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Rendez-vous Bundesplatz – the changing colors of the Bundeshaus in Bern

Come October, the Bundeshaus parliament building in Bern becomes an object of attention - both for the locals and tourists alike: it's the season of Rendez-vous Bundesplatz.

Why? After the sun sets, a spectacle takes place every evening through the end of November: Rendez-vous Bundesplatz. The Swiss federal capital building changes colors and turns into the backdrop for a light and sound show.

Rendez-vous Bundesplatz in Bern

As the sun began to set, the sparsely occupied grounds in front of the Bundeshaus transformed into a venue of excitement and anticipation. Clearly, the expectation of a visual treat was high. And the minute it began, all noises died down.

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The only noises were of the claps at various intervals. What's more, the weather gods were generous enough to grant us the best weather possible – warm with a hint of a slow breeze. And so was inaugurated the spectacle of the month!

First held in 2011, it is no hyperbole to say that the Rendez-vous Bundesplatz has become one of the symbols of Bern Tourism.

So much so, in fact, that tour operators from around the world wish to plan a trip around the time of the event. No wonder that October is a time when you see an influx of tourists wishing to lap up the many goodies Bern has to offer.

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Must-see light projections during the holidays

At a recent press event, I got to meet a few of the organizers behind the event. I now appreciate that the Rendez-vous Bundesplatz show is the culmination of much hard work and dedication.

Brigitte Roux, the producer and organizer of the event, shares with me:

"It wasn't easy to convince people to make this happen. We dealt with skepticism in the beginning. And finally, when one hurdle was conquered, there would come another. I remember a man who took care of the potted plants all over the Bundeshaus. He refused to take them down for the show. He did not get the idea of having a backdrop without any hindrances. Exhausted, I told him that we would call for a press conference only to talk about how we could not go ahead with the show because of the plants. And the next day, they were all gone!"

In 2023, this monumental light and sound show is running into its 13th successful year.

The theme "Mystic" at this year's Rendez-vous Bundesplatz offers a magical escape from the current turbulent times. We are invited to embark on a journey into an enchanted forest where deer and fairies coexist, where foxes live among dwarves and other fabulous woodland creatures. This theme promises a deep-dive into a realm of myths and fairy tales.

"Mystic" is on from Oct 21 through Nov 25, 2023. The projections onto the Swiss Parliament Building in Bern take place nightly at 7 PM, 8 PM, and 9 PM, and each cycle takes about 30 minutes.

More information

Rendez-vous Bundesplatz Light Projections in Bern
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An Indian citizen married to a Swiss, Indira is a published journalist based in Bern. She is very enthusiastic about Switzerland's culture and traditions.

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