Trip to Switzerland, France and Italy in July 2016

Trip to Switzerland, France and Italy in July 2016

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KushalDave
KushalDave
10 posts
new member
Mar 12, 2016 - 7:58 PM

Hi,

We are group of 8 people planning to travel to Switzerland, France and Italy From 13th July to 24th July 2016.

Following is my rough itinerary:

1. 13th July Arrive in Paris by 1:00pm.

2. 14th July Bastille day (planning this especially for fireworks :-))

3. 15th to 18th July - Switzerland.

4. 19th July to 21st - Italy (Visit Cinque terry/Naples etc.)

5. 22nd to 23rd - Back to Switzerland.

6. 23rd Nigh reach Paris or travel by a night train from Swiss to Paris (if there is any).

7. Flight on 24th morning 10:00AM back to India.

I will be grateful if you can answer my following questions:

A]For my stay in Switzerland, I plan to keep Interlaken or a near buy place as my base and visit Jungfrau, Mt. titlis, Bernina express, Thun-Spiez boat ride, glacier express, lucerne lake boat ride etc.. Can you please suggest me regarding this. I predominantly prepared this list based on the EUrail pass benefits shown here: www.eurail.com/eurail-passes/pass-benefits/benefits-switzerland. But, as mentioned below I am not yet sure if I should buy a EURail pass. Please help me plan the 5-6 day stay in Switzerland. Feel free to add/remove suggestions. We are inclined towards natural attractions rather than cities.

B] I am not sure if I should buy a EURail pass for France-Switzerland. Since the pass is coming to be around 340 Euros per person (inclusive of the 15% family + youth discounts) for 4+1 days. Also, I am not buying a three country pass as it is not allowing me to get a France-Swiss-Italy 2nd class pass (but allows me a France-Swiss 2 country second class pass)! But even with the France-Swiss pass I am not sure if I am using it to full potential. I think I will definitely spend less if I travel and get point to point tickets. But I would miss out on all the EURail pass benefits in Switzerland.

C] Can the EURail pass be used for local transport in Paris like RER and local transport (buses) in Swiss?

D] If the base is in and around Interlaken, which is the ideal place to stay, considering we are a group of 8 people? :-)

E] If I have to travel from interlaken (or some City in Switzerland) to Paris, can I take some night train where I save on accommodation and precious day travel time?

PS. I need to be in Italy on 19th of July, hence splitting my Swiss time into two parts.

Annika
Annika
4424 posts
expert &
moderator
Mar 13, 2016 - 10:16 AM

Hi KushalDave, welcome to MySwissAlps!

A] The Bernina and Glacier Express are not very practical from Interlaken. They're too far away for a day trip. The Glacier Express would be pretty expensive with a Eurail Select Pass as you would pay 75% of the normal fare, at least from Brig to Disentis. A Swiss Travel Pass includes the ride for free. Please see www.myswissalps.com/in terlaken/activities for what to do near Interlaken.

B] Point to point tickets are not very expensive in Italy, so that might be the better choice there anyway. Please see www.myswissalps.com/tr aintickets/italy/price. In order to pick the best (cheapest) pass for your travel plans you need a detailed list of your plans and then do the math as explained here.

C] No, it can't. Please see the Eurail Select Pass link I gave you under A] and click "Where it's valid".

D] That depends on your preferences. Interlaken is a practical place with good train connections and plenty of restaurants and hotels. It's not a pretty town and it's not in the mountains. Grindelwald is smaller, but still plenty of facilities, and is surrounded by wonderful scenery. It's about 30 minutes from Interlaken. Lauterbrunnen is another, much smaller option. Wengen and Mürren take longer to reach and might not be suitable for you as you seem to have planned to travel a lot. Once you have picked a town you can ask for hotel suggestions in the Accommodation forum, if you wish.

E] There are no night trains from Switzerland to Paris. The day time high speed trains only take a few hours: www.myswissalps.com/tr aintickets/france.

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