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Trains - Lake Orta & Milan to Wengen (Sept/Oct 2024)

Looking for recommendations for trains between Milan and Wengen.
Depending on which place I book my accommodations, 5 days later I’ll do the reverse to get back MPX (Milan).
I will get whatever the best Swiss Pass for my needs. I enjoy walking, hiking, exploring the villages.

Travel dates - 2024
9/27 Lake Orta to Wengen
10/02 Wengen to MPX
Also train 9/10 MPX - Venice where I’ll spend a few nights.

UPDATE - I'm getting closer to finalizing my plans. I'm taking the Rick Steves Village Italy tour and will be coming from Lake Orta train station (Orta-Miasino?) 9/27/24, bus and train to Wengen. I will be in Wengen 9/27 - 10/2 - 5 nights. Trying to decide on which pass to get - 6 day Berner Oberland Pass by itself 350 CHF or the BOP plus the Half Fare Travel Card = BO 254 CHF + 120 CHF Half Fare = 374 CHF. Most recent posts I've read stating the Half Fare card not as valuable in 2024.

Posted by
1625 posts

Basically the recommended trains are the ones that get you there. There is no choice here. In Italy you will travel on Trenitalia, in Switzerland on SBB and local railways.

Use www.sbb.ch and www.trenitalia.com to find schedules. Know however that it is about 5 months to early to book... Use a date in next week to see what is available. You can expect schedules to remain much the same.

For Wengen back to MXP you best take the train back to Domodossola and take the bus from there.

Posted by
20032 posts

When you look at the schedule in the future (trains for your dates in Italy are not showing up right now) You will see a couple of EC trains that are direct from Milano Centrale to Spiez. From Spiez it is just a short train to interlaken Ost, then to Lauterbrunnen, then to Wengen (or Muerren). If you can commit 3 months out, you can get a nonrefundable SMART fare for 42 EUR to Spiez.

Depending on which place I book my accommodations, 5 days later I’ll do the reverse to get back MPX (Milan).

From 9/27 to 10/3 I count 7 days.

PS, I see you are doing the Village Italy Tour, starting Sept 16? That puts you in Orta on 9/29, so perhaps that is a typo. Going from Orta, there is a direct train to Domodossola, so you can skip going to Milan and take a shortcut.

Posted by
25 posts

Thanks to everyone for your input...greatly appreciate it.
Sam:
RS Village Italy Tour - 9/14 - 9/27/24. Great to know about Lake Orta train!

"PS, I see you are doing the Village Italy Tour, starting Sept 16? That puts you in Orta on 9/29, so perhaps that is a typo. Going from Orta, there is a direct train to Domodossola, so you can skip going to Milan and take a shortcut."

Posted by
20032 posts

Get the 8-day Berner Oberland Regional Pass for 395 CHF. That will cover all travel from Domodossola to Muerren/Wengen and virtually all the lifts except to the top of the Jungfraujoch above Eigergletscher (you get a special discounted price) and the Schilthorn above Muerren (you get 50% discount). and you must travel between Brig and Spiez on the BLS line via Kandersteg.

On 9/27. take the 7:40 am train from Orta-Miasino to Domodossola (cost is 5.40 EUR), arriving at 8;49, then the RE 1 from Domodossola at 9:59 to Spiez, then connecting trains to Interlaken Ost, Lauterbrunnen, and Muerren or Wengen.

Assume your flight from MXP is on 10/5. If it is on 10/4, then you will need to leave Muerren/Wengen on 10/3. Return the the way you came, and at Domodossola, you can get a bus to MXP and spend the night in an airport hotel. Bus needs to be booked in advance.
https://www.berneseoberlandpass.ch/all-in-1-ticket-bernese-oberland/
https://www.comazzialibus.com/ComazziAlibus/?locale=EN

Posted by
1625 posts

If you can commit 3 months out, you can get a nonrefundable SMART fare
for 42 EUR to Spiez.

You don't need to book 3 months out. I see the cheap 35 EUR Smart fare for departures just two weeks from now. In fact, you will probably run in to issues if you try to book this early. The Simplon Route has frequent temporary closures, and because of that schedules are often only finalised a couple of weeks beforehand, and thus bookings often open rather late.

Posted by
25 posts

Sam - my return flight home is 10/3/24, and plan on leaving Wengen or Murren 10/2, with spending night at MXP hotel.. Thank you for all the very helpful information.

Posted by
20032 posts

Obviously, the 6-day Berner Oberland Pass for 350 CHF is indicated.

Posted by
25 posts

Sam and WengenK can you weigh in on my 3/14/24 update? Thank you.

Posted by
20032 posts

The Half Fare Card is as valuable as ever. Its just that you do not get as big a discount off the BO Pass this year. But you still effectively get a Half Fare Card for 24 CHF. But if you are going back to MXP on the 6th day of your pass validity, there is no where to use it, so might as well forget about it and pay full price for the 6-day BORP. Just remember to take the BLS regional train between Spiez and Domodossola on 9/27 and 10/02. You will take the train to Domodossola from Orte-Miasino on 9/27. On 10/02, you will take the bus from Domodossola to MXP.

Posted by
25 posts

Sam - thank you for information especially on the trains! In a nutshell, can you explain what the Half Card is good for and also what is not covered with the BOP? I think maybe two places 🤔. Appreciate your input and that nice detailed map which is easy to follow.

Posted by
20032 posts

The BORP only gives a discounted price to go to the top of the Jungfraujoch from Eigergletcher, which is 99 CHF r/t. Free to Eigergletcher. Also it only gives a 50% discount on the Schilthornbahn above Muerren.

The detailed map of validity can be downloaded as a pdf from this site.
https://www.berneseoberlandpass.ch/maps-bernese-oberland

The Half fare Card would be good if you were traveling in Switzerland outside the area of validity of the BORP, where you get half price train tickets.

Posted by
25 posts

I'd like to pass along what I think my plans are for 9/27/24 travel day. A nod of approval or advise is most welcome.
I will be in Wengen, Switzerland 5 nights / 6 days.

Arriving 9/27 and 10/2/24 departure.
I’m most likely just purchasing the BOP 6 day pass which should cover all my travel days. Any need to purchase earlier than later?

Domodossola – Wengen – from the little I’ve read, I don’t need a train reservation on the SBB train – just board the train??

Trenitalia Train
9/27/24
R 11414
Orta-Miasino – Domodossola

7:40am – 8:49a 5.40 €
I can pay with phone app - how many days prior would be recommended?

SBB
Domodossola – Wengen
RE1 – Direction Bern
09:58 – 13:12 – 31.40 CHF
Domodossola
Spiez (going through Kandersteg/Goppenstein)
Interlaken Ost
Lauterbrunnen
Wengen

Posted by
20032 posts

If you have your Berner Oberland Pass beginning 9/27, then you do not have to pay the 31.40 CHF as it is included with the pass.
Nothing in Switzerland needs to be reserved.

Posted by
25 posts

Sam - that € cost was in my notes just to share the train I was planning on booking. Train schedule look good to you ?

Posted by
1625 posts

Regarding the regional train in Italy: That does not need to be bought in advance. You just need to have the ticket before you board the train. I would suggest just buying the ticket at the station from a ticket vending machine (you can switch the menus to English) as Trenitalia has made electronic ticketing for regional trains unnecessarily complicated.

Posted by
25 posts

WengenK - thank you for input. Any idea if later trains in morning might be added (Orta - Domodossola)?

Posted by
20032 posts

There may not be a ticket machine at a tiny station like Orte-Miasino, at least I would not count on it. And I doubt any trains will be added, but you can check after June 8.