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Swiss holiday with teenagers

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2 posts
new member
Jul 5, 2014 - 5:37 PM

On the 31st July, my husband and I together with our children (12,15,21 yrs) will be travelling to Switzerland for the first time. I have planned the following itinerary:

31/7: Arrive Zurich airport at 4.45pm train to Interlaken (we already booked our hotels).

1/8: Thun by return train, cruise Brienz. Perhaps stay at Interlaken to watch Swiss National day parade in the afternoon.

2/8 Jungfraujoch (weather permitting)

3/8 Schiltorn and Trummelbach falls or no Schiltorn and see Jungrau towns of Murren, Wengen.

4/8 Leave Interlaken to our hotel in Lucerne via Bern. Leave luggages at the station and tour around Bern until 3pm.

5/8 Golden round trip to Mt. Pilatus

6/8 Visit Swiss Science Technorama in Winterthur. In the afternoon either we proceed tothe Rhinefalls or walk around Zurich and return to Lucerne in the evening.

7/8 Mt. Titlis. Afternoon at Museum of Transport.

8/ 8 Leave Lucerne in the morning to Zurich station. Since our flight is at 5.30pm we will leave luggages at zurich train station and stay at zurich then we catch the train to zurich airport.

After doing a lot of calculations it turned out that the half fare card together with the family card is cheaper for us then the Swiss Pass. Are there any other passes I should consider? Do you think it is a very busy schedule? Should I leave or add something? Where I live our summers are very hot and we don't have any mountains. If the weather is not good on the mountains what other possibilities are there? I do not want my grown up children to get bored.

Thanks in advance.

6106 posts
expert &
Jul 6, 2014 - 10:16 AM

Hi Panda,

Thanks for joining our community! Your plans look active but realistic. August 6 may be a bit much but it all depends on how long you want to spend at each site. I am not sure about your plans for August 1: Thun is on Lake Thun, Brienz is on Lake Brienz, these are two seperate lakes, so I assume you mean one of them.

As for the pass: if you have followed these instructions, the Swiss Half Fare Card may indeed be the cheapest option. Be sure you got the correct prices from the timetable (it shows half fare by default, so don't assume that's full fare), and include the extra advantages of the 8-day Swiss Saver Pass: free traveling (not tickets required) on trains, boats, buses and also some mountain transport (Mürren, Wengen can be reached for free). Many, but not all, museums are free. The Swiss Museum of Transport in Lucerne is 50% off with a Swiss Pass, the Technorama is not included.

Bad weather suggestions can be found on the Interlaken page and Lucerne page. Be sure to plan by the day and do the museums, city trips, etc. on cloudy/rainy days.

2 posts
new member
Jul 7, 2014 - 11:22 AM in reply to Annika

Thanks for your reply!

In fact we prefer to do the Lake Brienz cruise in the morning. We can visit Lake Thun and Beatus Caves by train some other day, if the weather is bad and we end up not going to Jungfraujoch after all. We are not sure yet if we stay for the Swiss National Day parade or check the weather and if it is fine go up one of the mountains.As you said we will plan our holiday day by day according to the weather.

On August 6 my children are all looking forward to Technorama so maybe we end up staying till around 4pm inside the Science Centre! Should we visit the Rhine falls after Technorama since it's not that far? A few years ago we've been to Niagara Falls.

Since we will be 2 adults and 1 under-25, the Half Fare Card will cost us CHF360 and CHF435 train tickets. The Swiss Pass will cost us CHF1003 and we have to add full fare on the 9th day from Lucerne to Zurich, besides other entrance tickets (only Museum of Transport is included at 50% discount). On the other hand if, while we are at Interlaken, we decide to go with the Half Fare Card to, for example, Montreux from Interlaken, it will cost us CHF69 each. If we buy the Half-Fare Card on-line we cannot be flexible.

I really have to make up my mind soon :)

Is it worth visiting all mountains I mentioned? My teenagers wish to go on the toboggan and do some snow activities.

14114 posts
expert &
Jul 7, 2014 - 11:59 AM

Hi Panda,

It's a 40 minute train ride from Oberwinterthur (the train stop near the Technorama) to Schloss Laufen am Rheinfall. The details are in the timetable, and there's the Rhine Fall page for further information. It's not as big as the Niagara Falls, but if you like waterfalls you won't be disappointed.

I'm not sure what you mean by "if we buy the Half-Fare Card on-line we cannot be flexible". If you buy a Swiss Half Fare Card, you only buy the card and not the discounted tickets for the trips during your stay. You buy those as you go, so you can decide what you want to do on a day by day basis. The same applies to the Swiss Pass, but that does not require to buy tickets for each trip, so you can just board and do additional trips at no cost.

I would recommend to buy online to save money. There are interesting promotions you can take advantage of, but they are not available when purchasing in Switzerland. Please see the promo sections of the Swiss Half Fare Card page and Swiss Pass page.

The mountains you plan to visit are great, but it's a personal thing whether or not to visit them all or specific ones. Many mountain excursions can be found in our activity overview, so I suggest to take a look and perhaps shift priorities based on what you've read there.

Best regards,


Last modified on Dec 28, 2014 - 12:55 PM by Arno

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