Basel to Lucerne and then Zurich

Basel to Lucerne and then Zurich

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debjohn
debjohn
10 posts
new member
Apr 16, 2018 - 5:57 AM

Wish I had found this site sooner. Leaving on a River Cruise from Amsterdam on 4/23/18 & ending in Basel on the 30th. I am fairly confused about the transportation passes and options. We will be in Lucerne 2 days & onto Zurich for 2 days. I guess we will be taking the train from Basel to Lucerne and would like to go up to Mt. Pilatus & also take a lake cruise. After getting to Zurich I would also like to take a tour to Lichtenstein if possible. I am starting to think I probably should have had the travel agent make more arrangements for us. Any assistance about the transportation would be greatly appreciated. This is our 1st trip outside of the U.S. so much of this is new to me.

Thank you so much.

Chantal
Chantal
944 posts
top member
Apr 16, 2018 - 8:34 AM in reply to debjohn

Hi debjohn, and welcome to MySwissAlps,

There is only one way to know which rail pass to choose: plan your itinerary in detail, including all trips by train, bus, boat and cable car. Then look up the full-fare cost of all these planned trips and compare the total cost of separate tickets with the cost of doing the same trips with the Swiss Travel Pass, Swiss Half Fare Card, Regional Pass etc.There is information and a spreadsheet here to help you: how to choose the best rail pass.

You can find fares in the Swiss Timetable. It is important to be aware that the fare shown for any trip in the Swiss Timetable defaults to half fare, as most Swiss residents will have a Half-Fare travelcard which entitles them to this discount. Your calculations need to be based on full fares, which are double the default fare that comes up.

I hope this helps.

debjohn
debjohn
10 posts
new member
Apr 16, 2018 - 2:02 PM in reply to Chantal

Thank you for your quick response. I think we are just going to go with the daily ticket and/or transportaton included with a tour if we choose that. Especially since European travel is definitely new to us.

Chantal
Chantal
944 posts
top member
Apr 16, 2018 - 2:31 PM in reply to debjohn

Maybe the self guided package is something you're looking for? There's more information on our web page here: www.myswissalps.com/pl antrip.

Please keep in mind that if you go for just daily tickets you don't get discounts on many of the Swiss highlights and point-to-point tickets might turn out to be much more expensive. The Tell-Pass Summer might be an option for you. A boat trip on Lake Lucerne for example is free with this pass. Read more here: www.myswissalps.com/te llpass/validity.

debjohn
debjohn
10 posts
new member
Apr 16, 2018 - 2:40 PM in reply to Chantal

Thank you So much. I will look at all the options today. Praying for good weather.

Will it still be quite cold if we go up to Mt Pilatus?

Chantal
Chantal
944 posts
top member
Apr 16, 2018 - 3:04 PM in reply to debjohn

Yes, it will be quite cold. Make sure you wear enough layers. Tickets for a trip up to the Pilatus are available at any staffed rail station, at the Lake Lucerne boat docks and from the Pilatus ticket desks. I wouldn't purchase the tickets now. Wait until you're here and you're sure that the weather is good enough to go up.

Last modified on Apr 16, 2018 - 3:04 PM by Chantal
debjohn
debjohn
10 posts
new member
Apr 16, 2018 - 3:31 PM in reply to Chantal

Thank you. A friend said it was cloudy one day but they decided to go up anyway & it was beautiful once they got up there. Can we get a weather report of the mountain conditions somewhere in Lucerne before we go up?

Chantal
Chantal
944 posts
top member
Apr 16, 2018 - 4:08 PM in reply to debjohn

We have a link to the weather forecast here: www.myswissalps.com/we ather/forecast.

Your hotel should be able to help you as well.

debjohn
debjohn
10 posts
new member
Apr 16, 2018 - 7:42 PM in reply to Chantal

Thanks again!!

Removed user
Removed user
0 posts
new member
Apr 17, 2018 - 12:16 AM in reply to debjohn

>> A friend said it was cloudy one day but they decided to go up anyway & it was beautiful once they got up there. Can we get a weather report of the mountain conditions somewhere in Lucerne before we go up?

In such conditions, you may or may not have views from the peaks. If the peaks are above the clouds, you might see a sea of clouds below you with mountain peaks sticking out of it. If the peaks are also in the clouds, you will see nothing but fog :-(

You can check visibility at the top before going up by looking at the webcams:

www.pilatus.ch/en/nc/l ive/

www.rigi.ch/en/Informa tion/Webcams

www.titlis.ch/en/live/ weather

www.stanserhorn.ch/_we bcam/video/video.html?TB_iframe=true&height= 350&width=384

I went up to Titlis one time when it was foggy in the valley, and on the way up in the gondola, but clear on top. If you are interested, you can see photos of what these conditions can be like - attached to my posts on the following page:

www.myswissalps.com/fo rum/topic/snow-and-fleet-in-the-mountains

Alpenrose

Last modified on Apr 17, 2018 - 5:24 AM by Arno
Removed user
Removed user
0 posts
new member
Apr 17, 2018 - 12:28 AM in reply to debjohn

>> would like to go up to Mt. Pilatus

The cogwheel train from Alpnachstad to Pilatus Kulm closes for the winter, and will reopen sometime in early May, depending on the weather.

