sculptures out of wood, iron, and stone, get a free spring check-up at the Swiss Red Cross health clinic, cheer for Europe’s top electricians as they compete in the European Championships, meet Mister and Miss Nordwestschweiz, take in a few rides at the Lunapark—the list is endless. Here you’ll see the best of the best…and maybe some things you may have never even heard of before.

But it isn’t just about shopping or consumerism—culture, education, and awareness come to the forefront of the fair. Just one example is the ‘Behindertenforum’, where different organizations for disabilities provide video presentations, lessons in sign language, and other opportunities to understand the challenges faced every day by those with disabilities and how they overcome them.

The churches of Basel are coming together with a ‘mubakirchgarten’ at the ‘Älter werden – aktiv bleiben’ display (Stand B22) to give visitors a many-sided look at the Evangelical Reformed, Roman Catholic and Christ Catholic churches in the city. Guests can join in on daily topics such as ‘Faith, Love, and Hope’ and ‘Spirituality and Culture,’ as well as a variety of music, including children’s choir and Gospel choir, and a special Sunday service on 22 April, 10.00 at the Muba Rundhof.

Beyond the Borders

Every year the Muba also features a ‘Gastland,’ and East meets West as this year’s guest is ‘India: an experience for all the senses.’ Travellers to the ‘guest land’ can explore India’s diverse and colourful heritage through music and dance, cuisine, handmade goods, tourism, and much more.

You’ll also find this year’s ‘Gaststadt’ or ‘Guest city’—Zürich. And if you’ve been in Basel very long, you’ll know that more separates Basel and Zürich than a one-hour train ride. Embracing the long-standing rivalry between the two cities, poets from Basel and Zürich will perform daily for the ‘Poetry Slam,’ touching on what makes these two towns so different…or alike. But which city comes out on top? Maybe the bet is most conclusively settled at the Water Bar, where you can sample drinking water from both places and decide for yourself which tastes best!

More highlights this year include autograph signing by team members of FC Basel (plus a live broadcast of FC Basel vs. FC Sion), an exhibit to celebrate the 70th birthday of legendary footballer Karl Odermatt, and the twoo bicycle expo.

What About Tickets?

Tickets are affordable, ranging from free for students to CHF 32.– for a MubaCard lasting the whole ten days. They are available at the event, and some such as the Tageskarte (Day Card) are available online. You can find out more about pricing here at Also, if you bought a ‘Blaggedde’ for Fasnacht this year, you can bring it to to the first day of the fair (13 April) and show it at the Box Office for a free Tageskarte. No Blaggedde? You can also gain free entrance on opening day if you bring a Ragusa chocolate bar.

Don’t forget to stop by the website for more info, or find them on Facebook, where you can enter a Muba Wettbewerb (sweepstakes). And in true Swiss style, stay up to date via iPhone with the Muba App: the latest on exhibitions, products and featured events, an exhibitor and product search, restaurant list, discount offers, chat function, schedule of daily activities, news feed, and more.

Starting Friday, you can expect the city and the trams to be packed! Why not jump on the number 2 or 6 to Messeplatz and see what it’s all about?

If the World Watch and Jewellery Show were a dessert, it would probably be Mr. Weininger’s record-setting bejeweled chocolate pudding. And with its two-carat diamond and glittering gold leaves, it could easily be one of this year’s creations at Basel’s famed Messeplatz March 8-15. It is the top show of its kind in the world, highlighting the finest and the latest in luxury watches, jewels, and precious stones. Officially named BaselWorld since 2003, the eight-day showcase now draws almost 1900 exhibitors from 45 countries and a minimum of 100,000 visitors from 100 countries.

Only the best international designers come to BaselWorld, everyone from Patek Philippe, Gucci, Breitling, Rolex, Tissot, Casio, Citizen, Omega, Chanel, Tiffany & Co., and Longines, among others. And for many of these exhibitors, it is the only trade show they will attend. They come to network, to share their creativity, to unveil new designs and set trends. This is a crucial event for the industry, and not only for exhibitors. It’s also where the world’s best sellers shop, relying on buyers for retail dynasties such as Saks Fifth Avenue, Hamilton Jewelers, London Jewelers, and countless more.

