Grand Train Tour of Switzerland - An Escorted Experience

October 6, 2025 - October 16, 2025

Glide through majestic mountains by rail, then sail pristine alpine lakes - a grand tour of Switzerland's breathtaking landscapes.

Get ready to be captivated by all that this European destination has to offer. Your adventures here may take you soaring high into the peaks of the Swiss Alps or deep into broad, colorful valleys. Brilliant blue lakes will complement the beautiful clear skies, while in the cities, the buildings will weave a multi-century tapestry before your eyes.

Are you ready to experience the best of Switzerland on a grand tour of this remarkable country? This escorted expedition begins in the largest city, Zurich. From there, you'll embark on an incredible train journey, venturing to must-see destinations like Grindelwald, Montreux, Zermatt, Chur, Lugano and Lucerne. Connecting these world-class cities will be rides aboard Switzerland's intricate rail network and some of its most famous trains - from the Glacier Express to the Gornergrat Mountain Railway.

As you traverse between historic cities and charming resort towns, prepare to be in awe of the breathtaking scenery all around you. Each location will bring new adventures, including a mountain rail excursion to the "Top of Europe" at the Jungfraujoch, a paddle steamer cruise on dazzling Lake Lucerne, and plenty of free time to explore the historic and modern sites.

Over the course of 11 unforgettable days, you'll fall deeper in love with the scenery and splendor that are uniquely Switzerland. Don't miss out on this chance to experience the very best this captivating country has to offer. What do you say - are you ready for an adventure?

Itinerary

Day 1 - Zürich

Monday, October 6, 2025

Arrive at the Zurich Airport and make your own way by rail or taxi to your centrally located hotel, where you will meet your Tour Manager.  See the Please Note section regarding the transfer.  The remainder of the day is at leisure.  Join your Tour Manager and traveling companions this evening for a welcome dinner at your hotel.

-Includes Dinner

Day 2 - Zürich to Grindelwald by Train

Tuesday, October 7, 2025

We depart Zürich by train this morning and embark on a beautiful journey to Grindelwald in the heart of the country. The train makes stops in Lucerne and Interlaken before arriving in Grindelwald, known to be one of the most scenic resort towns in Switzerland. Picturesque vistas can be seen from every angle as we make the short walk from the train station to the hotel. The remainder of the day is yours to enjoy the amenities of this wonderfully scenic locale. You may wish to take a mountainside gondola ride or to take in the dramatic scenery from the First Cliff Walk. Hiking trails surround Grindelwald, with one of the most popular being the Eiger Trail. Of course, you may also wish to visit the Grindelwald Museum to learn more about the region's history. Overnight Grindelwald.

-Includes Breakfast

Day 3 - Jungfraujoch

Wednesday, October 8, 2025

Today we embark on a journey to the "Top of Europe," Jungfraujoch. Our climb begins with a cog railway ride to Kleine Scheidegg. Here, we switch rail lines and continue our journey to the top. At over 11,000 feet above sea level, the Jungfraujoch is the highest railway station in Europe. You have some free time to explore its attractions, including the Ice Palace, the Top of Europe shops, the Lindt chocolatier or the Sphinx observation deck. As we return to Grindelwald this afternoon, you can continue your explorations at leisure. Overnight Grindelwald.

-Includes Breakfast

Day 4 - Grindelwald to Montreux

Thursday, October 9, 2025

After breakfast at the hotel, we walk as a group to the train station and join the train to Montreux. Montreux is beloved for its breathtaking location, with steep hillsides on one side and Lake Geneva's sparkling waters on the other. The train ride takes just under 4 hours to complete, and while you ride, enjoy views of several beautiful cities and the changing Swiss countryside. On arrival in this famous resort town, we transfer from the train station to our hotel with an afternoon at leisure to soak in the magnificent scenery and endless amenities. Guests that arrive in July may be able to visit the Montreux Jazz Festival, a highly anticipated annual event filled with countless concerts and fantastic events that bring the spirit of music to life. Overnight Montreux.

-Includes Breakfast

Day 5 - Montreux to Zermatt

Friday, October 10, 2025

A brief walk takes us from our hotel to the train station in Montreux, where we board a train to Zermatt in the southern tip of Switzerland. The train trip takes us through scenic national park land and past towering mountain peaks as we follow the southerly route. You know we have arrived when the mighty Matterhorn comes into view. We transfer to our hotel upon arrival, and the remainder of the day is yours at leisure. Zermatt is simply amazing, with its car-free streets and immense history. There are plenty of modern shops and restaurants to explore, as well as a historic Old Village, home to over 30 traditional wooden Walser houses and ancient barns and stables. You may wish to visit the Matterhorn Museum or to pamper yourself in one of the luxurious spas. Overnight Zermatt.

