Getting around Bern
Bern's city centre is compact, and sightseeing tourists are likely to move around on foot most of the time. The public transport network in the city is excellent however, providing convenient and frequent services.
Bernmobil (tel: +41 31 321 8844; www.bernmobil.ch) runs the city's tram, bus and trolley lines. In addition, there are Moonliner (tel: +41 31 321 8812; www.moonliner.ch) night buses, operating 18 lines from the station square on Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights.
If you're staying overnight in Bern, you'll receive a Bern Ticket from your hotel. This allows free travel on public transport in zones 100/101, which covers the city centre. It also includes the Gurten funicular, Marzilibahn funicular and the lift to the cathedral platform.
Taxi companies include Bären-Taxi (tel: +41 31 371 1111, www.baerentaxi.ch) and Nova-Taxi (tel: +41 31 331 3313; www.novataxi.ch). BETAX (tel: +41 800 903 090; www.betax.ch) provides transport services for disabled people. Public taxi ranks are on Casinoplatz and at the railway station.
It's easy to explore Bern without a car. If you are driving however, you can check live availability of car park spaces online (www.parking-bern.ch). The website also lists current parking rates; it's cheaper to park in the evenings and on Sundays.
Car hire is offered by Avis (tel: +41 31 378 1515; www.avis.ch), Europcar (tel: +41 31 381 7555; www.europcar.ch), Hertz (tel: +41 31 318 2160; www.hertz.ch) and Sixt (tel: +41 31 371 7100; www.sixt.ch). The minimum age for hiring a car is 19, but this varies according to the vehicle model and car hire company and there is sometimes a surcharge for drivers under 25.
Bern Rollt (tel: +41 79 277 2857; www.bernrollt.ch) is a free bicycle hire service (from May to October) on Bahnhofplatz, the main station square, and at various points around town. All you need to pay is a deposit and show some ID. You can also hire bicycles for a fee at the railway station (tel: +41 51 220 2374; www.rentabike.ch) and at the Ski and Velocenter, Hirschengraben 7 (tel: +41 31 312 0031; www.ski-velo-center.ch).