The small town of Burgdorf at the gateway to the Emmental – thanks to the cheese of the same name, a well-known hilly and forest landscape with spacious farmhouses – possesses an exemplary mediaeval old town with late-baroque patrician houses and an impressive castle. The town is the ideal starting point for excursions into the Emmental and for visits to the surrounding towns of Berne, Solothurn, Biel and Thun.
Encircled by a gentle, hilly landscape and imposing cliffs, this town east of Berne in the Swiss Mittelland is dominated by its castle: the 800-year-old bricks in its walls would have had many stories to recount: such as how this town grew around the largest and best-maintained Zähringen castle in Switzerland. Visitors can enjoy magnificent views of the city and the Bernese Alps from the donjon, which was built at the end of the 12th century.
The Burgdorf old town, comprising an upper town and lower town, is regarded as a jewel of urban architecture. The mediaeval urban architecture has to be admired as being virtually perfect: the upper town between the castle and church mound as a feudal residential town with patrician houses in the Bernese late-baroque style and neo-classical buildings, and the granary quarter at the foot of the castle cliff, the lower town linked to the upper town by stairs, which housed the businesses and trades.
Today, the alleyways of the old town, with their pleasant street cafés and snug small squares are a popular meeting place for shopping, entertainment and culinary enjoyment in a historic setting.
Burgdorf gives sportspersons the opportunity to discover the Emmental and the Mittelland on bicycle. Golfers, on the other hand, will find their pleasure in an attractive 18-hole golf course in the neighbouring town of Oberburg.