The Ultimate Switzerland Travel Guide

  • Post by Apoorva Shetty
  • Jun 16, 2019
The Ultimate Switzerland Travel Guide Header Image

The (Swiss-Knife) Ultimate Switzerland Travel Guide

Unable to decide where to go in Switzerland?
Thinking about what to prioritize in your trip?
Thinking about which mountains to go to, in Switzerland?

This Guide Contains

Top Places (Detailed)

Time Required

Ticket Links

Cost Breakdown

Interactive Map with Day Plans

Transport Options

What to Eat/Drink?

If you are overwhelmed by all the Guides out there and want to plan your trip choosing the best, you have arrived at the mother of all Swiss Guides. This is the Ultimate Guide you will ever need. This is because, before travelling to Switzerland, I had researched for more than 4 months of where to go and what’s not to miss out.

NOTE: This Guide is HUGE as I have included the almost all famous places to visit and activities to do with added hidden gems. This is designed so that you can make informed decisions and to know what Switzerland has in store for you by keeping your options open.

If you are still confused, and looking for predefined places to visit within a timeline, I would suggest a flexible itinerary to help you decide on that. You may also want to read our amazing offbeat journey and our first-hand experience to get a feel of how Switzerland enchanted us.

I suggest you read through the entire article after which you can inter-relate the places mentioned to plan itinerary better. I have also included the costs of travelling up a mountain to make your choices better.
Use the Table of Contents to skip to certain sections.

  Table of Contents


Cities and Larger Towns

When in Switzerland, you are expected to admire the main sights which generally are the cloud touching Mountaintops, exquisite Swiss village chalets and green pastures with healthy cows. But I will tell you that the cities themselves house amazing architecture and museums. If you are not planning to visit Switzerland for its cities, you may as well stay around one to get the feel and then head over to your favourite spots.

Lucerne

lucerne switzerland Lucerne is the most populous town in Central Switzerland, and a nexus of economics, transportation, culture, and media of this region.

What to expect?
A city with the buzz of the modern world while retaining the captivating old-world charm, Lucerne is one of the top places to visit in Switzerland. One of the city’s famous landmarks is the Chapel Bridge (German: Kapellbrücke), a wooden bridge first erected in the 14th century. Also, if you are up for a different experience, try the Capsule Hotel, rather than booking a hotel. It would be a unique stay and wouldn’t burn a hole in your pocket.

🚩 Places to Visit
Landmarks: Chapel Bridge, Lion Monument, Swiss Museum of Transport
Mountains: Rigi, Pilatus, Titlis Lakes: Lake Lucerne

Bern

bern the capital of switzerland Bern, the capital city of Switzerland, is built around a crook in the Aare River. It traces its origins back to the 12th century, with medieval architecture preserved in the Altstadt (Old Town). The Swiss Parliament and diplomats meet in the Neo-Renaissance Bundeshaus (Federal Palace). The Französische Kirche (French Church) and the nearby medieval tower known as the Zytglogge both date to the 13th century.

What to expect?
Bern is the ideal Swiss city. From the moment you enter the city, you see the charm. The shopping area is called Kramgasse where the covered arcade is lined with shops on both sides and the central street housing the famous statues in the middle. The huge clock tower sets a different tone to the city and makes you fall in love with Bern. The Bear Park is one of the highlights of the city where cute bears are provided a natural like habitat encompassing a huge area. Next to it is the Aare River which bends and twists around the city. It is a summer favourite for tourists to jump into the river and float across Bern.

🚩 Places to Visit
Landmarks: Kramgasse, Zytglogge, Bear Park

Zürich

The city of Zurich, a global centre for banking and finance, lies at the north end of Lake Zurich in northern Switzerland. The picturesque lanes of the central Altstadt (Old Town), on either side of the Limmat River, reflect its pre-medieval history.

What to expect?
Famous for its luxurious lifestyle and high-end shopping, Zurich is a cosmopolitan hub. Being one of the costliest cities in the world to live in, it provides a glamorous edge to the culture and lifestyle in the city. Zurich is divided into both old town as well as the new town. If you want to see the glamour in Switzerland which is otherwise famous for its mountains and terrain, head to Zurich.

