Lucerne, Andermatt, Zermatt, Montreux, Lausanne, Bern, Interlaken, Zurich
Outdoor & Adventure, History & Culture, Rail Journeys, Nature & Wildlife
This mountainous nation in the heart of Europe is a melting pot of cultures from its larger neighbours of France, Germany, Austria and Italy, with its own touch of quaint traditions and high tech innovation to create a uniquely Swiss identity.
Our journey takes in some of the best that Switzerland has to offer, from beautiful historic cities like Lucerne, Lausanne, Bern and Zurich, to an incredible natural landscapes of alpine mountains and glaciers, lakes and rivers, accessible by an extensive network of cable cars, gondolas, cogwheel trains and boats. The Swiss train system is one of the most efficient and comfortable in the world, and is an excellent means of exploring this beautiful country, with some iconic rail journeys.
Upon arrival in Zurich, meet your driver at the arrival hall and transfer to your hotel in Lucerne (approx. 70km, 50min).
Enjoy a private walking tour with your local guide. Lucerne, the gateway to central Switzerland, is embedded within an impressive mountainous and lake panorama. The townscape is not without merit either – the covered, medieval Chapel Bridge, complete with gable paintings is one of the oldest wooden bridges in Europe and one of the city’s iconic attraction. Historic houses decorated with frescoes line the picturesque town squares, with historic churches overlooking the old towns. Enjoy a stroll along the Museggmauer, the old city walls which have been preserved in its original state apart from one of its towers.
Switzerland is one of the pioneers of chocolate, with a long-established and innovative industry. Be introduced to this delightful Swiss tradition with a private 90min chocolatier workshop, with an exclusive tasting followed by a session with professionals to guide you through the world of cocoa and share their knowledge of the craft and quality ingredients natural ingredients to create your very own chocolate bar.
Lucerne is the ideal starting point for many excursions to the highlights of central Switzerland. Today, make a trip up to one of its regional mountains – Pilatus or Rigi using your Swiss Travel Pass.
Mount Pilatus is the destination made of legends – burial ground of its namesake Roman governor, a dragon rock which fell from the sky, and more! It’s also one of the most beautiful, with views of 73 alpine peaks on a clear day. Visitors will be delighted by the exciting options up and down the mountain – gondola lift, aerial cable car and one of the world’s steepest rack-railroad, combinable with a paddle steamer back to Lucerne.
Mount Rigi, also known as the Queen of Mountains, has a panoramic view of the highest Alpine peaks and a varied range of leisure activities in a majestic setting where three lakes meet. It was a famous destination for travellers across Europe in the 18th century, including royalty and celebrities. The Vitznau-Rigi railway was Europe’s first mountain Railway, and today, the peak of Rigi Kulm can be accessed by modern cogwheel trains or cable car, combinable with a scenic ferry ride back to Lucerne.
A luggage transfer service will be arranged for your luggage to be delivered to your next hotel, as you enjoy your journey by train to Andermatt (from 1hr 48min, with 1 connection).
Depending on your schedule and preferences, we can arrange a private tour to explore the historic military bunkers deep in the mountains of central Switzerland, or a scenic drive to the panoramic viewpoints along the legendary Gotthard Pass, or a gourmet lunch at a Michelin-starred restaurant high up in the mountains above Andermatt with spectacular views.
In the afternoon, board the ‘world’s slowest express train’ – the Glacier Express. Featuring panoramic windows that extends to the roof of the train, travellers are guaranteed unobstructed views of the spectacular landscape to car-free Zermatt (3hr 2min), where you will be transferred to your hotel by electric cart or horse carriage, depending on your hotel.
Note: Many hotels in Zermatt are closed during the shoulder seasons (Apr – mid Jun, mid Sep – mid Dec), so please speak to our Travel Consultants on other options.
Make an excursion on the Gornergrat Bahn, which was the world’s first fully electrified cog railway. Ascend to the summit at 3,089m, on a 33min ride over dramatic bridges, through tunnels, across forests of larch and Swiss stone pine, and past rocky ravines and mountain lakes. The reward is a spectacular panorama of 29 peaks above 4,000m, including the iconic Matterhorn, the Monte Rosa massif with Switzerland’s highest peak, Dufourspitze. The summit is home to Kulmhotel Gornergrat, one of Europe’s highest hotel which houses an astronomical observatory – stargazing experiences can be arranged here on selected evenings.
