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Port of Biel/Bienne

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Sunset at the Port of Biel/Bienne, Canton of Bern, Switzerland



Biel/Bienne is a city in the district of the Biel/Bienne administrative district in the canton of Bern in Switzerland.

It is located on the language boundary and is throughout bilingual. Biel is the German name for the town, Bienne its French counterpart. The town is often referred to in both languages simultaneously. Since January 1, 2005, the official name has been "Biel/Bienne", unofficially also "Biel-Bienne". Until then, the city was officially named Biel (BE).

The city lies at the foot of the first mountain range of the Jura Mountains area, guarding the only practical connection to Jura in the area, on the northeastern shores of Lake Biel (Bielersee, Lac de Bienne), sharing the eastern tip of the lake with its sister city, Nidau, the administrative centre of the District of Nidau. Neuchâtel, Solothurn, and Bern (the capital of Switzerland) lie west, east and southeast of Biel/Bienne. They all can be reached in about 30 minutes, either by train or by car.

The city has about 50,000 inhabitants and the agglomeration near 100,000.


Biel/Bienne is the heart of the Swiss watch-making industry. Trademarks such as Festina, Candino, Perrelet, Leroy, Swatch, Omega, Rolex and many others are closely associated with the city of Biel, The Swatch Group has its worldwide headquarters in the tree lined "Seevorstadt", in the previous building of ASUAG.

The small but beautiful historic centre, with its gothic church (15th century), impressive guild halls and fountains decorated with flowers, entice one to stroll, while restaurants brimming with character wait to greet visitors on their terraces. Leaving the historic centre, the tree-lined "Seevorstadt" takes to the lake and its beautiful shoreline. On the way the visitors pass the Biel "Cultural Quarter" with the Neuhaus and Schwab Museums and the CentrePasquArt.

The Jura mountains are easily reached by funicular railway from Biel, with both the Biel/Bienne–Leubringen/Evilard funicular and the Biel/Bienne–Magglingen/Macolin funicular linking the city with the foothills. It takes just seven minutes to reach Magglingen (where the Federal Sports School is located) and from where numerous walking paths start in every direction. Magglingen, Leubringen, Prêles and the year round resort of Les Prés-d'Orvin offer sensational views of the Alps on a clear day. The highest viewpoint is Chasseral (1607 m a.s.l). The steep gorge of Taubenloch also offers a spectacular scenery.


The port of Biel is the starting point for scenic river and lake cruises, which can take the visitors to the city of Solothurn, St. Peter's Island and the Lakes Neuchâtel and Murten (Three-Lake-Tour). Do not forget to interrupt the lake cruise with a visit to one of the picturesque wine-growing villages to taste their fine products. The experience is at its best during the autumn harvest and when the wine festivals are held against a background of autumn colours. Other culinary specialties of the Biel region include perch and whitefish filets and the famous marc sausage.

[Source: Wikipedia]


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Canon EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM

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Exposure time: 20s

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Taken on March 26, 2012