🚩 Places to Visit
Landmarks: Grossmünster, Fraumünster Church, Bahnhofstrasse, Swiss National Museum
Lakes: Lake Zurich (Zurichsee)

Geneva

img Geneva is a city in Switzerland that lies at the southern tip of expansive Lac Léman (Lake Geneva). Surrounded by the Alps and Jura mountains, the city has views of dramatic Mont Blanc. Headquarters of Europe’s United Nations and the Red Cross, it’s a global hub for diplomacy and banking.

What to expect?
Geneva lies in the westernmost part of Switzerland sharing borders with France. So much so that Lake Geneva is part Swiss and part French. Famous for its Water Fountain, Geneva is one of the top places to visit in Switzerland if you want to see the city side of the country.

🚩 Places to Visit
Landmarks: The Geneva Water Fountain, St Pierre Cathedral, Jardin Anglais
Lakes: Lake Geneva (Lac Léman)

Lugano

Lugano is a city in southern Switzerland’s Italian-speaking Ticino region. Its Swiss-Mediterranean mix of cultures is closely related to that of Italy’s northern Lombardy region. This mix is reflected in its architecture and cuisine. The city stands on the northern shore of glacial Lake Lugano, surrounded by mountains.

What to expect?
Being closer to Milan, Italy than to Zurich, this city nestled between the alps is a perfect getaway for most tourists. Also, the very famous Lake Como in Italy lies close to the city of Lugano.

🚩 Places to Visit
Landmarks: Villa del Balbianello, Villa Carlotta
Mountains: Monte Brè, Monte San Salvatore Lakes: Lake Lugano, Lake Como

Basel

Basel is a city on the Rhine River in northwest Switzerland, close to the country’s borders with France and Germany. Its medieval old town centres around Marktplatz, dominated by the 16th-century, red-sandstone Town Hall.

What to expect?
Situated in the northernmost part of Switzerland, Basel is pretty much on the junction of 3 countries: Switzerland, France and Germany. It draws influence from all 3 and its a cultural mix. Many companies from Switzerland are headquartered here.

🚩 Places to Visit
Landmarks: Kunstmuseum, Basel’s Old Town, Basel Minster

Lausanne

Lausanne is a city on Lake Geneva, in the French-speaking region of Vaud, Switzerland. It’s home to the International Olympic Committee headquarters, as well as the Olympic Museum and lakeshore Olympic Park.

What to expect?
Lausanne is close to Montreux and Geneva. It lies on the shore of Lake Geneva.

🚩 Places to Visit
Landmarks: Lausanne Cathedral, The Olympic Museum, Sauvabelin Tower
Lakes: Lake Geneva (Lac Léman)


Swiss Mountain Villages

Interlaken

interlaken Interlaken is a strategic base town at the heart of Switzerland. It is surrounded by the Alps, but it’s not actually in the mountains. It lies on flat land and is a transport hub to most mountain villages. The town is situated in between two beautiful lakes, hence the name inter-laken.

What to expect?
Famous for all the mountains nearby, especially Jungfraujoch, Interlaken is a must-visit. While there are a ton of activities to do outdoors, you will never be wanting for a calm peaceful day as well. Hiking, Mountaineering, Cruising, Paragliding are just some of the fun activities you can do here. Take your time here and enjoy it.

🚩 Places to Visit
Landmarks: Casino Interlaken
Mountains: Jungfrau, Monch, Eiger, Lakes: Lake Brienz, Lake Thun

Lauterbrunnen

img Lauterbrunnen is a municipality in the Swiss Alps. It encompasses the village of Lauterbrunnen, set in a valley featuring rocky cliffs and the roaring, 300m-­high Staubbach Falls. Nearby, the glacial waters of Trümmelbach Falls gush through mountain crevices past viewing platforms.

What to expect?
Lauterbrunnen is an ideal Swiss village. Its main attractions are two huge waterfalls, Staubbach Falls being the highest in Switzerland. To arrive in Lauterbrunnen, you need to take a train from Interlaken.

🚩 Places to Visit
Landmarks: Staubbach Falls, Trummelbach Falls
Mountains: Jungfrau, Monch, Eiger, Kleine Scheidegg

Grindelwald

Grindelwald, a village in Switzerland’s Bernese Alps, is a popular gateway for the Jungfrau Region, with skiing in winter and hiking in summer. It’s also a base for mountain-climbing ascents up the iconic north face of Eiger Mountain.

What to expect?
Again, one of the ideal Swiss villages and the gateway to First: one of the best mountains in Switzerland for fun and thrill activities, Grindelwald is a tourist’s paradise. You definitely need to visit this place, if not stay in this mountain village.

