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New itinerary - Switzerland, Germany, Scotland, tips welcome

New itinerary - Switzerland, Germany, Scotland, tips welcome

Old Jan 13th, 2018, 10:31 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Jan 2018
Posts: 18
New itinerary - Switzerland, Germany, Scotland, tips welcome

Hi all,

I have now (somewhat) firmed up my itinerary for an 18 day Switzerland, Germany and Scotland trip. See below. Anything in bold is a must do for me, anything else is flexible if you recommend somewhere closer or better, a nice restaurant etc. Some other things to note - I'm travelling with my 64 yo mother, she is relatively fit but we'd rather not do any massive hikes (1 hour easy walking trips are fine). We also don't want to ski or visit museums (unless they are absolutely mind blowing and you can convince us otherwise!).

Thank you in advance lovely people, I'm beyond excited!!!

18 May: Fly from Sydney Australia to Zurich, Switzerland.
19 May: Land in Zurich. Planning on checking into hotel, then spending the afternoon (4.30pm onwards) on a boat ride and old town Zurich.
7.30pm: Zeughauskeller for dinner (best authentic Swiss restaurant in Zurich according to google)? We want straight up traditional Swiss food

Sun 20 May 8.35am: Train from Zurich to Lucerne
Remainder of Sun 20 May from 10.30am: Go to Mt Pilatus for full day if weather is good, if not look around town for the day and do Pilatus as soon as weather is clear.
Mon 21 May: Lucerne (open to suggestions)
Tues 22 May: Lucerne for the day then train from Lucerne to Lauterbrunnen around 9.30pm. OR Wed 23rd 8am trip arr 10.25am Lauterbrunnen (pending how tired we are)

Wed 23 May: Lauterbrunnen / Interlaken / Murren / Gimmelwald
Thu 24 May: Lauterbrunnen Jungfrau
Fri 25 May: Lauterbrunnen to Bern,spend day in Bern (swim in river, will we freeze our tushies off or do people swim in May? then old town Bern)
Sat 26: Bern to Zurich, potential half day trip to Rhine falls (doubtful if we will have time) then fly to Fussen
Sun 27th: Neuschwanstein for half day, then ?? in Fussen
Mon 28th, Tues 29th, Wed 30th: Germany... open to suggestions. Munich is 2 hours by train and then to Berlin is 4.5 hours...
Wed 30th at night: Arrive Edinburgh via air
Thur 31st: Day trip to Lochness, castles etc
Fri 1st: 52 min train from Edinburgh to Cupar. Morning/lunch in Edinburgh? Things to do?
Sat 2nd: Wedding
Sun 3rd: Early morning Cupar to Edinburgh to explore ??
Mon 4th: Depart to Australia
alexandra772 is offline  
Old Jan 13th, 2018, 11:24 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 7,902
Hi alexandra772,

You actually cannot fly to Füssen -- there is no airport there -- unless you have a helicopter. You'd probably be flying into Munich, and that will be slower and much more hassle than the train. To fly, you'd have to get from Zürich to the airport, then wait 90 minutes, then fly, then get your luggage at Munich. Then, the train from the Munich airport to Füssen takes about 3h. So altogether, flying will take you about 6h.

The train trip from Zürich to Füssen takes only 4h49, with one change at Buchloe (a very, very small station). You could leave Zürich at 09.09 and arrive in Füssen at 13.58. The same schedule runs leaving Zürich at 13.09 and arriving in Füssen at 17.55.

With your extra days, you may just want to base yourself in Munich and make Füssen/Neuschwanstein a day-trip from there. You could spend your extra days exploring the city of Munich or taking day-trips out to Garmisch and Mittenwald and Linderhof and Oberammergau, etc.

BTW, if you can't make the umlaut (ü), you need to add an "e" or else you'll be misspelling the name. So it is either Füssen or Fuessen. That will help as you use the German rail site and google searches, etc.

Have fun as you plan!

swandav2000 is online now  
Old Jan 13th, 2018, 11:51 PM
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 22,979
Some observations:

“best authentic Swiss restaurant in Zurich”??? Switzerland has many regions, and each has its own traditional cuisine. I find it difficutl to believe that ANY one restaurant can legitimately claim to be the “best authentic Swiss restaurant” in Zurich or anywhere else – and if the restaurant itself makes that claim, I’d steer clear of it! If there are specific traditional Swiss foods that you specifically hope to taste, I think you would be better off searching for them.

