“Ultimate Swiss Scenic Trains” modified version

“Ultimate Swiss Scenic Trains” modified version

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chriswo
chriswo
6 posts
new member
Jul 7, 2018 - 4:42 AM

Hi All,

This site is extremely informative and useful! I am travelling solo and the sample itinerary for 7-day tours “Ultimate Swiss Scenic Trains” was just what I was looking for!

I need your opinion though on my modified version, as I would like to spend the nights at Wengen instead of Interlaken; spend another at Gornergrat instead of Zermatt.

Aug 18 Sat: Arriving Zurich (No STP)

Using Swiss Travel Pass 8 Day

Aug 19 Sun: Zurich - Lucerne** - Interlaken

Aug 20 Mon: [Golden Pass] Interlaken - Jungfraujoch** -Wengen**

Aug 21 Tue: Wengen - Grindelwald** -Wengen

Aug 22 Wed: Wengen - Montreux

Aug 23 Thu: Montreux - Gornergrat** (hotel available this night only - splurge!)

Aug 24 Fri: [Glacier**] Gornergrat - Zermatt - Chur

Aug 25 Sat: [Bernina**] Chur - Tirano - Lugano

Aug 26 Sun: Gotthard] Lugano - Zurich

Aug 27 Mon: Leave Zurich (No STP)

Highlights of each legs are bolded. Do they look ok with transfer time of train etc? Especially the modified leg on Wengen, and from Gornergrat to catch the Glacier Express.

thanks

Chris

Arno
Arno
11155 posts
expert &
moderator
Jul 7, 2018 - 5:59 AM

Welcome to MySwissAlps Chris!

Thanks for your compliments! As for your modified version of the Ultimate Swiss Scenic Trains sample itinerary:

  • Note that you'll be traveling the Golden Pass route on Aug 19 and 22, not 20.
  • I'd recommend to spend both nights in Wengen instead of one in Interlaken and one in Wengen. Switching hotels takes time, and the scenery in Wengen is better. The reason we suggest Interlaken in our sample is that it is a railway junction, and the round trip to Jungfraujoch is slightly easier from there. But if you prefer Wengen, which makes sense, I'd spend both nights there.
  • Aug 21: you can take the cable car to Männlichen, the gondola to Grindelwald Grund and finally the train to Grindelwald. That way you'll see a different route than during the Jungfraujoch trip. You can do this one way (50% discount) and take the train back via Zweilütchinen and Lauterbrunnen (free with your Swiss Travel Pass).
  • Aug 26: You can best take the Gotthard Panorama Express to Lucerne, then take a train to Zurich.
  • I don't see any transfer time issues as trains operate frequently in Switzerland. You can find details in the timetable.
Last modified on Jul 7, 2018 - 6:03 AM by Arno
chriswo
chriswo
6 posts
new member
Jul 7, 2018 - 10:33 AM

Thank you Arno. Your correction & suggestions made absolutely sense! I'm taking your adivse. :)

However, I might need to work this backward as the hotel I wanna stay at Gornergrat only now available on Aug 21 night. :(

This itinerary now done backward and I've removed Montreux to add additional night at Zermatt. You think this looks ok?

  • Aug 18 Sat:

    - Arriving Zurich

    * One night at Zurich

  • Aug 19 Sun:

    - Train from Zurich to Lucerne (1 hour)

    - Gotthard Boat from Lucerne to Fluelen (Dep 11:12am - 1:55pm)

    - Gotthard Panorama Express from Fluelen to Lugano (Dep 2:10pm - 4:38pm)

    * One night at Lugano

  • Aug 20 Mon:

    - Bernina Express Bus from Lugano to Tirano (3 hours - 9:58am - 1pm)

    - Bernina Express Train from Tirana to Chur (4 hours - 2:25pm - 6:21pm)

    * One night at Chur

  • Aug 21 Tue:

    - Glacier Express from Chur to Zermatt (11:24am - 5:10pm)

    - Train from Zermatt to Gornergrat (35 min)

    * One night at Gornergrat

  • Aug 22 Wed

    - Morning at Gornergrat

    - Evening at Zermatt

    * One night at Zermatt

  • Aug 23 Thu:

    - Train from Zermatt to Wengen (3.5 hours)

