Welcome back to Day 5 of the Ultimate Blog Challenge
Looks like there is a problem with the automatic transmission of the "prompt e-mail", so why don't you joni me for another sightseeing tour in Switzerland. We're going to Berne, our capital, OK? Follow me.
If you travel using public transportation you may get off at one of the suburbian train stations, which happens to be the Swiss Railway Company's HQ.
When they built their new offices in 2014, they gifted themselves a gigantic special edition of their iconic clock It has a diameter of 7m = 23 feet and comes up with some shenanigans every five minutes, check it out here.
One of Berne's sights is the Bundeshaus or House of Parliament. It's where our 200 National Councils and 46 State Councils meet for a couple of weeks four times every year to discuss current affairs. If you are interested in learning more about our democracy, check out this post.
When we were there we got to enjoy a special treat:
The HeartBeats project presented an open-air exhibition with over 60 colorful hearts painted by Swiss artists. Here's why:
"We love color, we love creativity, we love art! But most of all, we love people. We want to put a smile on their faces, make them marvel and drive away the dark shadows left by the Corona pandemic. That's why we created the HeartBeats campaign - an open-air exhibition, art and solidarity, with the aim of helping those people in Switzerland who have been particularly affected by the Corona pandemic."
Our teenage son was more interested in the guided tour inside the Bundeshaus, which of course was of course sold out, so we had to come back two weeks later. It was very interesting to learn more not only about the architecture and history of the bulding, but of what actually goes on when the politicians are in town.
As for me, when in Bern, I want to stroll through the beautiful Old Town with its Zytgloggeturm, the medieval clock tower that represents the most iconic landmark. It’s a good thing that apart from public busses it’s pedestrians only, so the bunches of tourists don’t have to worry about standing in the middle of the cobblestone street, taking pictures.
Just like in Murten there are vaulted arcades holding little shops or restaurants:
Some of the sights are a bit somber, such as the Chindlifrässerbrunne, which translates as "kids eating fountain". There are different theories for this horrific name, none of which I like. Check 'em out for yourself.
Berne’s mascot is the bear, and therefore Bern has a Bear Park.
When I was a kid it used to be a bear pit. The bears would walk around in circles on concrete floor, and visitors would throw down carrots and other treats.
About ten years ago they built today's bear park, comprising the entire land between the former pit and the Aare (the river flowing through the city of Bern).
Now the bears are roaming through grass, bushes and forest, which is great for them, certainly more animal friendly.
Speaking of Aare, there is a nice nature trail at the edge of the forest, leading along the river
Looking up from the river banks, you can see all the important buildings, such as the City Hall and Cathedral. Its spire l is open to the public; you may climb up the 312 steps and enjoy the magnificent view across the UNESCO World Cultural Heritage site and – on a fine day – enjoy the breathtaking view of the Bernese alps with the peaks of the Eiger, Mönch and Jungfrau.
I hope you enjoyed tagging along! Have you been to Berne? Did you enjoy your stay? If not, would you consider visiting? Let me know below.
PS: Today - three hours from now - there will be another post. For seven years I have been participating in a challenge called Secret Subject Swap. Each month we submit a secret subject for someone else and are assigned a secret subject to interpret in our own style, then we are all simultaneously divulging our topics and submitting our posts. It's always fun. Let me know if you're intrested in joining.