Enjoy the Spectacular Swiss Alps with great train journeys, cable car ascents and walks on Alpine trails. Learn about Swiss way of living, its 4 national languages, its government, and its tradition of democracy. This 7 days – 6 nights tour is designed for people who want to experience Switzerland’s culture and cuisine while viewing its spectacular scenery from the panoramic windows of its amazing long-distance trains.
Day 1 – Arrive in Lucerne
Start the trip in Lucerne where you will meet your English speaking guide that will be with you for the entire duration of the tour.
The guide will lead a leisurely informative walk around the old town, to the historic Chapel Bridge, the symbolic Lion Monument through the old town squares and much more.
The tour includes a visit of the world’s first and only Glacier Garden, accompanied by a local expert.
End the day of exploration with an authentic dinner in a traditional Swiss restaurant.
Day 2 – Full day excursion to Lucerne’s two home mountains: Mt. Pilatus & Mt. Rigi, with scenic Alpine views
Climb the scenic Central Alps views from Lucerne’s two “Home” mountains, Mt. Rigi (6,000ft) and Mt. Pilatus (7,000ft).
You will have the chance to experience the Swiss perfect travel system: from trains, to cogwheel trains, to boats.
The Mt. Rigi Railway was the first European cogwheel train in 1871 to take visitors to the top of the mountain. Take the chance to enjoy a 360-degree views of the surrounding alps. This is exactly where Thomas Cook in 1863 brought the first packaged tour and started the tourism industry.
In the afternoon, zip off to Mt. Pilatus on another cogwheel train.
The Pilatus Rail, first commissioned in 1889, uses a system with two horizontally rotating cogwheels to cope with a 48% gradient. It is still the steepest cogwheel train in the world.
The day will end in a local restaurant in Lucerne for another must-try meal.
Day 3 – Abbey Library in St. Gallen – Glacier Express to St. Moritz
Depart on the Voralpen Express train from Lucerne. Travel through scenic rolling landscapes typical of Eastern Switzerland to arrive in St Gallen.
Discover the magnificent Abbey Library in St. Gallen which is one of the oldest libraries in the world -with a manuscript collections from 8th to the 11th century.
In the afternoon, the journey continues via train to Chur, the Graubuenden’s 5000 year old capital, where you transfer to the Glacier Express train.
Enjoy the views of the Landwasser viaduct, a single track six-arched curved limestone railway viaduct, designed in 1901. A signature structure of the World Heritage-listed Albula Railway -recorded in the list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
Arrive in St Moritz in the late afternoon and explore the town with an orientation walk before reaching the centrally-located hotel.
Day 4 – All day in the St. Moritz-Engadine Valley area to visit scenic Alpine highlights with optional Panorama hike
Experience the highest railway across the alps with the Bernina Express train to Alp Grüm and enjoy the awesome Bernina mountain peaks, glaciers and waterfalls. At the highest point on the RhB, 2,253 metres / 6760 ft above sea level, you will see the Ospizio Bernina summit where you can relax surrounded by the beautiful Swiss nature!
Take a cable car ride up to Diavellezza at 2979 m / 8937 ft., the base of the fabulous backdrop of the Bernina massif, and another cable car to Corvatsch 3300, 11000 ft.
If you want, you can enjoy a Panorama hike with our two experienced and English speaking guides to admire these Bernina mountains and the green pastures.
For the bold ones, we also offer a Panorama Trail from Muotas to Pontresina, with different and personalized walking & hiking time and distance: 3 ½ to 4 hours, 5 ½ miles / 9 km
Elevation change: 400ft / 130m down
Hiking terrain: relatively flat, natural dirt & stone path, public sign posted trails
Day 5 – From St. Moritz by Glacier Express to Andermatt in the infamous Gotthard region of the Central Swiss Alps
Experience the highlights of the Glacier Express route – described by the UK’s Telegraph newspaper as one of the world’s best train journeys.
This trip includes a second view of the Albula line and Landwasser Viaduct from the South-to-North direction. Continuing on alongside of the Rhine Gorge or Switzerland’s ‘Grand Canyon’ as you travel up to the Oberalp Pass at 2033 m/6000 ft.
Witness one of the few trains that still serves hot meals at your seat as you ascend 1000 m/3000 ft from Disentis to Oberalp.
Arrive in Andermatt in the afternoon, in the area known as the watershed of Europe for it is here that Europe’s mighty rivers, the Rhine and the Rhône, as well as many other small ones, arise.
In the afternoon we enjoy a 2 hour ride in the Furka Steam Train cog engine – restored to the majesty of its original conditions. We cross mountainous countryside including the Rhone and Mutt glaciers.
The Furka Cogwheel Steam Train operates a partially rack and pinion-operated line across the Furka Pass, between Realp in Uri and Oberwald in Valais. Culminating at 2,160 metres (7,087 ft), above sea level, it is an old mountainous section of the Furka Oberalp Bahn (FO) that was abandoned after the construction of the Furka Tunnel.
It has been gradually brought back into service (with the entire line completed in 2010) by the Verein Furka-Bergstrecke with the use of only steam locomotives. The Furka Railway is the second highest rail crossing in Europe, after the Bernina Railway.
Day 6 – All day in the Andermatt / Gotthard region with an excursion to a military fortress.
In the morning ride up the Gotthard Pass summit to get a sense of Switzerland’s defense system during World War II.
