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Switzerland input needed!

(Posted in General Europe as well)
My 22 yr old daughter and 50 yr old self are going on our second 30+ days trip around Europe in Aug/Sept 2016. Would like your thoughts on my itinerary flow, should I add or delete cities? (Last time we hit the biggies like London,Paris,Amsterdam,Vienna,Munich,Rome, lots of Greece) We like to stay 2-3 days per city,travel by train/short flights if need be, no car. Both of us are major Type A's who like a plan and like little down time. We like walking tours, being told the history etc, rather than reading a guide book or following an audio guide. We have really enjoyed bike tours, our cooking class in Venice, anything active or hands on. Not big museum lovers, but do love to visit cathedrals, castles, etc. Hopefully that gives you a little insight about us. Here we go...
Stockholm (perhaps a Baltic Cruise for a week or two to see Copenhagen, St.Petersburg etc while they do the transporting?)
Copenhagen
Berlin,Prague,Krakow?,Rothenburg,
Switzerland (Need help here! Where? Looking for ease of transportation as well)
Venice
Florence/Pisa
Cinque Terre (perhaps not in this order?)
then another Mediterranean Cruise for the relaxation as well as transportation to Sicily,Crete, etc?
If no cruise, we have a week or two that still needs planning after Cinque Terre. French Riviera?
Thanks so much, you all always give such great advice!!

Posted by
7364 posts

RS's favorite location in Switzerland in the Lauterbrunnen area....and for good reason. It is spectacular! We enjoy staying in Wengen, and stayed in Hotel Alpenruh on the edge of town in September. Our room has a gorgeous view of the mountains & valley from our balcony, and the breakfast was excellent. Wengen has two small grocery stores to pick up lunch items for an overall cheaper food budget. (we ate in restaurants for dinner) and has easy access for lots of hiking.

Posted by
4922 posts

Kathi, Another vote for the Lauterbrunnen area!! If possible, try to stay in Murren. Scenery is almost beyond description and there is plenty to keep one occupied. TC

Posted by
16894 posts

You have plenty of time for the planning, so I think reading more about the areas listed above will help you prioritize them.
Are you saying you have about 30 days to visit 10 cities on the list above, plus another 2 - 4 weeks for separate cruises? If anything has to be cut from the above list, it would be the points that are further from your main path of travel. I'd say you can see Berlin and Prague, maybe Dresden in between, without Rothenburg and/or Krakow.

From either Prague or Krakow to Switzerland, check flights at www.skyscanner.com. There is also currently an overnight train from Prague to Zurich. Ease of transportation should not be a concern in Switzerland, as several varieties of public transport are all frequent and synchronized, even to get you to the tops of mountains.

Posted by
72 posts

Another vote for lauterbrunnen I fell in love with it for the first time. The area is amazing I stayed in lauterbrunnen my room was small but the view is amazing the waterfalla right in front of me. Getting around to murren and other towns is fairly easy. Or try Murren it is as beautiful as lauterbrunnen.

Posted by
17 posts

We would also vote for a visit to the Berner Oberland, and would recommend staying in Lauterbrunnen. We spent five nights there in Early October, and loved it. Public transportation is terrific in the Berner Oberland, and you can get anywhere you want to without a car -- train, cable car, local bus, etc. Our hotel in Lauterbrunnen, the Silberhorn, was right across the street from the train station, and a few doors down from the gondola to Murren. You can also take an inexpensive bus to the two waterfalls in the Lauterbrunnen valley, and to the gondola up to Gimmelwald. We also bought half-priced Swiss rail passes, that allowed us to pay half-price on ALL public transportation -- Switzerland IS expensive, and even their transportation is pricey, especially to go to the many sights the BO offers. I read others recommend both Wengen and Murren, and both are good choices IF you go during their busy season, which sound like you may be. I would NOT suggest staying in either after mid-September, though. BOTH town turn into ghost towns beginning in late-September, with most hotels, restaurants, etc. shutting down for repairs between their seasons.

One caution .. we mentioned that Switzerland is expensive. The weiner schnitzel you paid 16-18 Euros for in Germany ($23) and Austria, will be 42 Swiss Francs ($46) all around Switzerland.

Posted by
32228 posts

@Chris,

"I personally never understand why people travel so far to experience the Swiss Alps and then decide to stop and stay on the valley floor (Lauterbrunnen).....instead of an extra 20 minutes journey and staying in Mürren at 1650m."

I find the choice of where to stay in that area depends to some extent on exactly which locations each traveller wants to visit while there. My reasons for staying in Lauterbrunnen last time were somewhat pragmatic, as that was the best location for accessing transportation for the touring that I had planned on that visit. While I had thought of staying in Mürren (and may do so on a future visit), I was touring places on both sides of the valley so Lauterbrunnen was the most efficient choice. While it may only be a short trip from Mürren to Lauterbrunnen, that would have added both cost and time to each excursion.

I definitely agree with you though - Mürren is a beautiful place!

Posted by
250 posts

Thank you, one and all for the advice! Just what I needed to figure out my options!

Posted by
4478 posts

Schilthorn!

One reason to stay on the valley floor instead of Murren is more dining/lodging/shopping options.