Side of train for best views Lugano - Arth Goldau

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Stacy
Stacy
49 posts
active member
Feb 15, 2018 - 2:22 AM

Hi, all. We'll be traveling from Lugano to Arth-Goldau on our way to Weggis on June 18. Which side of the train would you recommend for the best views? Is there any train in particular that is better than the others or are they all the same?

Thanks!

rockoyster
rockoyster
4072 posts
expert
Feb 15, 2018 - 4:25 AM in reply to Stacy

Hello Stacy,

This www.myswissalps.com/go tthardpanoramaexpress/ gettingthere will tell you all about the best route.

You don't need to take the Gotthard Panorama Express, you can a take regular trains following the same route. Just make sure you go via Göschenen otherwise you may spend a fair amount of time underground in the Gotthard Base Tunnel (57Km long).

You could even go by train to Flüelen and then catch the paddle steamer from there to Weggis. That's a VERY nice boat ride. See www.myswissalps.com/fo rum/topic/the-reluctant-travellers-swiss-adventure-part-6.

Stacy
Stacy
49 posts
active member
Feb 15, 2018 - 8:28 AM in reply to rockoyster

Thank so much for your great suggestions. After checking the timetables, we will go Lugano (dep 11:19) via Goschenen to Fluelen (arriving 13:41) and then catch the 14:00 paddle boat to Weggis (arr, 16:05). Do you know which side of the train we should sit on for the best view? Thanks.

Lucas
Lucas
9868 posts
expert &
moderator
Feb 15, 2018 - 9:35 AM in reply to Stacy

Our seating preferences are noted on Rockoyster's 1st link. It notes preferences in the opposite direction. We like the left side when traveling between Lugano - Göschenen (although its a slight preference). :)

Stacy
Stacy
49 posts
active member
Feb 15, 2018 - 5:46 PM in reply to Lucas

Thank you, Lucas. Yes, I did read the informative links Rockoyster provided but had forgotten that bit of information after spending quite a bit of time researching his Fluelen suggestion. Thank you for reminding me.

Peterli
Peterli
679 posts
top member
Feb 15, 2018 - 11:53 PM

Hello Stacy,

In all likelihood there will be empty seats on your particular train, even in second class, so you will be able to switch sides to take advantage of the view which may be better on the left at one point, and then on the right. Here are the sides that I prefer and why. As you head north from Lugano, most of the time the train will be on the left bank of the Ticino river, so you would probably spend more time sitting on the left side of the train. Between Gironico and Lavorgo you will go through a double loop tunnel, and here the left is the better side for sure. After Faido, the view is better from the right side, so if you can be on that side, great ! You go into the long tunnel at Airolo and for that part of the trip you can take your choice ! But I would try to be on the right side when you come out of the tunnel at Göschenen. You will now be following the Reuss river flowing north to Lake Lucerne (Vierwaldstättersee). At first you will be on the left bank of the Reuss, so sitting on the right side is better for views. After you go into the first tunnel in Wassen, switch to the left side so you will see the church a bit below you and stay on the left through the second tunnel as the church will now be higher on the left. After Wassen, the train will be running on the left back of the Reuss, so the better views are from the right side of the train. After the tunnel at Amsteg, the train will be running on the right bank of the Reuss the rest of the way to Flüelen, so the best views are from the left side of the train

By the way, Rockoyster's suggestion of getting off the train in Flüelen and taking the lake boat north is a fantastic idea. If you don't have time to do the boat thing, make sure you stay on the left side of the train.

Last modified on Feb 16, 2018 - 1:56 AM by Peterli
Stacy
Stacy
49 posts
active member
Feb 16, 2018 - 1:48 AM in reply to Peterli

Peterli, thanks so much for the detailed advice. Hopefully, we'll have open seats (we'll be in First Class) so we can bounce back and forth from left to right. We are definitely taking the boat from Fluelen to Weggis.

This is the BEST travel website I've ever used! I wish there were equally good websites for other countries.

Peterli
Peterli
679 posts
top member
Feb 16, 2018 - 4:19 AM

I suspected you'd be in First Class, but mentioned Second just in case. In First Class there will almost certainly be even more empty seats, so get ready to go back and forth whenever you want ! Don't forget what Rockoyster said about making sure you go "via Göschenen" because the last thing you want to do is miss all that amazing scenery. There is absolutely nothing to see in the Base Tunnel, right or left side. You will go through the much shorter (15 km) and older (1882) Gotthard Tunnel (Airolo to Göschenen).

What is even more fun is to drive by car (are you reading this, Slowpoke ?) over the pass (Passo del San Gottardo) which is 2106 metres above sea level, but of course you can only do this when it is open and snow-free. Perhaps you can do this another time ? The snow comes early and leaves late up in those passes. A few years ago I drove up the Saint Bernard Pass (2469 metres above sea level) from Italy in early October, stayed the night in the Hospice at the top, and the next day that road over the pass was closed for the Winter. I went out to my car during the night and there was snow on the windshield, but when I left early the next morning it was all gone and I was able to get down (no Winter tires) to the lower Valais without any problems.

The following video: youtu.be/uFjozUCV_CM shows the ascent of the San Gotthard Pass from the Italian side. I suspect that the person who uploaded it speeded it up a bit. You can see that there are a good number of places where one can pull off and admire the scenery. Just watching this video makes me want to do this pass again !

Last modified on Feb 16, 2018 - 4:22 AM by Peterli
Stacy
Stacy
49 posts
active member
Feb 16, 2018 - 6:04 AM in reply to Peterli

Yes thank you. I've made sure we don't go through the new tunnel even though it would take less time. Sometimes, "time" is not of the essence!

Peterli
Peterli
679 posts
top member
Feb 16, 2018 - 4:01 PM in reply to Stacy

Hello,

Time is most definitely of the essence when exploring Switzerland. I wanted to add that I am pleased to see that you will be visiting the Italian part of Switzerland. I find that far too often the Italian and French parts of the country are ignored. I'm not saying "always" but rather "too often". Switzerland is a multi-cultural country and I think it is important to experience all of its regions and languages.

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