Explore the highlights of the Swiss Alps from your fantastic base in the 5-Star Romantik Hotel Schweizerhof in charming Grindelwald. Ascend to Europe's highest railway station, see the tranquil waters of Lake Brienz and enjoy classic Swiss luxury in your all inclusive hotel.
Our journey to Switzerland begins at our dedicated St Pancras Departure Office. Here we board the Eurostar service to Paris, before continuing on to the beautiful Alsatian town of Colmar, where we overnight. We enjoy dinner in the hotel in the evening.
We continue into Switzerland today, boarding the rail service to the beautiful mountain resort of Grindelwald, travelling via the Swiss city of Basel. Upon arrival in Grindelwald, we walk to our all-inclusive 5-Star hotel, the Romantik Hotel Schweizerhof.
Grindelwald is one of Europe's oldest mountain resorts, surrounded by the dramatic peaks of the Eiger, Mönch and Jungfrau. Its name is derived from the old German word 'grindel', meaning a piece of wood that serves as a barrier, and the 'wald', a forest closed off from the rest of the world. In the 1920s, with the 'invention' of skiing as a pleasure activity, Grindelwald lost its remoteness as members of the 'Downhill Only Club' headed to the village by train to ski. The village itself is filled with Swiss charm and is surrounded by flower-filled meadows during the summer.
Today we board the local Grindelwald First cable-car system to ascend the nearby mountain that shares its name with this resort. Drifitng up to Grindelwald First in the sky gondola is a true delight and affords some wonderful panoramas of the magnificent Alpine mountainscape. This area boasts some of the finest views across the sharp snowy peaks which stretch up into the clear sky above. Far below, the swathes of forests look like moss as they encroach on the minuscule villages. Enjoy some free time here, to breath the fresh mountain air before returning to Grindelwald.
The following day is at leisure in Grindelwald and the surrounding area. There are a number of easy walks around this region which are well worth trying out to make the most of this wonderful part of the world. The town itself is very much a traditional resort, and there are a number of cafés and bars to relax in here.
Today we enjoy what is undoubtedly one of the highlights of our stay in the Bernese Oberland, as we travel on the Jungfrau Railway (Standard Class) to the Jungfraujoch - Europe's highest railway station. We join our train at Grindelwald's station. Our journey takes us to Kleine Scheidegg where we join the remarkable Jungfrau Railway. Climbing further from Kleine Scheidegg, the distinctive string of red and yellow carriages of the Jungfrau Railway disappear into the tunnel through the Eiger Mountain. During the journey the train pauses at two separate observation stops; windows hewn out of solid Alpine rock between the tunnel and the infamous north face of the Eiger, with spectacular views down to the valley below.
Finally, the train arrives at Jungfraujoch, the 'Top of Europe', located at 3454m above sea level. With free time at the summit station, you will have plenty of time to explore the Ice Palace and its many ice sculptures. The fascinating works of art require a great deal of skill, thanks to the intricacy involved in creating such ornate and decorative iceworks.
You can spend time on the Sphinx Terrace, enjoying superb views onto the Aletsch Glacier, at 22 km the longest ice stream in the Alps, which provides a sharp contrast to the lush meadows and Alpine pastures of the lower lying hillsides near the valley floor. You can also enjoy the walking plateau, which is eternally covered in snow.
Today we travel by cog railway through Alpine meadows to Schynige Platte. We make the journey in restored 19th-century carriages, hauled by a vintage electric locomotive, to the peak at 6,463 feet. Along the way, the train hugs the side of the mountain, crossing bridges and tunnels on a journey which encapsulates the true beauty of this charming region. At the summit, why not explore the Alpine Botanical Garden, home to around 600 plant species, or relax and drink in the views from the café terrace?
The scenery is simply breathtaking; snow-capped peaks framed by a blue Alpine sky. We should also keep an eye out for the wonderful wildlife which call these mountain peaks home.
Today we travel to picturesque Interlaken, on the shores of 2 crystalline lakes. The entire region provides a year-round playground for walkers, climbers, hikers and skiers, combining towering mountains with picturesque lakes and endless forests. The charming town is wedged between Lake Thun and Lake Brienz and is surrounded by the majestic triple peaks of the Jungfrau, the Eiger and the Mönch mountains. Here, we carry on past Lake Brienz to the small town that shares its name with this body of water. The cosy village is our starting point for our ascent of the Brienz Rothorn mountain* (Standard Class), climbing over 5,000 feet to the summit of the mountain. The summit offers fabulous views of the deep-blue lakes below.
*Please note: On our May departure, we will ascend halfway up the mountain to the station of Planalp.
Your day is free, perhaps to explore with your Swiss Travel Card which gives a 50% discount on most trains, buses and lake steamers in the area. You could travel to the Schilthorn, a summit at over 9,744 feet which overlooks the valley of Lauterbrunnen. The mountain is ascendable by cable-car. The lakeside town of Thun is nearby, located at the point where the River Aare flows into the shimmering waters of Lake Thun.
