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Bernina Express

Connecting Switzerland and Italy via the highest mountain railroad in the Alps, the Bernina Express train rises to the challenges presented by snow, ice and the steepest gradients to delight passengers with a four-hour journey of breath-taking beauty through this iconic mountain range.

Beginning in the north at Chur, capital of the canton of Graubünden and the oldest city in Switzerland, the narrow-gauge railroad that carries the scarlet-liveried  Bernina Express winds its way south-eastwards through the Alps, crossing into Italy shortly after Poschiavo, to its destination in Tirano.

Highlights

The Alpine passage that the Bernina Express makes from Switzerland to Italy has been acclaimed as Switzerland's most scenic journey, and passengers have much to admire from the train's panoramic windows.

The first part of the route from Chur passes through the area of Switzerland most populated with castles. As the train ascends into the glacier-dominated region of Bernina itself, the scenery becomes increasingly breath-taking. However, the views are at their most magnificent at the mountain-ringed Lake Bianco, whose placid waters mirror the sky above.

Of the 55 tunnels and 196 bridges that help the train negotiate the trickier natural elements of the route, Solis Viaduct and famous Landwasser Viaduct are particularly spectacular.

 

 

Landwasser Viaduct

 

 

 

12 results matching: Bernina Express

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Traditional Glacier Express
(63 reviews)
2020AugSepOct
2021AprMayJunJulAugSep
8 days from
$2,065 pp
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8 days from
$2,065
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  • DestinationSwitzerland
  • Starts / EndsSt Pancras International
  • AccommodationHotel
  • TransportRail
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Classic Glacier Express
(31 reviews)
2020AugSep
2021AprMayJunJulAug...
9 days from
$2,965 pp
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9 days from
$2,965
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  • DestinationSwitzerland
  • Starts / EndsSt Pancras International / St Pancras International, Geneva
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  • TransportRail
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Glacier Express & St Moritz
(27 reviews)
2020Sep
10 days from
$3,895 pp
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10 days from
$3,895
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  • DestinationSwitzerland
  • Starts / EndsSt Pancras International
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Varenna
(9 reviews)
2020SepOct
2021MayJunJulSepOct
10 days from
$2,885 pp
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10 days from
$2,885
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  • DestinationItaly, Switzerland
  • Starts / EndsSt Pancras International
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  • TransportRail
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Klosters
2020Sep
9 days from
$3,315 pp
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9 days from
$3,315
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  • DestinationSwitzerland
  • Starts / EndsSt Pancras International
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  • TransportRail
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Engadine Valley
2020SepOct
9 days from
$4,195 pp
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9 days from
$4,195
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  • DestinationSwitzerland
  • Starts / EndsSt Pancras International
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  • TransportRail
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  • DestinationSwitzerland
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  • DestinationSwitzerland
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  • DestinationAustria, Germany, Switzerland
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  • DestinationAustria, Switzerland
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  • DestinationItaly, Switzerland
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Our customers love our Bernina Express tours
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Classic Glacier Express
Mr D Webber
“Great experiences, wonderful scenery, well organised, great Tour Manager, friendly group, no problems.
Glacier Express in Winter
Ms M Hickox
“Awesome trip! Fabulous sites and people on our tour!
Grand Tour Of Switzerland
Anonymous
“It way exceeded my expectations
Lake Como & The Bernina Express
Anonymous
“A well organised tour led by a fantastic Tour Manager. The base hotel was excellent being on Lake Como shores, on the main route around the island and within a couple of minutes of the ferry stages. The day trips were well organised and the day trip on the Bernina Express a major highlight. Highly recommend this tour.
Traditional Glacier Express
Anonymous
“Great organisation, itinerary and hotels. Guide was fantastic and very considerate to all Clients especially as some of them had problems with their mobility and needs
First Class Glacier Express in Winter
Mr G Whittaker
“A very enjoyable and well-packaged vacation, 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" vacation - 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.
Glacier Express & St Moritz
Les Mackey
“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 vacation was superb. Lovely scenery, hotels.
Grand Alpine Explorer
Mr M Ward
“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 vacation 4 and not 3.

A touch of class

Bernina Express trains typically comprise two or three First and Second class carriages separated by a bar and services carriage at the train's center. The carriages in both classes are spacious and offer air conditioning, panoramic windows, comfortable seating and an at-seat trolley service providing light refreshments.

Second Class carriages are designed to carry more passengers and are configured with two rows of tables, one each side of the carriage, each of which provides seating for four people.

First Class carriages comprise one row of four-seater tables and one row of double seats. Carrying fewer passengers than Second Class carriages means that First Class passengers enjoy more space and greater legroom and larger, leather-upholstered seats. Fewer seats in First Class also mean that the views from the carriages' larger panoramic windows are less obstructed.

 

 

Bernina Express Interior

 

 

 

The section of the Bernina Express's route that passes through the Albula and Bernina regions between the Swiss Town of Thusis and the Italian town of Tirano became a UNESCO World Heritage Site status in 2008.

This prestigious status recognises the supreme feats of engineering that were achieved by railroad builders in the early twentieth century in overcoming natural obstacles to connect remote Alpine settlements whilst simultaneously minimising the impact upon the stunning landscape.

Passengers can learn more about the route, its history and its highlights courtesy of an on-board commentary during the journey.

From the train's terminus in Tirano, the connecting Bernina Express allows passengers to continue their journey by road along a route that follows the shores of Lake Como and Lake Lugano to the city of Lugano itself on the Swiss/Italian border.

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