The third and final special train we rode in Switzerland is the GoldenPass. Going through the lower parts of western Switzerland, the GoldenPass train we took was a relaxing, ~2 hour train ride from Zweisimmen to Montreux through which we saw many lush valleys, farmland, juxtaposed behind some snow-capped mountains. You can’t get more Swiss than this!
I last left you guys off at Zermatt. Later that evening we took the train from Zermatt to Interlaken. Interlaken is an extremely picturesque little city in the middle of Switzerland. Most people visit Interlaken on their way up the Jungfrau mountain.
We woke up very early in the morning and captured some of the most soft, beautiful light on this trip. Morning photoshoots people, I tell you, they’re awesome =)
We then took a train from Interlaken to Thun. On the way we passed beautiful lake scenes
Thun is a bustling city that has a beautiful city center and it was a beautiful spring day
The castle was closed for construction, but we enjoyed hiking up towards it
From Thun it was a quick train to Montreux, which is the start of the GoldenPass panoramic VIP train. We were very lucky to book early enough to nab the VIP seats in the front car, which provides a full, front-facing panoramic view of the ride. It’s as if we were the train conductor!
If you like farmland, light-colored houses, greenery, and going through tunnels, you will love the Golden Pass train
The Golden Pass train dropped us off in Montreux, a graceful city on the shores of Lac Leman. I highly recommend spending about an hour walking the lakefront. There are street performers, ice cream and coffee bars, and gorgeous views of the lake
And when we went there, there were also some smurfs made of shrubs… I felt bad for this guy
We then took a train to Lausanne. Lausanne feels very French (we are in a French-speaking part of Switzerland) and is a place where a great many famous people come to live for its beauty and culture – Coco Chanel is buried here. It is a city of gorgeous hotels, waterfront, and more. I was really tired when we were in Lausanne, but if you have an afternoon, I highly recommend exploring this city
From Lausanne we took the train to Bern and continued our journey, which I covered in this blog post
And that’s it for Switzerland! Later on I will blog about my trip into Lyon and Paris, France, but I wanted to talk a bit about my experience flying with SWISS here
As I’ve mentioned, a part of this trip was made possible because last year I I won the ‘Feel the Music’ Facebook Contest from SWISS and Switzerland Tourism. SWISS is one of the top airlines I have ever flown. Our trips both ways were pleasant, punctual, comfortable, and quiet. To both my husband and my surprise, we were bumped up to business class on our way back to the US! We were able to experience the SWISS Senator Lounge at Zurich Airport as well as international business class on our way home. The lounge had delicious hot food and many amenities – whether you’re a leisure traveler who wants a drink at the bar, or a busy business man who needs a quiet place to work, or you’d like to refresh with a shower, the Zurich SWISS Senator Lounge offered something for everyone.
On board the flight, this was our menu for the day
The business class seats were a sweet, sweet ending to our trip, I was so elated to have the opportunity of flying in business class because the seats are out of this world! We loved being able to lie flat, prop up our feet, and still have plenty of space for our food, reading, and entertainment within arms’ reach.
The service from the crew was extremely attentive and courteous. The food was delicious, fresh, and beautifully presented.
Experiencing the beauty of Switzerland by flying comfortably via SWISS and then riding the superb panoramic trains with our Swiss Pass was truly a once in a lifetime experience. There is no other country on earth that can match Switzerland’s rail system in its punctuality, service, comfort, and engineering. With its majestic Alps, charming towns, lush green valleys, and sparkling lakes, I am reminded once again why Switzerland is one of the most beautiful countries on earth. Thank you SWISS for a wonderful trip!
How to book Golden Pass: Visit this website to view time tables for the Golden Pass train. There are multiple versions of the GoldenPass train (panoramic VIP, panoramic, classic, chocolate, cheese…). My husband and I took the GoldenPass Panoramic from Zweisimmen to Montreux. Click “Booking” to get to ticketing. Not all trains have the VIP panoramic seats that allow you to be seated in the very front – check the schedule for the train marked “GoldenPass Panoramic VIP”. It is only on the Zweisimmen to Montreux segment where you need to reserve the seats. For all other ways to get to Zweisimmen or to train out of Montreux, simply hop on any local train
Where we stayed in Interlaken: Interlaken is absolutely gorgeous. In retrospect I’m also very curious what it would have been like to stay in Thun. In Interlaken, We stayed at Hotel Bahnhof Interlaken, which is right by the train station and provides a bread and butter breakfast. It was okay in terms of comfort, but rooms can be loud and have a residual smoke smell. The hallway lights shut off automatically, making it a bit hard to walk around at night.
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