    * Night 1 of 3 at Wengen

  • Aug 24 Fri:

    - Train from Wengen to Kleine Scheidegg then Jungfraujoch (1 hour 15 min)

    - Train back to Wengen (1 hour 15 min)

    * Night 2 of 3 at Wengen

  • Aug 25 Sat:

    - Cable Car from Wengen to Männlichen. Then Gondola to Grindelwald Grund. Train to Grindelwald (1 hour)

    - Train from Grindelwald to Zweilütchinen & Lauterbrunnen (45min)

    - Cogwheel train from Lauterbrunnen to Wengen (15min)

    * Night 3 of 3 at Wengen

  • Aug 26 Sun:

    - Train from Wengen to Interlaken Ost (45 min)

    - Golden Pass route Interlaken Ost to Lucerne (2 hours)

    - Train from Lucerne to Zurich (1 hour)

    * One night at Zurich

  • Aug 27 Mon:

    - Leaving Zurich

Mark
Mark
190 posts
active member
Jul 7, 2018 - 2:44 PM

Hi Chris

If you’re having trouble making the hotel availability at Gornergrat work, you might consider the Riffelalp hotel at the Riffelalp train stop above Zermatt and on the way up to Gornergrat. It is expensive too but has great views down on Zermatt and I think better views of the Matterhorn than Gornergrat. The thumbnail photo on my post was taken from my room’s balcony looking at The Matterhorn at sunrise. Mark

chriswo
chriswo
6 posts
new member
Jul 7, 2018 - 3:23 PM in reply to Mark

Hi Mark,

Yes, I think I might just have to do that. I was looking at Riffelhaus 1853 too. Your thumbnail photo looks great! I was hoping to do a little bit of astrophotography with the Matterhorn as background.

I shall read more on both of this two hotel. I'm contemplating foregoing Montreux so I can stay at Zermatt for another day, to not rush for Glacier Express on 24.

Aug 18 Sat: Arriving Zurich (No STP)

Aug 19 Sun: Zurich - Lucerne. Lucerne - Interlaken Ost [Golden Pass] - Wengen

Aug 20 Mon: Wengen - Jungfraujoch -Wengen

Aug 21 Tue: Wengen - (Männlichen- Grindelwald Grund) - Grindelwald** - (Zweilütchinen & Lauterbrunnen) -Wengen

Aug 22 Wed: Wengen - Zermatt - Riffelberg / Riffelalp

Aug 23 Thu: Gornergrat - Zermatt

Aug 24 Fri: [Glacier Express] Zermatt - Chur

Aug 25 Sat: [Bernina Express] Chur - Tirano - Lugano

Aug 26 Sun: [Gotthard Panorama Express] Lugano - Lucerne. Train to Zurich

Aug 27 Mon: Leave Zurich (No STP)

:)

Last modified on Jul 7, 2018 - 3:25 PM by chriswo
Lucas
Lucas
8881 posts
expert &
moderator
Jul 7, 2018 - 5:12 PM in reply to chriswo

Hi Chris,

Looks nice. Unless you have something planned in Zurich (or your flight arrives late) I'd head straight to Wengen on arrival. Just a thought.

Also,be sure to make reservations for the panoramic express trains ASAP. You'll find our info pages on them here: https://www.myswissalp s.com/activities/sceni ctrips/train

Once you are on the info page for the train you want, click on the packages tab for links to make reservations.

chriswo
chriswo
6 posts
new member
Jul 7, 2018 - 5:49 PM in reply to Lucas

Hi Lucas,

Yes, I actually just made the adjustment by skipping Zurich and go direct to Wengen, which gets me to Zermatt - Gornergrat on Aug 21. And managed to book one night at 3100 Kulmhotel Gornergrat. :)

However, I was looking at the links to get tickets for Zermatt to Gornergrat - the main site given only allows paper ticket to be collected at airport for CHF13 or couriered to my country for CHF25! Do you think it'll be ok to just get the ticket from Zermatt on Aug 21? And that it will be good for return the next day Aug 22?

I have yet to get the STP yet. Can I make reservation before actually having the travel pass?

