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Glacier Express

The Glacier Express is undoubtedly Switzerland's best known train.

Departing from Chur, we board the magnificent Glacier Express for a spectacular journey offering unparalleled views of the most awe-inspiring mountain ranges in the world. We spiral up the mountains, crossing enormous viaducts, burrowing through tunnels and rising above the clouds on our way to Zermatt, under the mighty Matterhorn.

 

Highlights of the journey

Highlights of the route include the ascent of the Oberalp Pass, the highest point on the line at 2,033 metres above sea level, the stunning Rhine Gorge through which the train travels alongside the river and the remarkable - and famous - Landwasser Viaduct, a vast and curving limestone structure of six arches which spans the Landwasser River sixty-five metres below and leads the Glacier Express directly into the adjoining Landwasser Tunnel. 

The only times at which there is little of interest to observe from the Glacier Expressis when the train is passing through one of the ninety-one tunnels which lie along its route. Otherwise, passengers enjoy a constantly-changing vista of Switzerland's most breath-taking landscapes as they traverse imposing snow-clad mountain ranges, skirt the shores of vast lakes and pass through rolling Alpine wildflower meadows.

Read on below...

 

 

Glacier Express and the Oberalp Pass

14 results matching: The Glacier Express

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Classic Glacier Express
Small Group
4.7 stars(34 reviews)
2022MarAprMayJunJul...
9 days from
£2,095 pp
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9 days from
£2,095
per person
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  • DestinationSwitzerland
  • Starts / EndsSt Pancras International
  • AccommodationHotel
  • TransportRail
Map and accommodation
Glacier Express
4.4 stars(49 reviews)
2022AprMayJunJulAug...
8 days from
£1,595 pp
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8 days from
£1,595
per person
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tour map
  • DestinationSwitzerland
  • Starts / EndsSt Pancras International
  • AccommodationHotel
  • TransportRail
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Glacier Express
2022MayJunJulAugSep
12 days from
£2,895 pp
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12 days from
£2,895
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  • DestinationGermany, Switzerland
  • Starts / EndsSt Pancras International
  • AccommodationCruise, Hotel
  • TransportRail, Cruise
Map and accommodation