But the show isn’t just about showcasing — it’s also social. After hours, the city opens up BaselWorld Village at Binningerstrasse, with restaurants, bars, and a variety of networking opportunities. It’s a place where anyone can mingle, kick back after the show, and make new acquaintances.

So could such an exclusive show be open to the public? In Basel, the answer is yes. In fact BaselWorld has guest care down to a science, developing an entire service just for visitors. They offer accommodation on Basel’s select hotel ships, berthed specifically for the event and complete with a shuttle service to Messeplatz; a Business Centre with internet access, as well as a Media Centre; a BaselWorld shop with a book store, Catalog Centre, and travel agency; and more. There is even a comprehensive BASELWORLD App available on their website where you can download a 3D map of the exhibition center, information on exhibitors and wares, and snippets from their BASELWORLD Daily News.


Tickets are available on BaselWorld’s website through an easy-to-use online ticket booth. You can download a pass all the way up to the last day of the show. Spend one day or attend all eight days.
For Visitors — Price and Tickets
One-day pass: CHF 60.-
Full show (eight-day) pass: CHF 150.-
Group passes for schoolchildren and students only are also available.

How to Get There

Basel’s ideal central location in Europe makes it a very easy-to-reach destination. It is accessible by its international airport, multiple railway stations, its unbeatable public transportation system, and by car. You can find out more from these websites:


Basel International Airport


SBB, Swiss Railway Station
SNCF, French Railway Station
DB, German Railway Station

Public Transportation

BVB, Basel Public Transportation

BaselWorld – Outside View // ©
BaselWorld – Outside View // ©

While at BaselWorld, you may notice parts of the exhibition hall being rebuilt — signs that building plans for expansion are right on track. The finished structure is expected to be completed by 2013 and will hold more floors, a new event hall, and a ‘City Lounge.’ Here you can see a video clip of what’s being developed:

No matter where in the world they come from, BaselWorld always brings together a variety of people from all cultures who share a common interest in all that ticks, tocks, sparkles, and shines. It’s cultural, it’s social, it’s fashion, it’s business. And whether you’re in the industry or out, maybe a good deal of it is just plain fun.

Photo credit: By Baselworld

Dear Heidi,

How do you make Mehlsuppe? I hear you’re supposed to eat it for Morgestraich.


Dear Rose,

I don’t ever make Mehlsuppe — I can’t stand Mehlsuppe! But I can tell you how to make it, and it’s very popular for our Fasnacht festival. You can buy packets in all the grocery shops, like Coop and Migros; then just add water and when it boils, let it cook for about seven minutes. Add onions and cheese, like Gruyère or Appenzeller.

Or if you want make it from scratch, I found some links for you:

European Cuisines

En guete!

Photo credit: Betty Bossi

Romance, elegance, and a table set for two–whether this is your first, fifth, or fiftieth Valentine’s Day in Basel, thriving in the breath-taking romance of historic castles and cobblestones are a variety of places to celebrate life and love. Here are just a few ideas of what you can do this February 14.

Chocolate Love

Nothing says love like Swiss chocolate! In Basel you’ll find the best Switzerland has to offer, with bakeries, patisseries, and confiseries of all kinds: Lindt-Sprüngli, Bachmann, Merkur, Schiesser. These are the ‘jewelers’ of chocolatiering, crafting each truffle a gem and every treat a treasure. Confiserie Schiesser in Markplatz sells row upon row of chocolates, ranging from homemade champagne truffles, to Patoro Truffes, Pralinés, chocolate figures, and more.

Merkur Chocolaterie next door displays a wide variety of chocolate bark with dried fruits and nuts as well as traditional truffles and chocolates in all shapes and sizes—white, milk, dark, striped, dipped in chocolate or rolled in cocoa. Konditorei Rieder on Allschwilerstrasse is famous for its original Whisky-Truffes, as well as their Champagner- and Kirsch-Truffes. And all over the city, at any Coop or Migros, you can find melt-in-your-mouth Lindt truffles, Valentine’s Day specials, and of course chocolate hearts.

