8 Day Switzerland Itinerary – The Ultimate Guide

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Switzerland is hands-down the most beautiful and picturesque country I’ve ever had the pleasure of exploring.

Most famous for its cheese and chocolate but in addition to this, the verdant landscapes and enormity of the Swiss Alps are just some of the reasons why I love this country so much… and guarantee you will too!

This 8 Day Switzerland Itinerary includes a complete route guide with everything you need to know before you go, how to get around, the best places to visit, where to stay, and much more!

I’ve been to Switzerland on two separate occasions, once during summer and the other in winter, so I think it’s safe to say that this is the only guide you’ll need!

 

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8 DAYS IN SWITZERLAND

I have put together this 8 Day Switzerland Itinerary based on my trip around the country using the all-in-one Swiss Travel Pass which includes the majority of trains, buses, and boats throughout the whole of Switzerland.

Once you have purchased the Swiss Travel Pass online, you’ll receive an email with your tickets that you will have to print and keep with you at all times.

I also recommend downloading the SBB Mobile app from the App Store. You can use this app to check all train, bus, and boat timetables in Switzerland when you’re on the move.

 

OVERVIEW – SWITZERLAND ITINERARY

Here is a quick overview of an ideal Switzerland 8 Day Itinerary that you will find in this post:

  • Day 1: Zurich
  • Day 2: Luzern
  • Day 3: Interlaken & Lauterbrunnen
  • Day 4: Montreux
  • Day 5: Zermatt
  • Day 6: Glacier Express
  • Day 7: St. Moritz
  • Day 8: Zurich

lauterbrunnen

 

HOW TO GET TO SWITZERLAND

Arriving in Switzerland by plane is the easiest and most convenient way to begin your adventures in this wonderful country.

If you plan on following this exact itinerary, then your best bet is to fly into Zurich International Airport and begin your trip around Switzerland from here.

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DAY 1: ZURICH TO LUCERNE

The first leg of this itinerary begins in Zurich, where I recommend boarding a morning train at Zurich International Airport or Zurich Hauptbahnhof Train Station bound for Lucerne, which is a short one-hour journey.

There is no validation required for your Swiss Travel Pass, just simply jump on board the train.

When onboard, a ticket inspector will do the rounds and will most definitely ask to see your Swiss Travel Pass as well as your passport, so make sure to have these documents handy on the train.

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3 THINGS TO DO IN LUCERNE

 

#1 CHAPEL BRIDGE

When you arrive in Lucerne on day 1 of your Switzerland itinerary, I recommend checking out Chapel Bridge. It’s the most iconic attraction in Lucerne and the oldest wooden bridge in Switzerland, dating back to the 14th century.

Chapel Bridge Lucerne stretches 200 meters across the Reuss River and attached to the bridge is an old water tower that served as a dungeon, an archive, and a treasury vault in medieval times.

It’s free to walk over Chapel Bridge and remember to look up to discover the colorful old paintings on the underside of the roof.

switzerland itineraryChapel Bridge Luzern

switzerland itineraryChapel Bridge Switzerland

 

#2 BOAT TRIP ON LAKE LUCERNE

A boat trip on Lake Lucerne is a must on your 8 days in Switzerland. With the Swiss Travel Pass, you can take a round-trip boat ride on Lake Lucerne which is the best way to see the region at a slow pace.

There are daily departures on Lake Lucerne, usually every hour during the day. Just head down to the ferry terminal located across the road from the Lucerne Train Station and jump on board when a boat arrives.

Before boarding, you’ll be asked to show your Swiss Travel Pass and possibly your passport as well, so make sure to have these documents handy.

switzerland itineraryLake Lucerne – Swiss itinerary for 8 days

switzerland itineraryCruising on Lake Lucerne

 

#3 MOUNT RIGI

Mt Rigi, also known as the queen of the mountains, is a large mountain range in the Lucerne region and a must-visit during your stay.

The best way to get to Mt Rigi, using the Swiss Travel Pass, is to take the one-hour boat ride from the Lucerne Ferry Terminal and get off at Vitznau.

From here, there is a special cog-wheel train that will take you up to the summit of Mount Rigi. This was my favorite part of the adventure as I was able to hang outside the windows of the cog-wheel train to take photos!

Panoramic views await at the summit of Mt Rigi, overlooking three lakes and phenomenal alpine peaks in the distance. If you want to grab lunch or a beer you can simply pop into one of the hotel restaurants on the mountain and most have outdoor terraces with stunning views.

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switzerland itineraryTrain to Mount Rigi

switzerland itineraryMt Rigi – Switzerland by train itinerary

 

BEST PLACES TO STAY IN LUCERNE

Luxury: Lucerne Lake View Apartments

Offering stunning lake views, free wifi, and just walking distance to the center of the city, this 5-star accommodation is hard to beat! Each apartment is fitted with a balcony, fully-equipped kitchen, dishwasher, sofa, tv, dining room, washing machine, private bathroom with a bath, fridge and freezer, microwave, and coffee machine. Convinced yet?

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Mid Range: Hotel De la Paix

This 3-star hotel is located right in the heart of town, just 200m walk to the old quarter in Lucerne. Various restaurants, cafes, bars, and shops are all located in the vicinity of Hotel De la Paix. There are single, double, and triple rooms available and breakfast is included.

