Switzerland 8 nights in May - trip planning help

Switzerland 8 nights in May - trip planning help

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rakesh0908
rakesh0908
10 posts
new member
Nov 5, 2017 - 5:48 PM

Hi, I m planning with my family of 3 people May 2018 to London 2 nights, Paris 2 nights & Switzerland 8 nights. My first visit to Europe from India. I need help in building my iteniery. Switzerland I m planning to make my stay base in Lucerne & visit all attractions. Then proceeding to Geneva for 1 night & back to India. Please suggest.

Lucas
Lucas
5608 posts
expert &
moderator
Nov 6, 2017 - 9:59 AM in reply to rakesh0908

Hi Rakesho908 and welcome to MySwissAlps!

We don't create itineraries here, but we will point you in the right direction to create one that fits your needs and wants.

Here are a few pages on our website that will help you:

Your plan to stay in Luzern is a good one, but you will probably want a 2nd base during your 8 night stay to make travel easier. Perhaps an alpine village in the Jungfrau region like Lauterbrunnen or Wengen (especially if mountain landscapes are a priority for you).

To help you choose a rail pass check out our page here: https://www.myswissalp s.com/train/ticketspas ses/practical/choosera ilpass & be sure to use the Swiss railways timetable to plan out your trips between towns and mountains etc.

I hope that helps get your started. If you have more questions or would like to post a rough itinerary we will be happy to help you further!

Last modified on Nov 6, 2017 - 10:01 AM by Lucas
rakesh0908
rakesh0908
10 posts
new member
Nov 6, 2017 - 10:16 AM

Thanx Lucas. My plan in Switzerland is to visit the following.

Montreux, Bern, Basel, Zermatt, Interlaken, Jungfraouch, Mt. Titlis, Lucerne ( Lion Monument, Kappel bricked wooden bridge), Schaffhausen Rhine falls, Black Forest, Titesee, Zurich & Geneva city tour.

Planning to start from Zurich , Lucerne and finish in Geneva. Fly back from Geneva.

Please suggest if 8 days are sufficient for the said plan. Also extras if I m missing out some must visit places.

If the duration is not sufficient, I can give London a miss.

Regards

Lucas
Lucas
5608 posts
expert &
moderator
Nov 6, 2017 - 4:45 PM in reply to rakesh0908

You can certainly visit all those places in 8 days....but I wouldn't want to. Too rushed.

I would give Schaffhausen and the Rheinfall a miss and Basel as well. Bern could be a half-day. I would split your time between Lucerne (3 nights) and Wengen or Lauterbrunnen (instead of Interlaken) for 3 nights and then 2 nights in Zermatt with a 1/2 day in Montreux on the way to Geneva. But really that's just me. Have a look into our town links and see what there is to do there that you might like.

Again, it really depends on how long you can/want to spend in each town. Use the timetable link from my last post to plan out your days and see the travel time to get around.

Also, the Black forest and Titisee are in Germany and about 2 hours north of Zurich...not sure if it is a must-see for you? It is certainly a nice drive....do you know what you want to see/do there?

Last modified on Nov 6, 2017 - 7:14 PM by Arno
Peterli
Peterli
401 posts
top member
Nov 6, 2017 - 5:51 PM in reply to rakesh0908

Hello,

I should start by saying that it seems to me that travelers often try to put too much into not enough time, so I think your idea of not doing London as part of this trip is a good one. Second, may I assume that you are planning to use public transportation rather than renting an automobile ? As you are from India you probably would do well not to add the potential confusion of having to drive on the right instead of the left.

I notice that four of the places you have mentioned are to the north: Shaffhausen, the Rheinfall, the Black Forest (Schwarzwald) and the Titisee, the first two of these are close to the border with Germany and the last two are in southern Germany (Baden).The railway network in the Black Forest region is not as dense as you will find across the river in Switzerland, but it is possible to go by train from Shaffhausen to Tuttlingen (via Singen) and then take another train to Titisee with one change in Donaueschingen. After your visit in Titisee, you can continue down to Freiburg im Breisgau and from there it is a quick trip back to Basel, Switzerland. Freiburg is the sunniest city in Germany and well worth a visit in itself, and should include the Münster. The lively market outside the Münster (called the Münstermarkt) is open every day except Sunday starting at 07h30. www.muenstermarkt.frei burg.de/pb/,Lde/527200 .html

If you check on YouTube, you can find videos that show train travel in the Black Forest.

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rakesh0908
rakesh0908
10 posts
new member
Nov 7, 2017 - 2:45 AM in reply to Lucas

Thanx Lucas for your valued suggestion. I just need to find out the apartments which are near to the mountain hotels as we would be shifting our base with luggage we are carrying. My only concern was the final destination stay which should be close to Geneva airport.

Also since I m yet to book my air tickets I just need a small suggestion. Should I start from Zurich and end in Geneva or do reverse?

Regards

rakesh0908
rakesh0908
10 posts
new member
Nov 7, 2017 - 2:52 AM in reply to Peterli

Thanks Peterly for your suggestions. Yes I m thinking of giving a miss to London so that I can explore more in Switzerland.

Yes I m planning to buy Swiss 8 days rail pass. I hope I need not pay any extra charges for travelling except excursions. Also since we are vegetarians, we are planning to rent apartment and cook food for ourselves.

I just need to know about the Swiss rail pass. Is this pass valid when to travel to Geneva or Bern.

