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Switzerland: Zermatt, St. Moritz, Glacier Express, Bernina Express

Switzerland: Zermatt, St. Moritz, Glacier Express, Bernina Express

Old Apr 18th, 2010, 01:14 PM
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Switzerland: Zermatt, St. Moritz, Glacier Express, Bernina Express

I have about two weeks in Switzerland, and am planning to spend two days in Lausanne, then take the train to Zermatt early in the morning, spend the rest of the day in Zermatt, and leave the next morning on the Glacier Express to St. Moritz. My plan is to spend a day or two in St. Moritz. I have a few days that I'm undecided on, then I'm heading to Interlaken for the rest of my trip.

I'll be traveling between April 23 and May 9. I'm a 32-year-old woman, traveling solo, and planning to stay in hostels as much as possible. I'm a huge adrenaline junkie and am also into scenery, trains, etc.

I have an 8-day Swiss pass that I plan to activate when I leave Lausanne. Since I'm a huge train buff, I want to take advantage of as many scenic train trips as I can. I would like to check out part of the Bernina Express, but I don't think I can take it from St. Moritz to Lugano in late April/early May. Is it worth just going fro St. Moritz to Poschiavo or Tirano and back for the views? What's the best section of the Bernina Express?

I plan to visit Lucerne at some point - is the boat ride on the William Tell Express route any good? Also, is it possible to take that trip from Lugano, or does it not run in May either? Any other ideas of good boat trips in Lucerne that are covered by the Swiss Pass?

Also, is half a day enough in Zermatt if my main goal is just to see the Matterhorn and walk around? I'm doing this as much on a budget as possible, so I might try the hostel, even though it's $50.

With St. Moritz, is there much to see in late April? I'd have to stay at a hostel that's a distance from town, so I don't know if it's worth it. Is there much of a night scene there in April? Or just in the winter? I want to see St. Moritz mostly out of curiosity, and also since it's at the end of the Glacier Express.

I then have 3-4 days between St. Moritz and Interlaken. I might go to Lucerne for a few days (I know it's out of the way from Interlaken, but I'll still be on my unlimited pass) What else between St. Moritz and Lucerne is good? i.e. small mountain towns, places with adrenaline sports, etc. that I can easily get to from St. Moritz?

On another note, are there usually lockers in most train stations?

(As a heads up, I plan to stay in Interlaken for five days at the end of my rail pass, and will do the Jungfrau there, along with other mountain trips, so I don't have as much of a need to do that earlier in my trip)

Thanks in advance!
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Old Apr 18th, 2010, 01:30 PM
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I have been to St Moritz twice, once on a tour and the other time as a overnight after the Glacier Express from Zermatt. Both times were summer (I think - not winter). Only my opinion, but I do not think it is worth more than a brief look. The overnight we stayed in a lovely hotel in town with great views. That evening we just walked around and had dinner. The other time I just "toured" the town. It is a lovely setting but not much going on (if there was I missed it). As for the Glacier Express - the weather was rainy so the views were not as great as I had hoped for. However, the trip was very nice as we were with great friends. We had lunch on the train and it was great. Happy travels!!!
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Old Apr 18th, 2010, 03:52 PM
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We were disappointed in St. Moritz and glad we were staying in nearby Pontresina. St. M has a beautiful setting but the city itself is a jumble of modern architecture mixed in with the old.
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Old Apr 18th, 2010, 07:51 PM
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Thanks for the advice. HappyTrvlr, how far is Pontresina from St. Moritz? I'll be arriving in St. Moritz via the Glacier Express, and it seems like there are trains every hour to Pontresina from St. Moritz. I mostly just want to see St. Moritz briefly - does it make sense to do this between 6-8 p.m. when I get in, then take a train to Pontresina? Or is it pretty easy to get to St. Moritz from Pontresina once I'm there? I'll probably then do two nights and one full day in Pontresina.
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Old Apr 18th, 2010, 09:32 PM
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Hi cmb57,

You seem to be asking the exact same questions that were answered on another forum. I don't know if you didn't see the posts or if you are confirming our responses yesterday . . . ??

So I am giving the same responses, and if folks here disagree, hopefully they will speak up.

I've given you the site for train schedules on your post at another forum; you can easily use that to see how far Pontresina is from St. Moritz. Yes, Pontresina is a more scenic town, and it sits at a lovely spot on a shelf over a forrested valley, really pretty. But there are many little towns neaby St. Moritz that are also nice -- Sils, Silvaplana, and more. If you are interested, we can give you more. I am sure you can find inexpensive lodging at the sites I gave you.

Also, I know I suggested that a single day in Zermatt won't be enough, particularly in the afternoon. You need to plan several days there to increase your chances of a clear day to see the Matterhorn. Again, you can find a hostel, b&b or an inexpensive room either in Zermatt or nearby using the sites I gave you.

I am glad that you will see some mountains in the Jungfrau region, but I still believe you are only seeing a small portion of the countryside by not ascending the peaks in the Engadin.

As I said on your other post, yes, the trip from Pontresina to Poschiavo covers the most scenic parts of the Bernina Express, that part over the Bernina Pass. Again, you can verify this using google map's topography.

As I said on your other thread, also, yes there are luggage lockers at most train stations.

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Old Apr 19th, 2010, 06:13 AM
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Swandav is right and I did listen to her advice when we visited Switzerland. We spend 4 days and 3 nights in Zermatt and we had one very good clear day and the rest were rain during September 09. The Matterhorn was so beautiful on a clear day as well as the Eiger, Monch and Jungfrau.

If you're interested here are some pictures:

Jungfrau: http://khun-pook.smugmug.com/Other/S...686088_njm3Y/3

Zermatt: http://khun-pook.smugmug.com/Travel/.../9692384_FSjUf
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Old Apr 19th, 2010, 07:23 PM
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Great, thank you so much!
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Old Apr 19th, 2010, 07:31 PM
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Just an opinion, stay at least 2 nights (maybe 3) in Zermatt if you want to see the Matterhorn. St. Moritz may be worth a night, but no more. Only reason we stayed there was to take the Glacier Express the opposite way... St. Moritz to Zermatt. It's a long train ride. It took us almost 9 hours.

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