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Country Roads of Switzerland

14 Days from $4,496 per person

Style: Premium | Pace: Comfortable

An intimate journey of discovery amid stunning Alpine panoramas. This itinerary includes riding on the famous Glacier Express and staying in some of Switzerland's most enchanting hotels.

Travel to Europe often requires an overnight flight. Please arrange for flights to arrive on or before Day 1.

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Overview

An intimate journey of discovery amid stunning Alpine panoramas. This itinerary includes riding on the famous Glacier Express and staying in some of Switzerland's most enchanting hotels.

Travel to Europe often requires an overnight flight. Please arrange for flights to arrive on or before Day 1.

  1. Welcome to Switzerland, a land of snow-capped summits and romantic lakes that has attracted poets, musicians and travelers for centuries. On arrival at Zürich airport, transfers leave for your hotel in Lucerne at 9:30 am and 1:30 pm. Meet your Travel Director and travel companions at 6 pm for drinks, followed by a pleasant Welcome Dinner with wine at a local restaurant.

    meal(s):Dinner with Wine
    hotel:Hotel Astoria
  2. Step aboard a funicular railway and open-top cable car for a spectacular journey to the summit of the stunning Mount Stanserhorn. Admire unrivaled views of the surrounding mountains and, on a clear day see as far as Alsace in France and the Black Forest in Germany. Meet a Swiss Ranger and learn about working in this serene area filled with wildlife and natural beauty. Return to the beautiful 14th-century city of Lucerne to see its storybook wooden bridges, Baroque church and sorrowful Lion Monument. Enjoy the rest of the afternoon at your leisure to walk along the lake or perhaps shop for a special timepiece or chocolate.

    meal(s):Breakfast
    hotel:Hotel Astoria
  3. Join a local historian in Bern to see the Bear Pits, Cathedral of St. Vincent, Federal Palace and floral displays. Gather at the clock tower to watch the mechanical procession of painted figures before viewing the Ogre Fountain. Your travels continue into the wide, green valleys of the Vaud Alps with snowy summits filling the horizon. Continue through vineyards and alpine meadows to the fortified town of Gruyères, that gives its name to the well-known cheese. Enjoy time on your own to explore the pretty main street and 13th-century castle. From Montreux, travel along the shores of Lake Geneva to visit Domaine Bovyand admire the stunning panorama overlooking the lake. Savor a tasting of these tantalizing, local wines and delight in a delicious Farm-to-Table supper.

    meal(s):Breakfast, Dinner with Wine
    hotel:Grand Hôtel Suisse-Majestic
  4. On the western bay of Lake Geneva, a Local Expert will show you the medieval Chillon Castle, former home to the Counts of Savoy, immortalized by Lord Byron's 'Prisoner of Chillon.' Keep a look out for where the writer is rumored to have left his mark. Return to Montreux where the rest of the day is free for you to explore on your own or relax as you wish at your quayside hotel.

    meal(s):Breakfast
    hotel:Grand Hôtel Suisse-Majestic
  5. Enjoy a morning at leisure before following the shores of the lake to the international city of Geneva, seeing the Jet D'Eau, Floral Clock and Reformation Monument. Next, relax in first-class comfort on the waters of Lake Geneva during a highlight cruise. This evening, enjoy time at leisure on the promenades of your lakeside resort.

    meal(s):Breakfast
    hotel:Grand Hôtel Suisse-Majestic
  6. Journey into the upper Rhône Valley to Martigny to view the Roman Amphitheater. Continue to the town of Sion, dominated by two rocky peaks, each crowned with episcopal fortresses, and see the cathedral and Old Town Hall. Complete your journey via cogwheel train to the traffic-free mountain resort of Zermatt. This evening, take your pick from a selection of local restaurants for your Dine-Around Evening. Perhaps you will delight in the typical Swiss dining experience of fondue.

    meal(s):Breakfast, Dinner with Wine
    hotel:Resort Hotel Alex
  7. Zermatt in summertime offers many leisure possibilities: try swimming, hiking or spend a whole day relaxing in the fresh alpine surrounds. Perhaps take a trip to the Kleiner Matterhorn, see the Matterhorn from the church bridge or sample the delicious cakes known as Kuchen

    meal(s):Breakfast
    hotel:Resort Hotel Alex
  8. Descend to Täsch for a scenic drive through Brig where you'll commence your ascent of the Simplon Pass, taking in magnificent views over the Alps from the 6,562-foot summit. Cut through northern Italy, stopping along the shores of Lake Maggiore. The afternoon is at your leisure. Perhaps join an excursion to the stunning Isola Bella.

