Swiss panoramic trains from Bern in Oct

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Posts: 7
Swisslover19
Swisslover19
8 posts
new member
Oct 8, 2019 - 5:38 PM

Hi,

I will be traveling to Switzerland from Oct 10 to Oct 15 and checking for which Panoramic train should I experience. I have booked my base stay at Bern for all 5 days. Based out of the details you have provided it seems like Golden pass is the best to do full round in 1 day. Do you say I can do any other panoramic train as I will be staying in Bern.

Thanks

rockoyster
rockoyster
7362 posts
expert
Oct 8, 2019 - 6:24 PM in reply to Swisslover19

The ”best” panoramic train is the one that best suits your itinerary. From a base in Bern the only practical one is the Golden Pass.

My favourite panoramic train by a mile is the Bernina Express. But that’s not something that works from Bern.

Rather than getting hung up on the “panoramics” can I suggest you consider going from Bern to Gstaad. Then get a bus to Les Diablarets and a train to Montreux. Then return to Bern by the fastest route.

If you have time break the bus journey at Col-du-Pillon and take the cable car up to Glacier 3000 and do the Peak to Peak Walk (if you have the nerve).

The Golden Pass Panoramic Zweisimmen to Montreux is pleasant but really nothing to write home about. Personal opinion.

Swisslover19
Swisslover19
8 posts
new member
Oct 8, 2019 - 8:08 PM

Hi Rockoyster,

Thanks for your reply. I even felt the same that Golden pass is only the one option and near to my place. As I have a kid and concern about too many changes along the way. I am thinking of taking golden pass as round trip either from Interlaken or Brig.

Even to do small trip in other panoramic trains seems that its not that easy right?

1960man
1960man
2155 posts
top member
Oct 8, 2019 - 11:01 PM in reply to Swisslover19

Try not to focus too hard on the so called 'panoramic' trains. They have almost hyperbolic levels of marketing these days, but nearly all Swiss railway carriages have large windows so you see the same views, and in general terms virtually all railways in Switzerland are scenic in some way - if you don't see high mountains you will see other icons of Switzerland such as lakes, rolling pastures, farmsteads, cows etc. - so you will rarely be disappointed with any Swiss train trip. As such Bern is a great base for seeing lots of different areas don't ignore the Jura mountains to the north From the top of the Jura (and even from Bern city) you often get superb distant views of the Alps which can be as memorable as being in the high Alps themselves (for example: www.myswitzerland.com/ de/erlebnisse/route/ru ndwanderung-vue-des-alpes/)

As I say, being on a 'special' train hardly matters anyway as most modern Swiss trains have large windows, even if not officially panoramic. The key element of a ‘panoramic’ coach is ‘toplight’ windows above your head but in practice very few of the major views from panoramic trains are directly above your head, so the view through the normal trains windows on Swiss trains is perfectly fine.

If you get a Swiss Travel Pass, you can travel on any and all of the railway lines of the main Swiss national network, this includes any train on the so called 'panoramic' routes (which are all just normal railways with lots of normal trains services throughout the day.

A good publication to start with is:

www.bradtguides.com/sh op/europe/switzerland/ switzerland-without-a-car-3302.html

A look at this relief map will show you where the high Alps are and it shows the railways in context with the mountainous regions very well:

www.citymetric.com/sit es/default/files/artic le_body_2018/02/switze rland_without_trains.p ng

Swisslover19
Swisslover19
8 posts
new member
Oct 9, 2019 - 2:46 AM

Hello 1960man, It was quite a great explanation and convincing. Thanks for your suggession. The only reason I was looking for Panoramic trains is because I am planning to buy Swiss travel pass and this will cover all the panoramic trains, but for my 6 days stay I can't buy the pass to full fill all the days I stay. So my plan was to buy 8 days pass as its still same as if I buy 2 x 3 day pass. but If I am not going to use the panoramic trains at all then I am thinking of getting Swiss half fare card. Based on the swiss pass travel calculations sheet that was provided here seems like I am still paying less for SHF than the STP. Please check the sheet attached and let me know if I am missing anything.

Please suggest me any route changes

Thanks

Please login to see the attached documents
rockoyster
rockoyster
7362 posts
expert
Oct 9, 2019 - 5:22 AM in reply to Swisslover19

Your calculations look right (I haven’t checked every fare) but for that small difference in price I would opt for the Swiss Travel Pass. It is much more convenient to use and you will almost certainly use it more than you expect.

Not sure why your spreadsheet includes a random CHF5 for Glacier Express.

Ildiko
Ildiko
340 posts
top member &
moderator
Oct 9, 2019 - 5:33 AM

Hi Swisslover19,

you'll find the list of the Swiss panoramic trains at www.myswissalps.com/ac tivities/scenictrips/t rain. Please read at www.myswissalps.com/go ldenpass under "Regular trains versus Golden Pass trains" to see the differences.

How old is your child? If he/she is under 6 you do not need a train pass for her/him, but older, have a look at the Swiss Family Card at www.myswissalps.com/sw issfamilycard.

Are you staying for the 5 nights in Bern? Maybe you could stay a few nights in Lucerne and/or in the Jungfrau region, to avoid some traveling costs to get to back to Bern, as I can see from your itinerary you are perhaps visiting Bern only on your first day, right?

Choosing a rail pass is not easy, you should not only consider the price but also the flexibility. If there is only a slight difference between the Swiss Half Fare Card (www.myswissalps.com/sw isshalffarecard/howtou se) and the Swiss Travel Pass (www.myswissalps.com/sw isstravelpass/howtouse), I would suggest the Swiss Travel Pass to have more flexibility and convenience (also ticketless) while traveling, so you could change your plans even in the last minute.

See also:

Last modified on Oct 10, 2019 - 7:58 AM by Annika

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