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Budget: Barabas Hostel

I personally stayed at the Barabas Hostel, located just ten minutes walk from the Lucerne Train Station. The Barabas Hostel is one of the coolest and most unique hostels I have stayed in, the reason being that it was once an old prison. The dorms and private rooms are the same rooms where prison inmates used to sleep back in the day (much cleaner and refurbished of course) and it gives you a real sense of what it would be like to be a prisoner. A buffet breakfast is also included with the room and the staff is overly helpful with their knowledge of the best things to do in Luzern. 

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DAY 2: LUCERNE TO INTERLAKEN

Continue your 8 day Switzerland itinerary from Lucerne to Interlaken using the Swiss Travel Pass.

Interlaken is the gateway to the Jungfrau Region and a good location to base yourself when visiting Lauterbrunnen Valley, which is also referred to as The Valley Of 72 Waterfalls.

 

HOW TO GET TO LAUTERBRUNNEN

From Interlaken East Train Station, using the Swiss Travel Pass, you can take a train to Lauterbrunnen Station. The train takes only twenty minutes and you can disembark right in the center of Lauterbrunnen village.

 

9 THINGS TO DO IN LAUTERBRUNNEN

 

#1 VISIT STAUBBACH FALLS

Take a morning train on day 2 of your Swiss itinerary from Interlaken to Lauterbrunnen and from the station, it’s an easy walk through the village to a number of different scenic viewpoints of Staubbach Falls and upper Lauterbrunnen Valley.

Staubbach Falls is one of the impressive waterfalls I have ever seen! These glacial falls gush down from the 300m high peaks and emerge into the river that cuts through the village of Lauterbrunnen.

After taking some photos of the falls from Lauterbrunnen village, follow the road down till you reach the base of Staubbach Falls. You can walk up the stairs and into a man-made grotto that leads behind Staubbach Falls. 

From inside the grotto, peering out looks like a scene out of Jurassic Park, without the dinosaurs, unfortunately! The view of the distant glacier-filled valley is mesmerizing and so insanely beautiful that you’ll feel like you are standing in a real-life postcard

On a clear day, you can spot paragliders and base jumpers soaring around in the skies above and countless waterfalls flowing heavily over the edge of the towering cliffs into Lauterbrunnen Valley.

There is also an easy walking trail to the next village that will take you past several more Lauterbrunnen waterfalls and vast meadows.

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switzerland itinerary, lauterbrunnenStaubbach Falls in Lauterbrunnen

switzerlannd itinerary 2Grotto behind Staubbach Falls

switzerlannd itineraryLauterbrunnen in Summer

switzerland itinerary, lauterbrunnenLauterbrunnen in Winter

 

#2 TRÜMMELBACH FALLS

Trümmelbach Falls can be found in the heart of Lauterbrunnen. They are the world’s only glacier waterfalls that are accessible underground by lift, galleries, tunnels, paths, and platforms.

There is an easy walking trail from Lauterbrunnen Village that will take you through vast meadows in the direction of Trümmelbach Falls.

Trümmelbach Falls carries the water from the glaciers of Jungfrau down to Lauterbrunnen Valley. Up to 20,000 liters of water travel through the falls per second, they are a sight and a sound to behold.

This is one of the top things to see in Lauterbrunnen during your visit!

lauterbrunnen 14 e1589509348276Trümmelbach Falls

 

#3 MÜRREN VILLAGE

This delightful village of Mürren lies at the very end of Lauterbrunnen Valley, filled with traditional chalets and idyllic village life.

You can jump on the public bus No. 141 that runs from Lauterbrunnen to Mürren every thirty minutes. The bus departs from outside Lauterbrunnen Railway Station or you can hail it down on the main road near Trümmelbach Falls.

The bus journey time is around twenty minutes. Click Here to see Lauterbrunnen Bus No. 141 timetables.

Mürren offers a peaceful atmosphere with beautiful restaurants and cafes offering traditional Swiss dining and is also a great starting point for hiking, cycling, or skiing trails.

things to do in lauterbrunnen, lauterbrunnen switzerland, lauterbrunnen valley, murrenMürren Village

 

#4 MOUNT SCHILTHORN

Once you have visited Mürren, next on the list of places to see in Lauterbrunnen is Mount Schilthorn.

Head to Stechelberg Gondola Station which is located in Mürren at the base of Mount Schilthorn and using the Swiss Travel Pass, you can ride the gondola all the way up to the Piz Gloria revolving restaurant.

Note: Without the Swiss Travel Pass, a return trip on the gondola from Stechelberg to Mount Schilthorn will set you back 105 CHF ($105 USD).

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Mount Schilthorn is a popular ski field in Lauterbrunnen if you wish to spend a day skiing in Lauterbrunnen. Though if skiing is not your jam, you can still head up to the famous Piz Gloria viewpoint regardless to enjoy the view.

If you are a fan of James Bond 007, Piz Gloria located on the top of Mount Schilthorn is where one of the original 007 movies was filmed back in 1969. Expect to see James Bond memorabilia galore at Piz Gloria.

Aside from this, there is a 360-degree viewpoint at the summit of Mt Schilthorn, and the Piz Gloria revolving restaurant features floor-to-ceiling glass windows offering extensive views of the Swiss Alps in the Jungfrau Region. Not a bad spot for lunch if you ask me! 

