Aug 10, 2015 - 9:02 AM
Welcome to MySwissAlps, ISOheaven!
You can best buy a direct ticket from Paris to Basel. In Basel you'll have to change trains anyway, in order to get to Interlaken. These trains will pass Bern too. You can find details for all connections in the Swiss timetable at www.myswissalps.com/ti metable. I don't know which website you've used, but there should be more connections from Paris than just one leaving at 6pm. You can arrange for your tickets Paris-Basel using one of the resellers listed at www.myswissalps.com/tr aintickets/france/price. Since you're from the US, you can best use www.raileurope.com or www.raileurope-world.com.
As for the Swiss leg of your trip: you may profit from buying a rail pass, instead of regular full-fare tickets. Which pass is best depends on the details of your trip, but based on what you've mentioned now, I think you should look into a Swiss Half Fare Card: www.myswissalps.com/sw isshalffarecard. This allows you to buy 50% discounted tickets. You can also get the free Swiss Family Card along with it, allowing your children to travel along for free. To make sure if this is an economical option for you, you can make calculations as explained at www.myswissalps.com/tr ain/ticketspasses/prac tical/chooserailpass.
If you're interested in Swiss Half Fare Cards, you should check www.myswissalps.com/sw isshalffarecard/price and see if you still have time to order your passes online, which is cheaper than buying them in Switzerland. If delivery times for the cheapest reseller (in your case www.raileurope-world.com) take too long to have your passes delivered at home, you can try to have them sent to your hotel address in Paris. Alternatively, you can buy the pass as an e-ticket from www.swissrailways.com. The price will be the same as in Switzerland, but the advantage is that you can print it yourself and start using it as soon as you arrive in Switzerland, without the need to spend time on a purchase at the Basel railway station.
Whether you should stay in Interlaken or Grindelwald depends on your plans. If you want to focus on the Jungfrau region only, you may like Grindelwald better. If you want to explore a larger area, I'd suggest Interlaken instead. Please find accommodation suggestions at www.myswissalps.com/in terlaken/hotels and www.myswissalps.com/gr indelwald/hotels. For your last night in Zurich, a hotel near the airport may be convenient: www.myswissalps.com/zu richairporthotels. Hotels in downtown Zurich are listed at www.myswissalps.com/zu rich/hotels. If you're not able to find anything that fits your wishes in these lists, please provide us with more specifics (budget per night, accommodation type, preferred location, and so on), so that we can help.