Best Swiss rail pass for Bern, Interlaken areas

Best Swiss rail pass for Bern, Interlaken areas

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sakhan
sakhan
5 posts
new member
Aug 1, 2017 - 1:30 PM

Hi folks,

I am planning to travel from Lyon, France to Switzerland in month of September with my family (wife + 1 kid). Planning to cover Berne, Interlaken & Jungfraujoch. This is the first time I am visiting Switzerland and I want to make my trip memorable.

Please suggest better option to choose between Swiss Travel pass or half price pass or individual tickets?

Is September month good for Switzerland?

Is there only 25% discount on ticket for Travel pass between Wengen & Jungfraujoch?

Do you have any other recommendation other than this region?

Thanks

S A Khan

Lucas
Lucas
8901 posts
expert &
moderator
Aug 1, 2017 - 1:41 PM in reply to sakhan

Hi S A Khan and welcome to MySwissAlps!

To choose the best rail pass you will need to plan out your itinerary and compare rail pass prices against point to point tickets. Also, how long are you traveling in Switzerland? And what do you want to see?

We have an information page and Excel sheet here to help with comparing prices.

The Swiss Travel Pass does get you 25% off between Wengen & Jungfraujoch yes. Other rail passes give different discounts.

September is certainly a good month for travel here though - one of the best months.

We have a list of recommendations for the region you are planning to visit (the Bernese Oberland Region) noted here.If you plan to stay in this region I would look at a Regional Pass - Bernese Oberland rail pass.

I think this is a great region to visit (the really mountainous region of Switzerland) if that is what you want to see? I would stay in Bern if you want a city visit or Lucerne if you want more outdoor experiences. Also, consider a smaller village like Wengen or Lauterbrunnen instead of Interlaken.

Lucas

Last modified on Aug 1, 2017 - 1:43 PM by Lucas
sakhan
sakhan
5 posts
new member
Aug 2, 2017 - 12:13 PM in reply to Lucas

Hi Lucas,

Thanks for quick response. I am traveling for 4-5 days and want to cover Bernese Oberland region. My starting point would be Berne as I am coming from Lyon by bus. My main focus is outdoor experience.

As you suggested, I compared Swiss Travel Pass & Bernese Oberland region pass and both looks of same cost.

In Swiss Travel Pass, train is free till Wengen but in Bernese Oberland region pass train is free till Kleine Scheidegg.

Cable car is free from Wengen to Grindelwald under Bernese Oberland region pass but not in Swiss Travel pass.

Do I need to consider Wengen or Lauterbrunnen for stay instead of Interlaken?

Please suggest the best option and things to cover. Thanks in advance.

Regards,

S A Khan

Lucas
Lucas
8901 posts
expert &
moderator
Aug 2, 2017 - 1:34 PM in reply to sakhan

Hi S A Khan,

Most people do like staying at Wengen or Lauterbrunnen over Interlaken yes and I think the same. Interlaken can be a bit too touristy.

We have a list of activities you can do in the Bernese Oberland area here. I think you are right that the Regional Pass - Bernese Oberland is probably best for you for this trip - you can buy it online here if you like.

From Lyon to Bern you will need to buy a separate train ticket here.

Lucas

sakhan
sakhan
5 posts
new member
Aug 4, 2017 - 7:19 AM in reply to Lucas

Hi Lucas,

Thanks for the suggestions. Could you please clarify few points:

1. Do you recommend to buy the Bernese Oberland Region pass in advance or can I get in from Bern station & will the cost be same?

2. Does it require to reserve a seat from Bern to Lucern? Is the pass valid for all types of train like Regional, IC, EC etc.

3. Is there a locker room for luggage at train stations.

4. Does Bernese Oberland Region pass also valid in Golden pass panoramic train from Lucern to Montreux. If yes, can we directly hop on and off to this train and other trains in this region?

5. Is Brienzer Rothorn (Steam train) & Rothornbahn worth investing 5 Hrs? Considering we are also covering Schynige Platte, Jungfrau, Grandelwald & Murren.

Regards,

S A Khan

Last modified on Aug 4, 2017 - 7:20 AM by sakhan
Lucas
Lucas
8901 posts
expert &
moderator
Aug 4, 2017 - 9:49 AM in reply to sakhan

Hi S A Khan, I'd be happy to clarify for you.

  1. Prices for the Regional Pass - Bernese Oberland fluctuate a little online and compared to buying in Switzerland. Have a look at the price options here.
  2. No reservations needed. The type of train doesn't matter - only the route you are on and whether it is valid under the rail pass. You can see by a map here what routes are covered by the Regional Pass - Bernese Oberland.
  3. Most train stations have luggage lockers or left luggage offices yes. Click this link for more details - be sure to also explore the SBB link on that page for a list of station services.
  4. It is valid for part of the trip - refer to the map link above. For the last part to Montreux from Saanen you need a ticket (50% discount though).
  5. I think the Brienzer Rothorn is nice if you have a free day to explore. But I wouldn't try and cram it into an already busy day no.

Hope that helps!
Lucas

sakhan
sakhan
5 posts
new member
Aug 4, 2017 - 12:07 PM

Hi Lucas,

Thanks for clarifying my doubts. Based on that I have roughly created my itinerary. Could you please check and suggest few scenic routes if required to be added.

I'll start to use my 4 days regional pass from Day2.

Day 1

1. Reach Bern from Lyon by 2pm. Check-in hotel.

2. Bern city walk. Stay overnight.

Day 2

1. Early morning train from Bern - Luzern. Secure luggage at Luzern station.

2. Luzern city tour, Chapel Bridge, Lion Monument etc.

3. Evening train from Luzern - Interlaken OST. Check-in hotel.

Day 3

1. Interlaken city tour + Boat ride at lake Brienz.

2. Interlaken Ost - Lauterbrunnen by evening train. Check-in hotel

Day 4

1. Lauterbrunnen - Jungfrau by early morning train.

2. Jungfrau - Grindelwald by train and First by cable car.

3. Grindelwald - Wengen by cable car and then Lauterbrunnen by train.

Day 5

1. Lauterbrunnen - Grütschalp by cable car and then Murren by train.

2. Murren - Trümmelbach waterfäll

3. Trümmelbach waterfäll - Lauterbrunnen. Check-out hotel.

4. Lauterbrunnen - Bern by train.

5. Bern - Lyon by evening bus.

Regards,

S A Khan

Annika
Annika
4992 posts
expert &
moderator
Aug 5, 2017 - 6:44 PM in reply to sakhan

Hi S A Khan,

Your itinerary looks fine over all! There's not much I would add. I'd just avoid staying in hotels in both Interlaken and Lauterbrunnen, as they're very close to one another. Just spending your nights in Lauterbrunnen will prevent an extra process of packing and unpacking, checking out and checking in. Here are some more thoughts:

  • day 2: the city of Lucerne is for sure worth a visit, but if weather is clear you may like the views from Pilatus too. It's easy to be reached form Lucerne and free with a Swiss Travel Pass. It's not included in the Regional-Pass Bernese Oberland you're considering though;
  • day 2: mind not to travel towards Interlaken too late in the evening. It's a very scenic route and you don't want the valleys to be overcast by shadows and dusk already;
  • day 4 is very full. You'll manage if you start early and don't spend too long up at Jungfraujoch, but do check travel schedules and consider whether you're fine with such a long day.

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