Also, if you are not afraid of heights, I dare you to take the knee-jittering thrill walk around the front face of Mount Schilthorn.

switzerland itinerary, mount schilthorn, mt schilthorn, swiss travel passMt Schilthorn

switzerland itinerary, mount schilthorn, mt schilthorn, swiss travel passThrill walk Lauterbrunnen

things to do in lauterbrunnen, lauterbrunnen switzerland, lauterbrunnen valley, murrenTop of Mount Schilthorn

switzerland itinerary, mount schilthorn, mt schilthorn, swiss travel passView from Mt Schilthorn

 

#5 WENGEN VILLAGE

Before the day is out, ride the gondola back down to the Stechelberg Gondola Station and jump on the public bus No. 141 to return to Lauterbrunnen Station.

Disembark from the bus and walk down into Lauterbrunnen Railway Station. Ask one of the staff members at the station which platform you need to wait on to take the train to Wengen Village and they will point you in the right direction.

The iconic yellow train will take you up and over the mountainside to Wengen Village which is located in the opposite valley and it’s one of the best places to see in Lauterbrunnen!

There is another ski field at Wengen Village if you visit Lauterbrunnen in winter and from the town, you can enjoy another perspective of the Swiss Alps in the Jungfrau Region.

There is an old church in Wengen Village which is a great vantage point to get some photos of the village and surrounding mountains.

I recommend spending an hour or so wandering around Wengen Village seeing how the locals live their lives up here on the mountainside.

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switzerland itinerary, swiss travel pass, wengen villageLauterbrunnen to Wengen train

switzerland itinerary, swiss travel pass, wengen villageWengen Village

things to do in lauterbrunnen, lauterbrunnen switzerland, lauterbrunnen valley, murrenEpic views in Wengen

 

#6 PARAGLIDING IN LAUTERBRUNNEN

If you are a thrill-seeker looking for the ultimate experience and the best views of the valley then this activity is one of the best things to do in Switzerland.

Flying over the Lauterbrunnen U-Valley, you can book an all-inclusive tandem paragliding experience. Flying tandem with an instructor allows you to focus purely on the flight, the experience takes care of all other logistics offering pick up from your Lauterbrunnen hotel to the launch site and even a post-flight drink included.

Full safety equipment and an experienced pilot are part of this must-do activity.

The experience will cost you around $190 and can be booked online in advance. The experience lasts for around 1 hour and 30 minutes where you can expect to take in all of the aerial views of breathtaking Lauterbrunnen.

lauterbrunnen 3Paragliding in Lauterbrunnen

lauterbrunnen 6Flying high in Switzerland

 

#7 HIKING IN LAUTERBRUNNEN

There are nearly 400 designated hiking trails in Lauterbrunnen Switzerland catering to every ability!

Some of the best trails to take when hiking in Lauterbrunnen are:

  • Path to Murren through Blumental that takes you through the flower valley.
  • The iconic Eiger trail, a high route brings you right in front of the famous Eiger Nordwand.
  • The trail to Wengen ascends most of the way but gives you glimpses of the Breithorn and Staubbach Falls cascading into Lauterbrunnen Valley.

lauterbrunnen 7Lauterbrunnen hiking

lauterbrunnen 2The hiking trail to Wengen

 

#8 CYCLING IN LAUTERBRUNNEN

There are nearly 60 cycle routes dotted around Lauterbrunnen with something for every ability and ranging from the peaceful and relaxing to the hair-raising and thrill-seeking kind. 

There are trails allowing you to cycle to most of the surrounding villages including Grindelwald, Wengen, and Gimmelwald as well as routes to take in all of the iconic mountains surrounding the valley including Jungfrau, Eiger, and Breithorn.

Lauterbrunnen Valley is a must for any cycling enthusiast.

lauterbrunnen 13Cycling in Lauterbrunnen

 

#9 SKYDIVING IN INTERLAKEN

Skydiving in Interlaken is one of the best experiences you can have during your visit to Switzerland and I guarantee you will remember it for a lifetime!

What better way to finish off your adventures than tandem-jumping out of a helicopter from 15,000 feet, freefalling over the magnificent mountains in the Jungfrau Region.

The Swiss skydive masters make sure your safety is their number 1 priority. All tandem instructors are trained, licensed, and experienced to ensure you have the most incredible experience knowing that you are completely safe at the same time.

One of the best parts about skydiving here in the Swiss Alps is the phenomenal view from 15,000 feet in the air! But don’t get too comfortable, because your instructor will shortly be opening the doors of the helicopter to take the leap.

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lauterbrunnen 2 1Helicopter Skydiving

lauterbrunnen 4Skydiving in Interlaken

 

BEST PLACES TO STAY IN INTERLAKEN

The majority of people visiting Lauterbrunnen choose to stay in Interlaken, a small city located just twenty minutes drive or twenty minutes on the train from Lauterbrunnen Valley.

 

Luxury: Victoria Jungfrau Grand Hotel & Spa

This 5-star hotel is centrally located in between two beautiful lakes in the picturesque town of Interlaken. Victoria Jungfrau Hotel features a spa, swimming pool, sauna, and steam room. The spacious rooms have elegant interiors and marble bathrooms, boasting views of the snowcapped mountains in the Jungfrau region. Wifi is free and breakfast is included.