    meal(s):Breakfast
    hotel:Hotel Simplon
  9. Journey along the shores of Lake Maggiore, and head north to the three castles at Bellinzona to meet your Local Expert, Julia Guidotti, for a fascinating insight into this UNESCO World Heritage Site. Originally from the midwest of the USA, Julia was married in Ticino—the Italian-speaking region of Switzerland of which Bellinzona is the capital. Having lived in the area for many years, Julia is passionate about this city and is always keen to share her knowledge and delighted to assist with any questions you have about the region. Your travels continue through the Grison Region, traveling via San Bernardino and the town of Tiefencastel, as you follow the young Rhine River through the landscapes made famous by the stories of Heidi. Head east towards the Julier Pass and the glamorous resort of St. Moritz, set in the Engadine Valley with the majestic Grisons Alps towering above.

    meal(s):Breakfast
    hotel:Crystal Hotel/Steffani
  10. Enjoy a day at leisure to jostle with the jet-set in the elegant boutiques or take an exciting train journey over the Bernina pass. To help you make the most of your day, your Travel Director will provide you with a mountain railways pass (when available), offering free travel on all cable cars, funiculars and chairlifts in Engadine St. Moritz.

    meal(s):Breakfast
    hotel:Crystal Hotel/Steffani
  11. Step aboard the Glacier Express to experience one of the world's great railway journeys. Cross the Landwasser Viaduct before heading down through the Oberalp Valley to rejoin the coach at Andermatt. Drive through the dramatic Schöllenen Gorge passing the Devil's Bridge. Marvel at the Wetterhorn Peaks as you travel along the Grindelwald Valley. Follow the sparkling Lütschine River to Lauterbrunnen, at the head of the Valley of Waterfalls, and see the Staubbach Falls plunge 985 feet from the plateau above.

    meal(s):Breakfast, Dinner with Wine
    hotel:Romantik Hotel Schweizerhof Grindelwald
  12. Enjoy a day at your leisure to explore Grindelwald further. Perhaps take a cogwheel train ride to the summit of the Jungfrau mountain.

    meal(s):Breakfast
    hotel:Romantik Hotel Schweizerhof Grindelwald
  13. Take in the spectacular lake views, as you journey to Brienz, famous for its woodcarving traditions. Visit the Jobin Swiss Woodcarving Center to trace the history of the trade back to the early days of the 19th century. Continue over the Brünig Pass and drive alongside the lakes of Lungern and Sarnen to return to Zürich. See the Bahnhofstrasse, Grossmünster, River Limmat and Frauenmünster on an orientation of the city with your Travel Director. Join your travel companions at a local restaurant. Your Celebration Dinner is accompanied with wine—raise your glass to toast to your adventures.

    meal(s):Breakfast, Dinner with Wine
    hotel:Mövenpick Hotel Zürich-Airport
  14. Your stylish hotel is conveniently situated only a five-minute drive from the airport. Complimentary transfers to the airport, by hotel shuttle, depart every 15 minutes

    meal(s):Breakfast
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    We promise you’ll enjoy a stress-free travel experience from the minute you start your vacation planning or we’ll refund your deposit. Make your reservation with a $350 deposit. If you change your mind for any reason within 30 days of booking, we’ll offer you a full refund.

  • Add air to your reservation

    Let our Air Specialists handle your air reservations. We have direct access to the most current airfare routes and prices, so you’ll get the best value available when we book your flights. We never charge a booking fee and you’ll enjoy the flexibility to pay for air 60-90 days prior to departure.

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Price is per person and is based on two people sharing a twin bedded room. Single rooms are available at a supplement.

Single Room Supplement: from $680 per person

Triple Room Discount $150 per person

Gratuities: Option to pre-pay gratuities for Travel Director and Driver $158 per person.

Airport Transfers: On arrival at Zürich airport, transfers depart for Lucerne at 9:30 am and 1:30 pm. Complimentary transfers to the airport, by hotel shuttle, on the last travel day depart every 15 minutes.

AARP Members are entitled to an exclusive Member Benefit Discount on all Grand European Travel vacations. Plus receive a free travel gift!  Call Toll Free: 1-866-847-3858 for details.

