Trip report June 16-26, 2016
Thank you SwissAlps team for making so much info about Switzerland available at one great place and helping with all the queries. It turned out to be great trip! Here are the details of our trip which may help other users plan their trip.
June 17 - arrived in Zurich at 4 pm. Took train from the airport to the Zurich HB. Hotel was conveniently located, close to the train station (recommended on SwissAlps website). Visited ETH Zurich (my son wanted to visit) it was just a few mins walk from the hotel, and then took a walking tour of the city. It was a nice stroll thru the old town, river bank, bridges, lake promenade, etc.
Jun 18 - started using 8 day Swiss Travel Pass (with convenient online delivery option) visited Rhine falls, Schaufhausen, and then Stein am Rhein, all by train. On our way back, took a cruise from Stein am Rhein to Schaufhausen and then train back to Zurich HB. Collected our luggage from the hotel and travelled to Lucerne by train.
Jun 19- cloudy/ rainy day. Next day was sunny and reserved that to visit Mt Titlis. Decided to take a chance to go to Mt. Rigi. The boat ride from Luzerne to Vitznau was very beautiful. Half way up Mt Rigi, fog caught up with us and we couldn't see anything. There was no point in hanging out there as it was foggy, rainy and no visibility. Came down by cable car to Weggis and took the boat ride back. In the evening saw the famous chapel bridge, lion mountain, few churches, and stroll in this beautiful city.
Jun 20 - travelled to Engelberg by train and then to Mt Titlis. Enjoyed the ride on the cable car and different activities at the top of the mountain. Snow tubing was the best! We were back at the hotel by 3 pm. Took some rest and later in the evening, went for a stroll thru the city again. The lake area is very nice. Looked at the SBB app to explore anymore cruise options on the lake. Found a sundown round trip cruise to Beckenried. Awesome views of the city. This was a steamboat, the entire mechanism on display in action in the middle of the ship.
Jun 21 - travelled to Bern by fastest route (one hour) took a city walking map from information center and strolled thru this unique, scenic and laid back city. Covered most of the tourist spots along the way. On our way back took a longer, more scenic route via Kambly. Stopped by at the Kambly biscuit factory. They don't really offer any factory tours, it's just a shop where you can taste and buy their cookies. Didn't spend much time there, took the next train to Lucerne. This route was very scenic thru Emmental valley, definitely preferred over the fastest route we took in the morning. Back to Lucerne, picked up our luggage and boarded Golden pass panoramic Lucerne -Interlaken express. In my opinion this train ride was the highlight of our trip. What a scenic train ride! Thru the mountains, rolling green hills, lakes, small towns, just amazing! Interlaken -Lauterbrunnen -Wengen, Wengen being our next destination. Amazing scenery throughout the journey ( I'm running out of superlatives now..) the apartment we stayed had views of Jungfrau from the balcony and bedroom window, gorgeous!!! Everyday we got to see a different view depending on cloud formation, rain, sun, etc.
Spent next 4 days exploring this region. Mannlichen , Royal walk, Jungfrau, Lauterbrunnen valley with Trümmelbach Falls. One of the days we did rest of the golden pass route Interlaken to Montraux. Different kind of scenery, enjoyed it. It was a very long day though.
Jun 25 - started from Wengen by 8:30 train (with 4 connections and all our luggage) to catch 11:18 Glacier express from Brig. One of the connection was only 5 mins and few platforms away, but we could easily do it with all our luggage. Glacier express is king/queen of the Swiss trains. Very nice experience, gorgeous scenery along the way though I felt, doing this ride in winter will be a real treat. We got down at Chur and travelled to Zurich by different train. Our flight out the next day was in early morning, so booked hotel near the airport. Went back to Zurich city for nice dinner. This was the last day of our STP.
Jun 26 - back home
Some take always
- Swiss transportation system is very efficient, convenient and timely!
- Swiss Travel Pass is very convenient. Allows seamless travel thru trains, buses and boats.
- SBB app is your best friend if you are planning to use public transport. Check the timetable and plan your day.
- Check the weather often, especially for the mountain activities. Checking webcams of the destination helps as well
- If you have some free time, take a cruise, any cruise, you won't go wrong with any choice you make. We really loved them.
- Staying in Alps - totally worth it. It may add travel time if you plan to visit places outside, still worth it. The feel of stay in the mountain is hard to explain, one must experience it.
- MySwissAlps moderators are very knowledgeable, all their suggestions and insights make the trip experience even better.
Thank you again MySwissAlps team for loads of information made available on the site and your guidance, we had a wonderful trip. Hoping to return back to Switzerland soon as there is so much more to experience!