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Mid Range: Hotel Interlaken

Hotel Interlaken is where I based myself for one night because it’s conveniently located just five minutes walk from Interlaken East Train Station and a twenty-minute train ride to Lauterbrunnen Valley. Hotel Interlaken is the perfect accommodation for couples, families, solo travelers, and friends. Featuring large rooms, mountain views, and a delicious buffet breakfast.

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Budget: Valley Hostel

If you are traveling solo the Valley Hostel is your best option for cheap accommodation. Located in the heart of Lauterbrunnen Valley, this hostel is within walking distance to nearby waterfalls, retail shops, restaurants, and the main train station. Valley Hostel offers dorms and private rooms for every sort of traveler!

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DAY 3: INTERLAKEN TO MONTREUX

On day three of your itinerary, check out of your hotel in the morning and find your way to Interlaken East Station to take the train bound for Montreux.

I highly recommend taking the Belle Epoque train on the Golden Line for an unforgettable experience on your Swiss itinerary. The Belle Epoque is an absolute charm that will take you on a timeless journey between Zweisimenn and Montreux.

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WHAT TO EXPECT IN MONTREUX

Montreux is a beautiful little town located at the eastern end of Lake Geneva. There is a strong French influence in Montreux, from the architecture to the people and a pleasant vibe fills the air.

One of the most relaxing things to do in Montreux is to take a stroll along the promenade that lines the water’s edge of Lake Geneva and enjoy the calmness of the lake and the impressive mountainous hills that surround it.

Dozens of bars and restaurants are dotted along the promenade, perfect for lunch or dinner with a view.

If you are up for a small adventure, take the local bus south to Chateau De Chillon, just fifteen minutes ride from Montreux. Chateau De Chillon is an island castle located on the waters of Lake Geneva, an old medieval fortress that is now a museum.

The Swiss Travel Pass also gives you access to 500 museums in Switzerland and Chateau De Chillon is one of them. There is the option of an audio headset tour when you visit Chillon Castle or you can just simply explore inside the walls at your own pace.

switzerland itinerary, montreux, things to do in montreux, swiss travel pass, switzerland travel itinerary, belle epoque, golden line passBelle Epoque train

switzerland itinerary, montreux, things to do in montreux, swiss travel pass, switzerland travel itineraryChateau De Chillon

switzerland itinerary, montreux, things to do in montreux, swiss travel pass, switzerland travel itinerary, chateau de chillon, chillon castleChillon Castle

switzerland itinerary, montreux, things to do in montreux, swiss travel pass, switzerland travel itinerarySunset on Lake Geneva – 8 Days in Switzerland

 

BEST PLACES TO STAY IN MONTREUX

Luxury: Montreux Apartment On The Lake

These 5-star apartments are equipped with two bedrooms, flat-screen TVs, fully equipped kitchens with a dishwasher, fridge, and microwave. If you are wanting to splurge a little in Montreux, this is the perfect accommodation for you!

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Mid Range: La Rouvenaz Hotel

If you are looking for mid-range accommodation I highly recommend staying at La Rouvenaz Hotel during your visit for its incredible lakeside views, central location, reputable restaurant, and comfortable rooms.

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Budget: Montreux Youth Hostel

Only a few steps away from the lakeside promenade and a few hundred meters from the train station. There are dorms, private double rooms, and family-sized rooms available with wifi and breakfast is included. Montreux Youth Hostel is your best bang for buck!

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DAY 4 & 5: MONTREUX TO ZERMATT

Continuing on, take the train from Montreux to Zermatt. This train journey takes approximately two hours and thirty minutes, passing by beautiful farmlands, vast mountains, and deep valleys.

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WHAT TO EXPECT IN ZERMATT

Zermatt is home to the iconic Matterhorn mountain which stands a dominating 4,478 meters at its highest peak! This place is NOT to be skipped on any Swiss itinerary.

The Matterhorn is known all around the world for its unique pyramid shape and the famous Toblerone chocolate takes inspiration from the Matterhorn mountain.

Apart from the incredible Matterhorn, Zermatt is renowned for skiing, climbing, and hiking all year round.

If you love skiing or snowboarding, Zermatt is the place to do it! If you’re not a skier, it’s still possible to ride the world’s highest gondola to the Glacier Paradise Station at the top of the mountain regardless.

On a clear day, the panoramic views of Zermatt and surrounding mountains are absolutely insane! Unfortunately, it was cloudy and snowing on the day I visited but it was still an awesome experience seeing the Matterhorn up close!

Unfortunately, the Swiss Travel Pass does not cover this gondola ride so you’ll have to purchase a ticket at the gondola lift station upon arrival or book online in advance at www.matterhornparadise.ch/en.

I recommend spending one day on the mountain and the second day exploring Zermatt’s main street, Bahnhofstrasse, which is filled with retail shops, cafes, bars, restaurants, and an awesome apres-ski scene!

glacier express, switzerland itinerary, glacier express switzerland, landwasser viaduct, zermatt, matterhornTown of Zermatt

glacier express, switzerland itinerary, glacier express switzerland, landwasser viaduct, zermatt, matterhornExploring Zermatt

glacier express, switzerland itinerary, glacier express switzerland, landwasser viaduct, zermatt, matterhornGlacier Paradise Gondola

glacier express, switzerland itinerary, glacier express switzerland, landwasser viaduct, zermatt, matterhornThe iconic Matterhorn

 

BEST PLACES TO STAY IN ZERMATT

As Zermatt is one of the most popular destinations in Switzerland there are hundreds of hotels, resorts, chalets, and lodges to choose from. However, I have narrowed it down to a few of my recommended places to stay in Zermatt.