Regards

rockoyster
rockoyster
3393 posts
expert
Nov 7, 2017 - 3:28 AM in reply to rakesh0908

Yes the Swiss Travel Pass is valid for travel to and in Geneva and Bern. Check the map on this page to work out where you can travel for free. Pretty much everywhere in Switzerland.

Some mountain railways and cableways are 50% off and Jungfraujoch is discounted 25%. Study the legend on the map.

The major tourist panoramic trains such as Glacier Express and Bernina Express trains require an additional mandatory seat reservation fee - but that shouldn't worry you.

Peterli
Peterli
401 posts
top member
Nov 7, 2017 - 5:47 AM

Hello again,

If you do give London a miss, but still go to Paris, can I assume that you will be flying from India to Paris ? And if so, how are you planning on getting to Switzerland after Paris ? By train or by plane ? I ask this because you have stated that you plan to buy the 8 day pass for Switzerland. I am wondering if it might be better for you to go by train from Paris to Freiburg, and take two days to see Freiburg and the Black Forest including the Titisee and thus arrive in Switzerland at Shaffhausen and be able to take full advantage of the 8 days you will have on your Swiss pass, arriving in Geneva the day before or day of your return flight to India. By the way, there are many trains connecting Paris (Gare-de-l'Est) to Freiburg every day, the average travel time being about 3 hours and 41 minutes and the quickest just over three hours (3 hours and 9 minutes). It is important to buy your tickets well in advance, as prices can vary from 31 € to more than triple that amount. You will find that there are trains departing Freiburg for Titisee about twice each hour. Depending on when you are travelling during the day, you may notice a number of school children who use the trains to go back and forth from their schools. You will most certainly enjoy the views from your train as you weave your way through the Black Forest's very uneven terrain. You probably already know this since you have selected this as an area you want to visit.

Lucas
Lucas
5608 posts
expert &
moderator
Nov 7, 2017 - 6:42 AM in reply to rakesh0908

Have a look at our accommodation page here for help on hotels or apartment rentals.
Each town page I linked to also lists hotels we recommend. Finding vegetarian restaurants or at least options at any restaurant shouldn't be too hard for you either.

I like Peterli's suggestion of Paris - Freiburg - Titisee although I think that area is better explored by car (if possible). If driving is an option you could rent for two days from Freiburg and then get back on a train there to continue on to Switzerland.

Once you have decided on the travel dates in Switzerland you can buy the Swiss Travel Pass 8 day online here. But there is a fee for date changes so be sure you are sure of your dates before buying.
If you buy online then you can print the pass at home (you are emailed a PDF) and you can simply start using it as soon as you cross into Switzerland. You will also have an electronic back-up in case you lose the pass.

Last modified on Nov 18, 2017 - 12:03 PM by Arno
rakesh0908
rakesh0908
10 posts
new member
Nov 8, 2017 - 4:40 AM in reply to rockoyster

Thanx Peterli for your guidance. Yes I was lanning Paris to Zurich by train followed with Lucerne. But as suggested by you and Lucas, I find this iteniery better. Also you have suggested Shaffhausen in Switzerland. Do you mean to say that I should make my base at Shaffhausen for 7 days and explore Swiss followed with one day Geneva.

Lucas as you mentioned to rent a car for 2 days in Frieburg, can you help me with the cost for the same or any link where I can check the options.

regards,

rakesh0908
rakesh0908
10 posts
new member
Nov 8, 2017 - 4:42 AM in reply to rockoyster

Thanx rockoyster for your quick response. Please let me know if you have any suggestions for my trip.

regards,

Peterli
Peterli
401 posts
top member
Nov 8, 2017 - 6:40 AM in reply to rakesh0908

Hello again,

My mention of Schaffhausen was only as a suggested point of entry into Switzerland after a swing through the Black Forest region of Germany. I definitely do NOT suggest that you make Schaffhausen the base for your eight days in Switzerland culminating with your departure from Geneva. As Lucas suggested earlier, Lucerne followed by either Wengen or Lauterbrunnen and then Zermatt would make much more sense, as this will reduce travel times at the beginning and end of each day. The number of nights in each of these locations should fit the places you intend to visit each day. If time allows, you might enjoy one night in the area around Montreux. It does not take a long time (see attached map) to go by train to Geneva from Montreux, and you will know when you must be at the airport for your return flight to India.

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rockoyster
rockoyster
3393 posts
expert
Nov 8, 2017 - 7:15 AM in reply to rakesh0908

Car hire in Germany? Google is your friend www.rentalcars.com/en/ country/de/

cam223
cam223
63 posts
active member
Nov 9, 2017 - 9:53 PM

We are going to Zermatt in a few weeks. Two of us are vegetarians.

I will let you know where we ate and how the food was in the restaurants.

Peterli
Peterli
401 posts
top member
Nov 9, 2017 - 10:16 PM

For a good meal, whether you are vegetarian or not, I suggest you try a birchermüesli. I look for them all the time, and I must say usually the better ones are found in the Swiss-German areas. Here is one recipe: laurencariscooks.com/v egan-bircher-muesli/ If you decide you like the and order them in different places, you will see that no two are exactly alike. When I traveled in Switzerland with a group of students, we developed a rating scale of from 1 to 10. I think we all agreed that the best one we had was in Wengen ! I won't name the city, but the lowest rated one we tried was in a train station in Romandie. But recipes change as the kitchen staff changes. You can even find pretty good birchermüeslis at the Coop and Migros. They are a great on-the-go snack, and very healthy They even have a folding spoon hidden on the bottom side of the container, under the label. So very Swiss !

Last modified on Nov 9, 2017 - 10:17 PM by Peterli
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