Ideas for Trip around Christmas

Ideas for Trip around Christmas

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Nov 25, 2011 - 5:10 AM
Dear Friends

Me and my husband are planning a trip to Switzerland around Christmas for around 4-5 days...we r planning to reach Geneva on 22 Dec and go to Laussane for 1 day. On 23, we plan to go to Montreux and then by evening leave for Interlaken, Lucern and spend next 2-3 days there visiting Jungfrau region and Mt Titlis. We r not plannin to go to Zurich and want to return back to geneva on 26 to catch our flight back to London. We look forward to have some great ideas about places to visit around the areas we are going which are worth a visit. Also , we r confused as to which rail pass will be best suited for us. Can we buy the Golden pass rail ticket separately or do we have to buy a Swiss pass or Swiss flexi pass only for Golden Pass ticket also. Which option would suit us best?? All the ideas are welcome and much appreciated !!!
Annika
Annika
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Nov 27, 2011 - 6:20 AM
Hello Guneet, and welcome! That's a great itinerary for a stay in Switzerland around Christmas. The towns will be decorated and you can visit lots of Christmas markets (you can read about them in this topic and this one). My advice would be to plan your travels (including the one from Montreux to Interlaken/Lucerne) in daylight and not in the evening, as the views are great. Consider to use the Golden Pass line when leaving Montreux and/or when traveling back from Interlaken/Lucerne to Geneva. Alternatively, travel to Brig first and change trains to the RegioExpress Lötschberger there. Both routes can be found using the Swiss timetable. Enter your arrival and departure station and add 'Gstaad' or 'Zweisimmen' as your via-station for the Golden Pass route, or 'Kandersteg' for the Lötschberg route.

As for rail passes: if you like the idea of free traveling, you can best opt for a 4 day Swiss Saver Pass. It allows unlimited traveling in trains, buses and boats without the need to buy additional tickets. (Discounted additional tickets have to be purchased for mountain trains and cable cars.) If your stay lasts 5 days, you can start using your 4 day Swiss Saver Pass from the 2nd day onward. Your trip from the Geneva airport to your hotel can be made for free with a Unireso ticket, and your hotel will offer you a free Geneva Transport Card on top of that, so trips in and around Geneva will mostly be covered

I hope this gets you started!
Last modified on Dec 28, 2014 - 4:35 PM by Arno
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Nov 29, 2011 - 12:25 PM
Thanks a lot Annika..ur reply has surely helped a great deal in our planning. We are confused as to where to spend our Christmas Day out of Lucerne and Interlaken..Which out of the two will be having more places open and where can we find the Christmas market for getting souvenirs and gifts..I checked on internet and found that most of the Christmas markets are open only till 22 or 23 dec..Any ideas?
Annika
Annika
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Nov 29, 2011 - 1:16 PM
Hello Guneet. Some of the christmas markets are open up to December 22 or 23, but not all. Check the christmas markets in Bern (which can be reached from Interlaken) and Zurich (easily accessible from Lucerne) for example. You'll find winter and christmas activities in both Lucerne and Interlaken. You may want to check the tourist websites I linked to for more specific information.
maggiehorswell
maggiehorswell
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Nov 29, 2011 - 3:51 PM
Hello Guneet, we spent a week in Switzerland last December and visited many Christmas markets. I recommend you check out the website I used which is christmasmarkets.com where you can find out more. I have checked out dates for some of the markets we visited and they are as follows:- Basel open till 23rd Dec, Biel open till 24th Dec, Montreux till 24th Dec, Bern till 29th Dec and Zurich till 31st Dec. There is no info on dates for Lausanne so go to Lausanne tourist website. Unfortunately Lucerne finishes on 22nd Dec. I strongly recommend Montreux as it was our favourite. Zurich's market is in the main railway station so easy to get to. Bern has two markets and the city is very pretty decorated for the season. As Annika says you can reach Bern by train easily from Interlaken and Zurich from Lucerne. The Bern markets have more atmosphere than Zurich probably because they are outdoors but of the two cities we prefer Lucerne to Interlaken which would make the choice more difficult. Have a good time whatever you decide!! Happy Christmas. Maggie
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Nov 30, 2011 - 1:22 PM
Thanks a lot Annika and Maggie..ur suggestions have helped a great deal..A special thanks to you Maggie for taking out time to reply..I have managed to convince my husband to spend some more time in Montreux (just to go to the Christmas market there :-) ) ..Our schedule is such that we were going to Interlaken on 23 and Luzern on 24 or 25. So would have missed the Christmas Markets over there..But now no worries as will be going to Montreux market..Anything else worth a visit in Montreux? Also, we r a little confused if to spend 2 nights in interlaken and 1 night in Luzern or 2 nights in Luzern and 1 at interlaken...Any ideas? and if you can tell some optional things to do in and around interlaken ( in case the weather is bad on those days and we have to cancel our trip to my jungfrau ). Have booked our flights and rest booking is in process :-)
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Dec 2, 2011 - 12:30 PM
Help Please...2 nights Interlaken or 2 nights Luzern ??? which has more places nearby to visit..Not interested in Museums..More interested in Fun places, good scenic spots etc...
Annika
Annika
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Dec 5, 2011 - 2:05 PM
Hi Guneet. That's really a matter of personal preference. Did you check out the two tourist websites I linked to? They'll give a good impressions of the towns, their surroundings and attractions. You can also consider Maggies advice concerning the Bern market (to be reached from Interlaken) versus her preference for Lucerne.

As for Montreux: a very famous attraction is the Chateau de Chillon. That's definitely worth a visit!
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Dec 9, 2011 - 7:06 AM
Thanks Annika...We have booked the hotels, the VIP Seats for Golden Panaromic Train and the Swiss Pass. Do we need to do the pre booking for our trip to MT Titlis and Jungfrau or can we get the tickets on the day of our travel? Also, we have a 2 class Swiss pass and for the travel in Golden Panaromic train, do we need to the ticket booking also in advance or would it be fine if we got the tickets from the station some time before our travel time and pay for the upgrade from 2 to 1st class then and there. Please advice.
Annika
Annika
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Dec 9, 2011 - 8:50 AM
Hi Guneet. Trips to the Jungfraujoch and Titlis don't have to be booked in advance. You can just buy them at the valley stations right before boarding. Panoramic trains such as the Golden Pass do require seat reservation. Information and booking options are available through the seat reservation page. You can reserve 1st class seats already; the 2nd to 1st class upgrade ticket itself can be purchased locally before boarding.
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Dec 9, 2011 - 10:28 AM
Hi Annika,
For the Golden Panoramic journey, we have already reserved the VIP tickets and paid for the reservation(30 CHF) for 2 seats. Do i need to book in advance the tickets for the journey too or the seat reservation is enough and the tickets can be booked at the station.
Arno
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Dec 9, 2011 - 1:36 PM
Hi Guneet,

The tickets can be purchased at the station.

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