🚩 Places to Visit
Landmarks: Grindelwald Museum
Mountains: Grindelwald First Lakes: Bachalpsee (Mountain Lake in First)

Gimmelwald

https://i.imgur.com/7Lg65H6.jpg?1 Gimmelwald is a small traffic-free village in the Bernese Oberland in the Canton of Bern, Switzerland, and is located between Stechelberg and Mürren, at an elevation of 1363 meters. The village is at the foot of the UNESCO World Heritage site, the Jungfrau-Aletsch Protected Area

What to expect?
Gimmelwald is a quaint little town situated high in the mountains. If you want some quiet and peaceful time away from the city life and want to bask in the mountain sun and clouds, this place is just perfect. This is a lesser-known village and a gem in Switzerland.

🚩 Places to Visit
Mountains: Schilthorn

Wengen

Wengen is a car free Swiss Alpine village in the Bernese Oberland region. It’s known for its timber chalets and belle époque hotels. The Jungfraubahn railway climbs to Jungfrau summit, with views of the Aletsch Glacier from the Sphinx observation deck. A cable car reaches Männlichen’s slopes and trails, with views of Eiger and Mönch peaks. South of Wengen are the Trümmelbach glacier waterfalls, accessed via underground paths.

What to expect?
Wengen lies close to Lauterbrunnen and is one of the hidden gems. Being a quaint little village in the mountain sure puts Wengen in the ideal Swiss village list.

🚩 Places to Visit
Mountains: Männlichen, Tschuggen, Schilthorn, Jungfraujoch

Mürren

Mürren is a Swiss mountain village at the foot of the Schilthorn peak, which is accessible by cable car. Featured in a James Bond film, the Piz Gloria revolving restaurant contains the Bond World 007 exhibit and has views of Mont Blanc. Near Mürren is the Lauterbrunnen Valley, with its subterranean, glacial Trümmelbach Falls

What to expect?
Mürren is a hidden gem away from the touristy places like Interlaken and even the less travelled Lauterbrunnen. It is so less mentioned, but a great place to spend some quality time enjoying the Swiss holiday. Mürren is very close to Gimmelwald as well.

🚩 Places to Visit
Mountains: Schilthorn

Zermatt

Zermatt, in southern Switzerland’s Valais canton, is a mountain resort renowned for skiing, climbing and hiking. The town, at an elevation of around 1,600m, lies below the iconic, pyramid-shaped Matterhorn peak. Its main street, Bahnhofstrasse is lined with boutique shops, hotels and restaurants, and also has a lively après-ski scene

What to expect?
Zermatt is a highly recommended place to visit, if you have some days in hand or can make the time to head southwards from Interlaken. From the moment you get down from the train station, the Bahnhofstrasse of Zermatt welcomes you with shops lining the streets. When you look up, you spot the majestic Matterhorn (one of the most iconic mountains in the world) and breathe in the fresh mountain air with the glittering streets filled with people.

🚩 Places to Visit
Landmarks: Matterhorn Museum - Zermatlantis, Matterhorn Glacier Paradise (Klien Matterhorn), Charles Kuonen Suspension Bridge (nearby village Randa), Gorner Gorge
Mountains: Matterhorn, Gornergrat, Klien Matterhorn, Sunnegga (ski area) Lakes: Riffelsee (Mountain Lake on the way to Gornergrat), Schwarzsee, Stellisee

Andermatt

Andermatt is a village in the Ursern Valley in the Swiss Alps. A cable car offers access to Gemsstock ski area and a chairlift links the village with Nätschen’s gentler slopes. To Andermatt’s north, the path leading to Devil’s Bridge, which spans the sheer gorge of Schöllenenschlucht, is one of many trails.

What to expect?
One of the lesser-visited villages, Andermatt is a quiet ski resort town frequented during the winters. If you are looking for a peaceful charming village stay, head to Andermatt.

🚩 Places to Visit
Landmarks: Teufelsbrücke, Schöllenen Gorge, Gotthard Pass, Suworow-Denkmal
Mountains: Gemsstock Lakes: Göscheneralpsee, Tomaseemaarten, Oberalpsee


Swiss Lakeside Villages

Montreux

Montreux is a traditional resort town on Lake Geneva. Nestled between steep hills and the lakeside, it’s known for its mild microclimate and the Montreux Jazz Festival, held in July. The town’s promenade is lined with flowers, sculptures, Mediterranean trees and grand Belle Époque buildings. Offshore is a medieval island castle, Château de Chillon, with ramparts, formal halls and a chapel with 14th-century murals.

