Zurich to Milano - William Tell, or EC?

Zurich to Milano - William Tell, or EC?

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Posts: 4. This thread is closed.
cptlflyer
cptlflyer
2 posts
new member
Jan 1, 2011 - 3:29 PM
I will be traveling between Zurich and Milan in late February and would like to make the most out of this scenic ride. Of course, the easy path is to take an EC train between Zurich and Milano. However, I also see that panoramic IR trains run from Zurich to Bellinzona (part of the William Tell Express, I assume?), where I would then have to connect to an EC train for the remainder of the trip to Milano.

It appears to be CONSIDERABLY more expensive to do the panoramic train w/change than simply to do an EC train Zurich-Milan. But, is the panoramic coach worth the added cost and stop?
Arno
Arno
7722 posts
expert &
moderator
Jan 2, 2011 - 5:20 AM
Hi cptlflyer,

The classic William Tell route includes a (usually steam) boat ride from Lucerne to Flüelen and a train ride from Flüelen to Lugano or Locarno. If you want to make the most of your transfer, that would be the way to go: take a regular train from Zurich to Lucerne, then the William Tell route, and change to a EuroCity train in Lugano. It is indeed more expensive, and it takes much more time, but it's a totally different experience than taking a EuroCity train for the whole trip, especially because of the boat section.

There is indeed a panoramic IR train from Zurich to Bellinzona that picks up the William Tell passengers along the way in Flüelen.

Please review the William Tell page as well.
Last modified on Apr 14, 2014 - 9:15 AM by Arno
cptlflyer
cptlflyer
2 posts
new member
Jan 2, 2011 - 2:45 PM
Thanks. I'm aware of the boat portion, which I don't plan to take. Every book I've read and person I've engaged with while planning says the boat portion is forgettable.

The real question is whether or not to take the panoramic IR train v. the EC train, and whether or not I miss any great sights by not stopping anywhere along the way (or, alternatively, if I see plenty of the region to get a sense of it from the EC train and am better off using the remainder of my day elsewhere, i.e., Milan).
Arno
Arno
7722 posts
expert &
moderator
Jan 3, 2011 - 1:24 AM
I see. Well, the IR train takes the exact same route as the EC train. The only difference between both trains is that the IR makes a few extra stops and offers the opportunity to book a seat in the panoramic coach (those might be available in first class only). So, for the trip itself and the view from the train, you might as well take the EC.

It's subjective, but for what it's worth: I really enjoyed the boat trip on Lake Lucerne. I made that trip in Spring though. I don't know what it's like in February.

Another excursion along the way is to get off the train in Arth-Goldau and take the cog wheel train up the Rigi for a great view. You can do that using an IR, EC or any other train that stops in Arth-Goldau.

In any case, enjoy the ride!

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