Swiss Rail Spectacular III

Experience the unparalleled beauty of Switzerland’s mountainous landscapes in luxury and style, as we travel on the country’s most exquisite and historic trains during our twelve night/thirteen-day tour (with a two-night pre-tour optional rail extension available from London). Travelling by day on board the luxurious CIWL/VSOE style day cars of the standard-gauge Prestige Continental Express, and the metre-gauge Pullman cars of the Glacier Pullman Express, we marvel at some of Europe’s most breath-taking alpine vantage points, including the historic Furka Pass, the Gornergrat Railway and the Jungfraujoch, as we relax and enjoy the sumptuous onboard cuisine and musical entertainment. Each evening will be spent in luxury hotel accommodation in the heart of each destination.

London – Paris - Basel – Zurich – St Moritz – Tirano - Andermatt - Furka Mountain Pass – Zermatt – Bern - Interlaken – Jungfrau - Brienz – Lake Como - Pilatus Kulm - Zurich

TOUR HIGHLIGHTS

  • Historic locomotive haulage, including the 108-year-old RhB electric locomotive Nr 353 and the Bernina ‘Crocodil’ electric locomotive Nr 182, built in 1928.
  • Travel on the Gornergrat Rack Railway with spectacular close-up views of the Matterhorn.
  • Cross one of the world’s most beautiful mountain passes on the Furka Cogwheel Steam Railway.
  • Climb over 11,000 feet above sea level to the magnificent Jungfraujoch, stopping at Europe’s highest railway station.

Day 1 London

England

Why not join us for our two-night pre-tour extension in London and Paris to really start your Swiss journey with us in style? We begin the extension with a night at the beautifully restored St Pancras Renaissance Hotel in London.

Arrive to London any time. Overnight at the St Pancras Renaissance Hotel with dinner included in the Billiard and Exchange Room at the hotel.

Meal Arrangements: D

Day 2 London to Paris

France

After a sumptuous hotel breakfast, we will board the Eurostar late morning from St Pancras travelling in 'Business Premier' Class for our journey under the English Channel and onto Paris.

Tonight in the French capital we will dine at the iconic ‘Le Train Bleu’ restaurant in the heart of the Gare de Lyon. Built in 1901, a painstaking renovation was completed in 2014 honouring its turn of the century style.

We will spend the night at the Mercure Gare de Lyon.

Overnight at Mercure Gare de Lyon

Meal Arrangements: B, D

Day 3 Paris to Basel

Switzerland

For guests travelling from Paris after breakfast we will transfer to the French TGV for a three-hour journey to Basel, Switzerland for an overnight stay at the GAIA hotel.

For guests joining directly in Basel, transfers are own arrangements from Basel Airport to the GAIA hotel in the city centre.

Tonight we enjoy a dinner in a local restaurant in Basel for all guests.

Overnight at the GAIA Hotel, Basel

Meal Arrangements: D

Day 4 Basel via Zurich to St Moritz

Switzerland

This morning we join the Prestige Continental Express private train either in Basel SBB Station or in Zürich Flughafen (Airport) station.

Once on board we will have lunch as we depart for the Swiss city of Landquart, where we change to the narrow gauge Rhaetian Railway (RhB) and the Glacier & Bernina Pullman Express for the journey up to the exclusive alpine resort of St. Moritz.

Our travels will take us through the Albula Pass between Filisur and St. Moritz, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Today our three-coach train will be hauled by the historic 108-year-old RhB electric locomotive Nr 353.

Overnight in Badrutt's Palace

Meal Arrangements: B, L, D

Day 5 St Moritz to Tirano

Switzerland to Italy

Today we travel along Switzerland’s famous Bernina Line to Tirano, Italy. From St. Moritz we travel in the Glacier & Bernina Pullman Express cars hauled by a unique and historic Bernina ‘Crocodil’ electric locomotive Nr 182, built 1928.

During the final 17km of the journey we will cross the incredible spiral stone viaduct at Brusio. Once in Tirano, Italy we spend time enjoying the Valtellina Valley and visit the Triacco Winery where we will have lunch, before retracing our steps by bus back to St. Moritz.

