Münster Cathedral

Volume 7, Issue 181; 08 Oct 2004; last modified 08 Oct 2010

In Basel, Münster Cathedral is the center of the oldest part of town. Dating from the twelfth century, it’s a mixture of romanesque architecture and gothic style.

I really enjoy cathedral architecture. The enormity of the structures and the man years (man centuries) of effort devoted to building them is always impressive. The interior spaces are impressive too irrespective of the decoration or lack thereof.

In Basel, Münster Cathedral is the center of the oldest part of town. Dating from the twelfth century, it’s a mixture of romanesque architecture and gothic style.

Münster Cathedral (Front)
Münster Cathedral (Front)

Its facade is strikingly constructed almost entirely from red sandstone.

Münster Cathedral (Side)
Münster Cathedral (Side)
Münster Cathedral (From Courtyard)
Münster Cathedral (From Courtyard)
Münster Cathedral (Side)
Münster Cathedral (Side)

I think the sundials on the front and side of the right hand spire are pretty cool.

Sundial
Sundial

Inside, it’s a lovely, large quiet space.

Münster Cathedral (Inside)
Münster Cathedral (Inside)

For 3 CHF, you can climb the left spire almost to the very top.

Steeple Spire
Steeple Spire

They won’t let you go up by yourself, but I was lucky and slipped in just after another family started the ascent. The concern is one of safety, and it’s certainly the case that the stairs are steep, narrow, and demonstrate a relaxed attitude towards hand rails and other safety features.

Stairs: Narrow and Steep
Stairs: Narrow and Steep

On the other hand, the stairs have been in use for several hundred years at least. A little common sense and care will get you pretty far. The clock mechanism is in the left spire.

Cathedral Clockworks
Cathedral Clockworks

It’s a long way up.

Cathedral Courtyard
Cathedral Courtyard

But the view is gorgeous.

Basel from Münster Cathedral
Basel from Münster Cathedral

The views inside are gorgeous too, and it’s nice to see them being maintained.

Restoration
Restoration

There are more pictures of Münster Cathedral in my essay about the statuary.