City Facts - Basel
Basel is situated in northern Switzerland and is located on the Swiss, French and German border. It houses over 800,000 citizens, making it the second largest city in Switzerland. Basel lies on the banks of the River Rhine which has allowed a working port to emerge in the land-locked country, only adding to its economic prosperity.
The city was originally founded nearly 2500 years ago and has a long and varied history. The Basel Munster is one of the oldest buildings in the city having survived the great earthquake of 1356. Its spectacular gothic beauty contrasts starkly against the contemporary architecture that the city is famed for. Such buildings include the Basel Messeturm, the tallest building in the country.
Basel has some great sports facilities and hosts an annual tennis tournament that its most successful native, Roger Federer, regularly competes in. It also held some of the 2008 European Football Championship games at the FC Basel home ground.
The Theatre Basel is one of the city’s main attractions which regularly plays host to critically acclaimed operas and ballets. The city is also home to a wide variety of museums including the Museum of Fine Arts, the oldest public access museum in the world. The Basler Fasnacht attracts tens of thousands of people annually for the three day carnival on the streets of Basel known locally as “the three most beautiful days”. These have all helped to give Basel a reputation as one of the most culturally significant cities in Europe.