Enjoy the rest of the day to explore Zermatt Old Village, with more than 30 buildings constructed in the traditional style of barns and stores of the Upper Valais region. Alternatively, if time permits, you could take another day trip up to the mountains around Zermatt, such as the Matterhorn Glacier Paradise, or the funicular up to the Sunnegga platform for amazing views of the Matterhorn.
A luggage transfer service will be arranged for your luggage to be delivered to your next hotel, as you enjoy your journey by train to Montreux (from 2hr 34min, with 1 connection).
Enjoy the day at leisure to explore Montreux. The Montreux Riviera offers a postcard landscape of Lake Geneva, the mountains and vineyards, with a unique microclimate that gives it a Mediterranean flair that has attracted many artists and writers who have immortalized Montreux in their works. Aside from hosting the Montreux Jazz Festival every summer, the region also boasts a pretty lakeside promenade ideal for strolls, and museums like Chaplin’s World and Chillon Castle that is worth a day of self-exploration.
Continue onwards to Lausanne by train (from 21min, direct train), and check-in to your hotel.
Meet your private guide in the morning for a walking tour of Lausanne. Lausanne is known as the Olympic capital, with the International Olympic Committee based here since 1914, and is also home to the inspiration Olympic Museum. It’s a dynamic commericial city with a picturesque setting on three hills overlooking Lake Geneva, and its attractive old town dominated by the impressive Gothic Notre-Dame Cathedral. After exploring the narrow alleyways lined with cafes and boutiques, head down to waterfront Ouchy with its restaurants.
Meet your private driver-guide for a half-day tour to the UNESCO World Heritage Lavaux wine region, with boutique wine estates from the middle ages dotting a landscape of terraced vineyards. Enjoy an exceptional tasting of speciality Swiss wines accompanied with a platter of cheese and chocolates at 2 wineries, followed by lunch overlooking Lake Geneva and the vineyards.
A luggage transfer service will be arranged for your luggage to be delivered to your next hotel, as you enjoy your journey by train to Bern (from 1hr 7min, direct).
Meet your local guide for a private walking tour of Bern. Not many cities have managed to retain their historic features quite as successfully as Bern, the capital of Switzerland, with a medieval atmosphere of ancient towers, fountains, sandstone facades and narrow streets, well-deserving of its UNESCO World Heritage status. Explore the city at your leisure, strolling through its ‘Lauben’, which is the longest sheltered shopping arcades in Europe housing boutiques and street cafes. Be sure to enjoy the best views of the old town from the Rose Garden above the Bear Park and the platform of the cathedral tower. Art and architecture lovers should check out Zentrum Paul Klee, featuring the works for the beloved artist in a modern wave-like structure.
Next, take the train to Interlaken (from 52min, direct), where you will check-in to your next hotel.
We recommend an early departure up to Jungfraujoch, or the Top of Europe, easily the highlight of any visit to Switzerland. The Jungfrau railways have been making its journey to Europe’s highest altitude railway station in the heart of the Jungfrau-Aletsch UNESCO heritage site, including a tunnel through the mountain that emerges at the summit to a world of ice, snow and rocks, with an awe-inspiring view to the Aletsch Glacier.
En route, we recommend making stops, such as the pretty village Grindelwald, the starting point for various alpine hikes, as well as some adrenaline pumping activities such as the First Cliff Wall by Tissot, First Flyer zipline down the mountain. Visitors are also often left in awe by Lauterbrunnen Valley, a colourful alpine valley with small villages between towering rock faces lined by impressive waterfalls. Don’t miss the unique Trummelbach Falls which has carved a thundering cascade behind the mighty rock surface of the Black Monk mountain.
Today is a free day to explore the region. Nestled between 2 lakes and facing three mighty mountains – Eiger, Monch and Jungfrau, Interlaken is well-positioned for countless excursions. There are over 45 mountain railways, cable cars, chair lifts and ski lifts lead to a dense network of hiking trails and well-known mountain peaks, such as Schilthorn, which was made famous by the James Bond film ‘On Her Majesty’s Secret Service’, Schynige Platte, and Harder Kulm. Excursion ships, including historic paddle steamers, ply the waters of Lake Thun and Lake Brienz, with stops at idyllic towns and ancient castles.
A luggage transfer service will be arranged for your luggage to be delivered to your next hotel, as you enjoy your journey by train to Zurich (from 1hr 58min, 1 change).
Enjoy an eco-friendly eTukTuk half-day city tour to the most famous sights and squares in Zurich. On this novel way of zipping around the narrow streets of the old town, your experienced guide will share insider stories about this vibrant city, with a flexible itinerary according to your interests.
