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Geneva VS Bern

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Jul 13th, 2013, 04:03 AM
  #1
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Join Date: Mar 2013
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Geneva VS Bern

Hi All, we are visiting Switzerland for 7 days and this is our plan:

Day 1: Paris-Geneva-Montreux
Day 2: Montreux-Wengen(Golden Pass (09:44)- Schilthorn or Bern
Day 3- Jungfray stopping at Grindelwald and KS
Day 4- Ballenberg Open Air Museum
Day 5- Wengen-Lucerne- Mt Rigi and Katlab
Day 6- Please suggest a plan. Schilthorn or Bern
Day 7- Lucerne- Zurich(11:45am flight)

I am contemplating on whether I should visit Bern or on day 1 do a day trip of Geneva before moving on to montreux. and If I decide to choose Geneva then, I will visit the castle in the morning and take an afternoon goldenpass to Interlaken, in which case I will skip bern. So I want to know what is better a day trip in Bern or Geneva? Thanks!
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Jul 13th, 2013, 06:10 AM
  #2
 
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Bern to me is one of the nicest cities in Switzerland and has more old-world charm than Geneva IMO but both are really nice cities. You could take a few hours coming from Paris, put bags in a train station locker - look around the town center with castle then move onto Montreux.

You could do Bern as a day trip from the Jungfrau region, where the weather can be iffy even in summer so on the first rainy day go to Bern - which can be enjoyed in lousy weather.

You are traveling a lot so it's a no-brainer IMO to get a Swiss Pass of some type - even an 8-consecutive-day one even though you'll only be there 7 days and all you travel up to Wengen and Grindelwald will be covered in full - even the Ballenberg Open-airmuseum entry fee will be covered as Swiss Passes get free entry to 400+ Swiss museums and attractions.

Passes are good on lake boats and you can easily do that when visiting Ballenberg - take a boat from Interlaken-Ost station to Brienz and then one of those iconic postal buses up to the Ballenberg Museum - return to Brienz for trains back to Interlaken - all covered in full with a Swis Pass.

For lots of great info on Swiss trains, boats, etc I always spotlight these Uber fine IMO sites - www.swisstravelsystem.com; http://www.budgeteuropetravel.com/id3.html; www.ricksteves.com.
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Jul 13th, 2013, 09:00 AM
  #3
 
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anyone else with a take on Geneva vs Bern - would love to hear various takes on them!
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Jul 13th, 2013, 10:46 AM
  #4
 
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I'm with PalenQ.

Bern(e) is a lovely city, I've been there many times. Be sure and take the bus out to the fairly new Paul Klee Museum.

It's not a large city, but it certainly has a lot of amenities, and a good way to see how the locals act.
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Jul 13th, 2013, 05:16 PM
  #5
kja
 
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I liked both Geneva and Bern, but for very different reasons and think that choosing which to see would depend on your interests. If you want to spend some time on the water, Geneva would seem the better choice. if you want to just roam around a charming old town, Bern might make more sense. If you want to visit some wonderful museums, it would depend on what kinds of things you want to see, as both cities have some options that are well worth considering.

You don't say when you are going, but if it makes any difference, many streets in Bern's Old Town are currently dug up for a major construction project that I believe is going to last for at least several more months. One result is that the streets and sidewalks that are open are sometimes very crowded. There's still plenty to see, so I wouldn't make that a deciding factor, but it is something you might want to keep in mind.

But I think I'm confused -- which castle do you mean? Are you leaving any time to visit Lucerne and its wonderful lake? Are you skipping Zurich (except for its airport)?
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Jul 14th, 2013, 02:51 AM
  #6
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I am going in August. Yes, I will be in Luzern for 2 nights. And zurich will be just to the airport. What do you mean by time on water? Lake cruise?
Here is my plan for now:

Day 1: Paris-Geneva(do a walking tour of Geneva- walking down the rue du Mt Blanc from the station to the Pont du Mt Blanc, Ile Rousseau, walk through the Place Molard to the "rues basses", "vieille ville", Cathedral of St Pierre,Hotel de Ville , rue des Granges)-Overnight at Montreux
Day 2: Montreux- Wengen(Visit caslte and promenade in the morning)-15:44 golden pass to Interlaken Overnight at Wengen.
Day 3: Schilthorn
Day 4- Jungfray stopping at Grindelwald and KS
Day 5- Ballenberg Open Air Museum or Bern
Day 6- Wengen- Mt Rigi and Katlaovernight at Luzern)
Day 7- Lucerne- Zurich(11:45am flight)
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Jul 14th, 2013, 03:26 AM
  #7
 
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I just came from the Berner Oberland and I am totally confused by some of your itinerary. You say Da3 is for the Schilthorn; believe me, you are NOT going to find enough to do for an entire day at the Schilthorn. You can easily go over to Murren from Wengen, tske the cablway up to the top and be back in a half day.

I wouldn't even bother with stopping at Grindelwald other than to change trains. And if you want to see bern why not stop off on the way from Wwengen to Lucern; IMO taking a day trip there from Wengen and then going back in the same direction more or less to get to Lucern makes no sense but to each their own.
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Jul 14th, 2013, 04:19 AM
  #8
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Hi Dukey1

During the schilthorn trip we will be visiting murren and the falls as well. Half day packed with activities will give us other half to relax at wengen!

Not possible to do bern otw to luzern as we are thinking of doing wengen-ballenberg-luzern. Dont think there will be enough time to squeeze bern the same day. Unless if it rains on that day then we will skip ballenberg and do bern. Makes sense?
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Jul 14th, 2013, 04:23 AM
  #9
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Is there anything else we could combine on schilthorn day?

We are not a museum fans so what's better ballenberg or bern? Lol I am laughing at my own question as at first it was bern vs geneva! Sorry just that in so little time we want to make sure we atleast see the cream of Switzerland.
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Jul 14th, 2013, 08:01 AM
  #10
 
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Have you read about Ballenberg? It's an outdoor park, with houses in the native style of each of the cantons. It's a snapshot of historical Switzerland. There are mini-museums and enactors demonstrating historic crafts like cheese-making. Here's a link: http://ballenberg.ch/en/Welcome

Bern is a pretty small city, on a river. Totally different thing.

I was not enamored of Geneva but the north side of Lake Geneva is beautiful, lots of vineyards.
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