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Need advice on trip to Swiss and Italy - First timer (10 day trip)

Need advice on trip to Swiss and Italy - First timer (10 day trip)

Mar 16th, 2011, 03:37 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Mar 2011
Posts: 23
Need advice on trip to Swiss and Italy - First timer (10 day trip)

I need travel advice for family of 3 (2 adults and 2 year old kid) to Swiss and Italy. I am looking at flying to Zurich from US (Zurich seems cheaper) and fly back to US from Zurich. We are not in to museum's but would love to visit the places that has history to it. Would love to visit places that has great architectures, old churches, old bridges and anything that is old . So far i have selected the following places in Italy - Rome, Pisa, Venice and Swiss - Lucerne and Zurich.

Here is the itinerary we are thinking of

Day 1 - Reach Zurich and catch overnight train to Rome
Day 2 - Rome
Day 3 - Rome
Day 4 - Rome
Day 5 - Rome to Pisa (spend time just for the leaning tower) and travel to Venice
Day 6 - Venice
Day 7 - Venice and take night train to Lucerne
Day 8 - Lucerne
Day 9 - Lucerne and take the train to Zurich in the evening
Day 10 - Zurich and catch the flight from Zurich to US in the evening

Please advice if this is manageable, having a2 year old is bit challenging but we were able to manage before. Is there any other place that i can visit instead of Lucerne in Swiss that travelers find interesting in terms of architecture (old buildings, bridges, history, etc).
Murky1980 is offline  
Mar 16th, 2011, 03:44 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 16,519
That makes no sense at all. Fly into Rome. Have you looked at the cost and time of the nite train--and with a toddler.

And, Pisa on the way to Venice---you have no idea about times. It makes no sense.
bobthenavigator is offline  
Mar 16th, 2011, 04:24 PM
Join Date: Jul 2003
Posts: 11,334
Since you are flying into and out of Zurich, why not spend the bulk of your time in Switzerland! Lucerne, Zurich, Basel, Bern, Interlaken... there is much to see in Switzerland. Rome is quite a long distance from Zurich!
simpsonc510 is offline  
Mar 16th, 2011, 04:56 PM
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 57,890
If you want to see rome fly there - and return from Zurich. (It shouldnt't cost more - open jaws are 1/2 the price of each RT ticket). Agree you are too spread out for so few days - if you want to see Venice you need to spend more time there - and not waste time trekking cross country to Pisa just to see a tower.

Lucern is a goo spot for Switzerland, since you can do a lot of trips from there - on the lake, up the mountains or into the small villages - as well as touring the town itself. I would limit your self to those 3 places - plenty for such a short trip - esp wth a toddler.
nytraveler is offline  
Mar 16th, 2011, 04:59 PM
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 65,611
"(Zurich seems cheaper)"

Okay -- but when you add the cost of two night trains that "bargain fare" is probably a false economy.

If you want to see Italy --fly in/out of Italy. And whether you do Switzerland and Italy or just Italy, book open jaw into one city and home for another.
janisj is offline  
Mar 16th, 2011, 05:00 PM
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Posts: 65,611
oops that should be >>home from another<<.
janisj is offline  
Mar 16th, 2011, 07:46 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Mar 2011
Posts: 23
thanks everyone for your valuable suggestions....open jaw is a good idea that i didn't think about and i did check the night trains from Zurich to Rome and it doesn't look like cheaper when i add to the airfare so flying directly to Rome is the best option with toddler.

Will it be ok if i fly to Rome and go up the way to Zurich?

Day 1, 2 and 3 - Rome
Day 4 - Leave Rome to Venice in the evening
Day 5, 6 - Venice
Day 7 - Venice to Lucern
Day 8,9 - Lucern
Day 10 - leave Lucern to Zurich in the morning and fly out of Zurich
Murky1980 is offline  
Mar 17th, 2011, 04:15 AM
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 78,322
There are no longer any overnight trains running between Switzerland and Italy - scrubbed a few years back. Check out these fab IMO sites for lots on trains in those countries - www.seat61.com; www.budgeteuropetravel.com; www.ricksteves.com.
PalenQ is offline  
Mar 18th, 2011, 01:11 PM
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Posts: 78,322
Try to do a lake boat on lovely Lake Luzern once in Lucerne - the loveliest of all Swiss lakes IMO - especially the fjord-like finger on its east side - so hop one of the frequent steamers for a relaxing and memorable experience once in Lucerne.
PalenQ is offline  
Mar 19th, 2011, 07:53 AM
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 78,322
a nice excursion by boat on Lake Lucerne leaves Lucerne's downtown to Vitzau, no more than an hour's float and then take the mountain train up to the summit of Mt Rigi, one of Switzerland's most famous mountain top outlooks, an awesome view over the spine of Switzerland with lots of ice-capped peaks, etc. Mark Twain famously wrote about his ascension of Rigi and the ubiquitous alp horns being played up there that annoyed him so - you will still see often leiderhosen-clad guys blowing on alp horns on this famous summit.

Anyway a great easy excursion by boat and mountain train from Lucerne.
PalenQ is offline  
Mar 19th, 2011, 09:10 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 92,562
I can't help with much of this, but wanted to say your new itinerary is MUCH better! Flying into Rome will really smooth things out. I love Switzerland but have always gone in and out of Geneva and know only the Lac Leman area.
suze is offline  
Mar 21st, 2011, 10:26 AM
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Posts: 78,322
Another very very popular excursion involving boats and a thrilling mountain train ride from Lucerne could go by boat to Alpnachstad, from where one of the world's most thrilling and steepest mountain railways ascends Mt Pilatus, Lucerne's famous mountain you can see from town. Then after putzing around on the summit you take one of the most thrilling aerial cable car rides back to to Krens (sp?), in suburban Lucerne with trolley buses back to the town center.
PalenQ is offline  
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