Cheap flights to Basel
World-class food, unforgettable festivals and a capital of culture – Basel is a city that likes to impress. Folklore, medieval customs, world-class museums and a hodgepodge of different cultures best sums up Switzerland’s second largest city, Basel.
Sat on the border with Germany and France, this city used to be an important trade route back in the 14th and 15th centuries. Today it’s a tourist Mecca of medieval buildings, Gothic churches and bucket loads of charm. The old town is the usual Swiss mix of riverside views, leafy courtyards, Romanesque cathedrals and enough chic boutiques to leave your credit card trembling.
Baslers' favourite summer pastime, when not sunbathing and drinking on the Lesser Basel bank, is swimming in the Rhine. Just follow the parades of swimmers marching upstream and floating down to their outdoor bar of choice.
"Paul Chan" at Basel's behemoth art-storage facility Schaulager (until 19 October) is a shocking display of obscene cartoons, odd silhouettes, and more combinations of old shoes and power leads than anyone really needs, and yet, seen together, the Hong Kong-born artist's work is so wonderfully varied and playful, the exhibit is not to be missed. schaulager.org
Basel Fasnacht (10-12 March) is three days of fiendish masks, blaring marching bands, ear-splitting piccolos, and more parades, sweets, and crowds than any small city really needs. But the locals won't have it any other way, making the Basel carnival far and away the year's biggest party. Try the free Fasnacht mobile app at kaellerabstieg.ch to find all the secret taverns serving food and drinks.