A new restaurant, hotel opening or a top event – we send you insider tips from Basel every month.

Sign up now

Where wishes come true – Basel, city of culture

Basel is known as Switzerland's most traditional Christmas city, thanks not only to its Christmas market but also to a variety of other seasonal events: its many shops, beautiful Christmas lights, spectacular special exhibitions in its museums, its Wish Book and numerous concerts and events.


Shopping and dining

At Christmas, Basel provides a perfect combination of sightseeing and shopping. From the hustle and bustle of the Freie Strasse to the Marktplatz, from Spalenberg with its small boutiques and fine stores, such as Johann Wanner's famous Christmas Shop, to Manor, the city's oldest department store— everything is close at hand.
Basel also has a treat in store for everyone looking for delicious Christmas fare. In addition to the many tasty food and drink specialities on offer at the Christmas markets, Basel is also famous for its excellent Confiserie cake and chocolate shops with their delicious Christmas biscuits and confectionery. Furthermore, many of Basel's excellent restaurants serve Christmas-inspired menus in December, complete with spectacular Christmas decorations.

Sunday Shopping
10 and 17 December 2017 from 1 to 6 pm

Basel Wish Book

For the 24th time the traditional Basel Wish Book will once again be openly accessible in the inner courtyard of the Town Hall for all members of the public – both local residents and visitors from around the world – to add their Advent wishes. Over the entire Christmas period and into the new year visitors can fill the book with their private thoughts, wish-lists for Santa Claus and hopes for peace, love and good health. Thursday 23 November 2017 to Thursday 4 January 2018

Schliffi uff em Märt – the latest attraction at Marktplatz

Children and ice-skating enthusiasts can enjoy the new attraction at the Marktplatz from December 1st 2017.

Opening hours:
Fri, 01.12.2017 to Sat, 10.2.2018
Mon to Sat 8.30 am to 6.00 pm
Open Sundays, 10.12 and 17.12.2017, from 1.00 pm to 6.00 pm

From the 1st of December, the Marktplatz will be open for ice skating, whilst the market is open. Skates can be rented on site at a reasonable price. There will also be Christmas trees on sale, some delicious catering options and other opportunities for fun and games.

Christmas lights switch-on

At Christmas, the streets of Basel delight visitors with a variety of Christmas lights. Each district has its own tradition. The Freie Strasse, Spalenvorstadt, St. Alban-Tal and Clarastrasse are all worth a visit. And of course, Münsterplatz, with its spectacular snow globes.


"Kindernäscht" on Gerbergasse 14, second floor, offers professional childminding services throughout the year, including over the Christmas period. The city's offspring are lovingly cared for, allowing the adults to go about their Christmas shopping in a relaxed manner. In exchange for a contribution to expenses of CHF 10 (siblings CHF 8) per hour, children between 18 months and 12 years of age can be brought along to the facility with or without pre-registration. For parents who wish to pre-register, the telephone number is +41 (0)61 261 49 39. Basel Kindernäscht is open Mondays to Fridays between 8 am and 6 pm, Saturdays between 9 am and 5 pm, and on shopping Sundays between 1 pm and 6 pm. www.kindernaescht.ch.