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.
Discover Historic Chur, Poschiavo, and Kandersteg
Journey on the Bernina Express
Journey on the Glacier Express
Zermatt and the Matterhorn
GRJ Swiss Travel Card offering 50% fares for local travel
Inclusive luggage transfers throughout 1x bag up to 25kg per hotel room (size and weight may vary)
To arrange for a second suitcase up to 25kg (size and weight may vary) - prices start from £65 per bag. Just let us know at time of booking.
Excursions & Entertainment
The services of a professional UK Tour Manager from start to finish
Food & Drinks
What’s not included
Cancellation & Travel Insurance is not included in the price of the tour but can be arranged
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.
Day 1 - Dinner
Day 2 - Breakfast, Dinner
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?
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.
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.
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.
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.
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
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.
Due to the nature of our tours they are generally unsuitable for those with restricted mobility. If you’d like to discuss any particular holiday with us in this respect, then please don’t hesitate to call us.
Upgrade to a Superior Double Room at the Hotel Freieck
100% of travellers would recommend this tour
Based on 8 verified reviews
Ms C Hill
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
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
Very good and well organised trip, plenty to see. Bad weather stopped the glacier express and cut off Zermatt though.
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!
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.
Mrs B Glanville
Excellent tour, even when the weather tried to foil the itinerary the tour manager sorted everything out with the minimum inconvenience to us. Allows just the right level of independence and although a few things did go wrong, it didn't detract from the overall experience.