No Gotthard Express on Mondays? Suggestions?

No Gotthard Express on Mondays? Suggestions?

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RussellZone
RussellZone
6 posts
new member
Apr 25, 2018 - 8:20 AM

I've spent hours joyfully (and sometimes with a bit of frustration) planning my Swiss trip - Zurich, 2 days in Zermatt, Glacier Express, 2 days in St Moritz, Bernina Express, a night in Lugano and finally I was planning to take the Gotthard Express from Lugano to Fluen and then the boat to Lucerne.

As it happens I had planned to take the Gotthard Express northbound on a Monday but just heard from Happy Rails that this train doesn't run on Mondays (after their website took my booking).

So I'm asking myself (and the Forum) what to do now? I'm thinking of just taking a regular (or fast) train from Lugano to Fluelen and then taking the leg by boat to Lucerne. This would give me more time in Lucerne that day, which sounds great to me.

But I'm wondering, will the boat still run on Mondays? Will I need to make a seat reservation for my train from Lugano to Lucerne? Is there an alternative other than the fast train that would give me some of the experience of the Gotthard Express? Specific train names or numbers would be helpful. Also, is there some other option for that day that anyone could suggest? Something I'm missing?

This is Monday July 23rd that I'm talking about.

Lucas
Lucas
8906 posts
expert &
moderator
Apr 25, 2018 - 8:36 AM in reply to RussellZone

Hi RussellZone,

Yes I think it is just fine to take regular trains on the same route as the Gotthard Panoramic Express - as noted here: https://www.myswissalp s.com/gotthardpanorama express
Be sure to travel on the regional trains via Göschenen and Airolo.

The boats will be running, no reservations needed for either - just use the timetable to find the trains and boat you want.

Lucerne is nice city to have time to explore as is Lugano if you have the time too!
You can read about my recent trip to Lugano here for more details.

Last modified on Apr 25, 2018 - 9:14 AM by Arno
RussellZone
RussellZone
6 posts
new member
Apr 25, 2018 - 9:23 AM

Thanks Lucas. Much appreciated!

I read your post about Lugano and your pictures reminded me that a Swiss friend had been STRONGLY SUGGESTING that I visit Ascona. I told him repeatedly that I didn't have time, but I guess now I do.

Another thought that I had was to visit Pilatus on this day - I had been wanting to visit Shilthorn or Jungfraujoch- maybe Pialtus would be a great similar experience? Still, I'll have my bag and am not sure about hauling it around going to Pilatus. Would Pilatus be feasible on that day Lugano to Lucerne?

I'm attaching train options below. Which one is best, or does it matter? How will the regional train differ from the Gotthard Express experience?

Please login to see the attached documents
Lucas
Lucas
8906 posts
expert &
moderator
Apr 25, 2018 - 9:44 AM in reply to RussellZone

They all look fine and all would be a similar trip. Just click on the train to expand it and click again to see all the stops for each leg.

You want to see Gotthard-Panoramastrecke before Göschenen and not Gotthard Basis Tunnel (56km of blackness) :)

The regional trains simply lack the panoramic windows of 1st class on the Gotthard Panoramic Express.
Pilatus would be a reasonable stand in for Schilthorn - Titlis is even better if you have the time.

The Ticino region is very nice indeed!

Last modified on Apr 25, 2018 - 9:47 AM by Lucas
RussellZone
RussellZone
6 posts
new member
Apr 25, 2018 - 9:55 AM

Thanks Lucas, Got it.

How will the regional train differ from the Gotthard Express experience?

Lucas
Lucas
8906 posts
expert &
moderator
Apr 26, 2018 - 2:12 AM in reply to RussellZone

Hi Russell,

Nothing dramatic. As noted above the 1st class carriages on the Gotthard Panoramic Express trains have larger panoramic windows and there is also a "tour guide" on board as well (1st class again). If you are looking at 2nd class there is very little difference.

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