Best scenic routes (Zurich, Interlaken, Zermatt)

Best scenic routes (Zurich, Interlaken, Zermatt)

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EduardoCr
EduardoCr
3 posts
new member
Nov 10, 2016 - 5:12 PM

Hello everybody,

Me and my wife will be in Switzerland for this reveillon, and we would appreciate very much if you could help us planning our train trips, so we could get the best scenic routes.

I was thinking on getting the 3 day Swiss Travel Pass Flex, and do the following:

29/12/2016 - Zurich to Spiez or Tune to have lunch, then to Interlaken by boat

01/01/2017 - Interlaken to Zermatt, stopping on Brig or other nice city to have lunch

07/01/2017 - Interlaken to Chur or other nice city, via Glacier Express, spend a few hours and then go straight to Zurich Airport.

Would Swiss Pass Travel Flex cover all this, including the boat on lake Thun? For what I understood, I would have to pay an 13,00 CHF extra fee on glacier express, but would that be all?

Would I have to make reservations for each train trip, or is it safe to get the tickets only on the stations?

On each trip, what would be the best side of the train to get the best views?

Any suggestions on cities to visit or changes to be made on this itinerary are more than welcome!

Thank you very much!

Eduardo Cronemberger,

Annika
Annika
4992 posts
expert &
moderator
Nov 11, 2016 - 12:07 PM

Hi Eduardo, thanks for joining us!

You've certainly selected some very nice routes. Here are some tips:

  • Lucerne-Thun/Spiez can best be done via Meiringen, which is part of the Golden Pass route. The right side of the train is preferred;
  • when traveling from Interlaken to Zermatt, use the regional Lötschberger train that crosses the mountains rather than the quicker (but dull) tunnel connection. Enter "Goppenstein" as a via-station in order to see these options in the timetable. I think I'd prefer the right side here;
  • I don't know when your plane leaves, but your plans for January 7 seem to be a bit ambitious. If a late arrival in Zurich isn't a problem, this can be done, but it will be long traveling day. Please consult the timetable and our Glacier Express page for further information. If you board in Brig, the left side of the train would be recommended, but I don't think you can pick a specific side when arranging for your seat reservations;
  • apart from the Glacier Express you won't need any seat reservations.

I'm not sure if the Swiss Travel Pass Flex is your best option. Yes, it will cover all of these trips, except for the Glacier Express seat reservation fee; please refer to the validity overview. However, your base town seems to be Interlaken and I guess you'll be making some more (local) trips from there, right? It's a stunning region and I'd think you'd want to explore the Jungfrau region during your stay. If so, note that the 3 day Swiss Travel Pass Flex won't cover any of them, and that regular ticket prices add up very quickly. In case you've planned for more trips than the ones you've described, you'd better look into other options as explained here.

EduardoCr
EduardoCr
3 posts
new member
Nov 11, 2016 - 5:13 PM in reply to Annika

Hello Annika, how are you doing?

Thank you very much for your kind response, the info will be of much use, for sure!

You are right about the last day plans, I´m a little afraid that if something goes wrong, we won´t make it on time. Our plane departure is 22h40, so theoretically we can get the train in Zermatt at 8:52, be at Chur at 14:35, spend a couple of hour in there, take the train at 17:09 and be at Zurich Airport at 18:42. Sounds doable, right?

As we will ski in Interlaken and Zermatt, I think we won´t have time to travel to other places when we´re there, that´s why I was considering the 3 day flex option. I´m thinking in buying a 3 day Zurich Card too, for going around while we are in there, do you think it is worth?

Once again, thanks for your help, we´re counting the days to be there!

Best Regards,

Eduardo

Annika
Annika
4992 posts
expert &
moderator
Nov 12, 2016 - 5:27 PM in reply to EduardoCr

Hi Eduardo!

It's not quite clear to me how long your stay in Zurich lasts, but if it's indeed 3 days, a ZurichCARD will very probably pay off.

Right, I understand your choice for skiing. If that's your main activity, a regular rail pass in addition to your Swiss Travel Pass Flex may indeed not be worth it. Mind to check ski pass options for both regions though. As mentioned, regular prices are quite impressive and ski passes too will help you save money.

Personally I wouldn't feel that comfortable with such an extensive trip plan for your last day. It should be doable and trains generally run well in time in Switzerland, but of course there are no guarantees for your specific day. If you have the chance to do this trip another day, rather the last one, that's what I'd prefer. You don't have to decide on your free travel days in advance, so theoretically you can just pick any day with clear weather for your Glacier Express trip. Just fill out the date on your Swiss Travel Pass Flex before you board your first train that day and you're ready to go. The Glacier Express seat reservations may be a hindrance for such flexibility though. If you'd rather be flexible, regular trains on the exact same route may be the solution.

EduardoCr
EduardoCr
3 posts
new member
Nov 12, 2016 - 6:08 PM in reply to Annika

Hello Annika!

Thanks for your response, once again you were of great help! I will consider your suggestion and rethink the glacier express day.

Just to be sure, by ski pass you mean the ones that are sold on www.zermatt.ch and www.jungfrau.ch, right? Or are there other cheaper ski pass options for these mountains?

Thanks again!

Kind regards,

Eduardo

Annika
Annika
4992 posts
expert &
moderator
Nov 13, 2016 - 1:49 PM

Hi Eduardo,

Yes, I was indeed referring to ski passes sold by the local tourist agencies. As far as I know they have fixed prices, so you can best review the offers on the websites you mentioned.

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