18 days in Switzerland: Lucerne-Interlaken-Zermatt

18 days in Switzerland: Lucerne-Interlaken-Zermatt

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Posts: 12. This thread is closed.
SR1000
SR1000
47 posts
active member
Jan 31, 2016 - 5:04 PM

I got very good help in planning a 15 day itinerary in my other thread. Somehow I am not able to add more questions to it, so starting another one . Apologies in advance if this is not the right way to do it.

The 15 day / 14 nights plan was finalized as:

  • Zurich - 1 night
  • Lucerne - 4 nights
  • Interlaken - 3 nights
  • Brig - 2 nights
  • Zermatt - 2 nights
  • Montreux - 1 night
  • Geneva - 1 night

The way we managed to get tickets using miles gives us 4 more days (and nights) in Switzerland and we fly out of Zurich (that will consume one day in returning back from Geneva). So now I am asking for suggestions on how I can use these additional 3 days.

Option 1: Add one more day each to Lucerne and Interlaken -- possibly as a backup day for bad weather or additional hiking. Add one more day to Montreux and cover Cheese and Chocolate factories. Brig or Zermatt deserve an extra day?

Option 2: Add one more area in Switzerland not covered above. Any suggestions?

Don't want to make the trip hectic by cramming too many towns and places to stay (as we are traveling with a 6 year old).

Please help at the earliest as would like to start booking hotels now that flight tickets are booked.

Arno
Arno
7720 posts
expert &
moderator
Jan 31, 2016 - 5:34 PM

Hi SR1000,

We close threads after a few weeks of inactivity, so it's perfectly fine to open a new one for your remaining questions.

You stay fairly short in each of the towns, so I would not add more bases. You could easily stay a few weeks in each of these towns and do new things every day, so "staying too long" is nearly impossible. Here's what I would do, and of course that's just a personal preference:

  • Stay in a town near Interlaken, like Grindelwald or Wengen or one of the others in the mountains. Unless you plan to cover the entire Bernese Oberland. In that case Interlaken is a convenient starting point for day trips in all directions.
  • I would either stay in Brig or in Zermatt, not both. They're only an hour apart. Changing hotels takes time. Staying longer in one place gives you a better chance to move mountain trips to good weather days and do other things on cloudy/rainy days. Likewise, Geneva is an easy day trip from Montreux and Zurich is an easy day trip from Lucerne.
  • I'd add days to Interlaken and Lucerne, and possibly Montreux.

I don't know when you travel. That might be relevant.

Here's your starting point for hotels: myswissalps.com/ hotels. For hotel related questions, please post here.

Last modified on Jan 31, 2016 - 5:36 PM by Arno
SR1000
SR1000
47 posts
active member
Feb 1, 2016 - 5:40 AM in reply to Arno

Thanks for the quick response Arno.

We are reaching Zurich on 18th June (morning) and will leave on July 6th (morning).

I like your suggestion. Will add one day each to Interlaken, Lucerene and Montreux. Will also combine Brig/Zermatt in one hotel.

Will post the modified itinerary here once for final confirmation and will start looking for hotels based on the links you provided.

SR1000
SR1000
47 posts
active member
Feb 2, 2016 - 2:46 PM

Ok. I think I got the itinerary finalized now. Reaching on June 18th:

  • Zurich - 2 nights - local sightseeing
  • Lucerne - 4 nights - Mt Rigi, Mt Pilatus, Mt Titlis
  • Interlaken - 4 nights - Schilthron, Murren, Jungfraujoch, Kleine Scheidegg (small trek)
  • Zermatt - 4 nights - Fiescheralp, Gornergrat, Klein Matterhorn
  • Montreux - 3 nights - Local Sightseeing, Gruyeres (Castle, Cheese), Broc (Chocolate), Geneva
  • Zurich - 1 night

Some final questions if you can please help.

