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Day Train Trips From Luzern ?

We are hoping to fill our itinerary pre-tour from Luzern. We have a 4/5 day rail pass. Any scenic suggestions, opinions are appreciated, Lucern to Andermatt for lunch & back? or Lucern to Appenzell? or other options? Traveling end of July 2023. Restaurant recommendations?
Danke vielmal !

Posted by
16707 posts

What kind of pass will you have? A Swiss Travel Pass will fully cover the very nice Rigi round trip, a loop by boat, train and cablecar from Luzern to the top of Rigi and back. There are several places oblong the way to spend a few hours for lunch, a hike, or even a spa visit. Or explore the lakeside towns of Vitznau and Weggis.

https://www.rigi.ch/en

Posted by
15 posts

Thanks Lola, yes we are doing the Rigi one day. We do have the Swiss Pass. : )

Posted by
16707 posts

Oh, I see from your other posts that you already know about the Rigi excursion. Good.

For Andermatt, I recommend taking the Treno Gottardo which departs Luzern at 9:18 and 11:18 each day (destination Locarno). This train will follow the Gotthard Pass route.

https://www.myswitzerland.com/en-us/experiences/treno-gottardo/

You will need to change trains at Göschenen to reach Andermatt. Or you could stay on the train and visit Locarno.

Posted by
1976 posts

Another suggestion is to do a loop Luzern - Interlaken - Bern (spend some time in Bern) then back via the fast route.

Posted by
15 posts

Thanks Wengen, the RS 12 day tour ends in Bern, the round trip to Locarno is looking likely for us. Our first time, hopefully not our last to Switzerland.

Posted by
16707 posts

A nice think about Locarno is that the railway station is right near the lake, so if is easy to walk down and along the lake.

When we rode this train last September, we shared the first-class car with two women on a daytrip to Locarno. They were surprised to find Americans who knew about this train (it is fairly new, as a named scenic route). They seemed delighted to give us a running commentary of the sights along the way, including the chapel that the train passes 3 times as it switchbacks down the mountainside.

If you can postpone your return to Luzern until evening, you might have time to catch Postbus 321 ( also covered on the Swiss Pass) into ValmVerzasca to see the famed Ponte dei Salti (but don’t try jumping off—-the water will be too low in September). See photos and directions for getting there here:

https://www.earthtrekkers.com/how-to-visit-ponte-dei-salti-lavertezzo-verzasca-valley/#:~:text=Ponte%20dei%20Salti%20is%20a%20medieval%20style%20bridge%20that%20spans,to%20the%20town%20of%20Lavertezzo.

Posted by
648 posts

I don’t know if your pass covers the trip to Mt. Pilatus, but I love the view from the top, especially if it is a sunny day. You can even see the mountains in the BO region.
(Ricknride: One of my favorite places is Hurricane Ridge; the view at the top of Mt. Pilatus reminds me of Hurricane Ridge, but with more mountain peaks.)
The restaurant at the hotel at the top has a large outdoor seating area. Lunch with a view…my favorite lunch choice.

Posted by
995 posts

The Voralpen Express (https://youtu.be/eOqSodCq9SQ) goes from Luzern to St. Gallen and it is a very nice route, I do a couple of times a year. In St. Gallen you can visit the abbey founded by Irish monks in the 8th century and see some for the Celtic manuscripts. And then return via Zurich along the lake.

The Voralpen Express is not widely known in the tourist world, so there is no need for reservations as the train leaves about once an hour from Luzern and there is always plenty of seats.