Basel at their Arts Festival time

Hello! We have no choice but to be in Basel, Switzerland during their yearly arts festival. And while we are certainly lovers of the arts, we're more interested in visiting the town and seeing the historic buildings. I've contacted the local tourist board and they assure me that even with the arts festival (which sounds like it's confined to some type of civic center??) we will be able to find parking for our rental car in town, and we will be able to take the city's walking tour of the historic sites, even if we just purchase tickets for the tour that day. Does anyone have experience with this arts festival that could tell me if all this is true or not, or if the city will be too crazy to park in or tour? We can't find lodgings for the night in Basel because of the arts festival, so we'll be staying in France, but I just wondered if Basel will be tour-able. Thanks so much!

Posted by Jim
Bern, Switzerland
341 posts

Hi Mari, I worked in Basel for five years and I have to say I never noticed the Arts festival in all that time!!! So I'd say that the tourist office is correct on this one. Basel is host to many international events during the year and the only one that really causes accommodation and travel issues is the World Watch & Jewellery fair, other than that the others are not really noticeable. Enjoy your trip, Jim.