“Lucerne to Lauterbrunnen around 9.30pm.” So you don’t want to actually see the scenery? Personally, I’d want to make sure to reach your hotel before sunset. JMO. You can get sunset data here:

Also, it isn’t clear to me that you are planning time for your transportation reasonably. Whenever you change locations, you need to plan not only for the actual time to go from place to place, but also for getting to/from your lodging, checking in/out, packing/unpacking, getting lost/oriented, etc.

Why are you trying to visit Interlaken? Or Gimmelwald? I’m very confused about what, exactly, you want to do in the Bernese Oberland.

And at this point, I’m going to stop looking at your specific plans….

If you don’t already have them, I strongly recommend that you get some good guidebooks, perhaps the Rough Guide or Michelin Green. Or at least consult them at your local library.

Good luck!
kja is offline  
Old Jan 14th, 2018, 05:58 AM
Join Date: Apr 2014
Posts: 504

It is nice that you are traveling with your mom.
I know you said things in bold are must do, but for me the beauty of Switzerland is in the mountains. If the weather is nice at the end of May, I would bypass Zurich and Lucern and go straight to Wengen.

From Bern, I would not backtrack to Zurich: there are direct flights from Bern to Munich on May 25th or 27th (not on the 26th) 1hr (check or your can take the train from Bern to Munich 5.5 hr. I liked spending at least one night in Füssen so I could get an early start on castles. From Munich you are very close to Salzburg, which I adore. Even if you are not a fan of Sound of Music, the Sound of Music bicycle tour was fantastic and relatively flat (one hill). The Salzkammergut out of Salzburg is very beautiful, especially the little villages of St Gilgen and Hallstatt. If you want to stay in Germany , I have not been but I heard that the Garmisch-Partenkirchen area close to Munich is gorgeous. I would not go to Berlin. The Bavaria area is truly exceptional (after all it inspired both the Nutcracker and Swan Lake). So you have many option, you just need to focus on what appeals to you.
ToujoursVoyager is offline  
Old Jan 14th, 2018, 06:31 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 16,040
I think May 19 might be a bit optimistic - we made the trip to Zurich from Perth a few times and all we could do when we arrived was get to our destination, buy groceries for breakfast and go to bed. I was in bed by 4:00 pm local time and slept for 13 hours!

It's what, a 22-24 hour flight from Sydney? And a 10 hour time difference?
Melnq8 is offline  
Old Jan 14th, 2018, 08:29 AM
Join Date: Mar 2013
Posts: 6,818
The train Lucerne dp 19.06 - Lauterbrunnen ar 21.25 isn't that bad. There will be daylight up to Lake Brienz. If you wnat daylight up to lauterbrunnen, leave Lucerne 1 hr earlier.
Aar River: the temperature will be around 15 degrees centigrade. But that's not the main problem: every year people die in the Aar river, because they underestimate the dangerous currents.
You may reach Fuessen (Neuschwanstein) dy train from Schaffhausen (Rheinfall). Journey time about 5 hrs, Schaffhasuen dp every hr from 11.43 until 16.43
neckervd is offline  
Old Jan 15th, 2018, 01:22 AM
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Posts: 18
Thank you to all that have replied so far. I think I'm going to swing a day trip to Salzburg too.
alexandra772 is offline  
Old Jan 15th, 2018, 05:00 AM
Join Date: Feb 2005
Posts: 1,320
On arrival on the 20th I would skip Zurich and head straight to Luzern. Zurich is "meh" from a tourist's point of view (I'd love to live there, though). And you're heading to Luzern anyway the next morning.

My favorite things to do in Luzern are the Picasso museum, Kunstmuseum, a stroll through the neighborhoods up to the watch towers, wander through the old town area, a lake cruise to one of the nearby towns, and visit the lakeside parks near the transportation museum. Last time I also visited the Festung Furigen, which is a concealed artilery installation from WW2/Cold War days which has since been retired; they now do tours on summer weekends, perhaps as early as May.
Edward2005 is offline  
Old Jan 15th, 2018, 05:23 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 17,461
Take a look at Mike's Bike Tours, out of Munich. They have a wonderful day trip to Neuschwanstein that we enjoyed. They take you via bus and you do a bike ride to Swan Lake. It is not difficult at all, and there were many people older than your mom and they all seemed to manage just fine After the bike ride we went to a restaurant for lunch, but it was nice as we were all able to sit at tables with our own traveling companions and order whatever we wanted, so not a typical tour type of meal. After that was the castle. You could hike up or pay a couple extra euro and ride the bus up. It was a full day, but a lot of fun. I was expecting DH to not be thrilled with it, but I was wrong

Salzburg is an easy trip from Munich as well.
mms is offline  
Old Jan 26th, 2018, 10:47 PM
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Join Date: Jan 2018
Posts: 18
*almost complete* Switzerland>Edinburgh itinerary

Hello again all, and thank you for the help so far!
I have almost completed my itinerary for Switzerland, Austria, Germany and Scotland in late May/early June.

