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Swiss Trails

7 best train journeys in Switzerland

1. Glacier Express:

Traversing 291 bridges and 91 tunnels between St. Moritz and Zermatt, the Glacier Express is one of the most iconic train journeys all over the world. The route proudly highlights the magnificence of the snow-capped Swiss Alps, UNESCO Heritage Site of the Bernina landscapes. The paradisiacal tour takes you through the Oberal Pass, Upper Pass, the Rhine gorge, Engadine Valley and countless other stunning backdrops.
Duration: 7 hours
Best time to travel: January – October
Cost: Approximately $170 one-way
Website: www.glacierexpress.ch

2. Bernina Express:

Chugging through the mesmerising trail from Chur in Switzerland to Poschiavo and Tirano in Italy, the Bernina Express is a window-seat lover’s dream come true. Giving a tough competition to the Glacier Express, this train embarks upon an invigorating journey across the Swiss Engadin Alps, running along the UNESCO Heritage Site of the Rhaetian Railway. Adventure and harmony rolled into one, the train passes through 55 tunnels and 196 bridges, travelling across the Landwasser Viaduct, Lago Bianco watershed and ravishing scenery of the Montebello Curve.
Duration: 4 hours
Best time to travel: April – October
Cost: Approximately $45 one-way
Website: www.rhb.ch

3. Centovalli Railway:

Named after its spectacular alpine route that traverses through “Hundred Valleys”, the Centovalli seamlessly connects Domodossola in Italy to Locarno in Switzerland. As you drift into the gorgeous vineyards, waterfalls, chestnut forests and greenery, the train runs alongside the cobalt Lago Maggiore lake and Sorno viaduct. Taking this journey a notch higher, the train comes with panoramic coaches.
Duration: 2 hours
Best time to travel: June – August
Cost: Approximately $38 round-trip
Website: www.centovalli.ch
Photo credit: www.myswitzerland.com

4. The Golden Pass:

The scenic link between Montreux and Lucerne is made up of multiple routes. Unlike most trains, a journey across these touch points of Switzerland via the Golden Pass requires travellers to change trains at Interlaken and Zweisimmen. Since the train is not a direct one, the pace of travel is relatively slower, thereby accentuating the beauty of the Swiss highlands. Being an ideal portrayal of Switzerland’s hypnotic landscape, the train gives a divine view of lakes of Bernese Oberland, Gstaad, Simmen Valley, Lake Geneva. The state of the art panoramic coaches add a new dimension to this prolific train journey.
Duration: 5 hours
Best time to travel: Throughout the year
Cost: Approximately $90
Website: www.goldenpass.ch

5. Swiss Chocolate Train:

The Swiss Chocolate Train is the interesting offspring of the Golden Pass. The tour from Montreux to Broc begins along on the Swiss Riviera and slithers to Gruyères, the heavenly destination known for its cheese and castle. Further on, the it moves to Broc to give you a life-altering experience at the Cailler-Nestlé Chocolate Factory. Captivating your senses with a blissful overload of cheese, croissants, coffee and chocolates, this train journey is a zenith of culinary indulgence.
Duration: 10 hours, one-day round trip
Best time to travel: May – October
Cost: Approximately $100
Website: www.goldenpass.ch

6. Wilhem Tell Express:

Redefining scenic locomotive experiences, the Wilhelm Tell Express combines two modes of transport – boat and train. Linking the north and south passage of the Swiss Alps, the train connects Lucerne to Locarno. The first half of the journey comprises of a spellbinding boat ride in Lake Lucerne, before hopping on to the train. The railway route begins in Flüelen and stretches across the Reuss Valley, St. Gotthard ranges, Ticino and Bellinzona.
Duration: 5 hours
Best time to travel: March – May
Cost: Approximately $185 one-way
Website: www.sbb.ch

7. Jura Foot Line:

Chugging along the undulating hills between Basel and Geneva, the Jura Foot Line is one of the best ways to explore the changing backdrops of Switzerland. From River Rhine to Lake Geneva and the Jura highlands to the modest towns of Morges, Yverdon-les-Bains and Neuchâtel, the railway line promises to give you an unmatched view of the country.
Duration: 2 hours 40 minutes
Best time to travel: June – August
Cost: Approximately $78
Website: www.sbb.ch

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