Sep 21, 2017 - 12:54 PM
Hi Gleiva. We did this trip on the 5/6th September the other way round, Chur to Tirano, using both the Bernina Express and regional trains. Our route from Chur went via St Moritz as we picked up the afternoon Bernina Express from there. As Lucas says - the route by regional train is exactly the same with all the same spectacular scenery (avoid any that go via Landquart and you should be ok). The normal train from Chur was super modern with a panoramic carriage and windows that open for taking photos. Better I'd argue than the Bernina Express itself! The route really is special. We stayed overnight in Tirano (a nice town with a lovely old quarter full of narrow cobbled streets and hidden palazzos plus good value restaurants)
Don't worry about regional trains that show several changes. On our return from Tirano to Chur we changed at Pontresina and then Samedan within a short time but it was very easy, clear and quick. You don't require a reservation on the regional trains but there are always more than enough seats. It is possible to do the return journey in one day but bear in mind each way is around 4 hours.
As well as info on this forum I emailed railservice@rhb. ch to be absolutely sure the regional train we took was following the same Unesco World Heritage route.