Switzerland in April - worthy or not?

Switzerland in April - worthy or not?

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paddy
paddy
2 posts
new member
Sep 15, 2016 - 1:24 PM

Hi,

We are a group of 10 adults and 2 children, who are planning for an euro tour during the 3rd and 4th week of April 2017... We are planning to cover three countries - France, Italy and Switzerland or Germany.. But after going through certain posts in this great forum, we are confused if Switzerland would be a great option during that period.. With unpredictable weather and lot of facilities closed (as mentioned in the forum posts) will it be worthy to consider this option during April..

Moreover, we travel together once in two or three years and April - May are the only months available for travel.. So, please guide us.. Our expectation in Swiss - to visit Jungrafojouch, few mountain views - Schilthorn, Titlis or Rigi; lake cruises and more of enjoying scenic beauty rather than city tours or culture visits...

Annika
Annika
4418 posts
expert &
moderator
Sep 15, 2016 - 2:39 PM

Hi paddy, thanks for joining us!

Great that you get to travel together next year. In a sense you're right: April isn't generally recommended as the best month for a visit to Switzerland, as options are somewhat limited and weather may be bad: http://www.myswissalps .com/besttimetovisit. On the other hand: weather in the Alps is very unpredictable throughout the year, and there are no guarantees in any season. Personally I've been lucky enough to experience wonderful weather in late April/early May a couple of times. And nature is absolutely stunning: fresh green spring landscapes in the lower areas, still lots of snow capped mountain tops and no tourist crowds yet.

So if I were you, I wouldn't worry too much. Most of the attractions you mention will be accessible during your visit. Plan carefully and do check timetables though, as some of them may temporarily close for maintentance works (for example: the Schilthorn cable car was closed from April 18 to 22 this year). Details and links to specific timetables can be found through our attraction pages, e.g.

Stying in a centrally located town with indoor alternatives can be recommended too. Lucerne could be an option for example: www.myswissalps.com/lu cerne. You may also be interested in scenic train rides, as most are still nice if weather isn't that great: www.myswissalps.com/ac tivities/scenictrips/t rain.

Once your plans are more or less set, it's wise to look into rail passes: www.myswissalps.com/tr ain/ticketspasses/prac tical/chooserailpass.

Last modified on Sep 15, 2016 - 2:40 PM by Annika
Slowpoke
Slowpoke
2657 posts
expert
Sep 15, 2016 - 8:09 PM in reply to paddy

Hi Paddy- Arno has given very good advice and detailed help. You can definitely put togetehr a good itinerary, and, as suggested, Luzern is a good base.

If i go in April, I tend to stay at lower altitudes. Even in May, the Jungfrau region still has limited services. At lower elevations, Spring is in full bloom. It does rain more in April than in September.....

Slowpoke

Slowpoke
Slowpoke
2657 posts
expert
Sep 16, 2016 - 12:32 AM in reply to paddy

Hi Paddy- additional comments-

In April 2014, northern and central Switzerland was blessed with an unusually dry and sunny period. I was lucky enough to be there then.

I was hiking above Sumiswald in the Emmental, and the weather permitted a good photograph in the the direction of Trachselwald and the Alps.

With a little help from Photoshop, I captured a series of images and created the attached panorama.

Note that in mid-April, at that low altitude...about 700 meters... the trees were just blossoming, and the grass was not fully green except in the warmest areas. You can see how much snow was still on the Alps.

I'd say that the weather was more like mid-May and the plants were hurrying to catch up.

Slowoke

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azaib
azaib
12 posts
new member
Sep 16, 2016 - 2:48 AM

hi

you have been given really great advises . I will be there in april 2017 too. let's see how it goes . unfortunate for me though that I missed on Jaugfrauch pass as well as Regional pass due to " winter season " . these passes start operating in late april early may. keeping my fingers crossed . grab the accommodation on booking.com or last minute. com as early as possible as they give you free cancellation options which is great and keeps your trip flexible. do plan to stay in lauterbrunen for two days when you are planning to go to jaugfrauch and schilthorn. I am staying in a centrally located hotel but my friend can't find any reasonable and decent place .. and as the months pass by place will get crowded and expensive .

thanks and best of luck

Slowpoke
Slowpoke
2657 posts
expert
Sep 16, 2016 - 6:03 AM in reply to azaib

Hi azaib -

At that time of year, many hotels will be closed between seasons, because there are few travelers in the Jungfrau region. A bit late for good skiing. Plenty of snow on the higher trails, making hiking a problem. However, I'd be surprised if rooms were not easily available.

Arno and Annika have more direct experience with the region, perhaps they can point to some options.

Slowpoke

Arno
Arno
7727 posts
expert &
moderator
Sep 16, 2016 - 9:40 AM in reply to azaib

Hi azaib,

If you have trouble finding accommodation you can post in the Accommodation forum with some additional details about your trip.

paddy
paddy
2 posts
new member
Sep 16, 2016 - 4:01 PM

Thanks Annika, Arno and Slowpoke.. Appreciate ur time and guidance.. Will need ur help again before I finalize my plan..

Last modified on Sep 16, 2016 - 4:02 PM by paddy
azaib
azaib
12 posts
new member
Sep 17, 2016 - 5:36 AM

thanks for the replies guys. no it's ok I have my accomodation done .

i didnt mean can't find accommodation I meant it gets expensive when you try to book something closer to yoir trip . good luck with everything.

thanks

Slowpoke
Slowpoke
2657 posts
expert
Sep 17, 2016 - 10:06 AM in reply to azaib

Hi Azaib-

<<"I meant it gets expensive when you try to book something closer to yoir trip .">>

That certainly can be true if the lower cost accommodations have filled up.

However, the pattern of room bookings and prices depends strongly on the season and locality than on proximity to the time for the trip.

If you look at the price offers for several hotels in the Alpine regions, you will see that many of them have a pattern of pricing that varies with season, and that the rooms with the best views, such as those facing the Jungfrau, can be more expensive.

Certainly it is not a universal rule, but it is quite common for rooms at the time of year when there are few travelers in an Alpine region to be less expensive than at the peak of the summer season (August, when many families take vacation) and January and February (at the height of the ski season).

In Luzern, the seasonality is reduced, but rates still tend to be highest in the summer months.

Finally, some smaller hotels, such as one that I use periodically in Zürich, have a computer driven pricing algorithm. If they serve business travelers, the prices for a class/size of rooms increase as that set of rooms fills up, and weekend rates are cheaper, due to lesser demand from businessmen. Certain weeks, for major festivals or events ( such as the Geneva Auto Show) can fill all the rooms and drive prices up, too. In that case, people book rooms in Lausanne or even Montreux, and use the trains to get to/from Genva.. Early booking certainly helps for those circumstances.

Slowpoke

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