Luxury: Grand Hotel Zermatterhof

Absolute luxury can be found at the Grand Hotel, boasting three restaurants, a spa, swimming pool, and sauna. The perfect way to warm up after a day on the slopes! The rooms and suites are beautifully furnished and most have a phenomenal view of the Matterhorn. The best part is the free wine and fruits upon arrival!

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Mid Range: Schlosshotel Life & Style Zermatt

One accommodation I can highly recommend in Zermatt is the Schlosshotel, a short two-minute walk from Zermatt Train Station. I spent two nights at the Schlosshotel and it was honestly one of the best places I stayed. The staff members were super lovely and genuine throughout my stay, the room was very cozy and had an incredible view of the Matterhorn. The hotel also features a sauna, spa, and heated swimming pool and the buffet breakfast is to die for!

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Budget: The Matterhorn Hostel Zermatt

Enjoy easy access to the ski slopes and hiking when you stay at The Matterhorn Hostel. A fun and friendly hostel with clean, comfortable rooms and a bar/restaurant to enjoy a nice meal and something to drink. This is one of the best hostels in Zermatt.

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DAY 6: ZERMATT TO ST. MORITZ

This leg of the Switzerland travel itinerary is an experience you will never forget. The Glacier Express is an unforgettable eight-hour journey through the Swiss Alps, connecting Zermatt to St. Moritz and it is by far one of the most scenic train rides in the world.

Top to bottom glass windows offer panoramic views, lunch is served to you in your seat and there is also a bar for refreshments on board the Glacier Express.

Note: The Glacier Express is included in the Swiss Travel Pass though you must make a seat reservation at an additional cost which you’ll have to book online in advance. Visit the Glacier Express website to choose your desired day of travel, make seat reservations, and get a discount using the Swiss Travel Pass.

You’ll most likely arrive late into St. Moritz and there won’t be much daylight left to explore so my recommendation is to head straight to a hotel and rest up and feel fresh for the following day.

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glacier express, switzerland itinerary, glacier express switzerlandOnboard the Glacier Express

glacier express, switzerland itinerary, glacier express switzerlandThe Glacier Express

 

LANDWASSER VIADUCT

If you’re up for an adventurous detour, disembark the Glacier Express at Filisur Station, which is before St. Moritz, and head over to the famous limestone bridge known as the Landwasser Viaduct.

This impressive 6-arch curved bridge boasts 65-meter tall pillars and a freshwater stream runs right beneath it.

From Filisur station, it’s approximately a forty-minute walk to get to the Landwasser Viaduct and there are a few good viewpoints to take photos.

One is down by the freshwater stream directly beneath the bridge and the other can be found up a dirt trail to the very top of the mountain to get a birds-eye view of the bridge.

The top viewpoint is by far the best spot to take photos of the train as it passes over the Landwasser Viaduct.

See the map below for the exact directions from Filisur Station to the Landwasser Viaduct.

Screen Shot 2019 07 12 at 9.26.23 amDirections to Landwasser Viaduct

glacier express, switzerland itinerary, glacier express switzerland, landwasser viaductLandwasser Viaduct

 

WHERE TO STAY IN ST. MORITZ

Luxury: Badrutt’s Palace Hotel

A luxurious 5-star resort located in the center of St. Moritz, featuring six restaurants, an indoor pool, and free shuttle services. Elegant rooms overlook the surrounding mountains, each with its own flat-screen TV, private bathroom, comfortable beds, and even a butler upon request! In summer there is a tennis court for guests to enjoy that, funnily enough, turns into an ice skating rink in the winter. How freaking cool is that?!

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Mid Range: Hotel Piz St. Moritz

Both stylish and elegant, Hotel Piz is a 3-star hotel located close to the city center that features a pizzeria, free wifi, sauna, and steam room. The rooms are spacious, each with its own TV, lock safe and private bathroom. Guests staying longer than two nights at Hotel Piz in summer will receive free tickets for the cable car, cog railway, and funicular!

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Budget: St. Moritz Youth Hostel

Offering panoramic views of St. Moritz, the best feature of this hostel is the games room offering billiards and table tennis. There are dorm rooms and private double rooms available that are bright and modernly furnished. This is the best place to stay in St. Moritz on a budget!

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DAY 7:  ST. MORITZ

St. Moritz is a dreamy city located on the far eastern end of Switzerland. It is here where the notion of winter holidays was born and its stunning imagery is jaw-dropping.

This place is as good as it gets and one of my favorite places I visited!

I am impressed by how active all the locals are here – mountain bike riding, hang gliding, skiing, snowboarding, kite surfing, and sailing on the lake. It seems St. Moritz is a place where the adventure never stops!

One of the best things to do in St. Moritz is to ride the famous Bernina Express train through the snowy mountains to a place called Alp Grum. The journey takes approximately one hour until it reaches the top of the Bernina Pass at Alp Grum.

Note: The Bernina Express is included in the Swiss Travel Pass though you must make a seat reservation at an additional cost which you’ll have to book online in advance. Visit the Bernina Express website to choose your desired day of travel, make seat reservations, and get a discount using the Swiss Travel Pass.

