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Switzerland 11 nights in September -- seeking recs

Switzerland 11 nights in September -- seeking recs

May 1st, 2019, 05:20 PM
  #1  
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Switzerland 11 nights in September -- seeking recs

In September we are flying nonstop into Zurich and out of Lisbon for a total of 17 nights, and have drafted the following 11 nights for Switzerland; itís our first visit. Iím hoping for any feedback or recommendations.

We enjoy architecture, wandering neighborhoods, outdoor markets, history, cafes, people watching, art especially outdoors, concerts. Will also visit exceptional churches, museums, shopping, castles, etc, to a limit. Usually prefer cities over villages.

We plan to get a 15-day Swiss Travel Pass at $US 540 each. I have not done the math to estimate if a Ĺ fare card will be better, but expect to be on transportation every day for 12 days, and many days at museums at least for a brief stint.

Iíve made hotel reservations which all are cancelable. We typically book Airbnb apartments, but there arenít many choices unless I am just not searching in the right places. Any advice here? The room rates are all roughly $200/night Ė that wasnít by design, but it just worked out that way. Itís more than we usually spend, but given Switzerlandís reputation for high prices, it doesnít seem all that bad.

On the 12thday, we fly from Geneva to Porto around noon.


The Plan:

Friday morning arrive Zurich non-stop from USA.

3 nights in Zurich, Fri-Sat-Sun: Hotel Rossli (includes breakfast). This is the third draft Ė originally I planned 3 nights in Luzern then switched the plan to 3 nights in Basel. But I feel convinced that Zurich is right for us given that it provides a base for an easy day trip to Basel on Sat or Sun. Basel is a priority for us.
In Zurich: walking tour(s), visit neighborhoods like Zurich West, Langestrasse & Im Viadukt, museums like Kuntsthaus Zurich &, churches (Fraumunster), etc depending on weather.


3 nights in Wengen, Mon-Tues-Wed: Hotel Edelweiss south-facing balcony (includes breakfast)
Monday morning -train to Bernese Oberland. Explore Luzern en route. Golden Pass to Wengen. Plan on scenery, hikes, scenery, hikes, scenery.


3 nights in Bern, Thu-Fri-Sat: The Bristol Hotel (business room, no breakfast)
Walking tour, museums such as Klee & Kunstmuseum, maybe Historisches Museum tapestries, Einsteinhaus, Munster Stvinzenz. Saturday market at Munstergasse. Perhaps Thurn, Murten, Solothurn. Laundry at the train station.


2 nights in Lausanne, Sun-Mon: HŰtel des Voyageurs Boutique (includes breakfast)
Perhaps Olympic Museum or Chateau de Chillon, Montreux, Frieborg, Ouchy.


Tuesday Ė train to Geneva airport to 6 nights in Portugal (happy for recs there too; will post on Portugal board).


So, Fordrites, Iíd love any feedback on any of the above, along with your favorite cafes, bars, etc. By dinner time on vacation we are usually beat from all the walking, so we prefer smaller, casual, unpretentious placesÖ the more local, the better.

Thank you!
GinnyJo is offline  
May 1st, 2019, 05:29 PM
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Usually prefer cities over villages.

Wengen is a village. A beautiful village.

I never, ever suggest that visitors choose Interlaken over Wengen, but given that you like cities over villages, I might make an exception for you.

As for passes, you really do need to do the math.

For instance, short jaunts within cities (and museums) aren't as expensive as mountain excursions (Jungfrau, Schilthorn), so you need to crunch the numbers to see what works best based on what you hope to see and do.

Consider full board at your hotel - might work well for you.

Last edited by Melnq8; May 1st, 2019 at 05:40 PM.
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May 1st, 2019, 06:06 PM
  #3  
kja
 
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If Basel is a priority, note that it has much more than can be seen in a single day trip.

In Wengen, the Hotel Edelweiss is, IMO, a mixed bag: It's more affordable than many hotels in Wengen, and the staff could not have been nicer when I was there, but the views from rooms are not necessarily all that good. I could only admire the view if I stepped onto the balcony, and my neighbors either (a) blocked my view with their laundry or actually looked into my room from their balcony! MG:

IMO, two days is not much for the Bernese Oberland.

The Historisches Museum tapestries in Bern are stunning!

Hope that helps!
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May 1st, 2019, 06:40 PM
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Thanks, Melnq8. I realize that Wengen in a village and I appreciate your making an exception for me, but I can't imagine going to Switzerland without a visit there. The vast majority of our time will be city-based so we'll looking forward to a bit of down-time in Wengen. "Full board" is breakfast and dinner? I did book dinner at Hotel Edelweiss for our first night. Didn't think of it for our other hotels but thanks for the suggestion.
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May 1st, 2019, 06:42 PM
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Thanks, kja. If we like Basel, we will plan to return when we have more time to spend, as part of exploring the Rhine. This at least give us a feel for it. Yikes, re Edelweiss -- any other suggestions? With paying specifically a south-facing balcony, I certainly expect a good view. And thanks for the thumbs up on the tapestries; I was hooked after visiting the Cluny in Paris.
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May 1st, 2019, 07:20 PM
  #6  
kja
 
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Originally Posted by GinnyJo View Post
Yikes, re Edelweiss -- any other suggestions? With paying specifically a south-facing balcony, I certainly expect a good view. And thanks for the thumbs up on the tapestries; I was hooked after visiting the Cluny in Paris.
My experience of the Edelweiss was strongly influenced by my neighbors, and for various reasons, I chose not to complain. If your neighbors don't behave with consideration, you might want to discuss it with management.

