Helvetisches Goldmuseum

Museum Schloss Burgdorf

Useful Information

Location: Schloss Burgdorf, Schlossgässli 1, 3400 Burgdorf.
A1 exit 49 Kirchberg, 23 to Burgdorf.
(47.054915, 7.629253)
Open: All year Wed-Sun 10-18.
Fee: Adults CHF 5, Children (6-15) CHF 2.
Classification: MineGold Mine
Light: LightIncandescent Electric Light System
Guided tours: self guided, D=1 h.
Photography: allowed
Accessibility: no
Bibliography: (2000): Führer Helvetisches Goldmuseum, Burgdorf 2000. Deutsch - German
Werner Lüthi (2008): Helvetisches Goldmuseum Burgdorf, Das Burgdorfer Jahrbuch, Jg. 75 (2008). Deutsch - German yumpu
W. Lüthi, M. Brunner (2008): Das Gold der Bündner Berge Goldformat 3. Burgdorf : Helvetisches Goldmuseum Burgdorf. Deutsch - German online DOI
Address: Helvetisches Goldmuseum, Schloss Burgdorf, Schlossgässli 1, 3400 Burgdorf, Tel: +41-34-426-10-40. E-mail: E-mail:
As far as we know this information was accurate when it was published (see years in brackets), but may have changed since then.
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2000 established on the initiative of Werner Lüthi..
2020 renovated as part of a major castle conversion and reopened under the name Museum Burgdorf Castle.


The Helvetisches Goldmuseum (Helvetic Gold Museum) is the only museum that provides an overview of gold panning and gold mining in Switzerland. Moreover, it is located in the former dungeon in the fortified tower of Burgdorf Castle, so it is underground. The large room was divided into two floors with a later installed intermediate floor. The collection is the property of the Verein Goldkammer Schweiz (Swiss Gold Chamber Association), which was founded as the Förderverein Helvetisches Goldmuseum in 2000.

The Zähringerschloss (Zähringer Castle) is located on a sandstone rock high above the Emme. The rock was formed during the Ice Age and was already inhabited in the late Bronze Age. A castle from the early Middle Ages was replaced by a new one around the year 1200 by Duke Berchtold V of Zähringen, hence the name. This was extended by the Kyburgs and then by the canton of Bern. It was also in use as the archive of the court and justice administration in the canton of Bern until the end of the 1990s. Due to a reorganisation, the basement of the keep was no longer used. In 2012, the cantonal administration moved out completely and the castle was converted into a museum, youth hostel and restaurant.

The castle originally housed three collections. These were partly relocated to new exhibition rooms when the castle was remodelled. It is now a museum with 20 rooms and 1500 m² of exhibition space, of which the Gold Museum is a part. The part of the Gold Museum consists of different thematic areas. It starts with the geology of gold deposits, the properties of gold and a collection of gold minerals. Historical engravings and paintings of gold mining and gold rushes around the world, gold coins and gold shares, as well as varieties of jewellery and gold plating are presented. Then the cultural history of gold and the use of gold in everyday life is presented.

The nearby river Emme has a very special connection to gold. Back in the 1970s, a geology student discovered gold while examining the river sediments. A gold prospecting movement ensued, and many people discovered gold panning as a hobby. People still pan for gold in the area today, and the museum organises excursions to the Emme every year. Part of the exhibition is also dedicated to local gold. Besides examples of the nuggets found, pictures and documents from 50 years of gold panning are on display. There is even a separate section dedicated to the gold panning championships. Besides Schweitzer championships, there are also European championships and world championships.