Help! So confused with transportation

Apr 8th, 2017, 02:15 PM
  #1  
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Join Date: Feb 2014
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Help! So confused with transportation

Help! I am getting so confused with options. I am really trying to do my best to research whether individual trips are more or less expensive than a Swiss pass or 1/2 fare pass, but the more I research, it seems the harder it is because I keep reading conflicting information about different ways to get to certain locations. Plus, when I try to research tickets at SBB, a place like Mannlichen has several options (like Mannlichen GGM, Mannlichen LWM, Mannlichen Parkplatz, Grindelwald Mannlichen Bahn) and to be honest, I have no idea which one to choose. If anyone could help me, I would be forever grateful.

This is our rough itinerary, based on some wonderful suggestions you all have already given me (most of my questions are from Day 1- Day 3, and if anyone can point out if I am misunderstanding anything transportation-wise, I would appreciate it more than anything!):

Day 1:
-Arrive in Zurich from JFK on Lufthansa flight by 8:30 am (if running on time). If possible (not sure if I can do this based on the time that we get there or the fact that I’m not taking SwissAir), I would like to send luggage ahead to Lauterbrunnen.

-Take train from Zurich to Lauterbrunnen, but depending on how tired we are and if we can send luggage forward, we would either stop in Bern or Luzern to spend a few hours before moving onto our base in Lauterbrunnen (I know it’s two entirely different routes, but I figure either would be nice to spend a half a day or so at)

-Arrive in Lauterbrunnen early evening, pick up luggage and continue onto lodgings.

Day 2:
(I think I could do this in one day because it seems like this area is kind of connected):

-Trip from Lauterbrunnen to Piz Gloria (do I take the Stechelberg aerial cableway, the Murren funicular, or both to get up there?)

-I would like to get down from Piz Gloria to Allmendhubel so we can then either hike the Panoramic or North Face Trail down to Murren. Is that possible?

-Relax/eat in Murren; train back down to Lauterbrunnen.

Day 3:

-Lauterbrunnen to Klein Scheidegg (from the map provided on their website, it looks like I take some sort of train/cable car up there if I’m coming from the Wengen side and not the Grindelwald side, does that sound correct?)

-Hike from Klein Scheidegg down to Mannlichen via Panorama Trail; have a break/snack in Mannlichen; also take Royal Trail hike and back to Mannlichen; take Mannlichen cable car down to Wengen;

-Hang out in Wengen for a bit; then I guess there’s a train down to Lauterbrunnen?

Day 4:

-Spend Day on Lake Thun, Visit Thun, and maybe Spiez and/or Oberhofen (depending on how much time it takes). I will most likely take train from Lauterbrunnen to Interlaken, then use Boat to get to sights and Thun, then take train from Thun to Lauterbrunnen because it will give me more sight-seeing time.

Day 5:
Free Day- Maybe head to one of the villages we haven’t seen; just relax in Lauterbrunnen or do something spontaneous like spend time on the shore area of Bonigen or visit First, etc. If we're feeling really ambitious, maybe we'll do a day trip to Luzern if we didn't do it earlier. (ps- yes, I know we're missing Jungfraujoch but we're okay with that lol; also, we will obviously fit in Trummelbach at some point).

Day 6:
Early AM train from Lauterbrunnen to Milan for next portion of our trip.

In addition to the questions sprinkled throughout my itinerary, based on what I have planned, would a Swiss Pass or 1/2 Fare Pass be advisable for my husband and I? I obviously don’t expect anyone to do the actual calculations and comparisons for me, but I wasn’t sure if anyone who had a similar itinerary could offer advice based on their experiences.