1. Which are the famous trains on this route that we should not miss? Any suggestions on the seating/reservations?

2. From Zermatt, can we do this in one day (if we start early)? Zermatt--> Brig --> Betten —> Bettmeralp (Cable Car) —> Bettmerhorn(Gondola) —> Hike to Fiescheralp (1 hour) —> Fiesch (Cable Car) —> Brig --> Zermatt

I will now start looking for hotels and post questions in another section for that.

Arno
Arno
7720 posts
expert &
moderator
Feb 2, 2016 - 4:28 PM in reply to SR1000

Hi SR1000,

1. The Golden Pass line connects Lucerne, Interlaken and Montreux. So if you switch Zermatt and Montreux you can see the entire line: myswissalps.com/ goldenpass.

2. Yes, that's certainly possible. Don't start your day too late so you can take your time.

SR1000
SR1000
47 posts
active member
Feb 2, 2016 - 5:03 PM

I can certainly switch Montreux and Zermatt. Alternatively is it possible to take the Golden Pass in the other direction ( Montreux->Zurich) or is it not that scenic?

Arno
Arno
7720 posts
expert &
moderator
Feb 2, 2016 - 6:07 PM in reply to SR1000

Sure, it's the same route. Very nice scenery.

SR1000
SR1000
47 posts
active member
Feb 3, 2016 - 7:12 AM in reply to Arno

Hi Arno & others,

These are the 3 visits we are planning. For these, is it better to stay in Interlaken or Wengen?

  • Lauterbrunnen —> Stechelberg Schilthornbahn (walk) —> Gimmelwald (Gondola) —> Murren Schilthornbahn (Gondola) --> Schilthron (Cable Car) --> Murren Schilthornbahn (Cable Car)-- --> Gruschalp (Walk)
  • Laterbrunnen --> Kleine Scheidegg (train) —> Jungfraujoch —> Kleine Schedegg —> Grindelwald (Eiger North Face - right)
  • Wengen --> Mannlichen LWM (Gondola) --> Mannlichen Peak (walk) --> Kleine Scheidegg (walk)
SR1000
SR1000
47 posts
active member
Feb 3, 2016 - 1:35 PM in reply to SR1000

Hi Arno,

One more thought. We are thinking of skipping Jungfraujoch, mainly to constrain costs and substitute it with the following:

Grindelwald Bahnhof --> Grindelwald BGF --> First --> Bachalspee (Hike)

Let me know what you think along with the question above.

Arno
Arno
7720 posts
expert &
moderator
Feb 4, 2016 - 6:02 AM in reply to SR1000

Hi SR1000,

The 3 trips are closer to Wengen, but can be done from Interlaken as well.

A walk to the Bachsee is wonderful, but totally different from a visit to Jungfraujoch. The links provide all the details about these activities.

SR1000
SR1000
47 posts
active member
Feb 4, 2016 - 6:29 AM in reply to Arno

Thanks Arno. I think I will cut down a day from Zurich and keep both Jungfraujuoch and First/Bachsee in the plan.

Just one last question on all the hikes. Are these quite safe for family? Similar to the hikes in North America, any risk of wild animals (bears etc.)? Any other precautions we need to take on the hike?

We will have a 6 year old with us on all hikes planned. Most of them are 6km or less. The only one longer is Bettmerhorn to Fiescheralp (about 9km). Is that doable with family (too steep or flat)?

Annika
Annika
4417 posts
expert &
moderator
Feb 5, 2016 - 8:39 AM

Hi SR1000!

The hikes listed on our website differ in length and difficulty. An estimation of difficulty can be found under the "Facts" on each of our hikes' pages. The Bachsee hike is certainly suited for families. Whether Bettmerhorn-Fiescheralp is, depends on the age of your children and the degree of fitness and hiking experience of all members of your party. The route isn't very exposed, but does include a section with larger rocks and loose stones that may be challenging to a 6 year old. Whether your family feels up for this, is a personal decision.

Further tips and precautions are at www.myswissalps.com/hi king/preparation and www.myswissalps.com/hi king/etiquette.

Last modified on Feb 5, 2016 - 8:41 AM by Annika

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