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Zurich to Murren to Freiburg to Nuremberg (for canal boat)

We are flying in 5 days ahead of our canal boat cruise from Nuremberg to Budapest in August.

My question is, my husband wanted to show his family Murren.

What is best way to get from Murren (3nights), to Freiburg (2nights), to Nuremberg to pick up our canal boat?

He wants to rent a car from Murren area and drop it off in Nuremberg.

Thank you for advice.

Posted by
7209 posts

Unless your husband is just loaded with money to burn which will definitely be the case if you rent in Switzerland and drop in Germany, I would definitely not rent a car. There are hefty dropoff fees for dropping in a different country than where you rented.

Where will you fly into? How will you get to Murren? I'm ALL about seeing Murren (been there many times) - the family will LOVE it.

Posted by
6898 posts

Marie, assuming that you are entering Switzerland by air, it's just over 3hrs from the Zurich airport to Muerren by train. 3-4 transportation changes (gondola is one of them). Fare is 89.20CHF one-way ($101.23). The Zurich airport train station is below the airport complex.

You are a good candidate for the Swiss Card. The cost is 199CHF and is good for 30 days. You buy the card before you purchase any other tickets. It provides full transportation to and from Muerren from Zurich (178.40CHF) so you've almost paid for the card. Secondly, while you are in Muerren, the Swiss Card acts as a 1/2 fare card. 1/2 fare on all Swiss transportation. Should you decide to go to the top of the Jungfrau (Jungfraujoch), the regular round-trip fare is 200.80CHF ($227.87). You would pay only 1/2 the fare with the Swiss Card. Same with the Schilthorn which is a gondola ride up from Muerren (106.60CHF regular fare). Take the family to the Piz Gloria for a wonderful breakfast in the 360-degree revolving restaurant.

For Muerren to Freiburg, it's just short of 4hrs from Muerren. 2-3 train changes. Your Swiss Card would cover you on the fare back to the northern Swiss border. You can actually buy this ticket from Muerren to Freiburg from the German train website for as low as 29Euro (non-refundable). It would duplicate the benefit of your Swiss Card on this trip but 29Euro is a good price. You can purchase these tickets 90 days in advance. August is not yet within the 90-day window. Here's a snapshot of what this run looks like. Note that I have opened up one run to show you the intermediate stops.

Freiburg to Nuerenberg will be a 5.0hr train ride. You can also buy these tickets in advance from Here's a snapshot. Again, those nice fares are non-refundable.

Posted by
16893 posts

I agree with Larry's recommendation to take trains and to consider the Swiss Card and to book German tickets in advance, since you're probably pretty sure of the date and time you need to arrive in Nuremberg. From Freiburg to Nuremberg, you'll probably choose a departure that only requires one connection, instead of two or three.

Posted by
31099 posts

There are other choices, too.

If you go to Basel by train, just beyond the German border is Weil am Rhein, near the airport, where cars are available which would have no drop charge.

If you stay near Freiburg im Breisgau, but not in the city, it is likely that the village or town will participate in the Konus card programme where local trains in the Black Forest are free to use.

Driving from west to east from Freiburg im Breisgau to Nuremberg on the A5 and A6 can be challenging.

The A5, from the Swiss border up to Frankfurt am Main, turn right at Hockenheim, has perpetual road works on it and can be interesting.

The A6, between the A5 and Nuremberg can also be a challenge because of the interminable road works.

It may be an easy drive for you but my experience on both of those roads last year would say otherwise.

Posted by
710 posts

Thank you for all your advice. On July 31 we fly from USA and arrive in Frankfurt the morning of August 1. We then take another plane to Zurich.
We then need to get to Murren. (My husband has always wanted to take our nephew there). I know we will be exhausted, but he really wants to go back to Murren. We will stay there 3 nights. Next will be 2 nights in Freiburg (Germany). He wants to rent a car there and then drop it in Nuremberg. We will pick up a River cruise there from Nuremberg to Budapest for 7 nights and then fly home by way of Frankfurt to USA. He wants to rent the car to possibly see where some of his family might have come from. There will be 4 of us. He really wants to be able to drive in Black Forrest area.

Posted by
31099 posts

Driving in the Black Forest is not difficult - most roads are in very good shape, but it can be slow.

I hope you all have a very good trip.