Switzerland in 2 weeks
Destinations,  Europe,  Highlighted Companies,  Switzerland,  Transportation

The Best of Switzerland in 2 Weeks by Rail

Switzerland is extremely accessible by rail. At this destination there is no need to worry about a taxi or renting a car. Even if you wanted to go to the top of a mountain, believe it or not, the train has you covered. The two week itinerary below can be completed from start to finish on the train. I did it myself and had a wonderful time. It was absolutely lovely being able to relax in my seat and watch the beautiful landscape go by. Keep reading for the best of Switzerland in 2 weeks that covers all the main sites of this gorgeous European country!

Switzerland in 2 Weeks: An Overview

     A. Travel to Zurich (Day 1) 

     B. Zurich (Days 2 & 3) 

     C. Lucerne (Days 4 & 5) 

     D. Interlaken (Days 6, 7 & 8) 

     E. Bern (Days 9, 10 & 11)

     F. Return to Zurich (Day 12) 

     G. Day Trip (Day 13) 

     H. Travel Home (Day 14)

Switzerland in 2 Weeks by Rail: Travel Information

For this trip I chose to purchase a Swiss Travel Pass. If you choose to do the same you will need a Swiss Travel Pass Flex 8 days in 1 month. It can be purchased at this link here. At the time I’m writing this in 2021, the cost of this pass is CHF 467 for 2nd class tickets or CHF 742 for 1st class.

You can also choose to buy each train ticket individually, however, I found the Travel Pass to be easy to use and well worth the purchase. After calculating the tickets cost individually, I found that the pass did end up costing a bit more. However, I enjoyed the convenience of the one pass versus having multiple tickets. Depending on which activities you choose to enjoy, the Swiss Pass can also provide free or discounted entry to many of the museums and other attractions listed below. See this link for details. 

Also important to note for this itinerary is that I flew into Zurich airport. You can easily get to and from the Zurich City center via Swiss Railways. A train leaves from the airport every ten minutes. Between each city listed in the itinerary there is a direct train offered multiple times a day. Visit the Swiss Railways site for information and timetables.

2 Days in Zurich

Where to Stay

Budget Option: Oldtown Hostel Otter [a hostel in the city center with both shared dorms and private rooms, starting at 47 CHF per person]

Moderate Option: Hotel Alexander Zurich [ a three-star hotel in Zurich’s Old Town, with double rooms starting at 170 CHF per night]

Luxury Option: Storchen Zurich [a five-star hotel in Old Town, right along the river, with river view rooms starting at 675 CHF a night] 

Where to Eat

Coffee Shops & Cafes

Casual Sit-Downs & Take-Aways

Fine Dining

What to Do

    • Bahnhofstrasse [the shopping capital of Zurich, which is also one of the most expensive shopping streets in the world!] 
    • Grossmünster, Fraumünster & St. Peter [three iconic churches, situated nearby one another in the city center, each representing a different historical time period]
    • Lake Zurich [situated in the city center, here at this lake, you can walk along the lake’s promenade, arrange for a boat cruise, or even go for a swim!]
    • Lindenhof [a hill within the city, available to climb for a view of the city skyline]
    • Museums [popular museums in Zurich include the Swiss National Museum (10 CHF admission), FIFA World Football Museum (24 CHF admission), Kunsthaus Zurich (16 CHF admission), and the Zurich Tram Museum (12 CHF admission)]
    • Old Town [take a walk down the cobblestone streets, admire the historic buildings, grab a bite to eat at a café, or shop at one of the many boutiques]  
    • Zurich West [Explore and see what this more modern, artsy side of the city has to offer]
    • Zurich Zoo [considered to be one of the best zoos in Europe and one of the oldest zoos in Switzerland, visit starting at 28 CHF for an adult admission]
Switzerland in 2 weeks
Switzerland in 2 weeks
Switzerland in 2 weeks

2 Days in Lucerne

Where to Stay

Budget Option: Backpackers Lucerne [a hostel across the street from Lake Lucerne featuring shared dorms and private rooms starting at 92 CHF per person]

Moderate Option: Altstadt Hotel Krone Luzern [a 3-star hotel offering both rooms and apartments within Lucerne’s Old Town, starting at 150 CHF per night]

