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Are we crazy?

We are planning a trip to Italy in December, and have scheduled three nights in Pontresina, Switzerland. Is this too much time? We thought a day trip to St Moritz would be nice. Any other thoughts? Many thanks.

Posted by
6866 posts

Sorry, Maria, but you have not given enough details of your trip to where an opinion can be formed.

There are so many mountains in Northern Italy that pushing yourself to go to Switzerland may not be required.

Posted by
6898 posts

Maria, how long is your overall trip? Into which airport will you arrive and which one will you depart? Which other cities and/or towns will you be spending nights? Pontresina is fantastic. It also suggests that you may be on the Bernina Express. These other details will help us form some suggestions and to let you know if you are crazy or not.

Posted by
8 posts

thank you Gentlemen. We are spending 10 days in Italy, 4 nights in Rome, 4 nights in Florence and 2 nights in Venice. We are in Venice on the 11th day heading to Milan. We have three nights available. We are thinking of spending all three in Pontresina. Is this too much? I have two teenage boys. many thanks.

Posted by
6898 posts

Thanks Maria, this is good info. It looks like you are a good candidate for the Bernina Express which begins in Tirano, Italy. It does stop in Pontresina. However, please note that the train journey from Venice to Tirano takes 5.5hrs-6.0hrs. And, you are not even on the Bernina Express yet. The best run takes you to Milano Centrale (2hrs35min) where you change trains for Tirano (2.5hrs). One hour layover in Milano Centrale. This second train goes along the east side of Lake Como and then heads east to Tirano. Not bad for scenery.

The Bernina Express seems to have only one run in December departing at 14:11. Journey time to Pontresina is just over 2.0hrs. You can see this on www.sbb.ch It's the BEX train. To get there on time for the run, you must be on the 6:50 train out of Venice. The next run out of Venice departs at 8:50 which puts you into Tirano at 14:50 or almost an hour after the BE departs. From Pontresina, you can reverse and return to Milano Centrale. But, the Bernina Express doesn't run in the morning from Pontresina to Milano Centrale. Here, you have to take a combination of 3 trains and a bus. Here's a link to the 9:02 departure with all transfers on the run shown. http://gyazo.com/91d9a738f923e114399ccddf2a9fc804 Once again, it's 6.0hrs.

There are alternate methods of getting to Pontresina from Venice without going on the BE. The routing is via Verona Porta Nuova/Bolzano and other transfers. Journey time is still 9.0hrs.

I hope that I haven't made this journey too disappointing. The Bernina Express and stay in Pontresina are well worth considering the travel time.

Posted by
6898 posts

Maria, I forgot to mention that if your teenage boys are about 16-17 years old, just park them on a corner in Florence and they can watch the really cute Italian girls go by on their motorscooters.

Posted by
8 posts

You are too funny Larry. I have one teenage boy who want to "eat" his way thru Italy (along with me) and another boy who will get bored after the first museum. I am going with an open mind.

Thank you for your thoughts on Pontresina. We plan to take a train to Milan and then catch the Bernina Express. I will look at your suggestions and determine the best options. Have you been to Pontresina? I assume there are buses or trains for a day trip here or there. Many thanks.

Posted by
6898 posts

Maria, once in Milano Centrale, you will change to a train from Milano Centrale to Tirano where you can catch the Bernina Express. I've described this train above. Again, leave Venice very early so that you don't miss the 14:11 departure of the BEX. I have been through Pontresina on the train but have not stayed there. Numerous posters have expanded further on what I saw passing through in the late summer months. Perhaps others can comment.