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Suggestion for free & easy trip for 5 nights

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9 posts
new member
Apr 3, 2016 - 10:47 AM

Dear Swiss Experts

Below are my itinerary for 5 Nights (from 12 June to 17th June) .I will be reaching Geneva from Rome by Flight , and this is my first experience planning such major trip on my own.

I appreciate your suggestion and tips for below itinerary.

(12 june) - Arriving Geneva airport at 10AM. Noon, will take the train to Montreux. Planning to do Chateu Chillon and walk along promenade, and leave to interlaken in the evening.

Besides the Chateu and beach, what else best to do at Montreux ? and is everything within walking distance? Are we able to leave our luggage in the train station?

How far is Geneva airport to Geneva train station? Is it the same place?

(13 & 14 June) - During these two days, Planning to do below 3 activities at Interlaken. Will I be able to cover these 3 within 1 1/2 days?

1) Cruise on Lake Thun and Lake Brienz - Where does the cruise start? I went through the website, it mentioned that the cruise starts near Interlakan OST and WEST train station. But didnt mention exactly where the location is and place to purchase ticket.

2) Schilthorn - Understand that we can only reach there through cable car from Murrren to Schilton. How do I get to Murren?

3)Grindelward - I dont plan to go up Jungfrau. But have plans to take train up to Grindelward. What activities can I do here?

I will also be purchasing the Swiss Travel Pass (4 days). Hence, do I need to pay for the lake cruise, Schilthorn and train to Grindelward?

Also, please advice which area will be the best place to stay for these 2 days at interlaken? Where, i can get some lively night life & Good food

14th June evening will be leaving to Luzern from Interlaken.

(15 & 16 June) - I have 15th full day and 16th half day. Will I be able to cover Mt.Titlis and Mt.Rigi?

16 June morning or noon, I will be leaving to Lugano from Lucern. Please suggest which route should i take for an outstanding view. either the short route william tell express or the bernina express(8hrs).

What activities we can do at Lugano?

(17 june) - Leave to Venice

35 posts
active member
Apr 4, 2016 - 12:21 AM


It sounds like you have a nice itinerary. I will make some suggestions for some elements of your planned trip.

13 & 14 June: 1) The cruises for Lake Thun and Lake Brienz are separate. Lake Thun cruise begins at the rear of the Interlaken West train station (there is good signposting). Lake Brienz cruise starts at rear of Interlaken Ost train station. With your Swiss Pass you do not need to buy tickets - you just go on board. You can sit at either end of the boat, inside or outside, so you can move around and see the view from all angles. You will probably find it is not too busy - it's a good time of year to be in Switzerland in my opinion. I would only take the boat one way. If you go Interlaken West-Thun, then train Thun-Interlaken Ost you can join the boat for Lake Brienz. Please see the links for the timetable and you can plan the times. Then after your trip on Lake Brienz (Interlaken Ost-Brienz) you can catch the train back to Interlaken Ost. The Lake Brienz trip may stop at the Giessbach falls. If you wish to get off and go up the funicular (small charge), you can have refreshment and a walk at Giessbach and join the boat again to continue to Brienz...but you must check the timetable.

2) To get to Murren and Schilthorn, the train leaves from Interlaken Ost - you sit at the Lauterbrunnen end of the train (clearly signposted and there are conductors to help you - this is the same train that you will probably catch to go to Grindelwald, but you will sit then at the Grindelwald end). I think a nice trip is Interlaken Ost - Lauterbrunnen - Murren - Schilthorn then down via cable car to Stechelberg and bus back to Lauterbrunnen (or walk if the weather is nice!) Please see the links on the myswissalps site. There is a small charge to Schilthorn - the map with your Swiss Pass shows the % discount.

