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Four day itinerary

Mom and two adult daughters are planning last minute trip to Switzerland in mid-Feb. We fly into Zurich and we're thinking of spending two nights in Lucerne but after that not sure. I would like to take scenic train excursion but not sure which one is best. Help? We are mainly interested in beautiful scenery and shopping. (Don't judge).

Posted by
1443 posts

I don't know what your shopping budget is, but Zurich has some pretty swanky boutiques.

Posted by
8889 posts

For shopping, stay in Zürich and Geneva.
For those with a non-Trump budget, and who prefer to see what Switzerland is famous for (mountains). Luzern is a good place to start, you can get direct trains there from Zürich airport, takes 1¼ hours.

Two questions (1) how long have you for this trip in total? And (2) are you skiers?
February is Ski season, all the resorts are totally Ski-orientated. The usual places in the Berner Oberland (Lauterbrunnen, Mürren, Grindelwald, Wengen, ...) will be snowed in with skiers. There will be some hiking, but it will be winter hiking through snow.

Luzern is a nice town at any time of year, there is probably enough shopping to blow most budgets. Some boat trips will be running (see here: ), but it may be a bit cold.
From Luzern move on to the Berner Oberland (Interlaken). The train route from Luzern to Interlaken is over the Brünig Pass, very scenic (and white in February).
You could continue from Interlaken to above-mentioned resorts (~1-1½ hours), or (if you aren't skiers or snow-hikers) stay down in Interlaken and do day trips.
Bern is a good day trip from Interlaken, if you want a city.
Beyond that, it comes back to the two questions: How long? and are you skiers?

Posted by
3 posts

Sorry I thought I mentioned time frame but I see I didn't. We will arrive Sunday Feb 19 early am in Zurich and fly out likely on Thursday, since I see no American flights out on Friday. We would love to ski but figure there isn't enough time and doubt if we can fit ski gear in our carry-on. In terms of shopping, definitely not into high end shopping but maybe a bag or sweater. I would say inexpensive but I understand there is nothing inexpensive in Switzerland!

Would it make sense to train all the way to the Interlaken area on Sunday when we are exhausted and much is closed on Sunday anyway and we could rest on the long train ride? Then we could work our way back to Zurich through Lucerne?


Posted by
8642 posts

slacktt If you're arriving in the AM, you probably can't check into your hotel in Zurich that early anyway. So you might as well continue moving forward and go on directly to Luzern. You can get there from the train station at the airport, so that makes it easy.

Posted by
8889 posts

Yes. if you are arriving AM it makes sense go direct from the airport to wherever in the Berner Oberland you wish to stay. Look up train times here:
Don't bother to stay in Zürich. If you want to ski you should be able to hire ski gear by the day in all the Berner Oberland resorts, no need to bring with you. Just ask at your hotel. Don't worry about things being closed on Sunday, in a tourist place all restaurants will be open, just the supermarkets will be closed.
"We will arrive Sunday Feb 19 early am in Zurich and fly out likely on Thursday" - that is 4 nights, for such a short period I would recommend skipping Luzern, except if you have an early flight out Luzern is a shorter trip to Zürich airport (1½ hours), so it may be worth spending the last night there, which gives you the scenic train route Interlaken to Luzern on the day before.