New Year's eve on the Glacier Express
The Award Winning Leader in Escorted Worldwide Rail Holidays
Celebrate the New Year in style on this magnificent tour. Travelling in First Class throughout, we discover some of Switzerland's most beautiful winter landscapes, such as the mountain resort of Zermatt and the lakeside city of Lucerne, and make spectacular journeys on some of Europe's most iconic trains such as the Glacier Express and Bernina Express.
We meet at our Departure Office in St Pancras International, before boarding the Eurostar to Paris, travelling in Standard Premier Class. We change trains and continue to Strasbourg, where we overnight. On Day 2, we enjoy a morning at the wonderful Christmas Market before continuing to Brig.
Today, we board a narrow-gauge train, travelling through picturesque vineyards and alongside the River Rhône to Visp. Here, we join the mountain railway to the charming resort of Zermatt, nestled below the peak of the Matterhorn. On Day 4, we are at leisure. Why not make use of the included Swiss Travel Card, giving you 50% off local rail fares?
We leave Brig today, travelling from the pretty Valais to the rocky landscape of the fantastic Graubünden canton on the iconic Glacier Express. We make the journey in First Class, enjoying unspoilt views through panoramic windows - views of the scenery for which Switzerland is justly famous, all covered in a thick blanket of snow; sloping snowy meadows and frosted forests, rising up the hillsides beside the track towards towering mountain peaks.
A two-course lunch is served at our seats during the journey, followed by tea and coffee - the perfect accompaniment to our time on board 'the slowest express train in the world'. We follow the wintry Rhône Valley and climb towards and through the Furka Base Tunnel. We continue past the countless small villages that line our route, decorated for the festivities and nestled in the foothills of the surrounding mountains, before our steep ascent over the Oberalp Pass - at 6,670ft the highest point of the route and where the views south include the distant peaks of the Italian Alps.
Our descent from Oberalp takes us along the beautiful Rhine Valley and into Chur - Switzerland's oldest town, for four nights at the Romantik Hotel Stern. This evening we enjoy a New Year's Eve celebration at the hotel with a five-course meal accompanied by wine. We ascend to the rooftop terrace at midnight to watch the fireworks over Chur, accompanied by a glass of wine.
New Year's Day is at leisure to relax in Chur. Set against a breathtaking backdrop of towering mountains, Chur is Switzerland's oldest town, and a pleasure to explore. Take time to stroll through the medieval alleyways and tranquil squares of the Old Town, and visit the beautiful 12th century cathedral. Alternatively, use your GRJ First Class Swiss Travel Card for 50% fares, perhaps to make the spectacular train journey on the Arosa Line to the scenic mountain resort of Arosa.
Today we travel by train to the historic lakeside city of Lucerne. You have plenty of time to discover the cobbled streets lined with pretty, frescoed buildings, picturesque squares and the famous Kapellbrücke bridge. The bridge has served as a prison, torture chamber, watchtower and treasury in its long history. The Swiss Transport Museum, with its fascinating collection of artefacts relating to land, air and sea transportation is also well worth a visit.
We enjoy a journey on the narrow-gauge Bernina Express, which takes us from Chur over viaducts and bridges, past frozen waterfalls and deep ravines and ascends the Albula Pass, on an amazing route which enjoys UNESCO World Heritage status. The ascent loops into the Engadine Valley before climbing even higher over the Bernina Pass to more than 7,000 feet (2,134m). Enjoy the breathtaking views of the snow-capped peaks as we travel to Poschiavo, a picturesque town in the Italian-speaking region of Switzerland.
Today, we leave Chur, heading to Paris via Basel where we join the Eurostar to London.
Please note that while every departure of this tour will feature the same excursions, the order may differ from that shown above.
Provisional departure and return times, where available, can be found together with our dates and prices by clicking on the 'Prices & Availability' button. We write to all booked customers approximately 10 weeks prior to the start of their tour to advise the exact departure and return time for their particular group.
An escorted experience and all travel arrangements
Comfortable accommodation in your destination
Delicious meals included
Exciting excursions and free time to explore
Please note: This tour may be suitable for reduced mobility passengers, please call for further information.
New Year's eve on the Glacier Express