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11 active days Zurich-Interlaken-Lake Geneva


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user9343027
user9343027
2 posts
new member
Aug 4, 2022 - 6:38 AM

Firstly, thank you for maintaining this website and forum!! We began planning a last-minute Switzerland trip about 5 days ago and this forum has been incredibly helpful. I've read a number of the articles and posts and have put together a rough 11-day itinerary. I would love any input - specifically, if we're being over ambitious or perhaps could be doing more! For context, I am a 30-year old woman traveling with my 15-year old sister. We both love adventure/thrill based activities, but also like traveling at a fairly relaxed pace (understanding some days will need to be a bit busier). As much as we love amazing views, we're not super keen on traveling far just for a vista and so have tried to make the itinerary activity focused.

Day 1 - arrive via train from Paris to Zurich in the late morning - sight see around Zurich

Day 2 - day trip to Lucerne from Zurich. We probably won't take a trip up to Rigi Kulm but will likely wander about Lucerne and take a boat trip.

Day 3 - sight see around Zurich (whatever we didn't get to on day 1); we are mostly allocating this day to hanging out at Street Parade

Day 4 - travel from Zurich to Interlaken with a quick stop in Bern for lunch/quick walk around the town. We are planning to get to Interlaken around 3pm and go paragliding at 4:45pm. We have no concrete plans for after paragliding (which we assume should conclude by 7pm), but perhaps taking a boat trip or walking around Interlaken.

Day 5 - day trip from Interlaken to Lauterbrunenn and Kleine Scheidegg. We initially considered going all the way to Jungfraujoch, but were quite alarmed by the price. While it seems cool, we were unsure of whether the cost justifies the experience, considering we will also be spending time at First. I would love input as to what the "pricey" portion of the travel is - is it from Kleine Scheidegg up to Jungfraujoch? Also, would really appreciate clarification on whether the trains from Interlaken to Lauterbrunnen and Lauterbrunnen to Kleine Scheidegg are regular trains or cogwheel trains? We are thinking of getting the Swiss Travel Pass, so curious if those two trips are included or discounted.

Day 6 - we will plan to have a more relaxed morning in Interlaken and visit Harder Kulm. We are also considering taking a boat trip (to the extent we did not already do that on Day 4). In the afternoon we are planning to do an organized tour white water rafting trip.

Day 7 - last full day in Interlaken; day trip over to Grindelwald. On this day, we would like to visit First and do the First Glider and First Flyer along with the Tissot Cliff Walk. We would also like to visit Gletscherschlcht and the Pfingsteff Toboggan. Certainly one of more packed days and we're planning to get an early start to get everything in.

Day 8 - travel from Interlaken to Montreux via Oeschinensee. In Oeschinensee, we plan to hike and do the mountain coaster. Eventually, we will make our way over to Montreux where we will spend the night.

Day 9 - from Montreux, we will head to Geneva and stop by in Lausanne and possibly Vevey. We are also considering visiting Gruyeres. Once we arrive in Geneva, we will sight see around town.

Day 10 - spend the entire day in Geneva, possibly do a boat trip and visit Evian or take the train to Annecy. If we don't visit Lausanne the day before, we will try to take a boat over to visit.

Day 11 - we have most of the day to spend in Geneva and will fly out in the evening around 6pm

I would love thoughts on the itinerary and as well what rail options you'd suggest? We were looking at getting the Swiss Travel Pass which, from what I understand, only I would need to pay for and my sister can travel free under the family pass since I am getting an adult fare. I know there is also a Half Fare Pass, but I wonder if it will end up working out the same with all the trains + boat tours in Zurich, Lucerne, Interlaken and Geneva; also we are staying in "Zurich North" and near Geneva airport in two cities so I am also factoring in travel from our hotel into central areas. Open to all input and ideas!

Many thanks!!

Arno
Arno
15415 posts
expert &
moderator
Aug 4, 2022 - 12:51 PM in reply to user9343027

Hello user9343027, welcome to MySwissAlps! Happy to hear the website has been helpful so far.

The Swiss Travel Pass is the perfect option for your itinerary. You can travel for free on trains, buses and boats without additional tickets, which is a flexible and easy way of traveling. Mountain transportation is discounted. You'll find a downloadable validity map and a list of covered activities here: https://www.myswissalps.com/swisstravelpass/validity. I'd pick the 15-day variant. Even though it has more days than you need, the costs per day come down to CHF 29 which is very good value. And the price difference between a 15- and 8-day variant is relatively low: https://www.myswissalps.com/swisstravelpass/price.

Your 15-year old sister can't use the Swiss Family Card. That's only for children traveling along with their parents: https://www.myswissalps.com/swissfamilycard. But that's no problem: you can get her a cheap Children's Co-Travelcard, allowing her to travel for fee on all routes. It's similar to the Junior travelcard explained here: https://www.myswissalps.com/juniortravelcard.

I think your plans look good overall. Concerning Jungfraujoch: it's is a pretty amazing experience in my opinion, and worth its money, especially if you travel in a relatively quiet season or at quiet moment of the day. Opinions vary: some think it's too expensive, others regard it as a fantastic once-in-a-lifetime-experience. There are cogwheels between Lauterbrunnen, Wengen, Kleine Scheidegg and Jungfraujoch. Plus a cable car from Grindelwald to Eigergletscher. All options are explained here: https://www.myswissalps.com/jungfraujoch/gettingthere. With a Swiss Travel Pass, the route is free up to Grindelwald/Wengen, and 25% discounted between these towns and Jungfraujoch: https://www.myswissalps.com/jungfraujoch/tickets, https://www.myswissalps.com/swisstravelpass/validity. More affordable mountain tops would be Schilthorn (https://www.myswissalps.com/schilthorn), Pfingstegg (https://www.myswissalps.com/pfingstegg) or Männlichen (https://www.myswissalps.com/mannlichen).

You'll find more information (hotel suggestions, routes, ticket prices, and so on) for the other towns and activities in your itinerary here:

I hope this helps you out!

user9343027
user9343027
2 posts
new member
Aug 4, 2022 - 3:26 PM

Thank you! Regarding the pass, does it make a difference if she turns 16 while on the trip (on day 3)? Will we be required to purchase a different pass or will they allow a small grace period?

If not, what is the best option for a 16 year old if I am already getting the full fare adult travel pass?

Arno
Arno
15415 posts
expert &
moderator
Aug 4, 2022 - 5:45 PM in reply to user9343027

Hi again,

Usually the following rule applies to children's passes: as long the child is still 15 (or any other maximum age to which the discount applies) at the first validity day of the pass, he/she can keep using it for the full validity period. Assuming this applies to the Children's Co-Travelcard as well, this isn't a problem in your case as long as you get it no later than day 1 or day 2 of your stay. Nice that she'll be celebrating her birthday in Switzerland by the way!

Please note that nowadays the Junior Travelcard and Children's Co-Travelcard are largely offered in a digital 1-year version, linked to an account for Swiss residents. That's not what you need as a tourist (see www.myswissalps.com/juniortravelcard/howtouse). An easy 1-month paper version of the Junior Travelcard is still available for tourist. I assume this is also true for the Children's Co-Travelcard, but this isn't crystal clear from the SBB website. So you can best contact the SBB for details, if you want to be sure in advance.

Last modified on Aug 4, 2022 - 5:47 PM by Arno

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