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  • Professional Travel Director Professional Travel Director
  • Sightseeing with Local Experts Sightseeing with Local Experts
  • VIP Access VIP Access
  • WIFI on Coach and in Hotels WIFI on Coach and in Hotels
  • Cultural Enrichment Cultural Enrichment
  • Expertly Selected Hotels Expertly Selected Hotels
  • Hotel Tips Hotel Tips
  • Most Meals Most Meals
  • Personal Flight Options Personal Flight Options

Included Quality Dining

13 Breakfasts, 5 Dinners with Wine, all with tea or coffee.

Signature Experiences

  • Visit Mount Stanserhorn with a Swiss Ranger.
  • Stanserhorn: Embark on a spectacular journey to the summit of Mount Stanserhorn and appreciate unrivaled views of snow-capped peaks. Meet a Swiss Ranger and learn about the local wildlife.
  • Bellinzona: Julia Guidotti is your Local Expert as you explore this UNESCO World Heritage Site, known as the capital of Italian Switzerland. Having married and now living in the region, Julia is very passionate to share her story and why she loves the area.

Top Rated Highlights

  • Cruise Lake Geneva • ride the Matterhorn Gotthard Railway to Zermatt • travel onboard the Glacier Express
  • Visit Mount Stanserhorn • Chillon Castle on Lake Geneva • Jobin Swiss Woodcarving Center in Brienz
  • City tour of Bern with a Local Expert
  • See Bahnhofstrasse, Grossmünster, River Limmat and Frauenmünster in Zürich • Lucerne's Lion Monument and Chapel Bridge • Lake Geneva and the Alps from Montreux • Gruyères Castle • Geneva's Jet d'Eau, Floral Clock and Reformation Monument • Martigny's Roman Amphitheater • Sion's fortress-churches, cathedral and Old Town Hall • the Matterhorn from Zermatt • Baveno's cobbled streets and square • the alpine resort of St. Moritz with an included travel pass • the village of Lauterbrunnen • Staubbach Falls • the glacier village of Grindelwald • Swiss countryside is some of the most beautiful in the world.
  • Zürich: Your Travel Director will show you the Bahnhofstrasse, Grossmünster, River Limmat and Frauenmünster.
  • Lucerne: During your orientation with your Travel Director, see the emotive Lion Monument, Jesuit Church and Chapel Bridge.
  • Bern: Your exploration with a local historian through Switzerland's capital includes seeing the floral displays, Bear Pits, Cathedral of St. Vincent, Federal Palace, clock tower and Ogre Fountain.
  • Gruyères: Travel along valley floors covered with rich meadowland, to the pretty town of Gruyères. Your Travel Director leads an orientation tour where you will see See the main street and 13th-century castle.
  • Montreux: At the foot of the Alps this town boasts one of the most beautiful walks along Lake Geneva and there is free time to explore.
  • Chillon Castle: Led by your Local Expert, visit the castle set on a rocky islet in the lake. Following his walk through the dungeons in 1816, Lord Byron wrote the poem 'The Prisoner of Chillon.' Look out for his name, which he carved into a pillar.
  • Geneva: During your orientation, your Travel Director will show you the Jet d'Eau, Floral Clock and Reformation Monument.
  • Lake Geneva: Enjoy first-class seats as you cruise on the serene waters of the King of Lakes, inspiration to the early Romantic movement.
  • Martigny: View the Roman Amphitheater during your orientation.
  • Sion: Your Travel Director will show you the two fortress-churches, the cathedral and Old Town Hall.
  • Zermatt: Ride the shuttle trains of the Matterhorn Gotthard Railway up to the traffic-free Alpine resort. Should weather permit, you may even see the majestic peak of the Matterhorn.
  • Zermatt: Your Travel Director will lead you on an orientation of this picturesque village, high in the mountains.
  • Baveno: During your orientation with your Travel Director see the cobbled streets and 16th century square.
  • St. Moritz: During your orientation of this alpine resort see the spa quarter and glacial lake.
  • St. Moritz: If you think there's no such thing as a free ride, you'd be mistaken! With your inclusive pass, travel on 13 cable cars, funiculars, chairlifts and select public transport options (when available). The crisp Alpine air is included in the deal.
  • Glacier Express: Travel on-board the world-famous Glacier Express, journeying through looping tunnels and dizzying viaducts. Enjoy a glorious adventure in the scenic heart of the Swiss Alps, only possible by rail.
  • Lauterbrunnen: Enjoy your orientation of the village that takes its name from 'many fountains,' referring to the 72 waterfalls that are within the surrounding valley.
  • Staubbach Falls: In the Valley of the Waterfalls, witness these magnificent falls that plunge 300 meters.
  • Grindelwald: Explore this glacier village during an orientation led by your Travel Director.
  • Brienz: Learn the history of woodcarving at the Jobin Swiss Woodcarving Center.
  • Scenic Drives: Swiss countryside is some of the most beautiful in the world. Enjoy drives along Lake Geneva, passing the Vaud Alps and Rhône Valley. Continue through the Simplon Pass, Italian Lake District, Grison Region, San Bernardino, Julier Pass and Engadine Valley. Journey by the Schöllenen Gorge, Grindelwald Valley, through the Brünig Pass and pass Lakes Lungern and Sarnen.
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  • 30 Day Refund Guarantee