Tonight we will enjoy a traditional Swiss dinner near to the Morteratsch Glacier.

Overnight in Badrutt's Palace

Meal Arrangements: B, L, D

Day 6 St Moritz to Andermatt

Switzerland

This morning we depart St. Moritz for Andermatt on the Glacier & Bernina Pullman Express. Once again, we will enjoy the hospitality of the RhB’s historic Pullman train but today hauled by RhB ‘Crocodil’ Nr 414 or 415, built 1929.

Our travels will take us by train through the Rheinschlucht Gorge, very close to the source of the Rhine River and across the Oberalp Pass to Andermatt, our stepping-stone for the Furka Pass.

After checking-in to the exclusive five-star Chedi Andermatt hotel our guests can either take advantage of the hotel’s extensive Spa & Wellness facilities or take an option to travel by bus along the Gotthard Pass to visit the huge Sasso Da Pigna Fortress that guarded it from 1943 onwards. Closed in 1998 it re-opened as the Gotthard Museum Sasso in 2012.

Tonight we will have dinner in the town of Andermatt.

Overnight in Andermatt, Hotel Chedi

Meal Arrangements: B, L, D

Day 7 Furka Mountain Pass

Switzerland

Today we cross one of the most beautiful mountain passes in the world, the Furka Pass. The Dampfbahn Furka-Bergstrecke (Furka Cogwheel Steam Railway) is a largely volunteer operated heritage railway which operates a partially rack and pinion operated line across the Furka Pass which peaks at 2,160 metres (7,086 feet) above sea level.

The Furka Dampfbahn has been gradually brought back into service using original equipment and is now restored to its former glory. The 100-year-old steam locomotive will take us 740m (2,405ft) to the summit. We then descend under the Rhône glacier to Gletsch for lunch at the Hotel Castle Blitzingen, Niederwald. Mid-afternoon we join the modern Glacier Express (First Class) to Zermatt, home of the Matterhorn.

Overnight in Zermatt, Hotel Zermatterhof

Meal Arrangements: B, L, D

Day 8 Gornergrat & the Matterhorn

Switzerland

This afternoon we take an exciting journey on the Gornergrat Railway on the Glacier Paullman Express attached to a Rack electric train. We travel to a height of 3,135 metres (10,285 feet) for the most incredible view of the Matterhorn. The Gornergrat is located between the Gornergletscher and Findelgletscher and offers a view of more than twenty peaks over 4,000 metres (13,123 feet).

A raclette dinner will be taken at the Al Bosco Restaurant, Riffelalp Resort, at 2,222m (7,290 ft) before returning to Zermatt.

Overnight in Zermatt, Hotel Zermatterhof

Meal Arrangements: B, D

Day 9 Bern & Interlaken

Switzerland

We start the day descending from Zermatt on the panoramic cars of the regular Glacier Express before re-joining the steam-hauled Prestige Continental Express in Brig. From Brig we take lunch during our journey over the Lötschberg Pass before arriving into Bern. Here we enjoy a three hour tour of the city, including one hour by historic steam tram.

From Bern we continue under steam haulage on board the Prestige Continental Express to Interlaken.

Overnight in Interlaken: Hotel Victoria Jungfrau and Spa

Meal Arrangements: B, L, D

Day 10 Interlaken - Jungfrau Region

Switzerland

Interlaken will act as our base for the next few days as we visit the magical Jungfrau alpine region of Switzerland. Today we will join a private steam train on the Ballenberg Dampfbahn to Meiringen and Innertkirchen.

From here there is the choice to walk 2 km through the spectacular Aareschlucht Gorge, followed a trip by Funicular to Reichenbach Falls, made famous by Arthur Conan Doyle as the spot where he killed off both Sherlock Holmes and Professor Moriarty, before a visit to the Sherlock Holmes Museum in Meiringen then re-joining our steam train which will return us to Interlaken.

