Report on our week in based in Brienz

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Posts: 9
Denandshazza
Denandshazza
21 posts
new member
Jul 5, 2018 - 3:06 PM

Hi My Swiss Alps Team. Want to say a huge thank you for the considerable advice you gave us it was invaluable. You were so right on the Swiss Half Fare Card being the best for us as we had our car and were therefore not totally reliant on the public transport, however as you say it is excellent clean prompt and very customer focused.

I will share the main things we did and our opinion.

Jungfrau - a spectacular trip from Lucerne via Lauterbrunnen up and up to Kleine Scheidegg station. The final leg up to the top is mainly in a tunnel and I did find what I found at the top far too crowded and commercialised. I simply wanted to admire the view and not feel I was in a glorified theme park being jostled by crowds of people. In hindsight i would have done a round trip from Lauterbrunnen to Kleine Scheidegg and then back down the other route to Grindelwald. Or maybe even done to the top of a less commercialised mountain such as Rigi or Pilatus where we may have had had a more enjoyable and less trying experience. It may also have cost less Jungfrau is expensive.

Our other major excursion was the Gotthard Panoramic Express package. With the half price pass this was quite reasonable at 6OCHF. each This gave us 3 hours on a boat on Lake Lucerne which was heavenly. However I did not get much out of the ensuing train ride as much of it was in the very long Gotthard Tunnel, probably worthwhile if you want to spend time in Lugarno, the final stop, but I prefer central Switzerland. If anyone else prefers this too a return trip on the Lucerne boat could be an option

The rest of the week we spent exploring by car, the various passes are fabulous and very well maintained Spectacular scenery. And.... thank you to My Swiss Alps for suggesting a trip to Lauterbrunnen Valley.....wow wow wow.

Must not forget we were very fortunate to be in a chalet just up the road from Giessbach Falls a huge fall that finishes in Lake Brienz. Well worth a visit, can either be accessed from the bottom by a funicular railway, or one can drive up Axalpstrasse and there is a car park and a lovely woodland walk to the falls.

Brienz itself is a place I would really recommend staying, by the side of an azure blue lake of the same name. Lots of lakeside bars, lovely walks, an absolute gem of central Switzerland.

Again thanks to my Swiss Alps team. Plan to return next year and possibly take our caravan to give us a bit more flexibility

Lucas
Lucas
9613 posts
expert &
moderator
Jul 6, 2018 - 7:13 AM in reply to Denandshazza

Hi Denandshazza and thanks for the report!

How long were you in a tunnel for? There are two routes to get to Lugano...both consist of tunnels. One is very, very long and the other not so bad (this route goes through Göschenen. If you were on the official panoramic train you went through a relatively short tunnel. :)

Denandshazza
Denandshazza
21 posts
new member
Jul 6, 2018 - 8:05 AM in reply to Lucas

We went the shorter tunnel as per the trip itinerary on the way to Lugano and then came back under our own steam by the express which took us through the longer bottom tunnel but it went through quicker being the express about 25 minutes. The tunnel going to Lugano may have felt longer because I was wanting to be out in the scenery again. It feels a lot different when you come out on the Italian side of Switzerland more urban than the chocolate Swiss chalet feel of central Switzerland.

Arno
Arno
11357 posts
expert &
moderator
Jul 6, 2018 - 8:40 AM

Hi Denandshazza,

Great report, thanks a lot! I'm glad to hear our website has been useful for your preparation. I also wonder if you took the actual Gotthard Panorama Express. I did it recently and the tunnel was only 15 minutes or so, while the entire train section took 2 hours and 20 minutes. Additionally there were a few shorter tunnels too. On the way back we also took the longer tunnel via the less scenic but much quicker route.

Anyway, you've had a good time and planning to come back, so it was a well worth trip I guess. I'm pleased to hear that. Hope to see you back here when preparing next years trip!

Gunzel
Gunzel
153 posts
active member
Jul 6, 2018 - 7:26 PM

Fascinating you took the car option in an area that has some of the best public transport in the world.

The Jungfrau comment is interesting too; that's part of the "experience"? You do find a diverse (?) mix of international travellers and those who are travelling together in groups can be rather noisy to some people.

During my visit, I made the effort to visit other mountain destinations such as Niesen Kulm and Schynige Platte that seemed to attract fewer noisy internationals. At Niesen Kulm we asked the waitress about the client mix and she said it was mostly "locals" and certainly not too many from Australia!

My travelling companion and I find people watching and observing "everyday life" a most rewarding part of the travel experience.

I guess you missed the relatively short but incredibly scenic and spectacular bus trip to Axalp; a magnificent ride from Brienz!

Denandshazza
Denandshazza
21 posts
new member
Jul 7, 2018 - 7:33 AM in reply to Gunzel

Hi Gunzel

Unfortunately When we went up Jungfraujoch it was so crowded it was difficult to get around. The Axalp we were fortunate enough that our chalet was halfway up Axalpstrasse so not only did we have a fabulous view over the lake but we were able to do the drive up to Axalp and yes it is a lovely scenic drive. The reason we had the car is because we drove from Dunkirk. We do like to drive to our destinations as it gives us the opportunity to see much more on the way. Also gives us the chance to stop where and when we want meet people etc. We hope to return to the lovely country again next year and travel around more with our caravan

TitafromTx
TitafromTx
2 posts
new member
Oct 9, 2018 - 3:19 PM in reply to Denandshazza

It looks like you were there in the summer. I'm wondering if Jungfraujoch is less crowed in September? We are planning a trip for next year.

Lucas
Lucas
9613 posts
expert &
moderator
Oct 10, 2018 - 6:32 AM in reply to TitafromTx

Hi TitafromTx and welcome to MySwissAlps!

Jungfraujoch and Switzerland in general is much busier in July and August and does tend to quiet down after the 1st week of September.

You could head up at the same time as a tour group and it'll still feel busy though. Here is a link that you may find helpful: www.myswissalps.com/be sttimetovisit

TitafromTx
TitafromTx
2 posts
new member
Oct 10, 2018 - 4:57 PM in reply to TitafromTx

Thanks Lucas so happy to be on this site and heading to Switzerland next year. Lot's of great info.

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