Mark
Mark
190 posts
active member
Jul 7, 2018 - 8:02 PM

Hi Chris

you can easily get the Gornergrat train ticket in Zermatt. The Gornergrat station is just across the street from the main train station. However our hotel (Riffelalp) met us in the main station and provided a ticket and luggage service to our hotel at no charge. They also did the same on our departure date. Perhaps your hotel offers the same service. Also when we were there there was a free train ride from Zermatt to Gornergrat once per evening for people returning from Zermatt but it was only at one specific departure around 9 PM as I recall Mark

chriswo
chriswo
6 posts
new member
Jul 8, 2018 - 2:56 AM

Thanks Mark. I booked my hotel through Agoda.com, not sure if they would offer the pickup etc, but judging from all the reviews, no one seems to have mentioned. :(

And Lucas, I thought I was not getting my Swiss Travel Pass until later, hence the question about reserving seat before having STP in hand. Anyway I booked before going to bed late last night thru www.HappyRail.com, expecting to get the pass after 1 working day, probably Monday. To my surprise when I got up this morning, apparently the pass arrived 15 minutes after I paid last night. It's great!

So this is the final itinerary, I hope:

Aug 18 Sat: Arriving Zurich. Airport - Lucerne - Interlaken - Wengen

Aug 19 Sun: Wengen - Jungfrauoch - Wengen

Aug 20 Mon: Wengen - (Männlichen- Grindelwald Grund) - Grindelwald - (Zweilütchinen & Lauterbrunnen) -Wengen

Aug 21 Tue: Wengen - Zermatt - Gornergrat

Aug 22 Wed: Gornergrat - Zermatt

Aug 23 Thu: [Glacier Express] Zermatt - Chur

Aug 24 Fri: [Bernina Express] Chur - Tirano - Lugano

Aug 25 Sat: [Gotthard Panorama Express] Lugano - Lucerne. Train to Zurich

Aug 26 Sun: Zurich

Aug 27 Mon: Leaving Zurich

Some questions:

  • Aug 18 - As I'm going to Wengen from Airport. Do I still need to take or reserve the Golden Pass route train or do I take other trains?
  • Aug 19 & 20 - As it's weather dependent, can I only get ticket to Jungfraujoch on the day itself from Wengen? 25% discount will apply regardless if I book online or at station right?
  • Aug 23, 24, 25 - I have reserved all 3 thru Happy Rail. However, I didn't get prompt to pick my seats (1st class)? Is this normal? Did I miss any other legs which I need to reserver seats for?
Lucas
Lucas
8881 posts
expert &
moderator
Jul 8, 2018 - 8:21 AM in reply to chriswo

Hi Chris,

Your hotel shouldn't care who you booked it with. But you have a short walk to the Gornergrat station both at the bottom and the top to your hotel. :)

Yes HappyRail is quite fast with E delivery! You could have made reservations without it, but not you are all set now.

  • Aug 18: If you take the most direct route (offered by the timetable by default) you won't travel on the Golden Pass route. If you search the timetable for your trip and enter VIA Lucerne you can travel on part of the Golden Pass route to Interlaken (I would do that).
  • Aug 19/20: Discount applies regardless. Not every online retailer offers the discount though - see here: https://www.myswissalp s.com/jungfraujoch/pac kages. Many people wait until the day before or day of departure before buying their tickets to wait on the weather.
  • Yes, it isn't uncommon to not be able to pick specific seats with some companies. If you want to email with HappyRail and ask for a preference they will try to help you I am sure. Only panoramic trains must be reserved.

Enjoy this trip!

chriswo
chriswo
6 posts
new member
Jul 9, 2018 - 10:27 AM

Hi Lucas,

I just realized that the seat I reserved on Gotthard Panorama Express was for Lugano to Flüelen. How does one get the boat from Flüelen to Lucerne? Is the boat near where the train arrives? Run by Gotthard? Do I need to reserve?

Last modified on Jul 9, 2018 - 10:29 AM by chriswo
Lucas
Lucas
8881 posts
expert &
moderator
Jul 9, 2018 - 12:26 PM in reply to chriswo

One can't make reservations for any boat in Switzerland.

So nothing to worry about, you have the proper reservation.

The boat is scheduled to meet your train and about 98% of your fellow passengers will all be walking to the boat with you (just a few minutes walk).

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