Here you could visit the 12th century Thun Castle, now a museum. Originally built around 1200 by the Dukes who called this region home, Thun Castle displays many artefacts from Thun's history including suits of armour, weaponry and various golden and ceramic artefacts.
Alternatively, you could travel to the historical city of Bern, with its wealth of Gothic and Renaissance architecture, including the famous 'Ogre Fountain' found in the Old Town. Tonight we enjoy a farewell dinner.
This morning we begin our return home by rail, travelling to Paris via the Swiss city of Basel. Upon arrival in Paris, we transfer to the Eurostar service for the journey to London St Pancras. On arrival into the English capital, your tour comes to an end.
Please note: One of the excursions on this tour is at high altitude. If you have any medical conditions or concerns that could impact this part of the tour, we recommend you seek medical advice and talk to us. We want to make sure that any holiday you book is right for you.
For this tour, we recommend arriving to, and departing from, London Gatwick or London Heathrow airport (LGW or LHR). London Gatwick is approximately 30 miles from your start and end point, and London Heathrow is approximately 19 miles from your start and end point.
It is your responsibility to check and fulfil the passport, visa, health and immigration requirements applicable to your itinerary. We do not accept any responsibility if you cannot travel, or incur any other loss because you have not complied with any passport, visa, immigration requirements or health formalities. You agree to reimburse us in relation to any fines or other losses which we incur as a result of your failure to comply with any passport, visa, immigration requirements or health formalities.
|8 September 2020||From $3,895|
|15 September 2020||From $3,895|
All prices are per person and assume full occupancy of the room.
Please always refer to the website for up-to-date prices and availability.
The Brienz-Rothorn Mountain Railway is notable for a number of reasons. To name a few, it is powered almost entirely by steam engines, it is one of the steepest railways in Switzerland - and of course it passes some truly wonderful scenery on its route from Brienz to the peak of Rothorn Mountain.
The high speed Eurostar trains link St Pancras International in London with Paris and Lille in France as well as Brussels in Belgium.
Eurostar's Standard Class coaches feature two seats on either side of the central aisle, most of which is arranged in an 'airline' seating configuration with drop down tray tables. There are two tables for four per carriage. Passengers travelling in Eurostar Standard Class coaches can take advantage of the Bar-Buffet which sells a range of snacks, meals, hot and cold drinks - including Champagne!
The highest class of Eurostar travel available for leisure customers is Standard Premier Class. In your dedicated Standard Premier carriage you'll find a less dense seat configuration, meaning the seats are larger and you have ample space to relax and stretch out. As part of the service you'll enjoy complimentary drinks and refreshments, served at your seat by friendly, helpful waiting staff.
For the class of travel used on your chosen tour, please refer to the 'What's Included' section of the tour page.
The wonderful train journey up to Jungfraujoch is the highlight of a number of our holidays and includes travel on the Bernese Oberland Railway, the Wengernalpbahn and the Jungfrau Railway. Providing visibility is good, passengers not only enjoy spectacular views from Jungfraujoch, but also throughout the journey itself. The sections that follow describe each stage of this journey in turn.
For customers starting in Meiringen, our journey begins as we travel along the valley to picturesque Lake Brienz, before closely following the lake's northern shore through the village of Brienz to Interlaken.
High up in the Bernese Highlands of Switzerland, stretched between sun-drenched Alpine meadows or snow-capped peaks depending on the season, the Schynige Platte Railway winds its way from the town of Wilderswil to the Schynige Platte Alpine ridge. Along the way, a jaw-dropping spectacle of ancient mountains reveals itself, indulging passengers in an Alpine wonderland of supreme beauty. The route also features marvellous views of the Eiger, the Mönch and the Jungfrau mountains.
Introduced in 1981, France's TGV (Train à Grande Vitesse) was the original European high-speed train. Linking Paris with Lyon, the new service revolutionised train travel and meant that travelling by air over medium and short distances was no longer seen as the best option, even for business travel.
The network has expanded rapidly and today these sleek, stylish trains offer links to over 60 destinations throughout France. Operated by SNCF, the French national rail operator, TGV trains travel over specially-constructed high speed lines. The trains can achieve speeds of up to 186mph (300km/h) on most long distance routes and 200mph (320km/h) on the new TGV Est line, which links Paris with Strasbourg, Luxembourg and Basel. With the exception of shorter journeys, TGVs almost always have an on-board buffet car, serving a selection of drinks and light refreshments.
A traditional Swiss chalet-style hotel, situated in the heart of charming Grindelwald, the 5-Star Romantik Hotel Schweizerhof provides a truly authentic Swiss experience. The hotel boasts a wonderful setting, with many rooms offering awe-inspiring views of the Alps and the rugged scenery that surrounds Grindelwald. Each room is superbly decorated, and all en-suite rooms come equipped with complimentary Wi-Fi. There are two á la carte restaurants on site as well as a third, half-board restaurant. The hotel also boasts a well-equipped spa and wellness centre.
We offer a selection of upgrades and 'add-ons' designed to help you make the most of your holiday - and make it even easier!