Swiss Alpine Holiday

Bellinzona
Bernina Express, Chur to Tirano - © swiss-image.ch/Marcus Gyger
Old town of Chur - © swiss-image.ch/Markus Buehler-Rasom
Golden Pass route
Interlaken and mountains - © S-F/shutterstock
Lake Thun - © Swiss-Image
Rhaetian Railway - © Switzerland Tourism

Holiday Highlights

  • Scenic journey to Switzerland using the classic Rhine route
  • First class Swiss Travel Pass for unlimited travel whilst in Switzerland
  • No expensive excursions to pay for
  • Explore three centres, Chur, Bellinzona and Interlaken
  • Journey in first class on the Bernina Express
  • UNESCO World Heritage Rhaetian Railways network
  • Independent and escorted sightseeing options
  • 14 Days from £2,989pp
BOOK NOWTailor this tour for independent travel

Tour Dates:
Saturday 5 September to Friday 18 September 2020

This classic tour gives ample opportunity to explore by train the varied scenic sights Switzerland has to offer. Using your first class Swiss Travel Pass enjoy memorable journeys through mountain and lake landscapes and traditional villages.

ITINERARY

Day 1 – To Cologne

Depart on the lunchtime Eurostar from London St Pancras to Brussels then continue by high speed train to Cologne for an overnight stay.

Day 2 – Graubünden

Leaving Cologne, we head south to Basle following the classic Rhine route. From here all our rail travel in Switzerland will be in first class using the unlimited Swiss Travel Pass provided. Leaving Basle, we travel to Chur, the oldest city in Switzerland. We stay in this charming historic city for 4 nights, and our hotel is in the traffic free area of the old town.

Day 3 – At Leisure

A day allowing you the chance to explore Chur and the surrounding area using the UNESCO World Heritage Rhaetian Railways network. There will be an optional escorted excursion on offer, but if you prefer to be independent, your tour leader will be only too happy to help with planning.

Day 4 – Bernina Express

A full day excursion from Chur to Tirano in northern Italy. This route is the only North-South Alpine rail crossing not in tunnel and the summit of the line lies at an altitude of 2253m (7391ft). The panoramic windows of your first class coach give you a wide vista and the many spirals and tunnels all make this a wonderful day out.

Day 5 – Further Leisure Time

A day at leisure to explore the city of Chur with its cobbled streets and 13th Century cathedral or use the Rhaetian Railway network one last time! There will be an optional escorted excursion offered by your tour leader.

Day 6 – Postbus

Leaving Chur mid-morning we take a Postbus on a historical journey from Chur, through Domleschg, the Viamala, the San-Bernardino tunnel and Misox to Bellinzona. Bellinzona greets us for our 3-night stay with its characteristic hospitality and warmth… and views of the famous three castles that also share a place on the UNESCO World Heritage list.

Days 7 & 8 – Exploring from Bellinzona

A short train ride from here takes us to the shores of Lake Lugano and the town of the same name. Stroll along the tree-shaded promenade and note the strong Italian influence in the language and culture. Why not visit nearby Swissminiatur where you can admire the important buildings, monuments and transportation of Switzerland in miniature? This enchanting park includes a 3,560m long model railway (entrance fee not included). There will be optional excursions offered by your tour leader, including the scenic narrow gauge Centovalli line to Domodossola.

Day 9 – Gotthard Base Tunnel

We take the train north and travel through the longest railway tunnel in the world before circumnavigating Lake Lucerne and changing trains in Lucerne to travel onwards to Interlaken for a 4-night stay.

Days 10 to 12 – Interlaken

Free time based in Interlaken. Your experienced tour leader will arrange optional excursions each day to include visits to Zermatt, Lucerne, Montreux via the Golden Pass route. For those who enjoy independent sightseeing, Interlaken is situated between the beautiful waters of Lake Thun and Lake Brienz and the nearby Jungfrau region boasts some stunning scenery. A lake trip is a must whilst here.

Day 13 – To Aachen

Leaving Interlaken after breakfast we travel via Basle and Cologne to Aachen. 

Day 14 – Homeward Bound

Morning high speed train to Brussels connecting with the Eurostar service to London St Pancras, arriving early afternoon.

Tour Route

Tour route map

Selected Hotels

Ibis Köln am Dom, Cologne

Hotel Freieck, Chur

Hotel & SPA Internazionale, Bellinzona

City Hotel Oberland, Interlaken

Ibis am Marschiertor, Aachen

Please note - hotels can be subject to change

Price Includes

  • Standard class rail travel to and from Basle
  • First class Swiss Pass for unlimited travel on trains, postbuses, lake steamers and many city buses and trams
  • Bernina Express supplement
  • Daily optional excursions
  • Accommodation in good quality hotels on a bed and breakfast basis
  • Services of a tour leader from London and throughout the tour

Price per person

Escorted holiday: £2,989
Single room supplement: £360
Deposit for this holiday: £100

Booking form

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Why Choose Ffestiniog Travel?

  • UK's first rail tour operator to run an overseas escorted rail holiday in 1974
  • Created for people who love rail holidays and exploring the world’s heritage railways
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  • Over 60% of our existing rail tour travellers return to holiday with us year after year
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