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Itinerary 8 days Montreux & Lauterbrunnen in Sept

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Deshani57
Deshani57
43 posts
active member
Aug 14, 2019 - 8:17 AM

Hi,

We (2 adults & 2 kids, 5y and 22m) are finally drawing near to travel time and I would really appreciate some feedback on the below itinerary, compiled after much research and invaluable feedback from this forum! Any input on whether this is too ambitious, or what else we can do, any other changes or tips you would recommend, would be most appreciated. Our mode of transport will be by train/bus and we will have a 8day STP.

Montreux (6-9Sep2019) based near Montreux Gare

6th Sep 10am - Check into hotel after 18 hour flight & 1.5hr train ride from Geneva Airport

14:17 - Catch train to Rochers de Naye

18:11 - Train back to Montreux

**Rochers de Naye on Day 1 will depend on energy levels. If not, we might just explore the area.

7th Sep 10am - Walk to Chillon Castle (heard it’s a scenic walk)

12-14:00 Explore castle

14:55 Belle Epoque cruise back to Montreux via Vevey Marche

8th Sep 9:44 GP/Regular train combo to Broc

12-14:00 Explore Maison Cailler

14:32 Train to Gruyeres

15:00-17:30 Explore Cheese Factory/Castle & Gruyeres village

17:59 Train back to Montreux

9th Sep 9:44 Train to Lauterbrunnen

Montreux Rainy day plans:

Thermal baths at Lavel Les Bains

Queen Studio

Anything else?

ux

Lauterbrunnen (9-13 Sep 2019) based near Lauterbrunnen station

9th Sep 15:00 Explore the area/Staubbach falls

10th Sep Schilthorn via Stechelberg

11th Sep Murren/Allmendhubel trail

12th Sep Lake Brienz cruise

Brienz Rothorn

13th Sep 9:32 Train to Basel SBB for onward train to Paris

Rainy day plan while in the Lauterbrunnen area:

Ballenberg

Trip to Bern

Lake Brienz cruise

Few questions:

1) I was trying to book reservations for the 9th Sep 9:44 GP Montreux-Zweisimmen leg. I want to get seats together for the 4 of us. Would seats 22,28,31,33 be ok? I’m unable to get a clearly viewable seating plan to gather this info. I’m guessing kids under 6 too require paid seat reservations, as there is no distinction, isn’t it?

2) Any recommendations on family friendly places to eat, picnic spots and places to grab things for a picnic, given our locations & itinerary, would be most appreciated. Dining has the last thing on my list! Any leads would really be most appreciated. Not interested in high-end options, just casual, fun locations, where they would accommodate young kids.

3) Do I need to pre-book tour times with Gruyeres Cheese factory & Broc?

Thank you once again!

Deshani

Ildiko
Ildiko
496 posts
top member &
moderator
Aug 14, 2019 - 2:30 PM in reply to Deshani57

Hello Deshani,

this is a nice itinerary.I would like to add only a few recommendations to it:

  • If you are not tired after visiting Chillon castle I would suggest you to take a bit longer boat trip so you could see the Unesco heritage vineyards called Lavaux. You could sail to Cully and take a train back to Montreux. There is even a small playground near the harbour and the train station is just like 500 m away. About Lavaux and the Swiss Riviera: www.myswissalps.com/la kegeneva
  • You can buy your Chillon castle entrance ticket online; this option is listed here: www.myswissalps.com/mo ntreux/activities
  • Cheese and chocolate factory is a good program for rainy days too. In case of rain Chaplin's World near Vevey is great and interesting even for kids: www.chaplinsworld.com/

Regarding your questions:

  1. Indeed, if you wish to have separate seats for your children you should pay for the seat reservation for them too. A link to the seating plan can be found under "More information" on this site: www.myswissalps.com/go ldenpass/tickets. Or you can purchase your seat reservation tickets via here: www.myswissalps.com/go ldenpass/packages. They will provide 4 adjoining seats (unless those aren't available anymore).
  2. Regarding the restaurants - they are usually children friendly. I do not think it will be a problem to find places to grab some food during the day. If any particular comes up in my mind I will let you know. I have small kids too and we always have some sandwiches/snacks and water with us if we are on the way - so no surprise can happen :)
  3. There is no need to book in advance for the factories. At Maison Cailler there can be longer queues especially on weekends but there is a shop and a small cinema where you can spend time. There is rarely a queue at the cheese factory.

I hope I've answered all of your questions. It you still have some please feel free to get back to us.

Deshani57
Deshani57
43 posts
active member
Aug 14, 2019 - 4:04 PM

Thankyou Ildiko!

- I will check on Lavaux vineyards.

- Isn’t the entrance to Chillon covered with the STP?

- Noted about the seat reservation & eating options. My main concern about dining options was because I have read that in some European destinations, kids are too welcome into certain restaurants. So I wasn’t sure what the pulse in Switzerland was.

- For Cailler & Gruyeres, so you can just walk upto the counters and freely get tickets for the desired tour times? Or do you get to choose from what’s available on the day?

Ildiko
Ildiko
496 posts
top member &
moderator
Aug 14, 2019 - 4:30 PM in reply to Deshani57

Yes, you are right: Chillon entrance tickets are covered with the Swiss Travel Pass. Sorry for that for a minute I forgot you will have it.

Unless you are having dinner at a very fancy restaurant, you will not have any problem in smaller restaurants to eat with the kids.

Correct. You can just walk there and ask for tickets at Cailler and Gruyeres. At the cheese factory you can get in immediately after the ticket purchase, but at Cailler they will put you in a group with other people and you should wait until that group is "called". Sometimes it takes like 30-40 minutes, but there is the shop, a café and the small cinema. If it is nice weather you can use also the small playground outside the building. (Note, that both are also free of charge with the Swiss Travel Pass, but you still have to go to the counters and ask for the free tickets and showing you card.)