Weggis

Weggis is a municipality in the district of Lucerne in the canton of Lucerne in Switzerland. It forms part of the northern shore of Lake Lucerne. The round trips to Mt Rigi are taken via this beautiful village by Lake Lucerne.

Spiez

Spiez is a town located on the shore of Lake Thun and accessible via cruise or train from Interlaken. Spiez is home to Schloss Spiez, a medieval castle which was initially built in 933, and is a heritage site of national significance.

Bönigen

Bönigen is a village and municipality in the Interlaken-Oberhasli administrative district in the Swiss canton of Bern. It lies on the shore of Lake Brienz, near to the mouth of the river Lütschine, and adjacent to the resort town of Interlaken.

Iseltwald

https://i.imgur.com/AQtphLx.jpg Iseltwald is a fairytale village located on the shore of Lake Brienz. It is a tiny village accessible from Interlaken via bus or cruise (or Brienz, via cruise). Looking back at our trip to Switzerland, this was one of the most memorable places we visited. We cancelled our plans to visit the nearby areas (ie Interlaken/Aare Gorge) and stayed just to get a feel of this place.


Swiss Luxury Villages

Gstaad

https://i.imgur.com/XT3pUVq.jpg?1 Gstaad is an upscale resort town in the Bernese Oberland region of the Swiss Alps. Its soaring mountains and prestigious international boarding schools have long made it a holiday destination for royalty and celebrities. Cable cars connect surrounding ski areas such as Wispile and Rinderberg, with hundreds of kilometres of all-level pistes and cross-country trails. Glacier 3000 offers nearly year-round skiing.

St. Moritz

St. Moritz is a luxury alpine resort town in Switzerland’s Engadin valley. It has hosted the Winter Olympics twice, has the Cresta Run, a world-championship bobsled run made of natural ice, and an outdoor Olympic ice rink. Its frozen lake hosts polo, cricket and even horse racing on ice. Ski and snowboard areas include Corviglia, Diavolezza and Corvatsch, and there are well-groomed cross-country ski trails.


Swiss Mountains

Listed below are some of the most famous mountains in Switzerland in descending order of height. The location of the mountains are also specified as well as the height which decides the snow factor if visiting during summer months. All these mountains have some form of transport to take you up into the peaks (except Matterhorn and Jungfrau). The cost of the ticket up to the mountains differ by the months (Summers are costlier while Winters are cheaper). The approximate cost of the ticket is also mentioned from the base station. Also, note that some mountains have additional costs associated with activities on top. Also, all mountains have restaurants on top, though pricey, will provide a great view with good food.

Legend

🗻   :   Height of the Mountain
💳   :   Approx. ticket price (Adult, 2nd Class, ONE WAY fare without discount)
📌   :   Nearby Town/City

Matterhorn

 🗻 4,478 m   📌 Zermatt

Known as the ‘Queen of the Alps’ and one of the most iconic mountains in European Alps and also featured as the Toblerone logo, Matterhorn is a must visit when in Switzerland. Accessible from the car free resort town of Zermatt, a day’s trip to see this majestic beauty is worth it.

⚠️ Note: There is no cable car to the mountaintop. The only way to see this breathtaking beauty up close, is from the adjacent mountains listed below:

Klein Matterhorn

 🗻 3,883 m    💳 -- CHF   📌 Zermatt  

Literally translated as “Little Matterhorn”, it provides stunning views of the Matterhorn. it is also the highest place in Europe that can be reached by aerial tramway or gondola lift, as well as by any other means of transport. Matterhorn Glacier Paradise is located here.

  • Visit the Matterhorn Glacier Paradise:

Note: This provides a view of the Matterhorn from a different perspective, other than shown in most pictures.

Gornergrat

 🗻 3,135 m    💳 55 CHF   📌 Zermatt  

The Gornergrat is a rocky ridge overlooking the Gorner Glacier. It can be reached from Zermatt by the Gornergrat rack railway, the highest open-air railway in Europe. The Gornergrat provides an amazing view of the Matterhorn and the Monte Rosa massif. This includes the Dufourspitze (4634 m), which is the highest peak in Switzerland.

  • Visit Riffelsee at Rotenboden on the way to Gornergrat

Note: Gornergrat provides a view of the Matterhorn as shown in most pictures.

