A bike courier who takes it easy. Discovering Bern’s hidden gems by bike.

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Intro

Ivo Magistretti never feels as free as he does while cycling around Bern. He likes the charm the city’s diverse districts exude, as well as the people that live in them. As he says, they give each other the time of day, something he doesn’t see anywhere else.

Bern.

The Swiss capital is divided into several districts, each of which has a unique charm and acts as a meeting point for the residents of Bern as well as tourists.

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Past a UNESCO World Heritage site and across the Aare. That’s how Ivo starts his day.

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Landing your dream job – by spitting rhymes.

Ivo Magistretti works as a bike courier. This is the happiest he has been in his entire career. The Bern native, who has had jobs in a number of areas in the past, loves working in the fresh air. His way into bike couriering, his dream job, was an unusual one: a rap video. He filmed himself cycling through Bern while performing a self-penned rap and posted it online. The video went viral.

Ivo Magistretti

First stop: chocolate cake.

It’s early in the morning and dawn is breaking. Ivo races over the Lorraine Bridge and into Länggasse. His destination: Café Apfelgold. It serves Ivo’s favourite chocolate cake. Ivo picks up a crate of apple juice for delivery to the Marzili district. As he knows Bern like the back of his hand, Ivo is fast and has time for a little chat.

In Bern’s districts, people take the time to stop and chat. It’s one of the many things that make this a great city.
Ivo Magistretti

The bike courier appreciates the friendly, welcoming atmosphere in the districts.

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Every district has its unique flair.

Ivo started his working day with an espresso, served to him at Q-Laden, a small organic shop right next to the offices of the bike courier service. Sat in the Lorraine district, it’s often Ivo’s first stop of the day. Here, too, he knows the owners; here, too, they take the time to have a chat. “That’s Bern for you!” – one of Ivo’s most-used phrases. When he talks about Bern, his eyes light up. 

There are countless shortcuts and little-known paths. I still haven’t discovered them all.
Ivo Magistretti

In summer, everyone is drawn to the Aare.

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Ivo packs the crate of apple juice into his massive backpack and races off in the direction of the Monbijou Bridge near the Kirchenfeld district. On the way, he enjoys the view of the clear, aquamarine waters of the Aare and the local mountain, Gurten. He heads down a little-known alley, past the Gaskessel cultural centre and reaches the banks of the Aare in the Marzili district. It’s all about the river here.

Ivo doesn’t have time to take a dip in the river now. He has a delivery for Restaurant Marzer, which sits in a quiet lane and offers a view up to the Parliament House. A former chef, Ivo likes to stop for a bite in this cosy establishment.

I feel a sense of freedom when I cycle through Bern.
Ivo Magistretti

It’s all smiles along the Aare.

Ivo speeds up again as he cycles through the Matte district to his last stop of the day, pop-up bar Trybhouz. As in all of Bern’s districts, the motto here is “Nume-nid-gsprängt”, or “no need to hurry”. The Matte district is also a perfect place to end the working day with a nice refreshing dip in the Aare.

Urban experiences in and around Bern.