Take a guided walk through the former top-secret Elsasso Gothardo military bunker. A Swiss World Ware II Specialist will guide you through the 1942 military bunker deep in the Gotthard mountains.
The fortress was built inside the mountain during World War II to protect Switzerland’s southern flank and designed to be self-contained for 420 man and 73 artillery pieces for a minimum of 6 months.
After Andermatt, pamper yourself with a drink in the world famous hotel you are staying at.
Day 7 – From Andermatt to Zermatt
Ride through the old Gotthard Tunnel from the German-speaking region to Ticino, the Italian-speaking canton of Switzerland. Take a chance to smell the Mediterranean climate & culture of Switzerland and experience the Alps from the most Southern perspective.
After the Gotthard Tunnel, we arrive in Locarno one of the Italian gems of Switzerland. The city has an interesting downtown with covered walkways & piazzas where you can hear the Italian language while in Switzerland. You have plenty of shops and places to have lunch on your own.
In the afternoon we will travel on the Centovalli Railway. This is a metre-gauge railway that connects the Gotthard and Simplon lines, linking Ticino with the Valle d’Ossola in Italy and with the Canton of Valais via Simplon on the shortest possible route. The railway is not just a means of transportation. It is also an excursion train, that takes visitors through the magnificent landscapes of Centovalli and Valle Vigezzo.
In the evening we arrive in Zermatt where you can take a leisurely walk through the beautiful town centre and get the chance to admire the mountain of the Matterhorn.
Day 8 – Excursions from Zermatt on the Gornergrat Railway with time for Day Trips
Breathtaking views of Mt. Matterhorn.
Experience amazing views of the Matterhorn and the Alps in a combination of cogwheel train ride and easy to moderate day hike
Ride Europe’s second highest railway and the highest open-air railway of the continent – the Gornergrat cog wheel train – up to the 10,134 ft / 3089 meter Gornergrat with incredible views of the Matterhorn accompanying you most of the way.
Walk up to the 360 degree platform area where you see over 29 of the 79 alpine peaks higher than 4000 meters/13,123 ft, including the massive Matterhorn.
Enjoy a 1-2 hour guided hike along signposted trails through an alpine nature reserve with stunning Matterhorn views mirrored in pristine alpine lakes.
Learn about the origins of Zermatt and the people of the canton of Valais (French name) or Wallis (German name).
Day 9 – From Zermatt to Grindelwald via the Goldenpass Line with 2 hour stop in Gruyère
Travel through the French speaking Canton of Valais, know as the fruit basket of Switzerland.
This segment is branded as the Goldenpass Line with either a Classic train car or the Panorama Car with big panorama windows.
Experience what it was like to travel during the Belle-Epoque when the rich and famous where the only ones traveling on such trains.
In Gruyères you have time to walk around the most picturesque square in all of Switzerland. There’s a castle at the top of the square, fun shops to poke into, such as special chocolate shop, and many places where to have lunch.
A ten minute walk down to the Gruyères cheese dairy museum and restaurant is a great way to learn everything about cheese making, and check out all the cheese related souvenirs.
We continue on the GoldenPass Line through the Préalps of the canton of Fribourg and the beautiful Simmental Valley, known for the sturdy brown and white cows and the world famous resort town of Gstaad, home to many Hollywood stars.
Enjoy amazing Alpine valleys and rolling hills, green pastures and grazing cows, wooden chalets and picturesque villages as we journey to the Jungfrau region, one of Switzerland’s oldest and most popular resorts in the UNESCO World Heritage Jungfrau region.
Day 10 – Grindelwald – Top of Jungfraujoch – Lunch at Eigergletchser Restaurant – Lauterbrunnen and Trümmelbach Falls
Experience Europe’s largest Aletsch glacier. View mountains, snow, and ice as we ride up to the top of the 3,400m / 13371 ft Jungfraujoch, the 1914 built complex between the Mönch & Jungfrau mountains. One of the highlights of the trip!
There’s time to walk outside on the hard packed snow glacier and be part of the scenery.
Sit in on one of the free standing deck chairs or go tubing and enjoy Europe’s highest man made splendor.
In the afternoon we take the train to Lauterbrunnen and transfer to a postal bus with a visit to the Trümmelbach falls.
The Trümmelbach Falls are the world’s only glacier waterfalls that are accessible underground by lift, galleries, tunnels, paths and platforms. Experience a series of ten glacier-fed waterfalls inside the mountain made accessible by a tunnel-funicular, built in 1913.
Day 11 – Grindelwald – Brienzer Rotbahn Steam Railway – UNESCO Biosphere – Zürich Airport
On our last day, catch the Lake Brienz steamer in Interlaken. And then, in Brienz, board the unique Swiss steam train that has been operational since 1892.
We climb up to 7,700 ft. while seeing wonderful green Alpine pastures, houses on farms.
On top the local restaurant offers great views of the Bernese mountains.
Afterward we board a cable car that takes us down into the Entlebuch valley to view pre-Alpine moorland and landscapes – designated by UNESCO as Switzerland’s first biosphere reserve.
The local bus takes us to the Schupfheim train station with transfers through Bern and to Zürich airport.
-June 6, 2021 to July 17
June 28, 2021 to July 9
July 19, 2021 to July 30
August 9, 2021 to August 20
August 30, 2021 to September 10
September 13, 2021 to September 24
You can select your preference when booking the experience.
Additional dates for 2021 are available upon request.