Did you know that Basel is the third-most-populous city in Switzerland?
This city is one of the largest cultural centers in Europe, because of its many museums, spectacular buildings, art galleries, and similar cultural sights.
The city of Basel is a center for numerous fairs and high-class events all year round.
If you decide to travel to this city, we are sure that you will be delighted by its beauty, but also by the many amazing Basel events that take place there.
Discover what makes Basel special, and look at our list of top 10 events in Basel.
Top 10 events in Basel
The Fasnacht Basel is, without any doubt, the most popular and the biggest carnival, not only in this city, but in the whole of Switzerland.
There are also many fairs, concerts, museums, and much more you could see in Basel.
Here is the list of top 10 Basel events in 2022, that we have chosen for you:
- Basel Carnival
- Basel Tattoo
- Art Basel
- Basel Herbstmesse
- Christmas in Basel
- Young Stage
- Longines CHI Classics Basel
- Swiss Indoors Basel
- Museums Night
- Architecture Week Basel
1. Basel Carnival (Basel Fasnacht)
This is one of the most famous cultural events in Basel.
It is a lot different from all other big carnivals in Europe. Around 20.000 active participants celebrate for three days, with music and beautiful carnival lanterns.
All participants are wearing a costume covering the whole body, sometimes similar to the Venice carnival, but always wearing a mask.
There are musicians, so you can hear numerous sounds of old marches, but also modern compositions.
The date of this carnival changes from year to year, because it starts at 4 o’clock in the morning 6 weeks before Easter Monday. More info about the start date you can find at Basel Fasnacht official website.
Anyone who really wants to get to know Basel, shouldn’t miss this carnival.
2. Basel Tattoo Festival
The world’s second-biggest military music festival, Basel Tattoo, is held each summer. So, this unforgettable Basel event is expected in 2022 too.
At the Basel Tattoo, elite military bands from around the world impress audiences with an amazing musical program.
This year, an unforgettable show awaits you at the Basel Tattoo Festival with the sounds of bagpipes, wind instruments, and folk dances.
Inspired by the world-famous Edinburgh Tattoo, impressive dance choreographies, wind-instrument music, and drums all come together to create a fascinating atmosphere.
If you are a fan of this type of festival, you will certainly be delighted with its great performances.
3. Art Basel – World’s leading fair in the international art market
Basel is where the art world meets, so Art Basel is a meeting place for artists, art collectors, and many celebrities from the art scene.
Art Basel is one gigantic exhibition, where 250 selected galleries from around the world present modern and contemporary works of high quality.
The high-caliber exhibitions show various art forms, both works by contemporary masters and the art of emerging talents.
This Basel event is often called Art Olympics and this year it will be held from 16 to 19 June.
4. Basel Herbstmesse
This autumn fair has a huge tradition of over 550 years.
It began to be held as early as 1471 and it is spread over seven of the city’s squares and a hall at the trade fair center.
The Herbstmesse is a more than average fair. It offers numerous adrenalin and fun fairground rides.
There is the Ferris wheel for romantic moments and many more entertaining activities.
Also, for the food lovers, there are the many tasty Switzerland specialties on offer and the inevitable sweets like chocolate, candies and lollipops.
This fair is being held from 29 October to 13 November, so autumn is reserved for one of the unforgettable events in Basel 2022.
5. Christmas in Basel
Attracting about 900.000 visitors each year, Basel’s Christmas market has become one of the city’s main public attractions.
This Basel event in 2022, offers something for everyone, from Advent concerts and Christmas markets to special exhibitions.
The whole city is wrapped in Christmas decorations and in some places, sells everything that belongs to Christmas, including spicy hot wine and sweets.
This is one of the most famous Basel events, and this December event has become a special attraction for tourists.
And finally, a charming and peaceful atmosphere will make you feel special.
6. Young Stage
This is the biggest international circus festival in Switzerland.
Young Stage belongs to the most important festivals worldwide and to the top-class events in Basel.
It offers the world’s best young professional artists a platform where they can present their talent and skills to an audience.
Young Stage’s mission is:
- to offer a platform to young professional artists from all over the world,
- to present their work,
- to get the contemporary circus developed and presented in general,
- to enable networking, and
- to inspire the next generation (kids and teenagers).
This is where young artists begin shining careers and places where creativity knows no boundaries when comedy combines with acrobatics.
From 20 to 24 May 2022, you have the opportunity to experience the magic of the circus and the top young acrobats.
7. Longines CHI Classics Basel
Longines CHI Classics Basel is a world-class riding tournament.
Sports fans will be delighted with this show and one of the most interesting Basel events.
For the first time in 2022, the best in dressage will also be invited. This is how Basel turns from CSI to CHI.
The world’s best show jumpers will descend to Basel again and they will compete together with their well-known horses.
Experience equestrian sport at its finest when the world’s elite in show jumping and dressage present themselves in Basel!
8. Swiss Indoors Basel
We present to you the biggest sporting event in Switzerland.
Swiss Indoors Basel is pleased as ever to present world-class tennis as part of the ATP TOUR 500.
Around 70,000 stadium visitors and millions of fans at home watch this sports event in Basel each year.
From 24 to 30 October 2022, you can experience the atmosphere of the world tennis tournament at the newly renovated and highly modern St. Jakobshalle.