Reservation for Two

Lady and the Tramp // © Disney // Valentine's Day
Lady and the Tramp // © Disney // Valentine’s Day

If you want to go all out, the Grand Hotel Les Trois Rois overlooking the Rhein River is one of the oldest city hotels in Europe and a beautiful tribute to Basel’s rich history, with origins dating back to 1681. Boasting a guest list that spans centuries and all avenues of culture and the arts, the hotel has served royalty, dignitaries, leaders, and artists including Monaco’s Prince Rainier, Queen Elisabeth II, the Dalai Lama, Charles Dickens, Pablo Picasso, Franz Liszt, Bob Dylan, and the Rolling Stones.

This Valentine’s Day Les Trois Rois is hosting a deluxe five-course dinner for CHF 135.- per person, where you can savor the evening amidst chandeliers and candlelight. The hotel comprises 101 rooms and suites, reminiscent of the ‘Tales from 101 Nights,’ each with its own unique decor and ambience. A double room at the hotel can cost upwards of CHF 660.-, including breakfast, minibar service, and free use of the city’s public transportation. On a clear day, if the weather isn’t too cold, a cozy tram ride through the ins and outs of the city, taking breaks for a stroll by the Rhein or through the park, can become an extraordinary Valentine’s adventure.

Grand Hotel Les Trois Rois
Blumenrain 8
CH-4001 Basel
Tel. +41 61 260 50 50

Dinner at the Castle

Another romantic hideaway is the Schloss Bottmingen outside the city in Baselland—a charming ‘Wasserburg’ or Water Castle with roots in the 1300s, where a beautiful wooden bridge leads the way across a small pond to the front entrance. The castle’s restaurant began in the late 1800s and still stands today as a monument to yesterday’s heritage and today’s all-star dining. Specializing in French cuisine, the restaurant is also a popular spot for weddings with it’s beautiful gardens and terrace in the summer.

Their unique winter menu for CHF 125.- includes a duo of salmon, marinated and tartare with lime sauce and a winter bouquet; grilled prawns and scallops on a bed of pearl barley risotto perfumed au curry; and an iced cinnamon cube with apple turnover for dessert. You can download the complete menu from their website.

Restaurant Schloss Bottmingen
Schlossgasse 9
4103 Bottmingen bei Basel
+41 (0)61 421 15 15
Directions from city centre:

Basel has plenty more special locales for every occasion. You can check out some of our favorite restaurants for Valentine’s Day and any time of year in our Dining Section.

But of all the options and things to do in Basel, maybe one of the best-loved is dinner at…home.

A nice homemade fondue with fresh bread from any Basel bakery is hard to beat. You can choose a specialty mix of fondue cheeses from the fromageries located in grocery sections of Globus and Manor, or something simpler in any supermarket, like Migros and Coop. They all offer tons of choices and cuisines for even the most hard to please. Many department stores also have an in-house florist for your pick of expert bouquets and arrangements.

What’s not to love? A very select table for two, far away from the madding crowds. Turn down the lights, but light the candles, with scattered rose petals or a bright bouquet in the center of the table. Bubbly or wine, your choice. Top it off with a warm chocolate fondue—some strawberries and cream, biscuits, candied ginger, dried apricots, fresh apple or orange slices—don’t forget your favorite music…and the food of love plays on

Dear Heidi,

My Swiss friends tell me that I shouldn’t tip the waiter more than one or two francs. In the States, we generally tip about 20%. What should I tip here?

Needing Help!

Dear Needing Help,

Swiss Francs ©
Swiss Francs © //
Your Swiss friends are right, you’re not expected to tip the waiter 20% since it’s all included in the service. If you want to be nice, you can leave a few francs. Tipping also depends on how long you’ve been sitting at your table, what you’ve consumed, if you’re happy with the service. If you’re not happy, don’t give anything! Once I didn’t like the service and so didn’t leave a tip at all. On the other hand, for a very good meal at a nice, popular restaurant, we paid 90 CHF and left a 4 CHF tip.

For a 64 CHF hairstyle, I usually tip CHF 7 – especially if I intend to keep going back to the stylist.

