I have a trip planned with my girlfriend in early-mid July in Europe. I will be at a meeting near Zurich and then meeting her in Zurich (where she flys into). We have about 3 full days in to do whatever in Switzerland before we go to Paris. I was wondering what is the best use of those three days with also keeping in mind it would be nice to get on a flight from Easyjet (i.e. end the 3 days in a city with some flights out of country) or something like that from somewhere in Switzerland to Paris. I heard Interlaken is really nice and we have some friends in Geneva, any suggestions would be appreciated. Also, what is the best way to travel around Switzerland for 3 days--what rail pass is the best?
Not really much to do with 3 days but here's a suggested itinerary. I'm hoping that you have 3 nights. From the Zurich airport, go down to the train station below the main terminal. In 2hrs-45min, you are in Lauterbrunnen (you will go through Interlaken). Stay 2 nights either there or in Murren. The morning of day 3 take the Golden Pass scenic train from Interlaken Ost (East) to Montreux. Continue on to Geneva. Night 3 in Geneva. Morning of day 4, take the train from Geneva to Paris (about 4hrs). If you only have 2 nights, it could be a very tight schedule
Matt, do you and your girlfriend prefer mountains or cities in Switzerland? If mountains, Berner-Oberland near Interlaken (Murren, Lauterbrunnen) is within reach, as Larry said. From there you could return to Zurich or train to Bern to fly to Paris. If cities are your preference, consider a day in Zurich or out to one of the villages along the lake. I'd also suggest Lucerne, very close to Zurich. It's a more intimate city, and in my opinion, more interesting. Neither Bern nor Basel are that far and both are also quite interesting. It's easy to get from any one to Paris.
Thanks for the information. I think for this portion of the trip I would be more interested in the mountains because the rest of the time we will be in big cities and I've heard the landscape in some areas of Switzerland are gorgeous.
Matt, your understanding of the views is correct. If you can get up to Murren, you'll see the alps on steroids. Quite breathtaking.
All the information about railpasses you can find at the railway website, www.sbb.ch Click on en for the english website, go to Online Travel Shop, and then click on Swiss Rail Passes. I believe there is an unlimited pass for 4 days (including boats, buses, trains and trams throughout Switzerland). Why not consider the TGV high speed train from Zurich or Geneva to Paris? It takes only 4 hours (from Zurich) and takes you right into the heart of Paris. Reservations are obligatory and the earlier you book, the cheaper the price, (sometimes as cheap as 30 euros from Geneva...) more info at www.tgv.com. For 3 days, I would leave a day for Zurich, one for Lucerne and on the third maybe a rail journey like the Glacier Express from Andermatt to Zermatt, or The William Tell from Lucerne to Locarno. (an extra fee applies to the special rail trips even with the rail passes). Montreux and the Chillion Castle on Lake Geneva should also be very nice. Interlaken is only a gateway to the mountains, as a city it's a little ho hum. Enjoy!