-Includes Breakfast

Day 6 - Gornergrat Mountain Railway

Saturday, October 11, 2025

A spectacular adventure lies ahead today on the Gornergrat Mountain Railway. The walk to the train station in Zermatt city center takes just a few minutes to complete, and we are in for a wonderful journey as the eclectic cog railway makes its way up the mountainside. Europe's highest open-air cog railway, this mountain train passes through tunnels, crosses bridges and offers views of lakes, forests and ravines. The route takes under an hour to complete and makes stops at four stations as we travel up the mountain. Take some time to enjoy impressive scenes from the top, such as that of the Matterhorn and Monte Rosa. There is an excellent viewing platform from which to take it all in, as well as plenty of room to walk around. We return to Zermatt with the afternoon at leisure before enjoying dinner at the hotel this evening. Overnight Zermatt.

-Includes Breakfast, Dinner

Day 7 - Glacier Express

Sunday, October 12, 2025

A jewel in the crown of this grand train tour of Switzerland is today's ride on the Glacier Express. We depart our hotel after breakfast this morning and make our way to the Zermatt station to board this classic train. Watch as the Matterhorn fades into the distance and some of the region's other tall peaks come into view. We cross through the V-shaped Upper Rhone Valley and makes its way across the Furka Pass before crossing through a long tunnel en route to Andermatt. We venture across the Oberalp Pass, the highest point on the train ride, and descend into the Rhine Valley. The Rhine Gorge region is often referred to as the Swiss Grand Canyon, thanks to its dramatic scenery, and you have the opportunity to take it all in before arriving in Chur. Lunch is served on board before arrival. When the train makes its stop in Chur, transfer to the hotel and  have the remainder of the day to relax or to explore this alpine town. Perhaps take a cable car ride on the Brambrüesch aerial cableway or begin your explorations of the 13th-century Old Town, free of vehicular traffic. Overnight Chur.

-Includes Breakfast, Lunch

Day 8 - Bernina Express

Monday, October 13, 2025

Keep your camera handy and your eyes peeled for amazing sights as we cross through the Alps aboard the Bernina Express. This train ride follows the highest route in the Alps and highlights the unique regions of Switzerland. Travel high into the mountains, gazing upon snow-covered peaks and mighty glaciers, before gliding down the mountainside toward the palm trees of Switzerland's Italian region. Your time on the Bernina Express is filled with incredible scenery, twists and turns. Cross through 55 tunnels and pass over 196 bridges as the journey proceeds. Because the train is equipped with panoramic rail cars, you can take in all the glory at every turn as you approach Tirano. As the train stations, we switch modes of transportation and continue from Tirano to Lugano. On arrival, we take the underground funicular railway from the station to the city center and embark on a lakeside walk to our hotel. Overnight Lugano.

-Includes Breakfast, Dinner

Day 9

Tuesday, October 14, 2025

Gain a different perspective on the majestic landscape during today's expedition: a cruise on Lake Lugano. The port is located right across from our hotel, and as we board the boat, take in views of palm trees and verdant mountains as we sail toward Gandria on the north shore of the lake. Take some time to look at the beautiful lakeside villas and visit Gandria's museums during your time here. Soak in the warm sun as the ship sails back toward Lugano, where your afternoon is at leisure to continue your sightseeing. Perhaps take a stroll through Parco Civico or seek out the city's magnificent cathedrals. Overnight Lugano.

-Includes Breakfast

Day 10 - Gotthard Panorama Express

Wednesday, October 15, 2025

Enjoy a buffet breakfast at the hotel this morning before embarking on one last railway adventure, this time aboard the Gotthard Panorama Express. Take in vistas of castles, palm trees and wine-growing regions as the route begins. The train passes through spiral loops and several tunnels, including the spectacular Gotthard Tunnel, dating back to 1882. The train continues through another set of spiral loops as it nears the town of Wassen and cascades through the valley of the River Ruess before arriving in Flüelen, where we switch modes of transportation. Sheer beauty surrounds us as we travel by paddle steamer across Lake Lucerne to the one and only Lucerne. During the 3-hour boat ride, enjoy views of Tell's Chapel, the snow-capped peaks of Gotthard Pass and high rock walls that rise up on both sides of the lake. Mount Rigi and Mount Pilatus come into view as you approach Lucerne - the perfect scenic ending to this idyllic journey. As we dock, the group transfers to the hotel. Take some time to freshen up ahead of the group's farewell dinner tonight at the hotel. Overnight Lucerne.

