Should I buy a pass, which would be best?

Should I buy a pass, which would be best?

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Posts: 4. This thread is closed.
CambridgeWI
CambridgeWI
2 posts
new member
May 27, 2014 - 12:23 PM

Traveling with 21 year old granddaughter in March 2015. Flying into Zurich, then training to Lucerne (2 nights), Zermatt (1 night) , Italy -- Verona (1 night), Venice(2 nights), Rome (3 nights). Have booked nothing yet, but would like to make plans now. Would like to visit one mountaintop (which one ? as Mt Pilatus will be closed while we're there). Which trains to book? Very confused about what will be the most cost effective and efficient. Any help would be greatly appreciated!

Arno
Arno
7718 posts
expert &
moderator
May 27, 2014 - 2:46 PM in reply to CambridgeWI

Hello CambridgeWI,

Thanks for posting here, and for your profile picture. I have always found those US double deck trains really beautiful, but never had the chance to travel with them.

The Pilatus can normally be visited by cable car in March too, but in 2015 it will be upgraded so unfortunately it is indeed closed. The cogwheel train to the summit will not be operating until May either. If you like trains, the journey by train up the Rigi is really nice, and free with a Swiss Pass. Other suggestions are listed here.

My suggestion is to travel from Lucerne to Zermatt like this:

  • Golden Pass route to Interlaken;
  • Train to Spiez;
  • Local train via Kandersteg and Goppenstein to Brig (not the long, fast tunnel to Visp);
  • Train to Zermatt.

It's too bad you only have one night in Zermatt. There's so much to see there, but time and good weather is required to fully enjoy it.

A 4-day Swiss Saver Pass may fit your plans. It covers the whole trip as suggested above for free. The same goes for the Rigi trip and the train from the airport to Lucerne. There's nothing to book, except for the pass. Just board any train you like. How to choose a pass is explained here. Hotels can be found here.

Last modified on Dec 28, 2014 - 12:53 PM by Arno
CambridgeWI
CambridgeWI
2 posts
new member
May 27, 2014 - 3:21 PM in reply to Arno

Thank you, Arno. We could certainly rearrange plans to have 1 night in Lucerne and 2 in Zermatt if you recommend that as a better choice. The other change could be 2 nights in Lucerne, 2 Zermatt, 1 Verona, 2 Venice, 2 Rome, or skip Verona and do 2 Lucerne, 2 Zermatt, 2 Venice, 3 Rome. I've only been to Lucerne and Venice, so not sure. Squeezing everything in to 9 nights is hard, and we don't want to be too rushed anywhere. Your advice is welcomed, as I haven't booked anything yet and am open to all suggestions.

You may someday enjoy the train trips by Amtrak trip to Glacier Nat'l Park in the US, or the mail train from Anchorage to Fairbanks, AK, US or VIA across Canada to Banff - all beautiful trips which I've done.

Arno
Arno
7718 posts
expert &
moderator
May 28, 2014 - 9:25 AM in reply to CambridgeWI

Hello CambridgeWI,

Well, since I love Switzerland my preference would be to plan one more day there. Both Lucerne and Zermatt are great places and you could very easily stay a full week in each of them. The issue with Zermatt is that good weather is required to do/see anything, so each night extra increases your chances of actually seeing the Matterhorn and to a trip into the mountains like the Gornergrat. Lucerne offers more options for both good and bad weather, like the great Swiss transport museum (50% off with the Swiss Saver Pass).

You can best explore the Central Switzerland, Lucerne and Zermatt pages for activities and hotel suggestions.

I'll keep those train suggestions in mind, especially Alaska sounds interesting, thanks!

Last modified on May 28, 2014 - 9:33 AM by Arno

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