A second group has a more leisurely day by going straight from Innertkirchen to Reichenbach Falls, then visit the Sherlock Holmes Museum and some free time in Meiringen before returning to our train back to Interlaken.

Overnight in Interlaken, Hotel Victoria Jungfrau and Spa

Meal Arrangements: B, D

Day 11 Jungfrau & the Top of Europe

Switzerland

Today we depart Interlaken by regular trains for Grindelwald and Kleine Scheidegg. Once at Kleine Scheidegg we have the choice of a leisurely morning with stunning Alpine views or transfer to the Jungfraubahn and the final leg of our trip up to a height of 3,454 metres (11,332 feet) above sea level, making this the highest railway station in Europe. Weather permitting you may be able to venture out onto the glaciers.

There will be time at the top of the mountain before descending back to Kleine Scheidegg where we will have lunch and then continue down the mountain to Wilderswil where we have a special steam charter train on the Schynige-Platte Bahn Rack Railway. At the summit we will visit the Alpine Garden before returning to Wilderswil and then back to the hotel.

Overnight in Interlaken, Hotel Victoria Jungfrau and Spa

Meal Arrangements: B, L

Day 12 Brienz & Brienzer-Rothorn Bahn

Switzerland

Today we leave Interlaken by bus for the Brienzer-Rothorn Steam Rack Railway. The town of Brienz has been known for centuries for its wood carving. as well as the sBrienzer-Rothorn Bahn, the fourth highest railway in Switzerland that reaches a height of 2,244 metres (7,360 feet).

Following lunch by the lake we cruise from Brienz returning to Interlaken on the 1914 paddle steamer SS Lötschberg.

Overnight in Interlaken, Hotel Victoria Jungfrau and Spa

Meal Arrangements: B, L, D

Day 13 Lake Como

Italy

Today we depart on the Prestige Continental Express from Interlaken over the spectacular St Gotthard pass to Chiasso and transfer to nearby Lake Como, in Italy. We will tour the town and have a cruise on the lake before having dinner at our hotel.

Overnight in Lake Como (Hotel TBC)

Meal Arrangements: B, L, D

Day 14 Pilatus Kulm & Zurich

Switzerland

This morning we depart Chiasso on the Prestige Continental Express for Lucerne, changing to a narrow gauge train for the short journye to Alpnachstad.

From here we travel on the Pilatus Bahn, which is the steepest rack railway in the world, with a maximum gradient of 48% and takes 30 minutes to the peak at Pilatus Kulm passing alpine meadows and striking rock formations on its route.

We will return down the mountain and enjoy our farewell gala dinner in the opulent Prestige Continental Express dining cars as we make our way back to ZurichFlughafen Station. From the train we will walk to the hotel, which is connected to the Airport Terminal.

Note: Guests wishing to continue to Basel can do so and accommodation will be in the GAIA Hotel near to Basel SBB station.

Overnight in Zurich, Radisson Blu Hotel, Zurich Airport or in Basel at the GAIA Hotel at the SBB station.

Meal Arrangements: B, L, D

Day 15 Zurich

Switzerland

After breakfast, free time until departing flights from the adjacent terminal or train connections from the station beneath the terminal.

Meal Arrangements: B

Dates & Prices

2023 PER PERSON PRICES

USD ($)Main Tour Price London – Basel Pre-Tour Option
Twin ($) Single ($) Twin ($) Single ($)
Jul 4 - Jul 1622,995 28,595 2,195 2,795
Deposit$2,000 $500
GBP(£) USD($) EUR(€)

TOUR INCLUSIONS

ACCOMMODATION

  • Premium hotel accommodation included throughout (4-star minimum)

DINING

  • Freshly prepared meals on board, using the finest local ingredients
  • Authentic dining experiences in local restaurants
  • Generous drinks allowance, including international wines with lunch and dinner
  • 12 Breakfasts, 9 Lunches, 10 Dinners

EXCURSIONS

  • Expertly guided off-train excursions as detailed in the itinerary

SERVICE

  • Experienced Tour Management team
  • Arrival and departure transfers
  • All gratuities – on and off the train
  • Luggage porterage throughout the journey

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