-Includes Breakfast, Dinner

Day 11 - Tour Conclusion

Thursday, October 16, 2025

Your grand tour through Switzerland ends this morning with breakfast after which you will return to Zurich Airport by rail. Your Tour Manager will provide your train ticket and hotel departure time details based on your return flight schedule.

-Includes Breakfast

**If you would like additional time on location, let me know and we can make arrangements.

Pricing Per Person

Gratuities not included.

Occupancy Package Price Deposit Travel Protection
Single Occupancy $6,390.00 $700.00 Click to Price Coverage
Double Occupancy (per person) $4,895.00 $700.00 Click to Price Coverage

Payment Schedule

Date
Deposit (Non-Refundable) Upon Booking
Final Payment July 1, 2025

Travel Protection

Travel Protection is highly recommended. Most US health insurance, including medicare does not cover out of the country. Many policies do not cover pre-existing medical if it is not purchased within a certain time after your trip is deposited.

I HIGHLY recommend travel insurance, including cancellation coverage. 

Third Party Protection and Coverage Information (Arch RoamRight)

Cancellation Policy

Days Prior to Departure Payment Due Per Person Cancellation Penalty Per Person
Deposit date to 90 days prior to departure $700 Deposit Deposit is non-refundable
89-61 days prior to departure 100% of Payment Due 25% of package price plus supplier fees
60-46 days prior to departure 100% of Payment Due 50% of package price plus supplier fees
45 days or less prior to departure 100% of Payment Due 100% of package price is non-refundable

100% cancellation fee for no shows or if cancellation is made after travel is scheduled to begin.
No refund for unused portions of the trip.
Supplier cancellation fees may be assessed in addition to the change/cancel fees stated above.

Frequently Asked Questions

The deposit is non-refundable.

The tour will involve make rail connections, getting on and off various trains and making connections. You will need to be able to manage steps, getting around the train stations, managing your carry on bag, and navigating cobblestone streets.

Please enter any dietary and mobility restrictions on the form when you sign up. Deposit is non-refundable so make sure you are aware of the requirements.

16 meals included:

11 Breakfasts
1 Lunch
4 Dinners

10 Nights of Hotel Stays Are Included

See itinerary above for transfer inclusions.

Time on the train varies by day and location. See more details in the itinerary above.

No gratuities are included. 

This guided tour includes Baggage Handling. You will need to be able to handle your carry-on bag.

I can only book flights if you add a pre or post stay of 3 nights or more. Otherwise, I can help you find flights and then you book your flights directly with the airlines. E-mail me if you want to discuss this further.

Zürich Airport (ZRH)

  • Half Fare Travel Card, permitting 50% discounted fares on free days for rail, boat and most mountain railway journeys
  • The services of a professional Tour Manager from start to finish

Early October is a wonderful time to visit Switzerland, as the weather is generally mild and pleasant. Here's a quick overview of what you can expect:
Temperatures:

  • Daytime highs average around 57°F (14°C) across most of the country.
  • Overnight lows typically dip down to around 43°F (6°C).

Precipitation:

  • Switzerland experiences relatively low rainfall in October, with an average of 3-4 inches (75-100mm) for the month.
  • Showers are still possible, but they tend to be brief and scattered.

Scenery:

  • Early October is right in the heart of Switzerland's autumn season, so you can expect beautiful fall foliage in the mountainous regions.
  • The air is crisp and clear, providing excellent visibility to take in the stunning alpine vistas.

Clothing Recommendations:

  • Layering is key, as the weather can be variable. Pack a mix of long pants, sweaters, and a good jacket or coat.
  • Comfortable, sturdy walking shoes are a must for exploring Switzerland's landscapes.
  • Don't forget to bring an umbrella or lightweight rain jacket, just in case.

Overall, the weather in early October is quite pleasant and ideal for sightseeing, hiking, and enjoying the natural beauty of Switzerland.

  • Cancellation & Travel Insurance is not included in the price of the tour but is highly recommended.
  • Flights
  • Any meals not mentioned
  • Spending money
  • Gratuities