If it has not reopened when you are there, you can go up and back on the cableway from Kriens. Chantal has given you a link, from where you can find out how to get to and from Pilatus.

The following link will tell you whether or not the cogwheel train from Alpnachstad is operating when you are there:

www.pilatus.ch/en/nc/l ive/

Alpenrose

Last modified on Apr 17, 2018 - 5:25 AM by Arno
Removed user
Removed user
0 posts
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Apr 17, 2018 - 12:42 AM in reply to debjohn

>> After getting to Zurich I would also like to take a tour to Lichtenstein if possible ... Any assistance about the transportation would be greatly appreciated.

To plan any trip, you can use the Swiss Timetable:

www.myswissalps.com/ti metable

Use the one on the right, with the red SBB logo.

Trains from Switzerland heading to Austria travel through Liechtenstein, but don't stop there. You will need to transfer to a bus at Sargans to continue the journey.

What draws you to Liechtenstein? From what I can gather, its charms are fairly limited.

Alpenrose

Last modified on Apr 17, 2018 - 5:25 AM by Arno
debjohn
debjohn
10 posts
new member
Apr 17, 2018 - 1:12 PM

Thank you SO much for all of the useful information. I can't believe our trip is finally here. Splurging on the Dolder Grand in Zurich so I know It will be beautiful. .

Removed user
Removed user
0 posts
new member
Apr 18, 2018 - 4:36 AM in reply to debjohn

>> Splurging on the Dolder Grand in Zurich

If you will be using the Dolderbahn cogwheel train during your stay, my post of Jul 17, 2016 - 3:39 AM on the following page (about finding the entrance to the bottom station of the Dolderbahn) might interest you:

www.myswissalps.com/fo rum/topic/polybahn-zurich

Alpenrose

Last modified on Apr 18, 2018 - 4:39 AM by Removed user
debjohn
debjohn
10 posts
new member
Apr 18, 2018 - 2:47 PM in reply to Removed user

Thank you. I will take a look.

Slowpoke
Slowpoke
4735 posts
expert
Apr 20, 2018 - 9:39 AM in reply to debjohn

Hi Debjohn-

Most posters are looking to find the cheapest way to travel the trains, and worry about buying a 5 day pass if they are traveklling only four days. The hate to waste that extra day.

In your case, and to make it easy, I'd seriously consider the Swiss Travel Pass. Don't buy tickets. Just get on the train. bus, boat, tram and show your STP. Very rarely, in back country corners of the country, it might not be good on some buses. And, on alpine transport, such as around the Jungfrau, it may only offer a discount. But, that's not on your list.

www.myswissalps.com/sw isstravelpass

I'm guessing that, if you wish plan to stay a the Dolder Grand, counting pennies might not be critical for you. And, with your experience level, it will make life a lot easier. All your travel , including trams in Zürich will be covered ( need to confirm Pilatus...might only get a discount. They keep changing the coverage there.

And, since you are from the USA, as I am, you will be amazed at how well the train system ( as well as other public transport) works.

www.myswissalps.com/ti metable

By the way, instead of Liechtenstein, if you really want to go to that part of the country or region, I'd take a look at St. Gall.

There is a bunch of stuff about it in this thread in my post on the 19th:

www.myswissalps.com/fo rum/topic/itinerary-advice-11#hHPB16DW9mqS6v8AAFc RTQ

Closer than Liechtenstein and a lot more interesting.

Slowpoke

debjohn
debjohn
10 posts
new member
Apr 21, 2018 - 12:36 AM in reply to Removed user

It was just a thought. I saw a tour that went there & it looked scenic. I really did not have a particular reason other than Alps scenery. I have to admit - I wish I checked on some of the site options earlier.

Slowpoke
Slowpoke
4735 posts
expert
Apr 21, 2018 - 12:43 AM in reply to debjohn

You'll have to come back again, once you undertand the place. ;-)

Slowpoke

debjohn
debjohn
10 posts
new member
Apr 21, 2018 - 12:47 AM in reply to Slowpoke

Thank you so much. Staying at the Dolder is really a splurge for us (our 40th anniversary & 60th birthdays) but I am still trying to be somewhat cost conscious. Using bonus airline miles for some of our Hotel stays. I have to admit; the Pass Did seem to be a little more expensive than I thought it would be as we will only be in Switzerland for 4 days (& I understand they may be on strike on our day to return to Zurich airport.) It may be worth it though as you said, this is pretty new to us & I have heard the Swiss transportation system is excellent.

Thanks Again.

Slowpoke
Slowpoke
4735 posts
expert
Apr 21, 2018 - 12:53 AM in reply to debjohn

A transport strike in Switzerland is almost unheard of.

Could it be France?

Slowpoke

Last modified on Apr 21, 2018 - 12:54 AM by Slowpoke

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