Last modified on Aug 14, 2019 - 5:41 PM by Ildiko
Deshani57
Deshani57
43 posts
active member
Aug 15, 2019 - 7:14 AM in reply to Ildiko

Hi Ildiko,

I was trying to do the seat reservation via the links you provided and have a few questions:

1) On the Happyrail site, I get the option to book a "passholder fare" for the GP which is higher than a standard reservation on the GP site. I was wondering what the differences was?

2) Also, if i dont see a particular route, eg. the 7:44, does that mean that there are no seats available?

Thankyou!

Annika
Annika
6110 posts
expert &
moderator
Aug 15, 2019 - 12:07 PM

Hi Deshani57!

1. Did you use this link: https://www.happyrail. com/en/pass/europe/swi tzerland/passholder-fares-golden-pass? That's exactly what you need, since the trip will be covered by your Swiss Travel Pass (www.myswissalps.com/sw isstravelpass/validity). "Passholder fare" is just another way of expressing that you'll be having a pass that covers the journey, meaning you'll pay for reservations only. So no problem, you can proceed there. Prices can differ per retailer indeed.

2) I do see all trains listed in the drop-downlist, including the 7.44 one. When proceeding, you get to select your preferred date. I can select 4 seats for September 9 for the train leaving Montreux at 7.44, so I'm not sure why you don't see those options. Could you try again, and if you don't succeed, let us know in detail what happens?

Deshani57
Deshani57
43 posts
active member
Aug 15, 2019 - 1:12 PM in reply to Annika

Thankyou Annika. Ok understood. I ended up booking on the GP site in the end cos I saw that there were only a few seats left on the 9:44 and so wanted to do it fast. It was on the GP site that I couldn’t view the 7:44 actually. I’m not sure why...

But thankyou very much! Matter resolved for now...

Ildiko
Ildiko
496 posts
top member &
moderator
Aug 15, 2019 - 1:24 PM

Hi Deshani57,

I do not know why the 7:44 is not there for you, but at least you have the seat reservations. Let us know if you need any advice or help again. :)

Last modified on Aug 15, 2019 - 1:25 PM by Ildiko
Deshani57
Deshani57
43 posts
active member
Aug 20, 2019 - 2:11 PM in reply to Ildiko

Hi Ildiko..

Sorry I just have a question regarding the Lavaux vineyards. When you say “so you could see the Unesco heritage vineyards called Lavaux”, do you mean see them while sailing through or visit them by getting off at Cully? Apologies if this is a silly question.

Also, for Schilthorn in September, what kind of footwear do you reckon we will we need?

Thankyou!

ioana
ioana
64 posts
active member
Aug 21, 2019 - 12:07 AM in reply to Deshani57

Hi Deshani,

Regarding the visit to Maison du Cailler and Maison du Gruyere - it is best that you switch them and go first to Gruyere, because the cheese making ends at 14:30. You will still be able to visit the factory after that, but no cheesemakers working on the cheese, no milk in the large containers. Check their website for information about the cheese making hours.

There were few people at Maison du Gruyere, but at Cailler it was packed even on a rainy day like the one we went there (12th of august). The waiting time was 1 hour , meaning if you bought the tickets at 12 you were alotted the entrance time at 13:00. Add to this about 20 min. of staying in line to get to the counter and buy the tickets. You need to do this even if the tickets are free. There are things to do in this time, so no worries about just looking at the watch and wait for your time, but you should take this waiting times into account when planning the day.

Last modified on Aug 21, 2019 - 12:15 AM by ioana
Deshani57
Deshani57
43 posts
active member
Aug 21, 2019 - 1:27 AM in reply to ioana

Many Thanks ioana. I will change those around...

Ildiko
Ildiko
496 posts
top member &
moderator
Aug 21, 2019 - 7:02 AM in reply to Deshani57

Hi Deshani57,

no, that is not a wrong question at all :) I was meaning you can see it while while sailing. (Make sure you sit on the right side of the ship. If you wish to see the mountains the left is better - if you are sailing from Chillon to Cully). Here you find more information about the boat trips on Lake Geneva: www.myswissalps.com/bo atlakegeneva

But from Cully you have the option to take the Lavaux Express, a little train, to visit the vineyard closer: www.lavauxexpress.ch/e n/courses/horaire It works just on specific days and times, so make sure you check their timetable and reservation in advance or email to them would be great to (it has happened to me that due to lack of interest they cancelled it - I had no reservation in advance).

In case the little train is not operating you still could do a walk, just be aware from Cully it goes up to the hill - concerning the kids.

Regarding the shoes, if you are not taking any hiking trip any comfortable, closed sport shoes with no heels would be good, with warm socks. More about clothing & footwear please refer to this: www.myswissalps.com/hi king/preparation

Last modified on Aug 21, 2019 - 4:39 PM by Ildiko
Deshani57
Deshani57
43 posts
active member
Aug 21, 2019 - 8:00 AM in reply to Ildiko

Thanks Ildiko! I checked out the link you gave me. It seems we might just miss the 16:30 Lavaux train because of the boat schedule. Although there is one at 18:30 which says "Wine Tasting in Aran". Trying to read up some more to get some info on that, although I'm not sure if the kids will last that long:)..... So maybe I'll just stick to the boat schedule to sail through the vineyards.

Noted about the footwear. Thanks again!

Ildiko
Ildiko
496 posts
top member &
moderator
Aug 21, 2019 - 1:50 PM in reply to Deshani57

It will be beautiful from the boat too, no worries :)

It is just an extra experiences if you have the option to walk among the vineyard while enjoying the mountain panorama and maybe some wine. But with tired kids... It is not much fun, you are right. :)

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