This is a great opportunity for tennis fans, and we are sure it will meet all your expectations.
9. Museums Night
Museums Night is held every year, and then the city is crowded with more than 100.000 visitors.
30 museums are open all night and each museum has many special performances and attractions.
The Museum Night offers around 200 programs in 38 museums and cultural institutions and tickets include entrance to all museums as well as the shuttle service by boat, tram, or bus.
Lovers of culture and art will be delighted with the offer of the museums in Bisel.
10. Architecture Week Basel
The city of Basel is known as the architectural capital of Switzerland.
Architecture week in Basel is an event that will be held for the first time. It will officially start on May 9, and will end on May 15, 2022.
This is one of the Basel events that was created in order to visibly reveal this diverse potential for building culture, expertise, and enthusiasm that exists in the city and the region.
The theme of this event is globalization, digitization, migration, climate change, and pandemics spatially influence our living space and everyday urban life.
And finally, the program with over 100 lectures, guided tours, workshops, exhibitions, films, concerts, and plays is intended for the general public.
So, fans of this kind of event, you are welcome!
What about COVID-19 restrictions?
The COVID-19 pandemic affects travel around the world, including Switzerland.
But, we have good news!
Masks and COVID certificates will no longer be required to enter museums, restaurants, clubs, theatres, and other cultural venues, shops, and various Basel events.
So, all Basel events in 2022 are waiting for you without any restrictions.
Famous Basel tourist attractions
As we mentioned, Basel is a city with a large concentration of cultural attractions and things to do, so tourists will need a lot of time to visit the most important sights of this city.
Since the events we mentioned can last for several days, we believe that you would like to know what else you could see in Basel during your visit.
In the large offer of sights there are some that should not be missed such as:
The old town of Basel will delight you with its eccentric and still untouched architecture dating back to the 15th century.
This place will surprise you with an unexpected blend of traditional and modern that completes the overall atmosphere.
The best time to visit Basel’s Old Town is from July to September.
Zoologischer Garten (Zoo)
This is the oldest and largest zoo in Switzerland. It has been named one of the fifteen best zoos in the world.
Founded in 1874 with 510 European animals, today the zoo is known more for exotic species.
You can find over a hundred different species of exotic animals and birds from various different corners of the world.
So, if you are a fan of animals, you should not miss this place!
The Basel Historical Museum is one of the largest museums in Switzerland, first opened in 1894.
It is a heritage site of National importance and has three sites:
- Haus Zum Kirschgarten, and
Each of these is displaying a collection of a different theme, so their content is sure to impress you.
Basler Münster (Basel Minster)
This impressive Cathedral was rebuilt after it was destroyed in an earthquake in 1356.
Basel Minster was a Catholic Church built between the years 1019 to 1500, it is now a Reformed Protestant Church and amongst the top places to visit in Basel.
The design of the Basel Minister with red walls and colorful roofs with sculptures is a mixture of Gothic-style exteriors and Romanesque interiors that gives it an unusual and incredible look.
With art collections for over seven centuries amassed in one place, Kunstmuseum Basel remains one of the most significant museums.
The museum exhibits 4.000 paintings, 300.000 drawings and prints, sculptures, and installations collected over centuries.
Kunstmuseum Basel is the oldest museum in Switzerland and has exemplary art pieces of the medieval period, such as the Holbein family, Martin Schongauer, Lucas Caranch the Elder, Rembrandt Van Rijn, and Casper Wolff.
How to get to Basel?
Basel lies in the heart of Europe, on both banks of the Rhine.
So, there are several ways to get to Basel:
- road traffic (using your car or hiring a limousine service)
- railroad traffic (train or tram).
- ship traffic
- air traffic
Since it is one of the most developed countries in the world, Switzerland’s road infrastructure is just like that.
Road routes are well developed and clearly marked, and safe, so they will take you to the desired location without any problems.
And finally, anyone arriving in Basel using a regular car will find numerous parking options, so you don’t worry about that.
A better option is definitely to rent a limousine. It will provide you with comfort and a safe trip to all Basel events you want to visit.
Switzerland has an excellent network of railways that reaches all parts of the country.
So, Basel has three mainline train stations and offers excellent connections to all Swiss cities and major European cities.
The only downside with this type of transportation is that you need extra transportation when you arrive in a particular city or resort to get to your accommodation.
Ship traffic is a popular way to arrive in Basel.
The cabin ships carry around 100.000 guests to this city each year.
Arriving by ship is a special experience, and we are sure that the landscape you will see will delight you.
When you arrive, you need to choose which transfer will take you to the desired location.
Our advice is to choose private transfers because they will give you the most relaxing and carefree ride.
A private chauffeur can wait for you at any location, and take you to the given destination in a most luxurious and comfortable way.
There are three airports near Basel:
- EuroAirport Basel-Mulhouse-Freiburg
- Zurich Airport
- Frankfurt Airport
This is the fastest way to arrive in Basel and these airports are well connected with other countries, so your trip to Switzerland will not be complicated.
You can also choose between public or private transportation from the airport.
We presented you our selection of the most popular events in Basel and how you can get there.
If you want to travel to a city that has many events, festivals, and numerous activities throughout the year, Basel is certainly the right choice for you.
This city will give you moments to remember!