Monday, November 5, 2012

Finding some of the gems of Basel

My days in Basel are passing by quickly. This is my last day here as I travel back to Sweden tomorrow. I still feel I have gotten a good impression of the city. I feel good about moving here and think this could be a place where I could feel both at home and enjoy living in. I also feel that I have managed to cover quite a bit during the days I have spent here. Thursday I continued my exploring of the town on foot. The red beautiful building above is the court house dating back to the 1500-hundreds. It is located just by the large market square.

 On the other side of Market Square you got a part of the old town that I fell in love with instantly. Winding small streets closed off from entirely from trafic. Small cozy and inviting shops. Beautiful old buildings with flower beds outside the windows. A bustling and active city center. There are both lively streets as well as more quiet streets that you get to yourself.

 Plenty of shops to do window shopping in. Small specialized cheese shops such as this one. As you can see the Raclette menu is quite extensive. I had no idea that there even were these many kinds of raclette. Raclette is basically a special kind of cheese that is melted and served. It is a little bit too heavy for my taste to eat nothing else but melted cheese but of course something we should try here when we live here. The Swiss are also crazy about fondu. The love their cheese in all kinds of forms. I actually read in the guide book that there are over 450 kinds of cheese made and produced in Switzerland. Holy cow!

 I enjoyed a good walk strolling on the streets of the old town. So many new impressions and things to look at.

 Even Basel has a bit of Halloween spirit of it's own. 

 There are many small parks and squares that you suddenly find yourself upon after taking a turn or climbing up a few stairs. I love to find these hidden cozy corners tucked away here and there in the city. On this terrace I got a nice view over the roof tops of the city.

 Thursday I also walked by the tourist center and signed up a two hour guided tour of the city. It turned out to be an excellent way to see more of Basel and to learn some of the history of the city. I am so glad I decided to do this. The guide was very nice and informative and I did learn a lot of things.

 The pharma industry has for centuries played a very important role for Basel and it still does today. There is plenty of money in the pharma industry. This grand blue house once belonged to one of the prominent families that had made their money within the pharma companies.

 The guide took us to some of the cutest alleys that I probably never would have discovered if I had not joined the tour. Here we are at the corner of Pepper street and Ginger alley. This area was the main merchant area of old Basel with plenty of small merchant shops.
 I love these old houses with their colorful flower beds hanging outside every other window. I feel like I am walking around in one of those fairy tale Alp villages half expecting to run into Heidi around the next corner.

We walked up all of these steps a long this narrow alley starting at Pepper street. As we reached the top the guide told us to turn around. You will get your reward he told us. We sure did as we got this stunning view. This is supposed to be one of the prettiest views from old town as you get a glimpse of the bright red court house tower as well as the view of the charming alley we just walked up.

I have had a nice last day only the weather has not been great. It was great in the morning but then in early afternoon it started raining and the rain grew heavier during the late afternoon and evening. Well after it is November and greyish November weather exists every where.


eastcoastmom said...

Looks amazing! Vi gillar ju också guidade tours, man lär sig så mycket mer om en plats.

Desiree said...

Eastcoastmom, visade sig vara toppen att ta en sådan. Man lär sig mycket och får en bra introduktion till ett nytt ställe.