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Bern Tourist Center, in the Bern Bahnhof, on Bahnhofplatz (tel. 031/328-12-12; www.berninfo.com), is open year-round Monday to Saturday 9am to 7pm, and Sunday 9am to 6pm. If you need help finding a hotel room, the tourist center can make a reservation for you in the price range you select.

City Layout

Main Arteries & Streets -- The geography of the city is neatly pressed into a relatively small area, so getting about is quite easy. You can walk to most of the major sights. Altstadt, or Old Town, lies on a high rocky plateau that juts out into a "loop" of the Aare River. A majority of the major hotels and attractions lie in this loop. You can reach the sprawling district south of the Aare by crossing the Kirchenfeldbrücke. The neighborhood has four major museums: Swiss Alpine Museum, Bern Historical Museum, Natural History Museum, and Museum of Communication

Most arrivals are at the Bahnhof on Bahnhofplatz, in the center of town. From here you can walk along the major arteries of Bern: Spitalgasse, Marktgasse, Kramgasse, and Gerechtigkeitsgasse. The town's major squares include Theaterplatz, with its famed Zytgloggeturm (Clock Tower), Kornhausplatz and its much-photographed Ogre Fountain, and Rathausplatz, on which stands the old Rathaus (town hall), seat of the cantonal government.

The three major bridges crossing the Aare into this historic loop are Kirchenfeldbrücke, Kornhausbrücke, and Lorrainebrücke.

Finding an Address -- In a system developed during the Middle Ages, street numbers in the city begin in the center of Altstadt, and the numbers increase as they fan out. Even numbers lie on one side of the street, odd numbers on the other.

Maps -- Good local maps are available at the Bern Tourist Center.

Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.