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Glacier Express in Winter

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An adventurous twin-centre Swiss rail holiday

8 days Sold out
Flexible Booking

Book your 2021 holiday before 31st October and you can transfer your holiday for free - no questions asked. T&C's apply

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2021 Tour code: GYW21

About the tour

This enticing twin-centre rail holiday provides ample opportunity to explore the majestic Swiss Alps cloaked in their winter finery, and to enjoy our trip on the famous Glacier Express, the slowest, and certainly one of the most scenic 'express' trains in the world.

Highlights

What’s included

Itinerary

Days 1-2 – London and Chur

We meet at our dedicated Departure Office at London St Pancras before boarding the Eurostar to Paris. We change for the high-speed service to Strasbourg where we stay for the night.

On Day 2 we leave Strasbourg by train for Switzerland. Our journey takes us across the border and travelling via Basel, we join the superb Swiss railway network. We make our way to Chur, Switzerland's oldest town with over 5,000 years of settlement history for you to explore.

Includes
  • Day 1 - Dinner
  • Day 2 - Breakfast, Dinner
Chur
Day 3 - Exploring Chur

Your day is free to explore historic Chur and the surrounding region. Take time to stroll through the medieval cobbled alleyways and squares of the Old Town, and visit the 12th-century cathedral, a blend of Gothic and Romanesque styles. Today is also a superb chance for you to discover the area by mountain railway using your included Swiss Card for 50% fares.

The wild, rugged, and rocky landscape of the glorious Graubünden region is waiting to be discovered, with superb railway journeys available from Chur that take you across the dramatic valleys that make this one of the most attractive cantons in Switzerland. A journey on the Arosa Line to lakeside Arosa, surrounded by dramatic snowy peaks, is a popular option for today. Alternatively, visit Lucerne a historic lakeside city of cobbled streets, squares, and ornate churches. Perhaps see the famous Kapellbrücke covered bridge or visit the Swiss Transport Museum?

Includes
  • Breakfast
Chur
Day 4 - Over the Bernina Pass to Poschiavo

Our excursion today takes us on the Bernina Express, a journey on the superb 100-year-old Bernina Line that passes mighty glaciers and sloping Alpine meadows laden with snow. We travel over the incredible Landwasser Viaduct, winding above deep ravines and past frozen waterfalls. We have time for lunch amongst the pastel-coloured houses of quaint Poschiavo, before our return journey to Chur.

Includes
  • Breakfast, Dinner
The Bernina Express
Day 5 - The iconic Glacier Express to Kandersteg

We leave Chur today, travelling from the rocky landscape of the Graubünden canton to the fantastic Valais on the iconic Glacier Express - the 'slowest express train in the world'. Our journey is accompanied by views of the scenery for which Switzerland is justly famous; snow-covered pastures, and frosted forests rising up the hillsides beside the track towards towering, snow-capped peaks. We travel along the beautiful Rhine Valley, climbing steadily and then steeply as we make our way up and over the snowy Oberalp Pass, the distant peaks of the Italian Alps in view to the south. At 6,670 feet, the Oberalp Pass is the highest point of the route.

From here we descend past the countless small villages that line our route, nestled in the foothills of the surrounding mountains, before travelling through the Furka Base Tunnel and into the Rhône Valley. The final part of our journey on the Glacier Express takes us through expansive vineyards that line the surrounding hillsides to the small town of Brig. Here we take the local railway for a wonderful journey over the imposing Kander Viaduct, through the old Lotschberg tunnel and past soaring mountain peaks to the town of Kandersteg. The resort of Kandersteg is one of Switzerland's truly unspoilt gems - a picturesque destination surrounded by breathtaking mountain scenery.

Includes
  • Breakfast, Dinner
The Glacier Express
Day 6 - Narrow-gauge mountain railway to Zermatt

Today we travel to the charming, car-free resort of Zermatt. We travel to Brig to join a narrow-gauge train, heading south through dramatic valleys and alongside the River Rhône to Visp. From here we join the mountain track for the steep ascent to Zermatt. The spectacular approach to Zermatt takes us through 8 tunnels and across 42 bridges. Finally, we reach the lavish scenery of Zermatt, nestled below the snowy tilted peak of the instantly recognisable Matterhorn. Here, you are free to explore.

Includes
  • Breakfast
Zermatt
Day 7 - Free time in the Eastern Swiss Alps

Today is free for you to explore Kandersteg, renowned for its breathtaking views and scenic trails. You could take the cable car up to the stunning Oeschinen Lake. The lake is frozen in winter, and offers incredible vistas.

Or, explore the wider region using your Swiss Travel Card for 50% fares. We particularly recommend travelling along the Rhône Valley to Montreux. From here you can enjoy a cruise on Lake Geneva or join the GoldenPass Line panoramic train for the journey over the Golden Pass to Spiez. Otherwise travel to Interlaken, a charming town situated between Lakes Thun and Brienz.

Includes
  • Breakfast, Dinner
GoldenPass Line
Day 8 - Kandersteg and London

We depart from Kandersteg, and travel by train via Brig and along the shores of shimmering Lake Geneva, before joining a direct TGV service to Paris. Here we connect with Eurostar to London St Pancras.

Includes
  • Breakfast
Eurostar

Additional information

Departure times

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.

Mobility information

Please note: This may be suitable for reduced mobility passengers, please call for further information.

Hotels

Hotel Freieck, Chur

Hotel Freieck, Chur

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Hotel Bernerhof, Kandersteg

Hotel Bernerhof, Kandersteg

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Trains

Bernina Express
Eurostar
The Glacier Express
TGV

Enhance your holiday

Upgrades

Inclusive Luggage Upgrade
Upgrade to Standard Premier Class on Eurostar
London Hotels
UK rail connections
Upgrade to a Superior Double Room at the Hotel Freieck

Reviews

100% of travellers would recommend this tour

Based on 9 verified reviews

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Ms M Hickox

Submitted 10220

Awesome trip! Fabulous sites and people on our tour!

Ms C Hill

Submitted 25419

A wonderful full itinerary, well organized and planned. The hotels were a great contrast...one in a town and one in a small village of typically Swiss wooden houses surrounded by mountains, and only accessible by train. The country was expensive, but the provided meals were good and local. Our group was friendly and a good mix of pleasant people, who all got on well. The weather couldn’t have been better....five days of sunshine for all the trips on the glacier and Bernina Express, so amazing views, then snow on the last day for a wonderful woodland walk from the chairlift above our last hotel. One of the best holidays we have had with Great Rail.

Mrs B Bone

Submitted 9418

Good organisation Office open on time at St Pancras. Very friendly helpful staff. Better positioning of the office at St Pancras. Where it was when we went before was a bit crowded and squashed.

Mrs S Wainwright

Submitted 13218

Very good and well organised trip, plenty to see. Bad weather stopped the glacier express and cut off Zermatt though.

Anonymous

Submitted 5218

The weather caused a few disappointments and travel problems. Whilst these were not the fault of the company, they did do their best to recompense for the disappointment. The majority of the holiday went to plan and was wonderful. We can't fault GRJ on their response to the problems whilst we were there, or their reply to our correspondence once we were home. We will be travelling with them again soon!

Mr P Bentley

Submitted 5218

Although two out of the three excursions were cancelled due to poor weather conditions, we still thoroughly enjoyed the week. Your tour operator was most helpful and attentive even though she had a number of difficult decisions to make.

Glacier Express in Winter

An adventurous twin-centre Swiss rail holiday

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Luke Simpson
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