Taxis will let you know if there are any extra charges, or you can tip them CHF 2.

I only give money to street musicians who are students or have CDs. I never pay musicians on the tram. Actually, this is prohibited.

Also, don’t encourage beggars by giving them money.

At the Weihnachtsmarkt, Herbstmesse, or Flea Markets, don’t tip unless it was fantastic.

When visiting Flea Markets remember they expect you to bargain!

Don’t bargain in shops — except when buying a car!! That’s for another day…

Liebs grüessli,

A richly creative community, Basel is home to many theatres celebrating artistic expression through plays, opera, musicals, and dance. Companies and troupes from all over the world pass through the city’s remarkable venues, and you can usually see long lines of people standing outside the glittering marquees on performance nights. From pre-show cocktails to cocktail attire, it’s a social and cultural celebration start to finish.

Theater Basel

Just off Barfüsserplatz, this centrally located theater braids together three main threads of the performing arts — plays, ballet, and opera — making it the largest theatre of its kind in Switzerland. Their programme spans the classics such as Romeo and Juliet, My Fair Lady, The Fairy Queen, and Carmen, as well as the more modern, accompanied by their magnificent orchestra. Most plays are in German, although you can catch the theatre’s final English language performance, The Great Gatsby, at the end of January 2012.

Elisabethenstrasse 16 • 4051 Basel
Tel: +41 61 295 11 00

Musical Theater Basel

Part of the biggest Fair and Congress development in Switzerland, Musical Theater Basel is one of the newest theaters and concert halls in the country. It houses just over 1550 seats in their 900m auditorium, staging quality performances from yesterday and today: Phantom of the Opera, Swan Lake, Grease, Thriller Live, and more.

Feldbergstrasse 151 • 4057 Basel
Tel: +41 61 699 88 99

Kunst in Riehen

Welcoming the best classical musicians from all over the world for more than 50 years. They honor the traditions of Schubert, Mendelssohn, and Chopin, among others, with an outstanding lineup of dymanic duos, trios, quartets, quintets, and beyond.

Tickets available through one of Basel’s most famous bookstores, Bider & Tanner:
Aeschenvorstadt 2 • 4010 Basel
Tel: +41 61 206 99 96

Kammerorchester Basel (Basel Chamber Orchestra)

One of the top chamber orchestras in Europe, touring all over the continent. In town, you can usually find them at the Ackermannshof Basel.

St. Johanns-Vorstadt 19/21 • 4056 Basel
Tel: +41 61 306 30 40

Basel Sinfonietta

Presenting both known and unknown works of music, the Basel Sinfonietta never stops exploring new ideas. They give audiences not just a performance, but a ‘symphonetic experience,’ such as the chance to see and hear a live soundtrack to a silent film. Touring frequently through some of Europe’s top festivals, they are also the only Swiss orchestra to be invited four times to the famous annual Salzburg Festival.

Dornacherstrasse 390 • 4018 Basel
Tel: +41 61 335 54 15

Basel Bach-Chor (Basel Bach Choir)

The timeless work of Johann Sebastian Bach in beautiful Martinskirche (St. Martin’s Church), Basel’s oldest parish church.

Bach Choir:
Von-Teuffel-Strasse 4/1 • 79400 Kandern

Martinskirche Basel:
Martinskirchplatz 4 • 4051 Basel
Tel: +41 61 261 45 07

Children’s Theatre

Basel has several theatres for children—young to adult! Offering old-fashioned puppet shows, fairy stories, plays, comedy, circus, musicals, and even Santa Claus specials, these well-loved places bring stories to life in a way the whole family can enjoy.

Theater Arlecchino

Colorful, vibrant productions covering a range of genres for all ages.

Amerbachstrasse 14 • 4057 Basel
Tel: +41 61 331 68 56

Basler Kinder Theater (Basel Children’s Theatre)

Showcasing the kinds of timeless fairy tales and classic adventures brought to us by the Brothers Grimm and Robert Louis Stevenson, the Basel Children’s Theatre is precisely that: by children, for children.

