Natural History Museum, Bern

4.2
#6 of 13 in Museums in Bern
Specialty Museum Museum
The Natural History Museum of Bern is a museum in Bern, Switzerland. In its teaching and research it cooperates closely with the University of Bern. It is visited by around 100,000 people yearly.HistoryThe museum is owned by the Bürgergemeinde of Bern. It was officially founded in 1832. It is located on Bernastrasse, in the Kirchenfeld quarter, in a building that was erected between 1932 and 1934, opened in 1936 and expanded several times since then. Previously the exhibits were kept in a building on Hodlerstrasse built from 1878-81 and demolished in 1936; and earlier still, in the library gallery of a former college building.CollectionThe museum is known for its set of over 220 life-sized dioramas, featuring preserved animals from Switzerland, Africa and Asia; it also owns a collection of minerals from the Alpine region, samples of gold discovered at various locations in Switzerland, meteorites, a large stock of invertebrates, and Switzerland's largest collection of animal skeletons and bones.Mammal DioramasThe dioramas originate from a collection of big game animals from Africa, bagged by the London-based Bernese painter and game hunter Bernhard von Wattenwyl (together with his daughter Vivienne) during an expedition in 1923-24. A total of 130 of these animals are on display, in 33 dioramas along two darkened corridors. The dioramas are designed and furnished according to the animals' natural habitat.
Plan to visit Natural History Museum and other customer-reviewed, writer-recommended Bern attractions using our Bern holiday planner.
Source
Create an itinerary including Natural History Museum
map
Reviews
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating
76 reviews
Google
4.3
  • I love the geological exhibition downstairs. It's not a huge museum but all the parts are interesting. Careful if you are there with young kids: there is an exhibition about life that involves sex, pr...  more »
  • We were on a Pilgrimage of sorts to the origins of the St, Bernard, so the only thing we visited in the museum was the Barry exhibit. The coolest thing was a photo booth where you can take a picture w...  more »
  • I should make clear that I am not a rock fan, and went downstairs to the rock (minerals) exhibition to humour the children. After an hour or so they were trying to drag me out. The rocks on display ar...  more »
Google
  • Awesome museum with great exhibitions. Love to go there
  • Informative. And absolutely beautiful
  • Nice place to visit for a very hot day. the events organized inside worth to watch.
  • Nice museum with the standard exibition. However whats cool about it is that they frequently organize events in the evening. One such event is the "Bar of the dead animals" where they transform one section of the museum into a bar. Othet events include art and cultur events which get a special atmosphere from being held inside the museum.
  • Our absolute favourite for a (rainy) family day out. We must have seen the exhibition ‘c’est la vie’ ten times or more. Our daughters (2 and 5) love going there, and it certainly sustains repeated viewing for adults, too! The collection of skeletons and a superb series of life-size animal dioramas are among the highlights. Also don’t miss the room-sized ant colony - and the rocks & minerals section in the basement. The cafeteria is small but perfectly formed. There is also a picnic area upstairs, and a playground in the inside courtyard. The presentation of the science is top-notch, the museum succeeds in engaging all age groups without resorting to ‘talking down’ to children. The whole museum has nothing of the mustiness so often associated with natural history museums - in fact, it’s super stylish! A lot of the museum’s success is no doubt owed to the splendid exhibition- and graphic design by art director +Claude Kuhn. (Google him, you’ll see what I mean). If you spend more than a few days in Bern I think this is an absolute must.

Plan your trip to Bern

  • Get a personalized plan

    A complete day-by-day itinerary
    based on your preferences
  • Customize it

    Refine your plan. We'll find the
    best routes and schedules
  • Book it

    Choose from the best hotels
    and activities. Up to 50% off
  • Manage it

    Everything in one place.
    Everyone on the same page.

Where to stay in Bern

In historic Bern, the bulk of the accommodation offerings are confined to the peninsula, where the Old Town or "Altstadt" is located. Staying here gives you the convenience of being within walking distance to everything--which will come in handy in this generally car-free area. Throughout the Old Town you'll find a number of mid-range three-star hotels complete with their original 19th-century characteristics. A couple hostels and pensions round out the options here, though these tend to be a bit more expensive than one might expect. Outside of the Old Town, there are a few hotels with cheaper rates, though you compromise on convenience and atmosphere. The city also boasts a few stunning four- and five-star hotels, should your budget be forgiving.
CHECK IN - CHECK OUT
TripAdvisor
Millions of travel reviews
on TripAdvisor

Plans in Bern by other users

25 days in Italy, France & Switzerland BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES May, culture, outdoors, historic sites, museums, hidden gems PREFERENCES: May, culture, outdoors, historic sites, museums ATTRACTION STYLE: Hidden gems PACE: Medium 12 days in Switzerland BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES June, culture, relaxing, romantic, historic sites, museums, shopping, slow & easy, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: June, culture, relaxing, romantic, historic sites, museums, shopping ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Slow & easy 13 days in Switzerland BY A USER FROM UNITED KINGDOM December, popular PREFERENCES: December ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 14 days in Switzerland BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES May, popular PREFERENCES: May ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 31 days in Europe BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES January, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, historic sites, museums, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: January, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, historic sites, museums ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 15 days in Switzerland BY A USER FROM MALAYSIA December, relaxing, romantic, slow & easy, popular PREFERENCES: December, relaxing, romantic ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Slow & easy 11 days in Switzerland & Italy BY A USER FROM HONG KONG September, relaxing, romantic, shopping, hidden gems PREFERENCES: September, relaxing, romantic, shopping ATTRACTION STYLE: Hidden gems PACE: Medium 12 days in Switzerland BY A USER FROM UNITED KINGDOM October, culture, outdoors, beaches, historic sites, shopping, hidden gems PREFERENCES: October, culture, outdoors, beaches, historic sites, shopping ATTRACTION STYLE: Hidden gems PACE: Medium 59 days in United States, Canada & Europe BY A USER FROM AUSTRALIA November, kids, popular PREFERENCES: November, kids ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 7 days in Switzerland BY A USER FROM INDIA October, relaxing, romantic, beaches, historic sites, shopping, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: October, relaxing, romantic, beaches, historic sites, shopping ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 6 days in Bern & Lauterbrunnen BY A USER FROM KUWAIT August, popular PREFERENCES: August ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 36 days in Europe BY A USER FROM AUSTRALIA November, culture, historic sites, museums, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: November, culture, historic sites, museums ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium
View more plans