The City of Bern looks back on more than 800 years of history. It was founded by the Dukes of Zähringen in 1191. It joined the Swiss Confederation in 1353 and was chosen as the capital city of the Confederation in 1848. During the 20th century, Bern developed into a modern service centre, accommodating the headquarters of international organisations and companies.Important garantees for a high quality of life in Bern are a sustainable politics, an old town designated by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site and the picturesque location at the bend of the river Aare. Locals as well as the numerous guests from all over the world appreciate this.