Alternative trains for Glacier Express route

Alternative trains for Glacier Express route

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chitrav
chitrav
8 posts
new member
Jul 27, 2017 - 8:33 AM

Hi

I am not able to find any trains other than Glacier Express for a trip from Chur to Zermett. Can someone advise the link to book local trains to do the same scenic route as Glacier Express.

Thanks

Lucas
Lucas
8888 posts
expert &
moderator
Jul 27, 2017 - 8:53 AM in reply to chitrav

Hi chitrav and welcome to MySwissAlps!

There are indeed many regional (non-panoramic) trains running this route. If you use the Swiss railways timetable here you can search for trains between Chur and Zermatt. There are only between 1 and 3 departures for the Glacier Express per day and it is labeled as GEX on the timetable. All other trains are a "standard" swiss train you can travel on as well.

Lucas

chitrav
chitrav
8 posts
new member
Jul 27, 2017 - 6:31 PM

Thanks Lucas for the pointers. Appreciate your help.

The other trains seem to be on the Bern -Visp route. Will I get to see the Andermatt and Oberalp Pass . Also is there going to be any snow in August that we can see from the train routes?

Is Glacier Route to Zermatt/Mateerhorn better or Bernina Express route better to do in August? I have just 1 day to do trips and I am trying to cover the most. Matterhorn looks exciting, but not sure if its pretty enough in summer. :)

rockoyster
rockoyster
3922 posts
expert
Jul 27, 2017 - 8:57 PM in reply to chitrav

Hi Chitrav,

You need to search for trains VIA Disentis/Mustér to follow the Glacier Express route.

I would say the Matterhorn looks stunning at any time of the year.

Lucas
Lucas
8888 posts
expert &
moderator
Jul 28, 2017 - 5:04 AM in reply to chitrav

Hi chitrav,

You can see a route description for the route here: http://www.myswissalps .com/glacierexpress/ge ttingthere

You need to enter Andermatt as the Via station. :)

I think Zermatt is a lovely destination in the summer - the Matterhorn is quite unique to say the least!

Lucas

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Jul 28, 2017 - 5:39 AM in reply to chitrav

>> Also is there going to be any snow in August that we can see from the train routes?

Along the Bernina Express route, you will see some glaciers in August, but no snow, unless it has just fallen due to an unseasonal turn in the weather. If it does snow, it probably won't hang around for long. I have attached some photos of glaciers you can see on the Bernina Express route. These photos were taken in late September last year.

If you are staying in St Moritz or nearby, and have time to go up to the Diavolezza, that is a lovely glacier to see. You pass the Diavolezza cable car valley station in the Bernina Express, but cannot see the glacier from the train. I have attached some photos, also from late September last year.

As for the Glacier Express route, I would not think you would see any snow at that time of year. Last August, I went across the Oberalppass (which is the highest point of the Glacier Express route) and there was no snow at all. You can see my trip report here:

www.myswissalps.com/fo rum/topic/train-across-the-oberalppass-on-a-gloomy-day

However, you never can tell with weather in the alps!

Alpenrose

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Jul 28, 2017 - 5:42 AM

These photos are of the Diavolezza Glacier.

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chitrav
chitrav
8 posts
new member
Jul 28, 2017 - 5:58 AM

Thank you very much Lucas and rockoyster. Few more questions :)

1. I don't plan to do much hiking or such at Matterhorn as I have just a day to tour.Just plan to do the Glacier route on regular train + Zermatt - Gornergrat train. Is that a worthy trip? I have no time to stay in Zermatt and plan to return to Zurich the same evening/night.

2. For return from Zermatt to Zurich, I am not particular about the route. I came across www.trainline.eu/ which seems to have much cheaper trains compared to what I find on SBB from Zermatt to Basel. Would you recommend I book the trains from www.trainline.eu/ and connect from Basel to Zurich using www.raileurope.com/?

3. Is the train station code Basel-SBB different from Basel-BSL?

rockoyster
rockoyster
3922 posts
expert
Jul 28, 2017 - 7:44 AM in reply to Lucas

Hi Lucas,

You wrote: You need to enter Andermatt as the Via station. :)

Some say to-may-to some say to-mah-to. I just like the sound of Disentis/Mustér better that's why it is my Glacier Express route via-of-choice.