Ah, the Cluny!

Hoping you have a wonderful experience!
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May 2nd, 2019, 08:30 AM
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Monday: a somewhat decent visit of Lucerne and surroundings will take a full day. And if you are into paintings: there are some really good Picassos to see at the Rosengart Collection (Rosengart was a friend of Picasso). So you will reach Wengen rather late.
It's much esier to visit Fribourg from Berne than from Lausanne.
Murten, Neuchatel, Solothurn: if the weather is fine, take the Murten - Ntel - Biel/Bienne - Solothurn boat at least for a short leg.
All about Swiss watchmaking can be seen in the museum at La Chaux de Fonds, 30 min by train (scenic line) from Neuchatel.
neckervd is offline  
May 2nd, 2019, 10:31 AM
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Just about trains - lots of info on Swiss trains - www.swisstravelsystem.com; www.sbb.ch; www.budgeteuropetravel.com; www.ricksteves.com. Pass sounds like a no-brainer with that much travel - good on lake boats and city transports too.
PalenQ is offline  
May 2nd, 2019, 03:18 PM
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there are a few apartments available in this building; looks to be twice as far from the train station as the Hotel Edelweiss. Price for the apartment is a bit less, and it includes a washer and dryer which would be a big plus. Any feedback on this apartment, building or location? (It's a 2-bedroom, but we only need one; however, I wasn't so keen on the 1-bedroom that's available for our dates)
https://www.e-domizil.com/vacation-h...-switzerland/#
GinnyJo is offline  
May 2nd, 2019, 03:19 PM
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Thanks for the tips, neckervd; I will definitely look into them.
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May 2nd, 2019, 04:22 PM
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I realize that Wengen in a village and I appreciate your making an exception for me, but I can't imagine going to Switzerland without a visit there.

Good on you, good choice! If a hotel appeals, I can recommend the Hotel Bellevue. All the better if you can score their corner room with fabulous views. Their full board (breakfast and dinner) was wonderful, and this from a rather picky eater.

Last edited by Melnq8; May 2nd, 2019 at 04:30 PM.
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May 2nd, 2019, 04:24 PM
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That apartment looks lovely. I'll take a look at location and get back to you.

Last edited by Melnq8; May 2nd, 2019 at 04:30 PM.
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May 3rd, 2019, 01:21 AM
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The former Hotel Mittaghorn, transformed into holiday flats in 2008, is about 100 ft below Wengen railway station (5 min on foot).
neckervd is offline  
May 3rd, 2019, 02:12 AM
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Looks like it is just down from the Alpenrose, nice location. Bit of an uphill walk to station in morning, good for working off those breakfasts.
Adelaidean is offline  
May 3rd, 2019, 11:30 AM
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they do have electric baggage carts in Wengen to take baggage from station to hotels? They did when I last visited but that was in the Paleontonic Age. The main thing I'd look for is a room with a frontal view of the high Alps.
PalenQ is offline  
May 3rd, 2019, 12:33 PM
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Originally Posted by Melnq8 View Post
Their full board (breakfast and dinner) was wonderful, and this from a rather picky eater.
Just FYI, breakfast and dinner is half board.
Full board is breakfast, lunch and dinner.
All inclusive is full board + drinks and snacks all day/night.

MyriamC is offline  
May 3rd, 2019, 05:15 PM
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My bad. It should be called 2/3 board
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May 5th, 2019, 01:59 PM
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I have gotten recent advice (not on this thread) that I add another night in Wengen, taking away from Bern. Thinking is that if weather around Wengen is bad for the 2 days I had planned being there, I'll be very sorry to leave if it breaks on the 3rd day. And if Wengen weather is bad, I can go to Thun or Bern for a day trip. Thoughts on that?

And after pouring over apartment listings, we have decided to stick with the Hotel Edelweiss in Wengen (for now at least).
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May 5th, 2019, 02:06 PM
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Seems like you got a neat plan for Bern for 3 days - though I and most would say the beauty of Switzerland lies elsewhere. Bern to me is neat for a day or so but you have a good plan for the town so I'd leave it alone. What would you do with extra day in Wengen say weather is fine all the time?
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May 5th, 2019, 02:15 PM
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We had 8 nights in Wengen and considered Bern as a rainy day option. Didn’t get there, had plenty to do, even when weather was less than ideal (opted for lake cruise and Thun instead).
We head back next month and again will only scratch the surface with 4 nights Wengen, 4 nights Thun.
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