Thank you SO much!
sbrosnan813 is offline  
Apr 8th, 2017, 02:34 PM
  #2  
 
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 600
Usually the half fare pass is the most cost effective. It gives you what it says half the full fare on the trains and lake steamers all over Switzerland and half fare on the local buses in the towns. The Swiss Travel Pass gives you free travel to any inhabited place in Switzerland. It will take you to Murren for example but will only give you a 50% discount on the fares above these places. Most cable cars mountain railways and gondolas. EXCEPT the trip to Jungfraujoch, here you can travel to Wengen/Grindelwald for free tthen you get a 25% discount on the rest of the journey. If you are thinking of doing this trip you buy your tickets in Interlaken and just show the ticket clerk your pass (they do the rest)

There are some moutain trains and cable cars included in the Swiss Transport Pass these include Mount Pilatus and Rigi near |Lucerne and the Schynigge Platte near Interlaken.
tipsygus is offline  
Apr 8th, 2017, 02:51 PM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
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Re: Day 2 -

You can make a circuit - going up one way and coming down the other.

You can take the funicular to Grutschalp and the connecting train to Murren from Lauterbrunnen. From the train station in Murren, it is a short walk to the cable car to the Schilthorn (Piz Gloria). Once you come down from the Schilthorn, you can continue via cable car to Gimmelwald and Stechelberg (or hike). From Stechelberg you can walk back to Lauterbrunnen (several miles) or take a connecting bus.

Alternatively, you can walk from Grutschalp (top of funicular) to Murren and continue from there - spectacular, easy walk.

Completely doable in one day, depending on how many sections you choose to walk.

Allmendhubel is a separate funicular from Murren. You can reach it easily on foot from either the Murren train station or from the cable car to/from Stechelberg/Gimmelwald/Schilthorn.

The North Face walk is beautiful. Yes, you can easily walk it back to Murren.

Day 3 -

Kleine Scheidegg is accessible from both Grindelwald and Wengen via train. It's worthwhile to go up one way and return the other.

All trains to the Jungfraujoch depart from Kleine Scheidegg. Kleine Scheidegg can be reached via Interlaken - Zweilütschinen - Lauterbrunnen - Wengen, or via Interlaken - Zweilütschinen - Grindelwald.

I'm not familiar with the Royal trail hike, but yes, hiking from Kleine Scheidegg to the Mannlichen via the Panorama Trail is a popular option.

Yes, there's a train from Wengen back to Lauterbrunnen.
Melnq8 is offline  
Apr 8th, 2017, 02:56 PM
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I'd suggest comparing the 8 day Swiss Travel Pass to the 1/2 fare card. Only way to do this is actually crunch the numbers based on exactly what you plan to do.

As the Swiss Travel Pass only gives a partial reduction on some trips (as mentioned by tipsy), the 1/2 fare card could well be the better bet.
Melnq8 is offline  
Apr 8th, 2017, 03:03 PM
  #5  
 
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Great info from typsy and melnq8 -

I'd also check out the Jungfraubahn Pass and Berner Oberland Pass too -may be better than a Swiss Pass and get a discounted fare to Milan at www.sbb.ch or www.trenitalia.com. Otherwise the Swiss Tranfser Ticket plus half-off Half-fare Card only with it or a pass may be your ticket to ride - gives you one trip from any airport to any place in Switzerland -may not be by train all- and then a ticket out to any border station or airport - like Brig or Domodossola for Italy.
anyway for lots of info on Swiss trains and such check www.swisstravelsystem.com; www.budgeteuropetravel.com and www.ricksteves.com.
PalenQ is offline  
Apr 8th, 2017, 03:29 PM
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timely for us as we are considering a trip to Switzerland this summer, so the links and information are very useful - thanks.
annhig is offline  
Apr 8th, 2017, 03:47 PM
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Yea annhig! You're in for a treat!
Melnq8 is offline  
Apr 8th, 2017, 06:19 PM
  #8  
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Tipsy, MelnQ8, PalenQ- Thank you SO much for clarifying all of this for me- my head was starting to get into vacation-planning overload! I ended up looking at the half-fare options and the BO Regional Pass and comparing the two, and it seems like the 6 day BO pass (with the discounted Italian trains) seems to be the best bet! Looking at the map of what the BO pass covers, it would even cover my train to Brig or Thun (which I would then take the train into Milan), it would cover Luzern if I wanted to do a daytrip, and it would also cover going from Bern to Lauterbrunnen. Plus, it would cover almost all of the places I wanted to stop at for free (it looks like only the Schilthorn and Kleine Scheidegg would be half-price). The only thing that would cost full price is getting from Zurich to Bern (56 for each of us- don’t think I can get any discount on that, but that’s ok).