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Glacier Express & St Moritz
Small Group
4.8 stars(16 reviews)
2022MayJunJulAugSep
10 days from
£2,895 pp
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10 days from
£2,895
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  • DestinationSwitzerland
  • Starts / EndsSt Pancras International
  • AccommodationHotel
  • TransportRail
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Glacier Express in Winter (Chur-Kandersteg) 2016
Small Group
5.0 stars(8 reviews)
2022JanFebMar
8 days from
£1,495 pp
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8 days from
£1,495
per person
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  • DestinationSwitzerland
  • Starts / EndsSt Pancras International
  • AccommodationHotel
  • TransportRail
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First Class Glacier Express in Winter (Brig-Chur) 2016
Small Group
4.5 stars(19 reviews)
2022JanFebMar
9 days from
£2,095 pp
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9 days from
£2,095
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  • DestinationSwitzerland
  • Starts / EndsSt Pancras International
  • AccommodationHotel
  • TransportRail
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Engadine Valley
Small Group
2022JunJulAugSepOct
9 days from
£2,795 pp
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9 days from
£2,795
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  • DestinationSwitzerland
  • Starts / EndsSt Pancras International
  • AccommodationHotel
  • TransportRail, Coach
Map and accommodation
9 days from
£2,295
per person
View Details
tour map
  • DestinationSwitzerland
  • Starts / EndsSt Pancras International
  • AccommodationHotel
  • TransportRail
Map and accommodation
9 days from
£2,295
per person
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  • DestinationSwitzerland
  • Starts / EndsSt Pancras International
  • AccommodationHotel
  • TransportRail
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Zermatt Matterhorn Mountain
2022Aug
10 days from
£2,895 pp
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10 days from
£2,895
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  • DestinationGermany, Luxembourg, Switzerland
  • Starts / EndsSt Pancras International
  • AccommodationCruise, Hotel
  • TransportRail, Cruise, Coach
Map and accommodation
Grand Alpine Explorer
4.4 stars(5 reviews)
2022MayJunJulAugSep
14 days from
£3,895 pp
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14 days from
£3,895
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  • DestinationAustria, Germany, Switzerland
  • Starts / EndsLondon Heathrow
  • AccommodationHotel
  • TransportRail, Coach
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Klosters
Small Group
2022JunJulAugSep
9 days from
£2,395 pp
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9 days from
£2,395
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  • DestinationSwitzerland
  • Starts / EndsSt Pancras International
  • AccommodationHotel
  • TransportRail
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Our customers love our Glacier Express tours
Glacier Express in Winter
10 Feb 2020
Ms M Hickox
5 stars
“Awesome trip! Fabulous sites and people on our tour!
Collected by Great Rail Journeys
Classic Glacier Express
20/Oct
Mr John Aliband
4 stars
“Very well organised trip, and certainly lived up to its promise to show outstanding Swiss scenery. Travel on Swiss railways was easy, and comfortable, and the hotel accommodation was generally very good. The only reason we haven't given 5 stars is that we kept that rating for the Rocky Mountaineer trip which we did in 2019.
Collected by Trustpilot
Traditional Glacier Express
12/Oct
J Mott
4 stars
“We enjoyed our holiday with Glacier express for various reasons. The organisation was good though the first days travel was too long. We only had 8 couples on our trip including the tour manager, which seemed a good amount.
Collected by Trustpilot
Classic Glacier Express in Winter
13 Mar 2020
Mr G Whittaker
4 stars
“A very enjoyable and well-packaged holiday, with an experienced and very approachable tour manager. Excellent traditional hotels. Extremely good value for money. But …. The group was FAR too large for a "First Class" holiday - and that would stop me trusting GRJ's descriptions in future !! Too many changes to the published itinerary. Not a good idea to have long and tiring day trips on either the first day in Switzerland or the last day before travel home.
Collected by Great Rail Journeys
The Glacier Express and St Moritz
11 Jul 2019
Les Mackey
4 stars
“We were downgraded on the Glacier Express because of overbooking. This was not the fault of GRJ. At the last minute we were reinstated for most but not all of it. It meant we had to travel on later trains to the group. The train journey from Cologne to St Moritz was tiresome and involved changes of stations, trains etc due to the problems on German Rail. This was not the fault of GRJ. However, the journey took 13.5 hours. Our tour guide was brilliant, he did his utmost to get us there as quickly as he could. He was constantly cheerful no matter what was thrown at him. He is a credit to GRJ. Overall the holiday was superb. Lovely scenery, hotels.
Collected by Great Rail Journeys
Grand Alpine Explorer
Aug 16 2018
Mr M Ward
4 stars
“The hotels were of variable standard. We felt the hotel in Traunkirchen was not of 4 star standard with regard to facilities, room, and the hotel was not particularly well situated. The dinners served in St Moritz were of poor quality and appeared to have been prepared on an extremely tight budget. However the hotel in Innsbruck was excellent and we would have preferred more time there than in Traunkirchen. The total porterage worked excellently which is why we give the holiday 4 and not 3.
Collected by Great Rail Journeys

CLASSES OF RAIL

Those making the spectacular journey between Zermatt and St. Moritz on the Glacier Express benefit from a wide range of Great Rail Journeys itineraries. Second Class carriages are comfortable, light and spacious and are designed to carry a maximum of forty-eight passengers via a configuration of twelve tables, six on either side of the carriage, each seating four passengers. Second-class carriages benefit from large panorama windows which extend into the ceiling of the carriage.

Each Glacier Express train consists of two First Class carriages, a carriage containing a bar and toilets, and three Second Class carriages. Between 2006 and 2009, every item of the Glacier Express's rolling stock was renewed to ensure that travellers enjoyed comfort and facilities of the highest standards.

 

 

Glacier Express Interior

The more expensive First-class carriages carry a maximum of thirty-six passengers, offering six four-seat tables and six two-seat tables. As a result, First Class carriages are more spacious and offer larger seats with greater leg room. The panoramic windows in First Class carriages are also larger. Travellers in both classes can enjoy a two or three-course lunch with at-seat service. First Class carriages are served before Second Class carriages. Additional snacks and drinks can be ordered in The Panorama Bar carriage at the centre of the train for delivery to your seat in either class. Carriages in both classes are air-conditioned.

Since 2005 the Glacier Express has carried around a quarter of a million passengers each year. Although the train began operation in 1930 it only ran during the summer months until as recently as 1982 when construction work was completed to ensure that the train could safely negotiate the Furka Pass and the Oberalp Pass in winter.

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