Main question I have is; what's the easiest (i.e. least hassle) way to get from Lauterbrunnen to Munich? Ideally via train for beautiful scenery.
Secondly, do the church bells keep you awake in Lauterbrunnen, hopefully we'll be ok with ear plugs
And if you have any suggestions on things to do in the below places, please let me know. We like: easy walks, beautiful scenery, lovely food, great sites, not a fan of museums or churches. Castles ok for Edinburgh
And yes - I've read Rick Steve's tips, watched videos, read reviews etc.

Thanks!!DAYTIME STARTDETAILSLOCATIONSHOTELDay 1Flights - our trip begins! Sydney > ZurichN/ADay 2Arrive 2pm, dep 3.47pmCheck into Lucerne, eat din & get early nightLucerne, Switzerland
(4 nights, 3 full days)tbc
(2 nights)Day 39am (full day)Full day in Lucerne (Pilatus half day trip if weather good)Day 49am, leave bags at hotel (full day)Check out. Pilatus half day trip if weather good. Check into Villa anytime in afternoon (1 hr from Lucerne). Swim in pool, explore, glamorous dinner!Hotel Villa Honegg (1 night)Day 5Sunrise, check out by 12 (full day)Sunrise swim. Beautiful breakfast, explore mountain, make way back to Lucerne (1 hr). Check in, potential Pilatus trip if not available on previous days (be flexible)TBC Lucerne
(1 night)Day 6Check out, 8am train, arr 10.30amTake breakfast on train (?). Check in, lunch. Explore from 1pm; Jungfrau if weather ok, otherwise Lauterbrunnen falls, Wengen, Gimmelwald (flexible)Lauterbrunnen, Switzerland
(3 nights, 2.5 full days)Hotel Staubbach
(3 nights)Day 78.30am onwards (full day)Jungfrau if weather ok, otherwise falls, Murren, picnic etc (flexible depending on weather)Day 88.30am onwards (full day)Jungfrau if weather ok, otherwise falls, Murren, picnic etc (flexible)Day 9TBC (A.M.)Check out. Lauterbrunnen to Bern train, then Bern to Munich. Check into new hotel. Relax! This is a long day of trains.Munich & Fuessen, Germany + Salzburg, Austria
(4 nights, 3.5 full days)TBC Germany
(4 nights)Day 109am (full day)Day in Munich, activities TBCDay 118am (full day)Munich to Neuschwanstein Day tour (2 hours each way). Return Munich at night.Day 127am (full day)Salzburg day trip - Sound of Music tour (1.5 hours each way).Day 139amMajority of day in Munich. Fly to Edinburgh in late arvo/evening (tbc). Check into hotel.Edinburgh, Scotland
(2 nights, 1.5 full days)TBC Edinburgh
(2 nights)Day 149am (full day)Full day in Edinburgh, activities tbcDay 159am, then over to Cupar by 5pmEdinburgh to Cupar train (1 hr). Scottish dinner, drinks & games .Cupar, Scotland
(2 nights, 1.5 full days)n/a (2 nights)Day 1610amWake up, full Scottish brekkie, wedding 2pm - midnightDay 179amFull Scottish brekkie. Train back to Edinburgh (aim to get there by midday latest). Half day in Edinburgh (tbc)Edinburgh, Scotland
(1 night, 0.5 days)TBC Edinburgh
(1 night)Day 188.30amFlights home… let's be sadEdinburgh > Qatar > SydneyN/A
alexandra772 is offline  
Old Jan 27th, 2018, 06:14 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 16,040
My experience with church bells in Switzerland is that they start about 7 am and stop around 10 pm. They've never deprived me a of a good night's sleep.

Your itinerary is very difficult to read as you've not included paragraph breaks. Maybe try again?
Melnq8 is offline  
Old Jan 27th, 2018, 11:09 PM
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 22,979
NOTE: The OP has started another new thread:
Finalising Switzerland, Germany, Austria & Edinburgh!
kja is offline  
Old Jan 27th, 2018, 11:10 PM
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 22,979
NOTE: The OP has started another new thread:
Finalising Switzerland, Germany, Austria & Edinburgh!
kja is offline  
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