There is not much more than a restaurant and bar up here at Alp Grum, but the views of nearby glaciers on the mountains are stunning!

Take the Bernina Express back down to St. Moritz to spend the second last day of your Switzerland vacation exploring this beautiful lakeside town.

switzerlannd itinerary 3The picture-perfect St. Moritz

glacier express, switzerland itinerary, glacier express switzerland, landwasser viaduct, bernina expressThe Bernina Express

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DAY 8: ST. MORITZ TO ZURICH

The last leg of the journey is taking the train from St. Moritz to Zurich, which takes approximately three to four hours depending on which connection you take.

Zurich offers a great street scene in the old town with dozens of shops, cafes, and small cobblestone laneways and there are also a number of historical sites to visit if you have the time on the last day of your Switzerland trip.

If you are interested in seeing all the sites in one day, click here to view the best Zurich City Tours.

zurichZurich city tour

 

BEST PLACES TO STAY IN ZURICH

Luxury: Park Hyatt Zurich

A contemporary 5-star hotel located in the heart of Zurich’s commercial district and walking distance to the Bahnhofstrasse shopping street. The rooms are very spacious with high-speed internet and there are restaurants, bars, and lounges inside the Park Hyatt. Perfect for couples wanting an unforgettable experience in Zurich.

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Mid Range: Motel One Zurich

An excellent 3-star hotel located in one of the best areas of the city. There is free wifi, private rooms with bathroom ensuites, flat-screen TVs and all of this is just within walking distance to Zurich’s main attractions.

CHECK PRICES ON BOOKING.COM

CHECK PRICES ON AGODA

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Budget: Budget Youth Hostel

The name says it all! Budget but also one of the best hostels in Zurich for solo travelers. The rooms are air-conditioned, the wifi is free and there is a garden terrace for guests to enjoy. There are 4-bed and 8-bed dorms available to choose from at Budget Youth Hostel.

CHECK PRICES ON BOOKING.COM

CHECK PRICES ON AGODA

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FOR ALL OTHER PLACES TO STAY IN ZURICH, SEARCH ON AGODA OR SEARCH ON BOOKING.COM

 

BEST TIME TO VISIT SWITZERLAND

The best time to visit Switzerland depends on what you plan to do. I personally prefer the spring and summer months in Switzerland (April – September) when temperatures are warm and the landscapes are vividly green.

However, visiting Switzerland in winter (December – March) is absolutely magical because the landscapes are completely covered in glistening white snow. Visiting Switzerland in winter means you have to opportunity to go skiing in the Swiss Alps.

 

THINGS TO KNOW BEFORE YOU GO

The currency in Switzerland is Swiss Francs (CHF) and the exchange rate is approximately $1 USD = $1 CHF.

Purchasing a sim card in Switzerland is very simple. You can do this at the airport on arrival or find a phone store close to your accommodation. For approximately $40 USD, you can get a local sim card that comes with 10GB of data.

 

MAP OF SWITZERLAND

switzerland map

 

AIRBNB SWITZERLAND

Another option for accommodation in Switzerland is to stay at an Airbnb which generally has some great deals!

WANT TO SAVE $$$ ON AIRBNB? GET MY AIRBNB MONEY SAVING GUIDE

 

MORE SWITZERLAND TRAVEL GUIDES

If you are planning a holiday in Switzerland, be sure to check out my other travel guides below that you might find useful while putting together your itinerary:

 

LONELY PLANET SWITZERLAND

One of the best books to take on your trip is the Lonely Planet Switzerland Guide.

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ONLINE ENGLISH TEACHING

Do you want to travel full-time and get paid along the way?

Teaching English online is one of the easiest and most flexible jobs out there! Become a Digital Nomad, choose your own hours, and work remotely from anywhere in the world by teaching English online. All you need is a laptop, good WiFi connection, a TEFL certificate and you’re good to go!

Click here to get your TEFL certificate with MyTefl

 

JOIN MY FACEBOOK COMMUNITY

Do you have any questions about Switzerland?

Join my Facebook Community and send me a message at any time for a quick response!

 

MY SHOP

Before you go, don’t forget to check out My Online Shop!

I’ve got a wide range of digital products for sale and I’m sure you’ll find something that will come in handy during your travels!

SEE MORE → MY SHOP

 

FINAL THOUGHTS

I hope you enjoyed reading this article and if you have any questions at all about this Switzerland Itinerary, please leave me a comment below this post and I will get back to you as soon as I can.

Happy Travels 😀

 

PIN IT FOR LATER

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59 thoughts on “8 Day Switzerland Itinerary – The Ultimate Guide”

  1. Enjoyed ur 8 days guide in Switzerland. Planning to go for abt 10 days end of Aug 19. This guide will be really helpful. We are coming from Asia/ Singapore. May I check if there are enough space for big luggage in all the trains?
    We loved the nature and hiking. Which location do you think best for us to stay a day or two longer for that? Zermatt ?
    Thanks in advance!

    Reply
    • Hi and thanks for reading! Yes there is plenty of space on the trains for luggage! And I would recommend spending two days for hiking and exploring in Lauterbrunnen Valley! Enjoy!

      Reply
  2. Great review!! but i am a little confused about the start and end point of the trip. I am planning to go in September. Your guide is to start off in Geneva but you mentioned flying into Zurich first. If so when i arrive, i will need to make a trip across the country first? since i would be leaving from Zurich as well.

