Neuchatel tourist information & hotel reservations.
We warmly welcome you to visit Neuchatel and wish you a wonderful vacation.
Neuchâtel is situated 46 kilometers west of Bern and 30 kilometers south west of Biel. It lies on the banks of Lake Neuchâtel and near the slopes of Chaumont (1 161 meters elevation) in the Jura Mountains. It is the capital of the canton with the same name which was first a Prussian principality and later became part of the Swiss Confederation. Most of the people there speak French and are Protestants and in the 18th century became famous as fine watch producers. Neuchatel is situated among vineyards and has many beautiful landscapes. Most of the limestone houses are in ocher colour and Alexander Dumas compared them to a “block of butter”. There is also a university in the town, founded in 1838. The architecture was influenced by the French style and the houses in the old town are from the 16th century. You can best feel the atmosphere of the town on the market square, Maison des Halles. From there you can buy the famous de Jura cheese. Driving in the Old Town is prohibited.
There are three main attractions in the Old Town of Neuchatel – the castle, the University Church (collegial) and the Prison Tower (Tour de Prisons). The oldest part of the chateau still remaining is from the 12th centuries, but most of it is from the 15th to the 17th century. The atmosphere of the castle is somehow gloomy but from some of its ramparts you can get an amazing view of the Old Town. You can get inside every day for free by contacting the concierge, near the main gate. You can also get a guided tour from Monday to Saturday.
Next to the castle is the Eglise Collégial, dating from the 12th and the 13th century. During the 19th century the church underwent major renovations and some of its decorations are from then. In the Romanesque choir you will find a monument in honour of the counts of Neuchatel. It was made in the 14th century, has some beautiful painted decorations and is the most amazing Gothic monument in Switzerland. You can pay a visit every day for free.
Neuchâtel has suitable train connections with Geneva, Basel, Zurich and Paris. From Geneva the trip by train lasts around 90 minutes, from Zurich – 2 hours and a half.
You can also reach it by ferry from Murten (Morat) which will take less than 2 hours.
For flights, trains and car-rental reservations as well as for buses, coaches and taxi ski transfers refer to the general Switzerland Transportation page!