Rothorn (Unterrothorn) / via Sunnegga

 🗻 3,135 m    💳 -- CHF   📌 Zermatt  

Rothorn also known as Unterrothorn provides panoramic views of Matterhorn and Weisshorn. It is the site of many hikes during summer and a starting point for many para-glides.


Jungfrau

 🗻 4,158 m    📌 Interlaken

Jungfrau is one of the main summits of Bernese Alps. It is visible from the Swiss central resort town of Interlaken. Together with Mönch (4,107 m) and Eiger (3,967 m), the trio forms a massive wall of famous mountains.

⚠️ Note: You cannot go to the top of Jungfrau. The highest you can reach is an area between the mountain peaks called Jungfraujoch

Jungfraujoch
 🗻 3,466 m    💳 120 CHF    📌 Interlaken  

Jungfraujoch is a saddle in the Bernese Alps, connecting the two four-thousander peaks Jungfrau and Mönch. Promoted as “Top of Europe”, Jungfraujoch is the highest railway station in Europe and provides excellent views of the Monch and Jungfrau mountains.

Kleine Scheidegg
 🗻 2,061 m    💳 42 CHF   📌 Interlaken  

The Kleine Scheidegg literally translated “minor watershed”, is a mountain pass housing a big railway station, situated below and between the Eiger and Lauberhorn. It is a meeting point for the trains arriving from Lauterbrunnen and Grindelwald to go up to the Jungfraujoch.


Mount Titlis

 🗻 3,238 m    💳 70 CHF   📌 Engelberg

Mount Titlis is a mountain in Central Switzerland near the Engelberg village (a bit off Lucerne and Interlaken). The trip involves going up by cable car with the last stretch in a 360° revolving cable car. At 3,032 m you can enjoy the eternal snow and the beautiful views. Titlis has some great fun activities in store as well.

  • Titlis Cliff Walk: Highest elevation suspension bridge in Europe (100 m long, 1 m wide). Free to walk.
  • Titlis Glacier Cave: The frosty heart of Titlis. The ice here is up to 5,000 years old. The cave’s 150-metre-long walkway descends ten metres below the surface of the glacier. Free to visit.
  • Trübsee Adventure: The free Trubsee adventure gets your adrenaline pumping as you can jump like a stuntman. Try out the BagJump Tower, Trampoline2Bag and the slackline.
  • Trübsee Snow Park: Available only in winter, the free snow park has fun snow slides like balancer, minibobs and snowtubes.
  • Trübsee: The beautiful alpine lake (1,788 m) provides breathtaking views. Easily one of the best places you would see.

Schilthorn

 🗻 2,970 m    💳 75 CHF   📌 Interlaken ; Murren

The Schilthorn overlooks the valley of Lauterbrunnen and lies just above the village of Mürren, from where a cable car leads to its summit. The panoramic 360-degree revolving restaurant at the summit, Piz Gloria, was featured in the 1969 James Bond movie On Her Majesty’s Secret Service. The view includes Titlis, along Eiger, Mönch and Jungfrau to Mont Blanc. On the way to Schilthorn, lies Birg with its famous Thrill Walk.

  • Thrill Walk, Birg: Walk along a 200-metre cliff pathway under Birg cableway station. A spine-tingling mountain experience of superlatives
  • Skyline Walk, Birg: This platform is situated over a vertical precipice, offering stunning and exhilarating panoramic views
  • Children’s Playground Flower Park, Allmendhubel: The adventure playground at the Allmendhubel transports you to a fantasy world of giant alpine flowers, grasses and oversized insects.

Brienzer Rothorn

 🗻 2,351 m    💳 60 CHF   📌 Brienz

https://i.imgur.com/dO4bBZq.jpg?1 The Brienzer Rothorn is a mountain in Brienz, which is on the other side of Interlaken and lies across the Brienzersee (Lake Brienz). Hop on the 127 years old steam railway taking you to the summit. It is said that while on the journey to the top you are able to view 693 mountain peaks in total along with breathtaking view of Lake Brienz. Also, if you are into mountain animals, an Ibex colony awaits you.


