Switzerland’s capital city, Bern, is a great place to base yourself for exploring the beauty of Switzerland. With roots dating back to the 12th century, Bern is blessed with both natural beauty and history. Using our guide to the best neighborhoods in Bern Switzerland, you can narrow down your selections and find the perfect Bern accommodation for your travel tastes and budget. Although Switzerland is notoriously expensive, it’s still possible to find budget-friendly hotels in Bern.
We will cover off all types of Bern accommodation options from Hostels to luxury Bern hotels as well as how to decide where to stay in Bern, the best Bern hotels, best places in Bern to visit, the best places to stay in Bern, hotels near Bern attractions, Bern neighborhood guide and many more. Airbnb is also a great option for short or long stays.
This post contains some affiliate links for your convenience. Click here to read my full disclosure policy.
Old Town – Where to stay in Bern for tourists
Bern has one of the largest medieval city centers in Europe, and unlike many capital cities, the Old Town, or Altstadt, remains the city center. With so much well-preserved history, Old Town Bern has been designated a UNESCO World Heritage site.
Bern city was founded at a curve in the Aare River, which forms a peninsula containing the Altstadt. The train station sits as the western edge of Old Town, offering easy transportation throughout Switzerland and the rest of Europe. Altstadt is the best area for tourists who are looking for hotels in Bern Switzerland near the train station.
Where to Stay in Bern Old Town
Lorraine – Where to stay in Bern for a local expereince
To the north of Bern City Center, Lorraine occupies a narrow strip of land along the Aare River. From the center of Lorraine, one can reach the Old Town in about 30 minutes walking. This residential area has fewer hotels than other parts of Bern, but apartment rentals are available.
This is one of the best neighborhoods to stay in Bern if you want to have a more “local” experience and explore the parks and grocery stores like a resident. Lorraine Bad is a public swimming pool set along the river, and the Botanic Gardens are just to the south. There are several restaurants and parks scattered throughout the neighborhood, offering plenty of opportunities for leisurely exploration.
Where to Stay in Lorraine
Kirchenfeld – Where to stay in Bern with family
Just south of Old Town lies the affluent neighborhood of Kirchenfeld. From top to bottom, the whole neighborhood can be walked in 20 minutes, with an additional five-minute walk to arrive in Old Town Bern. This is one of the best neighborhoods to stay in Bern for those seeking family-friendly apartment rentals.
Kirchnefeld is known as the museum district of Bern, as the northern half of the neighborhood is filled with museums, including the Kunsthalle, History Museum, Natural History Museum, the Alpine Museum of Switzerland, and the Museum of Communication. Tierpark Bern is not to be missed if you are visiting Switzerland with kids. This historic animal park contains an aquarium, petting zoo, and a bear exhibit.
Where to Stay in Kirchenfeld
Breitenrain – Where to stay in Bern for business travellers
East from Lorraine is the neighborhood of Breitenrain. This is perhaps best known as the home of Bern’s Football Club, FC Bern Breitenrain. The Stade de Suisse, a 30,000 seat football stadium is here, as is BernEXPO, Bern’s exposition center.
These two attractions ensure plenty of Bern hotels in the area, making this one of the best places to stay in Bern Switzerland for business travelers and sports fans. From the center of Breitenrain, it’s about a 30-minute walk to the center of Old Town, or you can take public transportation in about ten minutes.
Where to Stay in Breitenrain
Länggasse – Where to stay in Bern on a budget
Further west of Altstadt, and across the river from Lorraine is the area called Länggasse. This is the university district as it’s home to the University of Bern, so there is a large student population and a younger vibe to the neighborhood. Where there are students, there is usually cheap and tasty food, so this is a budget-friendly neighborhood for going out.
The area has slowly gentrified from an industrial center on the river to a trendy neighborhood making great use of historic buildings. The train station separates Länggasse from Altstadt, so this is another good place to find hotels in Bern Switzerland near the train station.