Andermatt always reminds me of the sort of place a Scandinavian might take their laundry. 😎

Lucas
Lucas
8888 posts
expert &
moderator
Jul 28, 2017 - 12:45 PM in reply to rockoyster

Oh yes, not to say you are wrong Rockoyster!

Our official directions on our Glacier Express page is Andermatt - so I tow the company line :)

Plus...it is probably easier to remember than to-mah-to / Disentis-Mustér. ;)

Arno
Arno
11155 posts
expert &
moderator
Jul 29, 2017 - 8:22 AM in reply to chitrav

Hi Chitrav,

1. Yes it is, see the Glacier Express page linked in the other posts here, and the Gornergrat page. You do need good weather but that's a matter of luck!

2. There are various companies who all sell tickets for the same trains. For tickets within Switzerland there should not be much of a price difference, but a little might be possible because of exchange rates. Please see myswissalps.com/traint ickets for the options. All retailers listed on our website are credible companies, so it does not matter where you buy apart from the price, possibly.

3. BSL is the airport. The main train station is Basel SBB.

Last modified on Jul 29, 2017 - 8:22 AM by Arno
chitrav
chitrav
8 posts
new member
Jul 31, 2017 - 4:16 AM

Thank you Arno.

One other question about Zurich. Is it safe for women to travel alone late in the night around mid night. Looks like I might have to return to zurich at mid night since I am doing a one day trip and walk to the hotel.

Lucas
Lucas
8888 posts
expert &
moderator
Jul 31, 2017 - 5:57 AM in reply to chitrav

Hi chitrav,

Yes I don't think you would have any issues - very safe country, even the "big" city of Zurich.

I've rarely heard/read about any issues while living here - it has to be one of the safest countries in the world for sure.

Lucas

Last modified on Jul 31, 2017 - 5:58 AM by Lucas
chitrav
chitrav
8 posts
new member
Jul 31, 2017 - 7:55 PM

Thank you Lucas.

I saw weather predictions and its going to be raining and thunderstorms in zermatt the day I plan to do the trip :( Is it even worth taking the trains and going all the way from zurich to see matterhorn if its going to be raining. Will thunderstorms impact the train up to matterhorn from Zermatt ?

Lucas
Lucas
8888 posts
expert &
moderator
Aug 1, 2017 - 6:07 AM in reply to chitrav

Weather changes frequently in the mountains here so wait until a day or so before you go to check the weather reports.

The weather from Zurich to Zermatt will not be the same. There may be storms in Zermatt but Zurich is a long way away. So parts of your train trip to Zermatt could be less scenic because of clouds but other parts could be great.

There is no train from Zermatt to the Matterhorn - you can't go to the Matterhorn itself. You can take a cogwheel train up to Gornergrat or a cable car up to Klein Matterhorn to get the best views of the Matterhorn.

If you go to Zermatt and it is dark and stormy and you can't see the Matterhorn at all from town I would not bother taking the trip up to either activity noted above.

Lucas

chitrav
chitrav
8 posts
new member
Aug 1, 2017 - 6:31 AM

Thank you so much Lucas. I will wait to check on the weather and plan accordingly. :)

chitrav
chitrav
8 posts
new member
Aug 9, 2017 - 5:33 AM

Quick question. I have a connection time in Chur station of 4 minutes. Train arriving at platform 9 and next train leaving from paltform 11. Will I have enough time to make it to the next train. I am unable to see a platform map to gauge if this is possible.

If I make reservation through SBB, will the connecting trains wait for reserved folks to show up. (guess not).

Lucas
Lucas
8888 posts
expert &
moderator
Aug 9, 2017 - 5:44 AM in reply to chitrav

Hi,

No they won't hold the train (reservations aren't possible typically anyway) unless there are many, many people connecting. 4 minutes is typically fine for changing of 2 tracks. They won't schedule a connection that is impossible but you will have to hurry a little if you can. :)

Here is a station map for Chur. You will have to go over (or under) one set of tracks.

ucas

chitrav
chitrav
8 posts
new member
Aug 9, 2017 - 6:38 AM

Thanks Lucas. The map is very helpful. I will try to run from one platform to the other ;)

Lucas
Lucas
8888 posts
expert &
moderator
Aug 9, 2017 - 8:05 AM in reply to chitrav

You can use the SBB timetable to make your connections longer as well (under advanced search & "duration of transfer"). That way you can plan out longer connections if needed.

If you don't have a lot of luggage with you and stairs aren't a problem you should be ok if everything is on time.

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