Männlichen

 🗻 2,343 m    💳 40 CHF   📌 Interlaken ; Wengen

The Männlichen is a mountain in the Swiss Alps located close to Wengen and Lauterbrunnen. It is famous for its hiking panoramic trails to Kleine Scheidegg. Männlichen offers great views of Jungfrau, Monch and Eiger (same mountains are seen from Jungfraujoch)


First

 🗻 2,167 m    💳 47 CHF   📌 Interlaken ; Grindelwald

Also known as Grindelwald First, this mountain is unlike other mountains as it has all the fun and thrill activities.

The stops are explained here:
Grindelwald Cable Car Base /—⬆️—/ Bort /—⬆️—/ Schreckfeld /—⬆️—/ First

Fun/Thrill Activities :

  • First Flier - whiz along the 800 metre long steel cable from First to Schreckfeld at a top speed of 84 km/h First⤵️Schreckfeld
  • First Glider - takes you in reverse from Schreckfeld to First and then glides headfirst from First to Schreckfeld at up to 83 km/h Schreckfeld⤴️⤵️Schreckfeld
  • Mountain Cart - a cross between go-kart and sled. It travels down the mountain on almost any terrain Schreckfeld⤵️Bort
  • Trottibike Scooter - the Trottibike inherited the best features of the scooter and the bicycle and rolls along pleasantly even on bumpy surfaces for 4.5kms Bort⤵️Base
  • Hiking - Hiking up would be a daunting task and it would take most part of the day. Hiking down is out of option when the above thrilling options are presented to you. Base⤴️Anywhere⤵️Base

Mount Pilatus

 🗻 2,132 m    💳 40 CHF   📌 Lucerne

https://i.imgur.com/jTKQfFY.jpg?1 Located near Lucerne, Pilatus is composed of several peaks, of which the highest is named Tomlishorn (2,128 m). The top can be reached with the Pilatus Railway, the world’s steepest cogwheel railway.

The trip to Pilatus and back is called the Golden Round Trip. Several fun activities are there for kids as well as adults. Pilu the dragon is the mascot.


Schynige Platte

 🗻 2,076 m    💳 36 CHF   📌 Interlaken

https://i.imgur.com/NWAgi05.jpg?1 The Schynige Platte is a small mountain ridge and a viewpoint. The mountain range consists of three peaks: Gumihorn, Tuba, and the closest summit next to the viewpoint, Geiss. There are lots of hiking trails and there is an Alpine Garden for tourists on offer.


Niederhorn

 🗻 1,950 m    💳 -- CHF   📌 Beatenberg ; Interlaken

The Niederhorn is a peak of the Emmental Alps in the Bernese Oberland near Beatenberg. From its summit, Lake Thun and the entire Bernese Alps can be seen. An aerial cable car to the summit was completed in 1946 with a restaurant and children’s playground at the top.


Mount Rigi

 🗻 1,798 m    💳 60 CHF   📌 Lucerne

Known as the ‘Queen of the Mountains’, Rigi Kulm is almost entirely surrounded by the water of three different water bodies one of which is Lake Lucerne. It has tons of hiking trails. While snow might be missing on the top during summer, the breathtaking view and the amazing journey to Rigi Kulm is totally worth it.


Harder Kulm

 🗻 1,321 m    💳 -- CHF   📌 Interlaken

The Harderkulm is a viewpoint overlooking the towns of Interlaken and Unterseen. It is situated very close to Interlaken and is recommended if you don’t what to travel and want to spend a lazy day in and around Interlaken.


Swiss Places of Interest

The Rhine Falls

 📌 Rheinfallquai ; Zurich

The Rhine Falls is a waterfall located in Switzerland and the most powerful waterfall in Europe. The falls are located on the High Rhine on the border between the cantons of Schaffhausen and Zürich

Chateau de Chillon, Montreux

 📌 Veytaux ; Montreux ; Lake Geneva

Chillon Castle is an island castle located on Lake Geneva, south of Veytaux. It is situated by the spectacular Lake Geneva on the narrow shore between Montreux and Villeneuve. Rich in history, it is one of the most popular spots for tourists to visit exhibits and take tours of the castle.

Oberhofen Castle

 📌 Oberhofen ;  Lake Thun

A fairytale like castle from the 13th-century with gardens and a museum of Bernese culture & an oriental smoking parlor. Various tours and exhibition are also conducted which takes a look at the world of the servants and lets the audience participate in situations that have taken place in the corridors and behind closed doors.

Oberhofen castle also provides rooms for rent and is also popular for providing a destination for Swiss dreamy weddings.

