|Motorways:||A1, A6, A12, ,|
Bern is the capital of Switzerland.
Option 1: Neufeld
From the train station, take the bus #11 to Neufeld P+R to the last station (You can use a short distance ticket for 2,20,- CHF.). Get out, turn left and walk 2 minutes to a roundabout with a nice hard shoulder. In August 2009 the new "Neufeld-Tunnel" was opened and since then this spot is not frequented that much anymore. It still works, but not much traffic. Therefore see Option 2: Tiefenaustrasse.
Option 2: Tiefenaustrasse
Take Bus 11/21 until "Henkerbrünnli". Or walk: It's a 5-10 minutes walk from the train station. Walk in direction of Bollwerk/Schützenmatte or to the "Reithalle" (a big autonome building with a lot of Graffiti etc.). Cross the street behind the Reithalle and there's the beginning of Tiefenaustrasse, which leads directly into the Neufeld tunnel and the motorway A1. There are many cars, but not too much space to stop (bike lane) and waiting times can be long. It nonetheless works. Use a sign because of local traffic.
Option 3: Wankdorf
From the train station, take the bus #20 to the station Wyler (buy a ticket 'zone 1-2' for 4 CHF). Walk 200m on the left side of the street (on your right you see a huge stadium, then cross the big crossroads. Right there you see a bus stop (Bus #28) where there is enough space for cars to stop. Use a sign! Cars driving past there can go to Zurich, Basel, Biel, Luzern,... You can take any lift to get onto the motorway (A1), right after Bern (3min) there is the service area "Grauholz" where you can change quite easily.
update June 2010: there are construction works and the situation changes every week. These days (June 14, 2010) the bus stop, where cars can easily stop, was moved around the corner. It's not the best place anymore, but it still does work. you better use a sign.
Option 4: Ostring From the train station, take tram #7 to Ostring (final station). Just stand in front of the motorway entrance. It's not the best place because cars can't see you from far away, but when it's raining you can place yourself under the motorway bridge. And there is enough place for cars to stop.
Option 5: Murtenstrasse A good on-ramp spot with a reasonable traffic flow and a lot of space for cars to pull over, about 10 minutes on foot from the train station resp. the center. The general direction is West, follow the Laupenstrasse and then the Murtenstrasse past the Inselspital hospital.
Option 1: Wankdorfplatz From the train station, take the bus #20 to the station Wyler (buy a ticket 'zone 1-2' for 4 CHF). Walk 200m on the right side of the street (on your right you see a huge stadium, then cross the big crossroads. There's a perfect bus stop. Better use a sign.
Option 2: Murtenstrasse See Option 5 above. Might be a doable spot for hitchhiking towards Lausanne, too.
Option 3: Weissensteinstrasse Take tram 7 or 8 to Schlossmatte, for example from Hirschengraben near the train station. Backtrack a bit and turn right down Huberstrasse, before you turn right again and follow Weissensteinstrasse until you see the motorway signs. This isn't a very good spot as several directions meet very close to the on-ramp, but by working with signs, you can still get a ride down towards Lausanne.
Option 4: Ostring (For Thun) From the train station, take tram #7 to Ostring (final station). Just stand in front of the motorway entrance. There is a redlight, and at least cars coming from one (of 2) directions will see you. There is enough space to stop.
There is an emergency sleeping place called Sleeper, where you can get a bed for 5.-, breakfast included. But they only accept people in an emergency, not people who actually could afford a hostel bed. Check-in times are from 10pm-1am and you can stay till 10am. Be there soon enough, especially in winter time. You can't make reservations.
If you go straight down from the Hirschengraben (close to the train station) following the tram tracks, you will find a small park on the right side after a few blocks. It's a good place for sleeping out.
You can try contacting Zenit if you need help or just company. His home base is in Bern, even though he's not there so much these days.
There is a wagenplatz by the E25 north of Bern, outside Bethlehem. You can get there taking a bus to Bethlehem b. Kirche or by tram 8 (check times at www.cff.com). The nearest train station is Bümpliz Nord, one station away from Bern Hauptbahnhof. Walk up Eymattstrasse, past the bridge that goes over the motorway, across into a nice woodland. Take the first footpath on the right and keep to the right at the following forks. Eventually you´ll see lots of beautiful vans and trailers. People are very friendly and welcoming. There are two guest spaces. The coordinates are 46.960324,7.392554
Breakfast: Monday-Friday at Aufenthaltsraum, Postgasse 35. Opening times 8.30-11.30am with free breakfast, and 2.30-5.30pm with free coffee, tea,... Postgasse is located in the lower old town, close to the (bus #12 stop) Rathaus.
Tuesday-Friday and Sunday at 12.30pm at La Prairie, Sulgeneckstrasse 7. It costs 5 CHF, if you can't afford that you can work for it in the kitchen. From the main trainstation go to the park "Kleine Schanze", on the right side of the park there is the street Sulgeneckstrasse and La Prairie just 50m from there.
Dinner/Supper: Every day from 6pm-8pm at the Sleeper. It costs 5 CHF. The place is located at Neubrückstrasse 19. From the main train station, walk towards Bollwerk/Reitschule. Go behind the Reitschule building, cross two streets and you will see it. Bus 11 or 21 stop there, the stop is called Henkerbrünnli (which means Hangman's spring).