Also, thank you MlnQ8 for all of the clarifications about my Day 2 and 3. That definitely made it easier for my brain to process (and the logistics actually don’t seem overwhelming anymore)!

Annhig- We are going to be there the last week of June, and then continuing onto Italy for 2.5 weeks. It’s my first time to Europe (my husband has been there before so he’s giving me first choice with where we go lol), but I am just so excited! Apparently Switzerland is gorgeous in the summer (well it’s probably gorgeous any time of the year lol). Have fun planning- the people on these forums have been lifesavers!!!
sbrosnan813 is offline  
Apr 9th, 2017, 04:37 AM
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sbrosnan - you don't need to tell me about how helpful the people here are - Mel's advice definitely saved our bacon when we were in NZ a few years ago, so I will pay especial attention to what she says about Switzerland. As we live in the UK we have had the opportunity to visit Switzerland a few times, but usually in the winter to ski including the 2 weeks we once spent in Wengen in the Swiss equivalent of Fawlty Towers. So visiting in the summer will be a new experience. It particularly appeals as DH has some health problems which make walking uphill quite difficult so being able to use trains and cable cars to get up the mountains and then walk down will be ideal.

We are not entirely sure when we'll be going but probably at the same time as you!
annhig is offline  
Apr 9th, 2017, 07:54 AM
  #10  
 
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sbronsnan813 -

Just in case you've not run across a detailed map of the BO yet, I've posted a few links. I find things make more sense when I can look as I plan:

http://www.mappery.com/map-of/Jungfr...ion-summer-map

http://www.mappery.com/map-of/Schilt...mmer-Trail-Map

http://www.mappery.com/map-of/Jungfrau-Map

Good luck with your planning.
Melnq8 is offline  
Apr 9th, 2017, 08:00 AM
  #11  
 
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Okay, I found the Royal Walk. I've actually walked it, just didn't know it was called the Royal Walk.

Lots of good details here if you haven't found this already:

https://www.tripadvisor.com/Attracti...n_of_Bern.html
Melnq8 is offline  
Apr 9th, 2017, 08:01 AM
  #12  
 
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And thank you annhig - you're very kind!
Melnq8 is offline  
Apr 9th, 2017, 02:44 PM
  #13  
 
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no, Mel - thank you!
annhig is offline  
Apr 9th, 2017, 03:10 PM
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It particularly appeals as DH has some health problems which make walking uphill quite difficult so being able to use trains and cable cars to get up the mountains and then walk down will be ideal.>

If going to Kleine Scheidegg there is a wonderful slowly descending wide foot path - even mountain bikes go over it -to Wengen-can hop on train at some places en route if tired.

And of course the famous easy few-mile Ridge Walk The Mannlichen to Kl Scheidegg -slowly descends - take gondola from Grindelwald or Wengen to The Mannlichen. Outstanding views of both the Lauterbrunnen and Grindelwald valleys and a frontal view of the Jungfrau Massif in all it glory - and places to sit down too.
PalenQ is offline  
Apr 11th, 2017, 10:11 AM
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If going to Kleine Scheidegg there is a wonderful slowly descending wide foot path - even mountain bikes go over it -to Wengen-can hop on train at some places en route if tired.>>

lol, Pal, I think I skied down there in another life!
annhig is offline  
Apr 11th, 2017, 12:53 PM
  #16  
 
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Yes it probably is a popular ski path in winter- cross-country skiing.
PalenQ is offline  
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