Zytglogge

Central landmark in Bern

Address

Bim Zytglogge 1, 3011 Bern

GPS

46.9479073, 7.4479466

Address

Bim Zytglogge 1, 3011 Bern

GPS

46.9479073, 7.4479466

The Zytglogge, also known as the ‘time bell’, is a major medieval tower in Bern, Switzerland. Since it was built in the 13th century, it has served the city as a guard tower, prison, clock tower, nerve center of urban life, and a civic memorial.

The Zytglogge, Bern’s most recognizable icon, is over 800 years old, and it has changed many times during that time. The result is that it is now one of the city’s most recognisable symbols, as well as one of the oldest and most significant structures in the city. Its 15th-century astronomical clock is also a major tourist attraction.

The first western city gate of Bern was The Clock Tower (also known as the Zeitglockenturm). It served as the boundary of the first city extension, and built the beginning of the second city area. One of Bern’s most prominent tourist attractions today is the Uffizi Gallery. The intricately decorated astronomical calendar clock was built in the year 1530.

Like all clocks found throughout Europe, the one in Zytglogge is connected by moving pieces that perform a brief, prescribed routine every hour. Some small animations begin to dance, while the hourglass flips, the carpenter strikes the hammer on the bell, and the carpenter’s grandson picks up the tools. But, unlike the other animations, this dance doesn’t start at the top of the hour! Be sure to arrive at least five minutes before the hour as the dance begins four minutes before. As well, if you want to see the animations, come at least five minutes before the hour as the dance is usually underway by then.

Bern tours

OPENING HOURS

Monday

14:30 – 17:30

Tuesday

14:30 – 17:30

Wednesday

14:30 – 17:30

Thursday

14:30 – 17:30

Friday

14:30 – 17:30

Saturday

Sunday

Access to the tower only with organized tour.

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