Luxury Option: Grand Hotel National Luzern [a luxurious 5-star hotel, with features such as four restaurants, on Lake Lucerne averaging 275 CHF per night]

Where to Eat

Coffee Shops & Cafes

Casual Sit-Downs & Take-Aways

Fine Dining

    • Lucide [Local, seasonal dishes accompanied by views of Lake Lucerne]
    • Richemont Restaurant [Fresh bakery items served alongside other house specialties]
    • Villa Schweizerhof [Authentic Swiss cuisine served in a beautiful setting near Lake Lucerne]

What to Do

    • Lake Lucerne [named after the city itself, here you can go for a swim, take a sightseeing boat cruise, or take a stroll along the shore]
    • Mount Pilatus [ a large mountain overlooking the city, starting at 72 CHF for a roundtrip, take the cable car or cogwheel railway to the top for some impressive views]
    • Mt. Rigi [another wonderful mountain, with it’s base located at lake Lucerne, take the cogwheel railway and cable car to the top, roundtrip starting at 120 CHF]
    • Musegg Wall and The Nine Towers [a well-preserved piece of Swiss history, which you may explore by walking along parts of the wall]
    • Old Town [steeped in medieval history and architecture, with many restaurants and shops to enjoy]
    • Swiss Museum of Transport [Switzerland’s most popular museum, showcasing all modes of transportation for 32 CHF]
    • The Chapel Bridge and Spreuer Bridge [two iconic covered footbridges in Lucerne]
    • The Lucerne Glacier Garden [Home to the famous Lion Monument, this exhibit tells the story of the glaciers and the Ice Age for an entrance fee of 20 CHF]
Switzerland in 2 weeks
Switzerland in 2 weeks

3 Days in Interlaken

Where to Stay

Budget Option: Backpackers Villa Sonnenhof – Hostel Interlaken [a modern hostel offering dorms and rooms starting at 33 CHF per person]

Moderate Option: Hotel Chalet Swiss [a comfortable 3-star hotel in the mountains, though only a short walk to town, starting at 145 CHF per night]

Luxury Option: Victoria Jungfrau [ a 5-star hotel offering high-end rooms and suites with amazing mountain views starting at 365 CHF per night]

Where to Eat

Coffee Shops & Cafes

Casual Sit-Downs & Take-Aways

Fine Dining

    • La Terrasse [Authentic dishes from the local region served in a beautifully decorated dining room]
    • Ox Restaurant and Grill [a Swiss steakhouse, nominated as one of the best restaurants in the area!]
    • Restaurant Luegibrueggli [A restaurant serving European cuisine in the mountains, with spectacular views of the two Interlaken Lakes]

    • Top o’ Met [offering Swiss cuisine at the top of Hotel Metropole, displaying panoramic views of the surroundings]

What to Do

    • Day trip to Jungfraujoch [take a rail journey to the highest train station in Europe, starting at CHF 105 round trip]
    • Hiking [Popular hiking areas near Interlaken include Schynige Platte, Harder Kulm, the Hardergrat, Lauterbrunnen, and Grindelwald]
    • Höhematte [a grassy park surrounded by mountains, which is a perfect place to relax, take a leisurely stroll, or watch paragliders]
    • Interlaken Monastery and Castle [In the center of Interlaken, this monastery and castle were first constructed in the 12th century and is currently open for public access to explore and appreciate the historical significance]
    • Lake Breinz [Interlaken’s eastern lake, good for swimming, kayaking and other boating activities]
    • Lake Thun [hike around the perimeter or take a boat cruise along this beautiful lake surrounded by mountains to Interlaken’s west]
    • Paragliding or Skydying [popular activities in Interlaken during the warmer months starting at CHF 160 for paragliding and CHF 395 for skydiving]
    • River rafting Lütschine [an exhilarating adventure that ends in Lake Breinz for CHF 129]

    • St. Beatus Caves [for CHF 18, you may enter the caves and visit the corresponding museum to learn how the caves came to exist]
    • Top of Europe Ice Magic [a unique ice skating experience available during the winter months for CHF 9]
    • Unspunnen and Weissenau Castles [castle ruins worth a visit within walking distance from Interlaken’s center]

