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The traditional Onion Market in Bern – Zibelemärit

Nov 22 @ 6:00 AM - 6:00 PM

Copyright Bern Tourismus

At the end of the chilly month of November, Bern wakes up to the annual Onion Market.

Every fourth Monday in November, this traditional market in praise of the humble little vegetable takes brightens up the (still dark) old town of Bern.


The Onion Market is the one time of the year Bern goes bunkers over onions.

Here's what the atmosphere at the Onion Market is like: you will see tons of perfected onion tresses all around. There is the smell of mulled wine, garlic bread, and onion pies in the air. There is confetti covering the streets (and the people.) And now and then, you might be softly hit by a squeaky hammer.

The masses of onions in this market are unbelievable. In 2015, there were nearly 60 tons of onions for sale on the single day the market takes place.

The market takes place in the old town of Bern between the train station and the Bundesplatz.

The best way to embrace this popular and very down-to-earth tradition is to put on your peppermint sugar bead necklace and stroll among the busy streets of Bern until dawn. Countless stands not only offer onions but different local delicacies and crafts.

Our advice: visit the Onion Market even before 6 AM to avoid the crowds.

Next level: for the truly brave, the traditional Zibeleschwümme (Onion Swim) takes place on the Sunday before the market. At 1 PM at the Schönausteg, watch the daredevil swimmers immerse in the bitterly cold Aare river.

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