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10 days in Switzerland

Hi all, My wife and I are planning a trip to Switzerland and have about 10 days in mid-June this year. We're twenty-somethings, not really the "super-hiker" type. We're thinking of visiting berner oberland, luzerne, bern, lausanne. What's the best way to link these few places?
Would there be time to see some place else? Would Zermatt be worthwhile to travel to? Thanks!

Posted by
31303 posts

Pauleon, Could you clarify your question a bit? The best way to "link these few places" is via rail, but which order to arrange them will depend on which airports you'll be using and other factors. With only 10-days, I would definitely drop Zermatt from the list, as I don't believe you have time. I suspect you may have to also drop one of the other cities you listed as well, as your time frame only allows 2.5 days per city, with no allowances for travel times. Is this your first trip to Europe?

Posted by
1717 posts

Hi Pauleon. You can go to all of those places (not including Zermatt) in ten days. A good plan for that trip would be : Lucern 2 nights, Lauterbrunnen in the Berner Oberland 3 nights, Lausanne 3 nights, Bern one night, Zurich one night.
I think there is not much to see at Bern. A traveler could visit Bern in one day of travel, by trains, from Lausanne to Zurich. That would give you an extra day at the Berner Oberland.

Posted by
6 posts

Ah I'm sorry I wasnt clear Yup we want to travel by rail. And I meant more about the order of visiting.
We'll fly in and out of Zurich. I basically took the areas of highlight from Rick Steve's Switzerland book.. Hence the places I mentioned above were chosen! Basically I'm not sure whether I should start off with Luzerne then --> BO --> Lausanne --> Bern --> Zurich or is there a better route? Thanks!

Posted by
2703 posts

Hi Pauleon, I'd try keep it at 3 locations for 10 days. Will that be 9 or 10 nights? Depending on the time of your flight out of Zurich, you could stay your last night in Luzern. I'd allow at least 4 nights (3 full days) in the Berner Oberland and 2 or 3 nights for Luzern. Never been to Bern or Lausanne, so I can't give any opinions on those. Paul

Posted by
12372 posts

I think you have the order of visiting just right, and you can include all four cities because you don't need to stay overnight in Zurich. trains go directly from the Zurich airport to both Luzern (1 hour 3 minutes) and Bern (1 hour 14 minutes). So, you could head straight to Luzern upon arrival; head to the Berner Oberland via the scenic Golden Pass route, then continue on the Golden Pass route to Montreux to reach Lausanne, and spend you last night or 2 in Bern. I don't think you should include Zermatt, as it is extra travel time, and you will see gorgeous mountain scenery in the Berner Oberland. I like Zermatt; we go there to hike. but it doesn't fit well into your trip with your limited time.

Posted by
82 posts

I agree, a day trip to Bern is enought to see all that there is to see in that city. I'd reserve the extra time for the Berner Oberland area. This may be personal preference, but my family and I liked Luzern better than Lausanne. For what it is worth! Penn

Posted by
1986 posts

I agree; one day and night in Bern should be enough. however the scenery and tiny villages you pass by train (or bus) within Switzerkland are delightful (Thun springs to mind); you may want to investigate some of these and stay for at least one night- not the grand Alpine scenery of the Jungfrau, but rolling hills, cute villages and farms. I am thinking of plotting the train routes and stopping off at one or two of these for one day on my next trip. I'd even give up a day in Lauterbrunnen. Lucerne is worth two days itself, plus one day for a trip on the lake and up Pilatus

Posted by
12372 posts

Bern is right on the route back to Zurich airport from Lausanne, so why not make it their last night in Switzerland? It is a lovely, well-preserved (not bombed in WW2) city, and the capital. It makes a good stopping point within reach of the airport.

Posted by
6 posts

Thanks everyone for the advice! Ok pretty good idea of what I'll be doing... Probably 2 nights in Luzern 4-5 nights in BO 2-3 nights Lausanne
then overnight in Bern or Zurich then out Will read more and decide =] Will have 10 nights - touching down Zurich about 8am and out from Zurich at 11:45am An alternative might be to cut down on some days in Switzerland and take a train over to Paris from Lausanne, spend 2 nights and fly out from there...?

Posted by
1986 posts

I wouldnt try paris for two days- adds tracel time (reduces sightseeibng time). not enough to see much in Paris. Stick to your current plan. For your last night you dont have to stay in Zurich, as long as you are in a town where its convenient to get to Zurich airport. If you do stay in Zurich, stay in town centre, half day wandering among those old financial buildings is more interesting than being out in the suburbs. But neither appeals over Lucerne to me

Posted by
6 posts

One more question: Would it b easier traveling with backpacks or luggage that we can drag? Thanks!!