Aare Gorge

 📌 Meiringen  

The Aare Gorge also known as Aareschlucht, is a section of the river Aare that carves through a limestone ridge near the town of Meiringen, in the Bernese Oberland region of Switzerland.

Charles Kuonen Suspension Bridge

 📌 Randa ; Zermatt

The Charles Kuonen Suspension Bridge is the longest hanging bridge for pedestrian use in the world. It is located in Randa, 10 mins from Zermatt and can only be reached by hiking up the slopes for around 4.5 kms one way. The hike is through the forest trails and this easily takes up half a day - one day to enjoy the trek to the floating suspension bridge.

Casino Interlaken

 📌 Interlaken

While not the largest casino in Switzerland, it is well known due to the close proximity to the tourist hub of Interlaken. The bronze statue of the famous Indian filmmaker Yash Chopra graces the garden. It was unveiled in 2016 to celebrate the influence of Indian Cinema in bringing tourism to Switzerland. Yash Chopra is also known as the brand ambassador of Interlaken.

Swiss National Park

 📌 Zernez

The Swiss National Park is located in the Western Rhaetian Alps, in eastern Switzerland. It is within the canton of Graubünden, between Zernez, S-chanf, Scuol, and the Fuorn Pass in the Engadin valley on the border with Italy. It is part of the worldwide UNESCO Biosphere Reserve.

Ruinaulta (Swiss Grand Canyon)

 📌 Versam

Ruinaulta is a canyon created by the Anterior Rhine between Ilanz/Glion and Reichenau in the debris of the Flims Rockslide just upstream of its confluence with the Posterior Rhine at Reichenau in the Grisons, eastern Switzerland.


Swiss Lakes

To sum up Switzerland in 3 words would be Mountains, Lakes and Pastures. Here is the list of the best, most common lakes in Switzerland.

Lake Geneva

Lake Geneva also called Lac Léman in French, is a lake on the north side of the Alps, shared between Switzerland and France. It is one of the largest lakes in Western Europe and the largest in Switzerland.

🚩 Places to Visit: Geneva, Jet d’Eau (Water Fountain), Montreux, Chateau de Chillon, Laussane

Lake Lucerne

Lake Lucerne is a lake in central Switzerland and the fourth largest in the country. The lake has a complicated shape, with several sharp bends and four arms

🚩 Places to Visit: Lucerne, Mount Rigi, Mount Pilatus, Weggis, Bürgenstock

Lake Brienz

Lake Brienz, Interlaken, Switzerland Lake Brienz is a lake just north of the Alps, in the canton of Berne in Switzerland. It has a length of about 14 kilometres, a width of 2.8 kilometres and a maximum depth of 260 metres. Its area is 29.8 square kilometres, and the surface is 564 metres above the sea-level.

🚩 Places to Visit: Interlaken, Brienz, Giessbach waterfalls, Iseltwald

Lake Thun

Lake Thun is an Alpine lake in Switzerland’s Bernese Oberland region. Its shore is dotted with towns, including Thun, and Romanesque churches. In Thun’s old town, 12th-century Thun Castle houses a museum exhibiting prehistoric and medieval artifacts.

🚩 Places to Visit: Interlaken, Thun, Spiez Castle, Thun Castle, Hünegg Castle, St. Beatus Caves, Panorama Bridge Sigriswil.

Lake Zürich

Lake Zürich is a lake in Switzerland, extending southeast of the city of Zürich.

🚩 Places to Visit: Zurich, Zurich Wilderness Park Sihlwald,


Swiss Scenic Train Rides

Switzerland is home to one of the most scenic train routes and you are sure to experience some of the best and classic journeys that would be forever memorable. Barring the mountain railways, which are surely a charm, these rail lines and trains below are just something that Switzerland prides on.

The Golden Pass Line

 Lucerne - Interlaken - Zweisimmen - Montreux

The GoldenPass line, an extraordinary journey in 3 different trains, with a panoramic view of breathtaking scenery. A never-ending spectacle of three mountain passes, the famous 4000 metre Alpine peaks, 8 lakes and unforgettable excursions. The line runs from Lucerne to Montreux comprising of 3 sections: Lucerne to Interlaken Ost ; Interlaken Ost to Zweisimmen ; Zweisimmen to Montreux. Most common section is taken by tourists travelling from Lucerne to Interlaken or vice-versa.

