We are a family of five traveling for 10 days to Switzerland, flying in to Geneva and travelling by car. We love to hike and are primarily visiting to see and enjoy the mountains. We've planned to stay in Lucerne for two of the nights and spend three nights in Murren. Would you suggest we stay only one night in Lucerne in favor of more nights in Murren? Is there enough hiking around Lucerne to warrant two nights there? Our final three nights are in Lugano, then back to Geneva. Thanks for your advice!
We loved Lucerne. A beautiful town to walk around. We took the cable car up Mt. Pilatus. A lovely lake for a boat ride. Lots of hills. We would have stayed longer if we could have!
Luzern (aka Lucerne) is a town at the end of the lake. You have to travel outside the town to get to any hiking tracks. But there are lots of good trails all around the lake. Most hotels in the old town do not have car parks, you would have to park in paid public parking some distance from your hotel.
Mürren (altitude 1650 metres) is a small tourist village with spectacular views. It is on a ledge above a U-shaped valley. Hiking tracks start literally from your doorstep. See: https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/b/b3/M%C3%BCrren_view.jpg
But, you cannot drive to Mürren, there are no public roads. You have to leave your car at Lauterbrunnen at the bottom of the valley (altitude 795 metres) and take a cable car (or hike up). The Lauterbrunnen valley is famous for its waterfalls, see https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/7/7c/1_lauterbrunnen_valley_2012.jpg
1) If you want hiking choose Mürren.
2) Give up the car, take the train Geneva airport --> Luzern --> Mürren --> back toGeneva airport.
There is plenty of hiking anywhere in the Alps. No matter where you go, you will find days of hiking. All hiking tracks in Switzerland (German: Wanderweg) are well signposted with yellow signposts, "distances" are shown in hours and minutes instead of Km. They times quoted allow more time for going uphill than downhill!
Thanks to Chris.
Thank you, Chris, for your very helpful response. We have decided on the following itinerary using trains: Geneva to Montreaux 1 night, Lucerne 2 nights, Wengen 2 nights, Zermatt 3 nights, Geneva 1 night then flight home. We have removed Lugano from our plans in favor of more time in the Alps and to minimize long train journeys. Any thoughts?