Bern, Switzerland (Berne)

Helvetiaplatz, Bern, Switzerland

Population: 128,848 (2014)

Language(s): French, German, Italian

Demonym: Bernese, Berner

Area: 52 km2 (20 mi2)

Dialing Code: +41

Electricity Adapter: 230 V, 50 Hz, Plug Types C & J

Time Zone: Central European Time UTC+1 (Summer CEST UTC+2)


Bern, sometimes spelled Berne, is the small capital city of Switzerland. It is the 5th most populous city in the country, with about 130,000 inhabitants, located slightly to the west of central Switzerland.

It is built on a peninsula that resembles a teardrop, due to the curving nature of the River Aare that runs through it. Bern’s Old Town has been designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The city has numerous long, cobbled streets, and four miles of arcaded sidewalks.

Bern prides itself as being the city where Albert Einstein lived while he worked out his theory of relativity. Check out his Einsteinhaus and the desk where he used to work. While you’re there, don’t forget to check out also the Kunstmuseum (Museum of fine Arts), the Bundeshaus (Federal Palace of Switzerland), and the Zytglogge, the clock tower near the center of the old town.

City facts put together in collaboration with sister site 6pt5. Language guides and more can be found on Shishek.

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