In the late afternoon, meet your guide on a Zurich West Food Tour. This culinary adventure is perfect for food connoisseurs to explore this trendy district and experience the restaurants popular with the locals. Your guide will share the story behind the city´s ‘culinary revolution´ and the transformation of Zurich-West from an industrial area to a cultural hotspot, while sampling various local delicacies.
After breakfast, you will be transferred to Zurich airport (approx. 12km, 15min) for your onward journey.
Low Season: November – March
Mid Season: April – May, September – October
High Season: June – August
Art Deco Hotel Montana • Backstage Hotel • Chateau d’Ouchy • Hotel Royal St Georges Interlaken MGallery • Markgasse Hotel Zurich
The hotel enjoys an elevated position that is accessed by one of the world’s shortest funicular rides, with Art Deco rooms offering spectacular views of Lake Lucerne, the city of Lucerne and the Louis Bar and Hemingway Rum Lounge are known for their lifestyle events. (Renovated: 2009; Rooms: 61)View More
Created by local architect Heinz Julen, this hotel has a modern design element incorporating wood and metal elements that is all made by hand in his studio. Guests can choose between the unique split-level glass cube lofts or the deluxe rooms in a more typical hotel configuration. There is also a cinema, theatre, bar, nightclub and art gallery. (Opened: 2010; Rooms: 19)View More
Nestled on the banks of Lake Geneva with magnificent views across the water, this is a striking neo-gothic castle reconstructed in the late 1800s into a hotel. A recent renovation has sensitively brought this gem back to life which now provides 50 delightfully rooms, a superb restaurant, an inviting wellness area with a hamman and sauna and its own boat for lake excursions. (Renovated: 2008; Rooms: 50)View More
An elegant hotel from 1908 in the heart of Interlaken, set against the panoramic backdrop of the Harder Kulm Mountain. Guests can marvel at the historic elements from its grand façade, impressive staircase in the lobby and Art Nouveau interiors, while rooms have been updated with modern comforts. (Opened: 2011; Rooms: 98)View More
This 4-star boutique hotel lies at the heart of the traffic-free old town, with 39 individually designed rooms and suites. Part of the Historic Hotels of Europe, it is today a listed building with stylish modern furnishings. Cosmopolitan cuisine is the focus at the Balthos restaurant & bar and Delish Take-Out and there is free use of a hamam and wellness centre within walking distance. (Opened: 2015; Rooms: 39)View More
Hotel Schweizerhof Luzern • Mont Cervin Palace • Beau Rivage Palace • Victoria Jungfrau • Baur Au Luc
Close to the lakeshore promenade with sweeping views of Lake Lucerne, this majestic family-owned hotel has modern rooms that are themed with graphics honouring famous past guests comprising of artists musicians, politicians, and writers, including Mark Twain and Leo Tolstoy. Many illustrious events have been held here, including the Retro Festival and Lucerne Blues Festival. (Renovated: 2014; Rooms: 101)View More
an institution in Zermatt since 1852, this luxury hotel exudes quaint charm and warm hospitality, right from your pick-up at the train station in a horse-drawn carriage to the traditional but thoughtful service. Rooms are decorated in rustic Alpine to a luxurious contemporary style, with views of the surrounding mountains. There are 3 restaurants including a Michelin-starred gastronomic restaurant. (Renovated: 2010; Rooms: 150)View More
Located in 10 acres of private gardens, this iconic hotel commands breath-taking views across Lake Geneva to the majestic French Alps beyond. Spacious rooms retain a classy, elegant look while fully equipped with the latest technological features. There are four restaurants on site offering an array of cuisines, including 2-star Michelin Anne-Sophie Pic. (Renovated: 2021; Rooms: 168)View More
Opened in 1865, the hotel enjoys a privileged and picturesque location with views to the eternally snow-capped Jungfrau. Almost half of its 224 rooms are suites, combining the style and sophistication of yesteryear with 21st century modern comforts. The 5,500sqm spa is a highlight, offering a vast range of wellness activities. (Renovated: 2003; Rooms: 224)View More
A stone's throw from famous shopping street Bahnhofstrasse, this legendary hotel commands a privileged position in its own landscaped park on the lakeshore. With 119 luxuriously appointed and individually decorated rooms and suites, there is an intimate atmosphere of a private home. (Renovated: 2010; Rooms: 119)View More
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