3) Grindelwald train leaves from Interlaken Ost, as above. If it is a nice day, you can walk up the hill from the train station and catch a bus - the bus to Schwarzwaldalp takes you through wonderful alpine country and the bus experience is great fun with the skilful Swiss drivers. Please see the links on the myswissalps site. Then if you wish to have a walk, it is possible to walk through absolutely spectacular mountain scenery to First and catch the cable car back to Grindelwald and then train back to Interlaken. There are so many possibilities! You could alternatively go from Grindelwald to Kleine Scheidegg and stand at the foot of the Eiger. A nice way to do this would be to go via cablecar from Grindelwald to Mannlichen, then walk to Kleine Scheidegg (easy and so very beautiful), then by train via Wengen to Lauterbrunnen, then back to Interlaken Ost.

The other thing I wish to mention is that your journey from Interlaken to Luzern takes you through the spectacular Brunig Pass. If the train is not too busy, perhaps sit on the right hand side facing backwards until you get to Brunig Hasliberg, then swap over to the left hand side and face forward. While the views are lovely everywhere, this combination gives you the best chance of seeing the Jungfrau as you travel along Lake Brienz, and then when you get to the Haslital region you are on the side of the lakes, which are beautiful. So please make sure you are awake and have your camera ready for this part of your trip!

Good luck - you have picked some wonderful places to visit. Perhaps you will post a photo with Freddy Mercury on the promenade at Montreux!

9 posts
new member
Apr 4, 2016 - 8:55 AM

Dear Minnie

Thank you so much for your suggestion. Really appreciate your time.

I have decided to leave from Montreux to Interlaken on 13th morning. This is because I am planning to take the Swiss Travel pass ( 4 days), and will start using the pass from 13th to 16th June.

I will stay one night at Montreux (since I will only be paying train ticket from Geneva to Montreux on my own, and believe this wont cost that much).

Lake Thun and Lake Brienz cruise - should I do both or 1 lake is sufficient? If only 1 lake, which is worth doing? Base on my findings, Lake Brienz seems to be better. Also, how long will it take to cover each lake?

Schilthorn - How many hours would I need to cover Schilthorn and return back to Interlaken.

Grindelwald - You have given 2 options to reach Grindelwald. Fantastic! Unfortunately, due to time constraint I may need to choose the shorter duration. Hence, which will you suggest? Via the bus route to Schwarzwaldap or to Kleine Scheidegg?

Since I have more time on the 13th, which 2 would you suggest me to do first?

And, by looking at your suggestion, Lauterbrunnen seems more convenient to stay compared to Interlaken, Correct me if im wrong.

Once again, really appreciate your time and help.

35 posts
active member
Apr 4, 2016 - 11:49 PM in reply to dhurkkha

Sorry for the delayed reply. Busy month, as we are off to Switzerland shortly!

Re Lakes Thun and Brienz. I think one is sufficient. I would do Lake Brienz as it's smaller and you will travel past Lake Thun on the train from Montreux to Interlaken. Here is an idea which might help you have two experiences at Grindelwald. You could get the first ferry from Interlaken Ost to Brienz (1.5 hours, first at 09:07 - please check timetable), then train Brienz to Meiringen, then Postbus Meiringen to Grindelwald (this is approximately 2 hours and will be a very good experience - you may have to pay a little extra fee, I am not sure - please check the forum). Then you have time in Grindelwald to possibly also go by cable car to Mannlichen and on to Kleine Scheidegg, and then back down to Interlaken. All this would be possible in one (busy but satisfying) day.

The trip from Interlaken to Schilthorn is something you could do on the 13th after you arrive from Montreux. I suggest you leave Montreux early and pick up a breakfast snack at the train station if there is not a buffet on the train. Any lodging place will look after your bags if you are too early to check in. This might be a good option for Day 1 as it means you have a whole day exploring on 14th.

I would stay in Interlaken Ost if possible as it's more central. There is a lot of information on this site - you can have modest accommodations to save cost.

Good luck!

7567 posts
Apr 5, 2016 - 12:32 AM in reply to dhurkkha

Minnie did not mention, as far as I know, the Timetable.

It will help you immensely if you learn to use it. It will answer many of your questions.

www.myswissalps.com/ti metable



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