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Old 22.04.2015, 22:17
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planning ahead...need help choosing between places to go in August

I have a friend visiting in August for about six days. It will be her first time in Switzerland (Europe really) and she's eager to pack in as much as possible (staying in Switzerland...unfortunately going further afield is too much for this trip).

I'm looking for some suggestions (we'll be starting/based in Neuchatel). I've thought of the following: 1) Gimmelwald for a couple of nights; 2) Swiss National Park (including the Glacier Express en route); 3) Ticino area (with boat ride from Lucern on the way)...She has indicated that she'd be eager to try to squeeze in two of the three but I've concerned that's a lot for five nights...

I'm wondering if a) doing some sort of day trip/hike in the Kandersteg/Leukerbad area would be as good as actually staying in Gimmerwald for a couple of nights? b) if Lugano/Locarno is uncomfortably hot in August? c) if doing both the Swiss National Park and Gimmelwald would be too much of the same sort of thing?

Any other suggestions/itineraries? I'm looking for a diversity of things to show her without breaking the bank ....and we're out for the scenery more than the big cities.

Thanks!
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Old 23.04.2015, 13:16
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Re: planning ahead...need help choosing between places to go in August

Having travelled just about the entire SBB network I would say that your itinerary is too much for six days. On my first trip I stayed in Lucerne, St Moritz, Zermatt, Grindelwald and Montreux over 14 days. That was a busy itinerary with too much travelling really. I included the Glacier Express, Bernina Express and Golden Pass among the routes.

As you are starting from Neuchatel I would look to heading down to Lake Geneva area, then Zermatt and back to the Jungfrau area, returning via Bern.

Another option could be to Lake Geneva area, Golden Pass train, stopping in Interlaken for the Jungfrau area then on to Lucerne, again returning via Bern.

Routes like this would be much more manageable in the time and enable you to see more. As good as the trains are, you don't want to be spending all your time on them.
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Old 23.04.2015, 14:01
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Re: planning ahead...need help choosing between places to go in August

@jullee
I think a lot depends on the physical health of your friend, whether she can walk a lot, whether climbing up the stairs into the trains be easy for her, etc. If she is young, energetic and fit, then of course you can risk packing in a lot more, and she can sleep when she goes home.

In Zurich, you can "hire" bicycles for free (Züri Rollt) and perhaps there is something like that in your area.

If she can swim, then I'd recommend she brings two bathing suits, and that you dip into the water at every possible opportunity.

Here's a very genteel trip which we enjoyed immensely
http://www.bielersee.ch/en/angebote/...river.699.html

In terms of both keeping the costs down and enjoying a wonderful degree of freedom, you could consider a travel pass that has everything included. Usually, they are cheaper for travellers who live abroad (and best you check whether such a pass would need to be purchased outside of Switzerland, before she arrived). Here are explanations of the various options: http://www.sbb.ch/en/leisure-holiday...velsystem.html

Also: you can avoid quite a lot of spending if you stick to taking your own drinks along, bought from the supermarket, and in any case a water-bottle which can be filled up during the day. Similarly, take along a picnic. Whenever the budget is a real consideration, it seems a pity to spend a lot just on stopping for coffee, when that could go towards the cost of a train fare or an entrance fee.
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Old 23.04.2015, 14:33
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Re: planning ahead...need help choosing between places to go in August

Hi, you can buy the above mentioned Tageskarte, but for your friend are other options available. For visitors only from outside Switzerland check here: https://www.myswitzerland.com/en-us/...el-passes.html
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Old 27.04.2015, 20:40
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Re: planning ahead...need help choosing between places to go in August

Thats quiet a lot for 6 days,
Try to get around Interlaken & Titlis. Shoud be great!!!!!
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Old 28.04.2015, 00:30
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Re: planning ahead...need help choosing between places to go in August

Thanks everyone for the suggestions. My friend is going to buy one of the SBB passes so we aren't worried about cost of the trains. I was just more concerned about packing as many "different" experiences in for her as possible without it becoming an exhausting week...
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Old 03.05.2015, 14:31
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Re: planning ahead...need help choosing between places to go in August

Definitely I would recommend some hiking on Grindelwald area. I was there in Winter and it was awesome, and my friend told me that on Summer is an impressive place to do hiking, I totally believe him after what I saw there. Since you have Interlaken close from there, you can do something in the lakes too.

Enjoy!
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Old 03.05.2015, 14:36
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Re: planning ahead...need help choosing between places to go in August

Quote:
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Thanks everyone for the suggestions. My friend is going to buy one of the SBB passes so we aren't worried about cost of the trains. I was just more concerned about packing as many "different" experiences in for her as possible without it becoming an exhausting week...
The Aletsch Glacier is the largest in Europe and if you go to Zermatt, not too far. It is truly an amazing site !
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Old 10.05.2015, 14:14
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I'd skip the Glacier Express. It takes too much time, plus I prefer being outside, on the mountains, and have the time to enjoy the view.

1 day: Instead of Jungfrau I'd do Schilthorn. Way cheaper, less people, and in some sense better view because you see the Jungfrau as well.

2 day: Then the glacier you can check by visiting the Aletsch as suggested below plus Zermatt area

1 day: You could combine Titlis and Luzern. On Titlis try the scooter and devil bikes.

1 day Ticino: Bellinzona, Locarno, up to Cardada

1 day: You could combine Zürich with a great hike to the Grosser Mythen. Or, I you'd prefer a lazy day, then Zürich, Rhine Falls, Schaffhausen, Rapperswil, then take the ship all the way back to Zürich, and finally up to Uetliberg.

and/or:

1 day Klettersteing in Braunwald, there are routes with different difficulties, and you can rent everything in the hut up there.

1 day: Lausanne, Montreux, Les Diablerets, Glacier 3000

..and don't forget to check SBB's offers of the month:

http://www.sbb.ch/freizeit-ferien/ta...-freizeit.html

Last edited by 3Wishes; 16.06.2015 at 18:08. Reason: merging consecutive replies
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