    Reply
    • Hi thanks for reading. I started the train journey in Zurich and ended in Zurich. I never went to Geneva… I hope this helps 🙂

      Reply
  3. This is so awesome. I’m visiting Switzerland in October and it’ll be my first time traveling alone so I was a little confused about how to get around but this really helped. Thank you!

    Reply
  4. Great post! Planing eight day family vacation with 7 year old daughter for August 2019. Do you think your itinerary would be too much for an active 7 year old? If so, what would you take out and where would you spend more “down time”. We enjoy all things outdoors (biking, hiking, etc.) so any opportunities to enjoy those activities would be great. Thanks again for sharing your post!

    Reply
    • Hi Mark, glad you like this article and found it useful. This itinerary is perfect for all ages and if you are interested in hiking and some more downtime, Lauterbrunnen is the place to do that. I hope this helps and enjoy your trip! 🙂

      Reply
  5. Hi,
    Thanks for this amazing blog. It was very helpul. I’m planning to visit end of this month.I have the swiss pass, can you tell me please which rides weren’t included in the swiss pass and you need to pay. Like the cog wheel train, gandola to piz gloria. glacier paradise gandola,yellow train, bernina express.Also do you need to book seats in advance or you can get the tickets when you arrive there?
    Many thanks

    Reply
  6. Hi Jonny
    Thanx for sharing this wonderful experience. We are planning to go in end of september and have plans to pick up a swiss pass. Can you let me know any journeys that swiss pass wont cover.

    Reply
    • Hell, you’re going to love it! I am not 100% sure whats covered and whats not covered outside of the exact itinerary in my article. Best bet is to click on the ‘swiss travel pass’ link in this article and all information can be found on their website. Hope this helps and enjoy Switzerland!

      Reply
  7. Hye.. I wanna use 8 days STP like what u did for my trip in September.. But I just wanna ask, how did u use Swiss Travel Pass for domestic trains? Did u just go to the station and showed them the pass or how? For example if I wanna go from Laguno to Grindelwald via train…

    Reply
    • Hello, You can use the Swiss Travel Pass on all domestic trains. No reservations needed, just board the train and the ticket inspector will ask to see your ticket on the train. For more information click on the ‘swiss travel pass’ links in this article and visit the website. Hope this helps1 🙂

      Reply
  8. Hi
    Thanks a lot for this detailed blog…it’s really very informative.
    I am planning to visit switerzerland in September and i am going to follow your itinary….as it looks just how i would like to travel.
    I have a little question about baggage allowance in trains ..is there any limit for baggage.
    And also about Bernia Express…is it included in swiss pass

    Reply
    • Hello, thanks for reading and glad you enjoyed this article. There is no maximum baggage allowance on all trains so feel free to take as much luggage as you like. And yes, the Swiss Pass includes the Bernina Express! Enjoy 🙂

      Reply
  9. Hi Jonny,

    Thanks for the post! Your detailed itinerary was very helpful. I’m planning to travel to Switzerland in Sept. I was wondering if you felt rushed traveling from place to place every day. I’m hoping to have time to fit in a couple of 2-3 hr hikes in Interlaken and Zermatt.

    Reply
    • Hello!

      It was a little rushed but I wanted to see as much as I possibly could. It was the right amount of time to do the things that I did but if you want to throw in a hike you may need an extra day. Hope this helps and Enjoy! 🙂

      Reply
  10. Amazing itinerary and pictures, this really helped me a lot for my next adventure. What camera did you use for this travel? or camera you use for most of your travel?

    Reply
  11. Hi Jonny, nice post you got there. Also planning to visit Switzerland one time. May I know what month you guys went? Seems like the perfect time to go since you get a mix of winter and still get to see some greens. Also, how much did you spend all in all for the trip, minus airfare and the Swiss Pass?

    Reply
    • Hi Karen, you’re going to love Switzerland. I was there in March this year and also in July about 2 years ago. If you want to see snow and green on the same trip I recommend going in April/May. Not sure how much I spent, I didn’t keep track of that sorry. Hope this helps and enjoy!

      Reply
  12. JONNY Great Blog. Your Trip covers 80% of places which we finalized before seeing your blog and we are now sure-we made right list. We are going in End october and are sad to learn that Glacier express does not run that time. Will normal trains cover same route or would be better to avoid St. Moritz if none of activities mentioned by you-are planned by us.

    Reply
    • That’s great to hear, you’re going to love Switzerland! I am sure there are other normal trains that operate to St. Moritz, best to check on the sbb.ch website to see what’s available. Definitely try to make it to St. Moritz, it’s one of the most beautiful places in Switzerland!

      Reply
  13. Hi Jonny,

    Thanks for the wonderful post. Silly question though, would you recommend driving or getting around by train?

    And also, would you recommend to pick a base area to visit and travel the Jungfrau region. For example. If i were to stay in Interlaken, could i make daily trips to Lauterbrunnen, Grindelwald etc and back to Interlaken back at night? Or should i pick my stay at the specific places i wanna go.

    Thank you!

    Reply
    • Glad you love the article! Not a silly Q at all, in fact, I have road-tripped Switzerland and also done it by train, both offering a completely different experience! The train is scenic though limiting to where you can stop, whereas if you have your own car you can stop whenever you see an amazing viewpoint. So I can’t give you a solid answer on that one sorry. Yes, I would base in Interlaken and make the day trips to Lauterbrunnen from there, it’s only 20-minutes by car or train. I hope this helps and enjoy 🙂

      Reply
  14. Hi Jon

    Thanks for the wonderful post. Silly question though, would you recommend driving or getting around by train?