    • Winter Sports [Skiing, snowshoeing, and night sledding become highly anticipated activities during the winter]
Switzerland in 2 weeks
Switzerland in 2 weeks
Switzerland in 2 weeks

3 Days in Bern

Where to Stay

Budget Option: Hostel 77 Bern [outside the city center, but only minutes away from public transportation, this hostel offers dorms and private rooms, starting at 39 CHF per person]

Moderate Option: The Bristol [a modern 4-star hotel near the city center, with rooms starting at 185 CHF per night]

Luxury Option: Hotel Bellevue Palace [a 5-star hotel situated in the city center offering luxurious rooms and suites starting at 415 CHF per night]

Where to Eat

Coffee Shops & Cafes

Casual Sit-Downs & Take-Aways

Fine Dining

    • Casa Novo [Mediterranean food served on Bern’s river with outdoor seating on a terrace overlooking the water]
    • Kirchenfeld Restaurant [Swiss and European cuisine served in an upscale, historical setting right outside of the city center]
    • Kornhauskeller Restaurant [Serving specialties local to the region and a large selection of wines in a gorgeous, spacious setting]
    • Mille Sens [A modern menu using ingredients from the local region in a beautifully decorated interior]

What to Do

    • Aare River [a beautiful river surrounding three out of four sides of Bern, known for it’s gorgeous blue-green color]
    • Bear Park [a pit with three live brown bears located in Bern’s center, paying tribute to Bern’s symbol – a bear] 
    • Bern Cathedral [a very impressive architectural feat in Bern’s city center]
    • Bern’s Botanical Garden [shows off a large number of diverse plant species with free admission]
    • Bern’s Tramway [the tram plays an important role in Bern’s public transportation system]
    • Bundeshaus [Switzerland’s parlaiment building which houses two government departments]
    • Clock Tower [a famous mechanical clock tower located in Bern’s city center]
    • Gurten [a mountain overlooking Bern, used for skiing in the winter, and hiking, biking, or exploring via cable railway car in the summer] 
    • Historic Statues & Fountains [Simsonbrunnen, Schützenbrunnen, Anna-Seiler-Brunnen, and Mosesbrunnen are several of the famous landmarks in Bern]
    • Old City [a UNESCO world heritage site with gorgeous medieval buildings and the lovely Aare River running through it]
    • Museums [popular museums in Bern include Kunstmuseum (16 CHF admission), The Einstein Museum/The Historical Museum of Bern (CHF 18 admission), Paul Klee Center, (CHF 22 admission), the Natural History Museum, (CHF 12 admission) and Bern’s Communication Museum (15 CHF admission)]
    • Rose Garden [located above the beautiful city of Bern, this public park offers gorgeous views and beautiful gardens, fountains, and ponds]
Switzerland in 2 weeks
Switzerland in 2 weeks

Day Trip Ideas from Zurich

  1. Basel [a 1 hour train ride from Zurich, this historical city is full of fabulous architecture, museums, and home to Switzerland’s oldest university]
  2. Colmar, France [less than two hours by train, this gorgeous, picturesque town is known as “Little Venice” and is located in the middle of France’s Alsace wine region]
  3. Liechtenstein [the perfect day trip full of history and castles in another country, only two hours from Zurich by train and bus]
  4. Rhine Falls [named the most powerful waterfall in Switzerland, 50 minutes by train from Zurich]
  5. Stein am Rhein [an hour by train, this fairytale town is on the bank of Rhine River and is quite charming]

So what did you think about this itinerary? As someone who followed it herself, I feel you should give it a try! Train travel in Europe is wonderful. Switzerland in particular is fabulous, with its picture-perfect scenery! If you go on this trip (or part of it) please let me know! Tag me in your photos on Instagram @travelswithkayy, I’d love to see them!

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Switzerland in 2 weeks
Switzerland in 2 weeks
Switzerland in 2 weeks

Owner and creator of Travels with Kayy. Travel blogger and adventure enthusiast, creating content to inspire and help fellow travelers plan amazing itineraries and explore all the corners of the earth!

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