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geneva or zurich as departure points out of CH?

geneva or zurich as departure points out of CH?

Old Sep 20th, 2008, 09:22 AM
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geneva or zurich as departure points out of CH?

we will be spending 3 nights in the lauterbrunnen/wengen/murren area after touring the romantic road and bavarian alps (munich,salzburg, innsbruck)for 9 days. we would like to go to jungfrau and do some easy hikes. which would be a better departure point on our return flight to the US, zurich or geneva?

we are in the early planning stage, we haven't booked our tickets and hotels yet so we are still open to suggestions. we orginally considered taking the Glacier Express but decided against it after reaading some earlier posts here, mainly bec we don't want to spend a whole day in the train for the sightseeing we're going to get. just not enough bang for our time, IMO.

thanks in advance for all your input.
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Old Sep 20th, 2008, 09:36 AM
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Zurich has more flights to more places in the US, and is likely to be cheaper. That being said, I would price out both cities, since you only care about the flight taking you home and all those others may not matter.
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Old Sep 24th, 2008, 11:22 PM
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I donít think it makes a hue difference, but I would look at things like non-stop flights versus connections, etc and see whether one city works out as an advantage over the other. Price may be different from one versus the other as well. In terms of distance to the airports from the Jungfrau (by train), Zurich is about an hour closer. If you want to spend any time in either place, I like Zurich more as city for touring, but I love the beauty of the Lake Geneva area (would not spend time in Geneva, but would happily do so in Vevey, Lausanne or some of the other towns on the northeast shore of Lake Geneva.) But if you are only talking about going from the Jungfrau right to an airport, or spending one brief night before a flight, then it does not matter IMO.

One thing that may weigh in favour of Geneva is that from the Jungfrau to Geneva you can take the Golden Pass train, which is quite scenic. The train journey to Zurich, while pretty in parts, would not be nearly as scenic nor go to as high elevations. But you would need to leave some time to appreciate the Golden Pass. See http://www.goldenpass.ch/GPL/main.asp for info.

I donít know your plans, but my strong recco if you are renting a car for Germany or Austria (which makes sense for the romantic road) is to drop the car before you go to Switzerland and train from then on in Switzerland. You wonít need a car in the Jungfrau for the most part (in fact cannot use it in Wengen on Murren, you would be parking in Lauterbrunnen down in the valley below and paying for the privilege each day for <i>not</i> using your car), and train service is fantastic (is so in Germany and Austria too of course). You will save drop off charges, parking and gas, and can get a combo train ticket that will give you discount or free access to cable cars and mountain trains.

One final comment: much as I feel that the Jungfrau is beautiful, there are other lovely places, esp ones which may be more accessible from the German romantic road area and from Austria, e.g. the St Moritz valley area and the rest of the Engadine. From Innsbruck, the train ride to St Moritz is between 4-5 hours and would be a lovely ride, the trip to the Jungfrau from Innsbruck would be about 7 hours (but quite pretty too). Drive time to St Moritz is about 2.5 hours, to Lauterbrunnen about 4.5.

The Engadine is just as beautiful as the Jungfrau, just not as hyped (and not as full of American tourists). Some of the most charming villages in Switzerland are here (e.g. Guarda). You can do the Bernina Express train ride here (probably the best of the scenic train rides in Switzerland, IMO, much preferred to the Glacier which I think you made a good decision to skip), and do easy hikes here as well. For info on the Bernina Express, go to rhb.ch. From St Moritz, the Bernina Express would take up about half a day, from about 9:30 am to 3 pm, including a stop for an hour for a stroll and possibly lunch in Tirano, Italy. (You would not do the whole train ride from Zurich, but would get to see the rest of the views on the train ride to Zurich airport, esp the lovely Bergun Valley). This area is an easy and quite scenic 2-4 hour train ride to Zurich airport (I would rule out a flight from Geneva if you choose the Engadine).
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Old Sep 25th, 2008, 11:25 AM
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I don't think it makes much difference. Both airports are connected to train stations so easy to use.

I'd check routing and prices for the flights as the determining factor, as others have mentioned already.
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Old Sep 25th, 2008, 01:33 PM
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I'd check prices from both..you can use www.itasoftware.com
my last Swiss experience produced cheaper fares to where we wanted to go out of Geneva vs. Zurich
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