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switzerland 7 days itinerary - first draft - please critique

switzerland 7 days itinerary - first draft - please critique

Old Feb 5th, 2013, 08:38 AM
  #1  
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switzerland 7 days itinerary - first draft - please critique

Our family with 18 year old son will be in Switzerland in late May for 7 days/7 nights. I’m planning to use trains.
I know it looks like a lot of changing of hotels, but don’t see how to make it work without long trips everyday. Any suggestion/critique/recommendation are very welcome!
1. arrive in Zurich 10AM, day in Zurich, overnight in Zurich near train station.
2. Train to Lucerne, maybe leave luggage in the train station, spend a day, then leave for Interlaken, overnight in Interlaken. Spend there next 2 nights.
3. Spend next 2 days near Interlaken depends on weather go to Jungfrau and another day to Bern.
4. Spend next 3 days near Lauzanne. Stay in one hotel in Lauzanne/Montraux/Vevey/. Visit all those places and Gruever, not sure about Geneva. On last day leave for Zurich late at night. Overnight in Zurich near airport.
Thanks a lot,
Mariya
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Old Feb 5th, 2013, 09:34 AM
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A few thoughts to consider...
-It appears that you are flying in and out of Zurich, without actually spending any time there. Perhaps fly through Geneva or some other location where you plan to spend time to cut down on moving around. Or otherwise, cut out Lucerne and enjoy a full day in Zurich.
- Do you plan on doing any hiking in the Interlaken area? I strongly suggest you do... its the best way to really experience the mountains. Need not be anything rugged... there are some nice long walks. But to fit in time in the mountains, I'd suggest another night in the area. I doubt you will want to leave the glorious mountains to spend a day in Bern.
- Keep in mind that every time you move to a new city, you will lose at least half a day in travel, hotel checkin/out, etc. So you may not have as much time in each place as you think.
- Three nights in Lausanne, with visits to Montreux and Vevey should work.
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Old Feb 5th, 2013, 09:41 AM
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Hi mariya,

If you do fly out of Zürich, then I would say to skip it when you arrive. That day is lost anyway, due to jet lag normally and all the travel time, so simply press on to the Interlaken area. You can see Zürich on the evening before you depart.

I'm not certain I understand your itinerary. You will spend two days in Interlaken and then two more days near Interlaken? Otherwise, I only see 6 days -- one in Zürich, two in Interlaken, and three in Lausanne.

Btw, I would prefer to stay in Montreux for your time at Lake Geneva -- it's smaller than Lausanne and closer to Chillon and the trip to Gruyeres.

Have fun as you plan!

s
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Old Feb 5th, 2013, 09:52 AM
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Why not bike ride from Zurich to Geneva and open jaw the flights.

http://www.mybikeguide.co.uk/Swiss_Guide.php

you will see more of the country, get some exercise and fine food.
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Old Feb 5th, 2013, 09:59 AM
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I would bag Zurich and hed straight to Lucern to spend a couple of night there, then move on to someplace near Interlaken in the mountains (no need to stay both in and near Interlaken). And why not return from Geneva - to avoid a trip back to Zurich (primarily a business city).
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Old Feb 5th, 2013, 10:13 AM
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since you are taking a lot of trains a lot of time as well as perhaps lake boats - lovely rides on Lake Lucerne or lakes Thun and Brienz, lakes bookending Interlaken - strongly consider a 8-consecutive-day Swiss Pass - since you are on the move everyday and except for the possible Jungfraujoch train a Swiss Pass would cover virtually everything that moves in Switzerland - city trams and buses as well as virtaully all trains and postal buses and 50% off lifts to mountain tops - even only being their 7 days the 8-consecutive-day pass may be the most cost effective as per day it is much cheaper than a flexipass and will cover everything you have planned just about from get there to get to. Just hop on anything - no ticket lines to queue in, etc.
For lots of great info on Swiss trains, passes, etc. I always spotlight these superb sources - www.swisstravelsystem.com; http://www.budgeteuropetravel.com/id3.html and www.ricksteves.com.

