|Area||52 km2 (20 sq mi)|
|Elevation||542 m (1,778 ft)|
|Mayor (list)||Alexander Tschäppät (as of 2005) SPS|
|Bremgarten bei Bern, Frauenkappelen, Ittigen, Kirchlindach, Köniz, Mühleberg, Muri bei Bern, Neuenegg, Ostermundigen, Wohlen bei Bern, Zollikofen|
|Twin towns||Salzburg (Austria)|
As of early 2006, 127.000 people live in the city.
Bern was started in 1191 by Berchthold V. von Zähringen. A legend says that he said he would name the city after the next animal he caught. So when he caught a bear (German: "Bär") the city was named Bern. Zähringen built the city in the half-circle the river Aare makes.
Public streetcars and buses are run by an organization called BernMobil. There are 3 streetcar lines and about 15 bus lines. Most of the lines are in the city but some travel away from the city. There is also the Marzilibahn, a funicular (inclined- or cliff-railway) which goes from the banks of the Aare up to the Federal Building (German: "Bundeshaus"). The Marzilibahn is 105 meters long. It is the shortest funicular in Europe. Another funicular, called the Gurtenbahn, goes from the section of Bern called Wabern, which is on the river Aare, up to the top of Gurten, a large hill 585 meters high that is just south of Bern. A small airport, Belpmoos, is located a short distance south of Bern in Belp.
Folk Festivals [change]
Zibelemärit (onion market) [change]
Each year, on the 4th Monday in November, there is the Onion Market in Bern, where onions are sold. Many people visit the market in the early morning and throw confetti. They also hit other people with hammers made out of plastic
Aareleuchten (glowing Aare) [change]
Since 1996, every August 1 (a national holiday in Switzerland) they hold the Aareleuchten. The Aareleuchten is paid for by SwissAid. During the festival, people put small ships with a light in them into the river Aare. All of these small lights make the Aare "glow."
The Swiss parliament building in Bern
View towards the cathedral called "Münster"
One of the many fountains in the old part of the city
View over the river Aare towards the modern part of the city.