Schützengraben 9 • 4051 Basel
Tel: +41 61 261 28 87

Basel Puppet Theatre

Founded more than 60 years ago, this theatre hosts unique puppet shows in an equally unique setting: a beautiful vaulted basement in Münsterplatz. Daytime shows for children and evening performances for adults.

Münsterplatz 8 • 4051 Basel
Tel: +41 61 261 06 12

If you’re looking for a concert or any good live music, Basel is the place to find it. It’s very welcoming to musicians of all kinds, from street musicians playing Strauss on Freiestrasse, to independent singer-songwriters at the corner café, to famed bands like Journey at Pratteln’s Z7 Konzertfabrik (Concert Factory). Here are some places you might catch a favorite artist, or discover the next big act in Basel and beyond.


Z7 Konzertfabrik

A venue for bigger names like Swiss acts Adrian Stern and Plüsch as well as international bands like Porcupine Tree and Iron Butterfly. Also features harder rock and metal bands. 

Kraftwerkstrasse 7 • 4133 Pratteln, Basel
Tel: +41 61 821 48 00

Parterre Kultur

One of Basel’s exclusive restaurants and live music venues, Parterre features musicians and singer-songwriters from all over the world for an up-close-and-personal concert experience. Also hosts Open Mic Nights on Wednesdays.

Tram 8 to “Kaserne”
Klybeckstrasse 1b • 4057 Basel
Tel: +41 61 695 89 91


Sommercasino © schoeband
A main venue for younger fans, featuring rock, punk, alternative, hardcore, metalcore, hip-hop, and ska bands from Switzerland, the US, and the UK, among others. They host free Twenty Plus-Party Tunes parties on Saturday nights for  adults 20 years and older.

Münchensteinerstrasse 1 • 4052 Basel
Tel: +41 61 313 60 70


Another of Basel’s unique venues, complete with disco balls, a sparkling chandelier right above the audience, and a bright, glowing dome topping the building. The lineup is eclectic and inclusive, offering New Wave, Pop, Rock, Disco, Electro, Glam, Indie, and more. Performers include Swiss singer-songwriter legend Roli Frei and Britain’s The Drops. 

Binningerstrasse 14 • 4051 Basel
Tel: +41 61 564 66 00

Avo Session

THE music festival in Basel. Each year, it welcomes some of the top names of all time to its Festival Hall at Basel Fair: Mary J. Blige, Liza Minnelli, P!nk, Tom Jones, Paul Anka, and KT Tunstall to name just a few. This unique festival gives you the chance to see artists up close in a relaxed candle-lit atmosphere, and with only 1,500 seats, you may want to buy your tickets far in advance!

Festival Hall, Basel Fair
Grenzacherstrasse 79 • 4058 Basel
061 686 44 44


A well-known café serving up cappuccinos, sandwiches, and fresh daily specials, Stoffero also holds live music certain nights of the week. Although quite small, it’s an ideal venue for smaller and acoustic acts from all over the world. Be sure to try their famous panini!

Stänzlergasse 3 • 4051 Basel
Tel: +41 61 281 56 56

Open Air

Summer is a prime time for live music in Basel. The weather is perfect for open-air concerts, and music festivals spring up all around the country like wildflowers. On the steps by the Rhein or on the grass under the stars, you’ll hardly find even one night without music. Some events are free…although a generous tip is always welcomed.

Im Fluss

Each year from about the last week of July to the middle of August, a barge is set up on the Rhein for Im Fluss Open-air Concerts, featuring a different band each night. The concerts center around local and national acts, though some of the artists come from as far away as the UK, Canada, and the US. 
The Rhein River (Outside Café Spitz and Best Western Hotel Merian)

Rheingasse 13 • 4058 Basel
Tel: +41 61 681 80 90


One of the best known places in Basel for all varieties of arts and culture, music, theater, and dance, and a top venue in the city for summer open-air concerts. Their neighboring restaurant, the KaBar, is a popular stop for lunch, evening apéros, and ‘Snack Attacks.’ 

Klybeckstrasse 1 • 4057 Basel
Tel: +41 61 681 47 17

Photo credit: Deer Park Avenue