Are you the Gatekeeper?

Waaaaay back in August, this was my plan for the day:

We had visited one of the city gates last October when we visited the city. And we pass another one on the tram that goes to Birsfelden, although I hadn’t specifically gotten out and walked through it. The final one, I had no idea where it was or what it looked like.

All three towers were open to the public that day, meaning you could walk up in them and see the view from the top. They were also doing tours, but they were in German. So I learned nothing, but I got to see a lot of the city that I don’t usually see and take in views that aren’t normally available.

First stop was St. Alban-Tor, which is right on the 3 line.

This is a model of St. Alban-Tor inside of the real St. Alban-Tor. How meta.

They had a bunch of small lanterns from Fasnacht on display inside as well.

I made it up to the top of the stairs at quarter-past the hour and let me tell you, that bell is loud. I made it a point to be back down the stairs before it was half-past.

That’s Roche Tower, which is the tallest building in Switzerland. You can see it from most places in Basel (and from our apartment).

The gate part of this city gate.

Looking up the tower.

The back of the tower.

Next I headed to Spalentor, which was the first city gate we saw when we visited last year. I hopped back on the 3 and off I went!

Still impressive.


Roche Tower and the towers of the Münster.

Rear view.

Finally I headed to see St. Johanns-Tor, which was the only city gate I hadn’t seen yet. I walked down a hill, past some shops and places I hadn’t seen before, and then caught the 11.

I love how all the gates look different, but you can tell they were built around the same time and have certain similarities.


I just liked the colors from the stained glass on the old wood.

It wasn’t an overly exciting day, but it was lovely. Warm, but not too hot. Sunny. Lots of people out and about. Just a nice day to be out with my camera seeing our new(ish) city.

5 thoughts on “Are you the Gatekeeper?

  1. This is something I’m sure I could look up myself if I wasn’t so lazy, but what is the purpose of the gates? Are they part of a wall around the city or did they used to be? They sure are gorgeous!

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