a Saverpass is for two or more folks traveling together on one pass - but you do not need all three folks on board to have it be valid - so if say your son wants to take the pass and do something whilst you stay put he can and vice versa. Saverpasses are about a 15% or so saving p.p. over solo passes - but since your son in under 26 he could get a Youthpass if he wants his own pass.
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Old Feb 5th, 2013, 10:23 AM
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Thanks so much for responses so far and so quick! Flight from Geneva was way more expensive, so my flights are to and from Zurich.
Please continue with ideas!
I was thinking to maybe to go from Interlaken to Lucerne, but it's 2 hours train ride, and 1 hour from Zurich. Hmm.. but this is an option to go streight to Interlaken from Zurich airport...There is no direct train though... Maybe very tiring on first day after long flight. and spend 3 nights there and 3 nights in Monteux and last night before flight in Zurich
Mariya
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Old Feb 5th, 2013, 11:14 AM
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No direct train from the Zurich Airport to Interlaken but there is only one change of train - usually in Bern and that is a snap - about 2 hours airport to Interlaken-Ost via Bern. Bern is a very manageable station where things are very well marked, etc.
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Old Feb 5th, 2013, 12:41 PM
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I would stay in Vevey. It is situated between Lausanne and Montreux and easiest to get to and from the train station of the three.
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Old Feb 15th, 2013, 12:22 PM
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Ok, revised itinerary:

1 day – arrival 10am to Zurich, train to Luzerne (1 hour), rest of the day and night in Luzerne

2 day - Mt. Pilatus in the morning, afternoon train (2 hours) to Interlaken Ost via Brunig pass, night in Interlaken Ost

3 day – depends on the weather Jungfrau or Bern (train 1 hour), night in Interlaken

4 days – depends on the weather and day 3 Jungfrau or Bern, train to Montreux from Interlaken or if it will be day in Bern (leave luggage in Bern train station, tour Bern) and take train from Bern to Montreux via Gstaad (3+ hours from Interlaken or Bern). Night in Montreux/Vevey

5,6 day – Castle, Geneva, Gruever, Lauzane, nights in in Montreux/Vevey.

7 day – whatever is left from days 5,6 in the morning, train to Zurich in the afternoon (3 hours), walk around old town in Zurich in the evening.

8 day – 10am flight home.

I know I’m almost missing Zurich and I will not be able to fit all 4 places for days 5-7, but can’t do everything, also 2 mountains tours (Pilatus and Jungfrau) are very close to each other…

Please let me know what do you think
Thanks,
Mariya
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Old Feb 16th, 2013, 09:03 AM
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An 8-consecutive-day Swiss Pass would be great since you are moving about everyday, and including train to the Zurich Airport on the final day.
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Old Feb 16th, 2013, 10:47 AM
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I liked Montreux over Vevey. Spent a couple of nights there and took the train over to Vevey one day. Just thought it was way more charming.
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Old Feb 16th, 2013, 10:48 AM
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"Took the train over one day".... And the boat back.
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Old Feb 16th, 2013, 12:23 PM
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Zurich is a nice place to visit but you don't have time. If your flight arrives early, and you have been able to sleep on the train, you might consider going to Luzern via Chur and Andermatt; it is a very scenic ride, but check to see how long it takes. You can buy the makings of a picnic in the train station grocery and eat on the train. For your two days in Luzern, be sure to take a boat ride (covered with your rail pass and a scenic way to get to Pilatus; you take a cogwheel train up, and a ski lift down, which puts you right in town where you can get a local bus.

I would skip Interlaken and find a place to stay in Lauterbrunnen or one of the mountain villages above it. That way you are right in the midst of the great scenery. If you are amenable to hostels, consider http://www.mountainhostel.com/ right up in the mountains.

I would skip Bern; it is the seat of government and full of bureaucrats, and is not in a scenic area of Switzerland. Rather, route yourselves through Spiez, Zweissimeann, Gstadt, and Montreaux, or further. I like all three of the towns listed in that area. Vevey is smaller, and a local bus ticket will get you from there to Chillon and back.

I would skip Geneva on such a short trip, but it would be convenient if you could fly into Zurich and home from Geneva using the multiple destination option on your booking web site. I'm not sure how best to get back to Zurich; it depends on the time of your flight and the time of the train ride. http://www.sbb.ch/en/index.htm enables you to look at how long all the routes take. I'd consider using the same route back, as I really like riding through the mountains.
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Old Feb 20th, 2013, 10:38 AM
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Scenic Swiss Trains in a Nutshell
http://www.fodors.com/community/.../...-a-nutshell.cf... - rail links at Tirano, Italy and St Moritz - Majola Pass bus to Lake ...

some older things I once posted could be of interest
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