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4 day trip to Switzerland late August from Basel

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6 posts
new member
Aug 10, 2015 - 11:22 PM


i have planned a 4 day trip starting from 27th evening to 1st september morning. i would need some advice how i should spend my time.

I have already decided to take a 4 day swiss rail pass which will help me going around places. But my flight is arriving and returning from Basel itself.

There were certain advice which was given to me e.g. spend time on interlaken as much as you can. But i want cover more places thoroughly. So it will be helpful to give me some advice on the circle which i can cover before coming back to basel on 31st august night.



7180 posts
expert &
Aug 11, 2015 - 3:17 PM

Hello Abishek!

Interlaken and its surroundings are great indeed. There's enough to keep you busy for weeks: www.myswissalps.com/be rneseoberland/activiti es. I understand you want to see more, but you can't thorougly explore many regions in a 4 or 5 day trip. Interlaken can very well be combined with a short stay in Lucerne though: www.myswissalps.com/la kelucerne. The Golden Pass is a good way to get there from Interlaken: www.myswissalps.com/go ldenpass. Lucerne is an attractive town with many nearby highlights. Traveling times between Basel, Interlaken and Lucerne are doable, so I this combination will result in a trip with a doable travel pace.

Another option is to make a day trip from Interlaken to Zermatt: www.myswissalps.com/ze rmatt. It will be a long day, but if you're keen on discovering other Swiss regions, this will allow you to see a very different part of the country. Consider to take the regional train that stops in Goppenstein on your way (the Lötschberg route), as that's a scenic alternative to the quicker tunnel connection.

The timetable www.myswissalps.com/ti metable at and our general planning tips at www.myswissalps.com/pl antrip/doityourself/co mposeitinerary may be of help too.

Purchasing the Swiss Travel Pass has been discussed in this topic, right: www.myswissalps.com/fo rum/topic/summer-discounts-of-up-to-60-on-rail-passes?

6 posts
new member
Aug 12, 2015 - 3:25 PM in reply to Annika

hi Annika,

Thank you for replying.

I am reaching on 27th evening.Do you suggest to move to Interlaken rather than staying at basel? I have complete 4 days so can i just spend 2 days at Interlaken and Lucerne before i go to Zermatt and Zurich? I will be back from there to Basel for my fight back on the 5th day(1st September) morning.

I also want to know what are the mountains i should cover in this trip e.g. Titlis, Alps or something else. I will finalize the itinerary accordingly.

Finally do i take the Swiss rail pass for these 4 days? I am not able to get a clear confirmation if that covers glacier express/ other panoramic view trains.

Thank you for helping me

7180 posts
expert &
Aug 13, 2015 - 7:51 AM

Hi Abishek,

I don't know how late you'll be reaching Basel, but if there's still time to move on to Interlaken, that's what I would prefer. That allows you to spend a few full days there before heading back to Basel. You may want to spend your last night in Switzerland in an airport hotel, which allows a convenient trip to the airport for your flight back: www.myswissalps.com/ba selairporthotels.

As for mountain visits: you can best focus on mountains that are close to your resorts. For your stay in Interlaken, consider the Jungfraujoch (www.myswissalps.com/ju ngfraujoch) or Schilthorn (www.myswissalps.com/sc hilthorn), and for Lucerne Pilatus (www.myswissalps.com/pi latus) or Rigi (www.myswissalps.com/ri gi). If you indeed consider a trip to Zermatt, I'd recommend the Gornergrat (www.myswissalps.com/go rnergrat) for a beautiful classic look of the Matterhorn. Do mind to make some back-up plans in case of bad weather.

A 4 day Swiss Travel Pass certainly makes sense. The "Where it's valid section" at www.myswissalps.com/sw isstravelpass/validity lists what's covered, and that does include scenic trains. The Glacier Express (www.myswissalps.com/gl acierexpress) doesn't match with your travel scheme though. Part of the Golden Pass route (www.myswissalps.com/go ldenpass), between Interlaken and Lucerne, does. Purchase options for you are being discussed in the Summer discounts topic.

6 posts
new member
Aug 25, 2015 - 1:35 AM in reply to Annika

Hi Annika,

My feets were not touching the ground when i was thinking that i can cover entire switzerland in 4 days! I must be in some dreamland. But now i am thinking realisticly and trying to lock my trip's itenary. Really need your approval or suggesstion. I will really appreciate if Arno can find some time to review it once.

There it goes. I took few of your advice and made this up after sitting down straight 5 hours. I know the below is a lot but i dont want to stop.Stop me where i should.

27 Aug:Basel to Interlaken

28 Aug: Interlaken Morning

29 Aug: Zermat

30 Aug: Lucerne

31 Aug: Zurich to Basel

1 Sep : Back to London

www.myswissalps.com/sw isstravelpass/validity

Day 1:

The Arrival at Basel and go to Interlaken OST

Day 2:

The Jungfraujoch/Schilthorn( which one?) half Day trip

Boat trip Lake Thun

(Boat trip and St. Beatus caves combined. There is a boatdock called 'Beatushöhlen-Sundlauenen'. From there, you can walk to the cavesin about 20 minutes.A nice round trip is to travel from Interlaken to Thun byboat, and back by bus via the North side of the lake or by train via the Southside.Boat trip via Spiez. A shorter trip is a boat trip to thenice little town of Spiez. From there you can walk to the train station inabout 20 minutes and take the train back.)

Day 3:

Travel to Zermat

Travel on rack railway from Zermatt to Gornergrat and back down

Travel to Chur (The Glacier Express) and Chur to Lucerne /Engelberg

Day 4:

Go to Mount Rigi

Suggestion Needed for More in Day 3

Travel to Zurich in the evening

Day 5:

The easiest way to reach the Rhine Falls is taking a train to the station called 'Schloss Laufen am Rheinfall'.

The station is located right next to the falls. It takes 45-60 minutes from Zurich to get there.

Travel back to Basel by evening

Day 6:

Misty Return from Basel back to London

Many thank you in advance. Any suggestions from anyone is welcome.

7180 posts
expert &
Aug 25, 2015 - 2:58 PM

Hi Abishek!

You've certainly put a lot of work in this new itinerary! I still think traveling times are too long in some cases, especially day 3. Only a few Glacier Express trains run each day, leaving in the morning, so you may not even manage to do the Gornergrat first and then catch a Glacier Express. Personally I'd prefer just a day trip to Zermatt and getting straight back to Interlaken or Lucerne (that would already be a day with extensive traveling), rather than making such a long detour. Did you check the timetable to make sure all plans are doable? In the end, it's up to you of course. If you're fine with long traveling days and want to see as much as possible, that's perfectly fine!

Let's look into some further details:

  • the choice between Jungfraujoch and Schilthorn is a very personal one. You can best check the pages I linked to in order to decide what appeals to you. Generally, the Jungfraujoch is a more special experience due to the train ride through the mountains, and the feeling that you're literally in between the Alps. And you'll get to see quite a lot of the region if you make a round trip via Wengen and Grindelwald as mentioned here. The Schilthorn offers more of a panoramic view and is cheaper. Also, the ride up takes less time than to the Jungfraujoch. You may find that worth considering, since you plan to combine this with a boat ride over Lake Thun and a visit to the Beatus caves.
  • on day 4, you can combine your visit to the Rigi with a boat trip over Lake Lucerne. The town center of Lucerne is also worth exploring.
Last modified on Jan 9, 2018 - 7:34 AM by Arno


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