    And also, would you recommend to pick a base area to visit and travel the Jungfrau region. For example. If i were to stay in Interlaken, could i make daily trips to Lauterbrunnen, Grindelwald etc and back to Interlaken back at night? Or should i pick my stay at the specific places i wanna go.

    Thank you!

    Reply
  15. Excellent blog!! I’m here for work but I am planning to use the weekends to know CH! This was very helpful!
    Tomorrow I first expedition is to Luzern. From Wettingan to Luzern. I will do the three suggested things to do! I will let you know 🙂

    Reply
  16. Hi Jonny,

    Thank you for wonderful post. This is really helpful to give us an idea when we planned for our trip few months ago.
    We decided to stay a couple days more and now we’re at the end of our trip. Our plan worked out really well cause of your posting.
    Thanks!!

    Reply
  17. Hi Jonny,

    I am planning a trip in late October (28th) till 4 Nov. This was really helpful! Just wondering if you actually changed accommodation everyday. Or did you have a base city? I tried to follow your itinerary but found it really mind boggling to plan for daily check-in and check-out, though it may save some travelling time.

    Reply
    • Glad you loved this article! I changed accommodations every day. You can definitely extend your stay in some of the places if you wish. Hope this helps and enjoy 🙂

      Reply
  18. Hi, I loved ur article, I’m staying in Lucerne on 26/27/28 December, but not yet decided where stay on 24/25 December with family . Kindly suggest best city at my train reaches at 3pm on 24th to BASEL from Paris.

    Reply
  19. i was planning for a family trip there, and luckily found this amazing informational guide…
    thanks a lot as this guide will help me for my family travel trip… briefly explained travel guide…!!

    Reply
  20. This was super amazing guide I have ever read on the internet. I am planning to go Switzerland between 27 Feb to 2 March 2020.
    The trip will like 2 days in Zurich and 2 days in Lauterbrunnen. I was planning to rent a car but it would be better to have Swiss pass for all train and other activities right?

    One question in my mind is; how much cold the weather at the end of Feb? Do you think we might able to explore places in that time.

    It would be great if you can share your comments.

    Keep up with good working!

    Regards,
    Mesut from Turkey 🙂

    Reply
    • Hi Richard, glad you loved this article. I don’t know any travel agents in Switzerland I am afraid. This trip I went on was all DIY so this guide is based around that. I hope this guide is enough for you to make it work 🙂

      Reply
  21. Hi! Enjoying reading your blog on Switzerland. I am going next month with a group of friends to celebrate my 40th. We are going to Montreux, Zermatt, Launterbrunnen, Lucern, and Zurich. I can’t wait. Two questions if you have time.
    1. Where was the picture “The beautiful town of Zermatt – Switzerland Itinerary” in the Zermatt section taken of the village. I would like to see the rooftops like that!

    2. Did you do any sledding/Tobogganing during your trip in the winter? If so, any recs? We aren’t big into skiing but love the outdoors!

    Reply
    • Hi Jamie, thanks for reading and glad you found the guide useful! Ahh I really can’t remember the exact location of this photo but if you search Zermatt Matterhorn Viewpoint on Google Maps, that’s another popular spot to take photos. I didn’t do any tobogganing in Zermatt but I did see some others doing it so it is possible! Hope this helps and enjoy!

      Reply
  22. Hi Jonny!! Thanks for the help on the Itinerary!! this is a huge help for me but I was wondering if Bern is worth the visit?? I am currently planning 9 days for Switzerland in April. TOP NOTCH itinerary!! God Bless!

    Reply
    • Yes if you have extra days I would definitely include Bern on this itinerary. I haven’t been myself but it looks amazing! Enjoy!

      Reply
  23. Hi Jonny! I am grateful for the itinerary as it helped a lot with my planning. Do you think Bern would be worth visiting too and any idea on the weather there in late April? Once again, Great help and may you have a blessed year!!

    Reply
    • You are welcome! Yes Bern would be great, I didn’t make it there unfortunately but will have to go back and do it next time! End of April weather would be perfect!

      Reply
  24. hello. this is a very good itinerary and posting. i’m wondering if you could offer some advice. could this itinerary be applied in January or beginning of February trip? I’m not a winter sports fan but would love to hike if possible and go up to the alps.

    thanks in advance!!

    Reply
    • Hmm I am not sure if you would be able to go hiking in the middle of winter, best to go around March – April when the snow has melted some.

      Reply
  25. Love your blog. am looking at staying in Switzerland for 4 days . Stay at Interlaken and travel to Lauterbreunen and jungfraugh and Thun . then to zurich and do a 1 day tour in zurich. should i still get the 8 day pass? what are other alternatives? Are individual train ride tickets a better option?

    Reply
    • Hey, sounds like a great trip! Yes I would recommend the 8 day pass because it still works out cheaper than individual rides. Enjoy!

      Reply
  26. Hi JONNYMELON.this is indeed an excellent blog regarding 8 days swiss travel itinerary.very compact,lucid ,filled with almost all the important informations which everyone ask from the google.am really excited.planning to visit next august last week,2020.

    Reply

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