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When is the best time to go to Switzeland?

When is the best time to go to Switzeland?

Jun 17th, 2000, 08:43 AM
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When is the best time to go to Switzeland?

We're planning a trip to Switzerland next year. When is the best time to go there?

Jun 17th, 2000, 09:16 AM
richard j vicek
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Good afternoon, Ofelia
Have been to CH both during May and
September, both times you can get rainy
weather in the mountains, however would
favor Aug/Sep/Oct over Apr/May/Jun.
Things in the mountains tend to start
closing after the 1st of October, however these means less tourists.
Feel this is especially true within
the Berneroberland, and also the area
of Zermatt. The Luzern areas might
consider it going all year round.
Richard of La Grange Park, Il...
Jun 17th, 2000, 02:10 PM
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The obvious answer is it depends on what your interests are. If museums, restaurants and the like then year 'round is fine. Switzerland, for the most part, has a typical 'Continental' climate like most of France, Germany, etc.

If you're interested in mountains which are Switzerland's most special destinations, then summer is the best time, presuming your interest is not skiing.

Mountain weather is very quixotic. If you want the most dependable weather you really want to limit your visit to the period between early to mid-June and late August to very early September. We've been in snow (at 5,000 feet) as late in Spring as June 10, and as early as August 25.

Though more tourist then (for good reason) it takes only a few minutes to walk outside the village centers to find yourself in relative solitude, so pay no attention to stories of hordes of tourists. The hordes are restricted to train stations and village/city centers. And a couple of mountains peaks, but are easily eluded elsewhere.

If you still want to go in shoulder seasons you'll often find good weather as well as the occasional afternoon or morning of fog and snow ... or possibly several such days in a row. See www.twenj.com/swisswhen.htm

For us, we want to see the mountains at their best so we make it a point to restrict our visits to June through August. It's too darned far to travel to run into a day or several of snow or low-hanging fog.

Jul 8th, 2000, 03:27 AM
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Thanks Richard and Ed for the inputs. I am still in the planning stage. I appreciate all the information. WE always travel on ashoulder season - late May. Might change if this is not the best time to go there. We are not the skier person. We just to experience the mountains and the alps. I am thinking of combining this trip with Austria (Vienna, Salzburg or Innsbruck) and preferably Prague. Still in the planning stage, would appreciate all the information I could get. I already got my travel packets from Switzerland and Austria tourist offices in New York.

Jul 8th, 2000, 04:51 AM
Mary Ann
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We went to the Berner Oberland in Late July and stayed in Murren. Believe me it was not crowed. Murren is a car free city. We woke up with a southern view of the Alps and it was fantastic. If you take the gondolas up early crowds were not bad at all. We did breakfast in a revolving restaurant on top of the Schlithorn and it was wonderful.
Hope you are getting the tourist board packets for Prague. We went there last September. They charged $3.20 for the package (shipping cost, well worth it). Prague was really great but book early for accomodations! Weather in September was very nice, mid to upper 70s in mid sept. Have a wonderful trip!
You may want to check out Rick Steves travel books. he makes a book "Germany, Austria, Switzerland, including Prague". We have used them and his walking and hiking tours work well.
Jul 8th, 2000, 05:54 AM
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Hi Ofelia,
I went this year to the Jungfrau and went in late May. The weather was pleasant, but you do take the chance of rain during this time. I loved the hiking. The air was crisp, but not cold and everything was very fresh. There were no crowds at all in Wengen. In fact I took two trips to the top of the Jungfrau and one time I and my traveling companion were the only ones on the train. I loved it and would go back the same time of the year.
Jul 8th, 2000, 07:28 PM
Bob Brown
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In my experience, the last week of September is when the rain comes to the Swiss Alps.
But, none of us can predict the weather.
As a general rule, early to mid September is good for mountain hiking because it is cooler and the weather is nice, hopefully. At least your chances are better. But if you want to raise a sore point just ask me about my sloshing along trail from the Gemmi Pass back to Kandersteg and from the First lift station toward the Faulhorn. (I don't mind sleet so much, but I turned chicken when it started lightening and thundering.) Every where I went, I seemed to draw rain or snow or sleet or all 3.
If you are a skier, then you need to go in ski season. January through April finds good snow conditions, usually. Early and mid May in some mountain villages is off time. I know that Saas Fee is virtually shut down during the "between seasons" times.
Speaking of Saas Fee. I rarely see it mentioned on this board. I presume that is because few Americans go there. They are all over in Zermatt buying funny souveniers, or in Grindelwald, Interlaken or Luzern.
Jul 9th, 2000, 04:28 AM
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Hi Ofelia:

I am not sure of how you plan on getting about in Switz. but no matter when you go the Swiss Rail System will be ready to take you anywhere! I have used it to get to remote ski areas and found it a very relaxing way to travel, best in all of Europe!. A bit of pre-planning on the Swiss Rail Internet site can give you a good idea of the time needed to get about! Have fun!
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