The Bernina Express

 Tirano (Italy) - Chur

The bernina express red train from tirano italy to chur switzerlandThe little red train is what we call it. The journey in The Bernina Express takes you on the Bernina and Albula route - a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2008 - directly to Lugano, Switzerland’s sunny spot. The route is known as the highest transalpine railway in Europe and leads to 145 kilometres through 55 tunnels and over 196 bridges and artful vertiginous viaducts. It is a mesmerizing experience and is highly recommended if you are travelling from Italy to Switzerland or vice-versa.

The Bernina Express is also a round trip experience with the first leg starting in Lugano travelling alongside Lake Como and reaching Tirano via Bus and the second leg starting from Tirano and reaching Chur via Train.

The Glacier Express

 Zermatt - Chur

The panoramic journey on the Glacier Express is one to remember. The 8-hour journey from Zermatt (home to the world’s most photographed mountain, the Matterhorn) on board the slowest express train in the world takes passengers over 291 bridges and through 91 tunnels. From cosmopolitan St. Moritz the train snakes its way through the Swiss Alps. The trip passes through the Rhine Gorge, Switzerland’s very own Grand Canyon.


How to Plan a trip to Switzerland?

Switzerland is one of the most beautiful countries in the world and one of the costliest too. Planning a trip to Switzerland requires careful planning to avoid costly last-minute changes.

The entire country covered in breathtaking landscape with mountain peaks and lakes and charming swiss chalets in swiss villages. Here is an easy step by step approach to planning for Switzerland:

  1. Figure your entry point - The most common ports of entry are either from Germany in the north, or France in the west, or Italy in the south. If visiting from Italy, I highly recommend coming through the Bernina Pass via the Bernina Express. Otherwise, the most common point of entry is the city of Zurich.

  2. Figure out the travel duration - Plan if you want to stay in a place for a longer duration or quickly head to all the Swiss famous landmarks. Depending on the number of days, figure out the best places to visit from the above guide.

  3. Figure out transport options - Switzerland is a small country and any place can be reached at an average of 2 hours. Operated by SBB, the swiss trains are run perfectly and are very well maintained.

    Passes like the Eurail and Interrail pass is suggested if travelling to other countries during the trip. If travelling within Switzerland you could check the Swiss Rail Pass as well even if travelling to a few places. Swiss Rail Pass provides a lot of flexibility and some very good perks if utilized correctly.

  4. Plan the transport options in the city - All cities and towns in Switzerland have a very good connected bus network and is the recommended mode of travel within the city. Avoid cabs, as they are insanely pricey.

    Switzerland issues tourist-friendly City Passes that grant free bus rides within a certain radius of your hotel. They are issued from the hotel and generally last for your duration of stay in the city. Don’t forget to check at your hotel reception during check-in.

  5. Plan the sites and buy advance tickets - Swiss Mountains are one of the most visited places and planning a trip to them requires a bit of pre-planning and some amount of flexibility for last-minute cancellations. This is owing to the changing weather in the top of the mountains. If you have already booked mountain tickets on a specific day, and so it happens that on the day, the mountain is cloud covered, it would be a waste of money if you. You don’t want to end up like this:

    https://i.imgur.com/Uhmo70j.jpg


Map

📌 Use the below interactive map for directions:

✔ Clicking the top right button opens the map in a new tab showing the different sections. Click on view map legend if browsing on phone
Save the map in your Google Maps for easy access later: Click the ⭐star button beside the name of the map. You can access the map later from Google Maps > Saved > Maps


Final Thoughts

Points to Remember

✔️ Hotels and Lodges in most Swiss towns and villages offer City Passes (limited for travel inside the city perimeter) for free. Since all Hotels charge tourist tax (which is generally included in your hotel bill), this is a great way to cut down on travel costs in the city.

✔️ Swiss trains are always on time at the minute. Do check for any rail closures in the winter. Summers generally have all trains running

✔️ Mountain Trains are operated privately. Altough the Swiss Travel Pass grants concession, please check all terms and conditions before buying

✔️ Weather in mountains is unpredictable: If heading to a mountain, ALWAYS check monitoring webcams (all major mountains have webcams) to visually check how the weather is on any given time of the day.

✔️ Drink from the water fountains: they fountain bottle class water

✔️ Food is generally pricey. Supermarket shelve ready to eat foods in both cold and hot varieties. Migros and Coop are the largest and second largest chains respectively. Most of the stores close early, mostly by 7.

✔️ Cabs are costly. Avoid, unless totally necessary. Take the buses or trains.

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