    We promise you’ll enjoy a stress-free travel experience from the minute you start your vacation planning or we’ll refund your deposit. Make your reservation with a $350 deposit. If you change your mind for any reason within 30 days of booking, we’ll offer you a full refund.

  • Add air to your reservation

    Let our Air Specialists handle your air reservations. We have direct access to the most current airfare routes and prices, so you’ll get the best value available when we book your flights. We never charge a booking fee and you’ll enjoy the flexibility to pay for air 60-90 days prior to departure.

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Reviews

Saturday, September 29, 2018
Timothy Ohrt
Service:
Vacation:
Service rating : The travel director was very knowledgeable and very organized! We had an excellent experience and would recommend GET to anyone that would like a worry free vacation!
Vacation : We had an excellent experience with GET and would recommend their services to anyone looking for a stress free vacation!
Saturday, September 22, 2018
Roger Stork
Service:
Vacation:
Service rating : Over all the tour was excellent... Mel Lennon made it special and took care of our every need...
Vacation : Your name tags ****.... no good, redo.... Your tours for the costs should include more dinners vs "on your own".
Request a Quote
  • 30 Day Refund Guarantee

    We promise you’ll enjoy a stress-free travel experience from the minute you start your vacation planning or we’ll refund your deposit. Make your reservation with a $350 deposit. If you change your mind for any reason within 30 days of booking, we’ll offer you a full refund.

  • Add air to your reservation

    Let our Air Specialists handle your air reservations. We have direct access to the most current airfare routes and prices, so you’ll get the best value available when we book your flights. We never charge a booking fee and you’ll enjoy the flexibility to pay for air 60-90 days prior to departure.

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  • U.S. citizens traveling to Switzerland must have a current passport valid for six months beyond the conclusion of their trip. You can find information on how to apply for a passport here, and how to renew a passport here. No visa is required for U.S. citizens entering Switzerland.

  • The currency in Switzerland is the Swiss Franc (CHF). While the country is not part of the European Union and thus is not obliged to convert to the Euro, many prices are nonetheless indicated in euros to help travelers compare prices. Some Swiss merchants may accept euros but are not obliged to do so. Change given back will most likely be in Swiss francs. While it’s a good idea to bring some money for when you first arrive in Switzerland, you’ll usually find a better exchange rate in your destination.  The most convenient way to obtain cash is to use your ATM card at local banks in Switzerland. We recommend you also bring a valid credit card for purchases while you are traveling.  It is important that you inform your financial institutions of your travel plans before you leave home so they don’t flag your purchases as potentially fraudulent charges.

  • Swiss cuisine is a flavorful blend of German, Italian, and French influences and a wide variety of regional offerings.  Specialty dishes include fondue and raclette (cheese dipping dishes), sausages and rösti (fried potato), bündnerfleisch (air-dried beef) and fondue bourguigon (cubes of steak with various sauces). Swiss pastries and desserts are excellent. There are also spirits made from fruit; the most popular are Kirsch, Pflümli and Williamine. And don’t miss out on the world-class selection of Swiss chocolate.

  • We suggest bringing a variety of clothing items that can be layered to save space in your suitcase and give you more options for how to dress. It is important to bring comfortable walking shoes and a waterproof jacket. For more helpful information please refer to our Packing Tips & Packing List.

  • A service charge is typically included in the bill at restaurants in Switzerland.  While there is no need to leave an additional tip, you can round up to the next franc for service if you choose.

    At the end of your guided vacation, it’s customary to offer your motor coach driver and Travel Director a gratuity.  We recommend €3.00 per person/per day for your driver and €5.00 per person/per day for your Travel Director.  Recommended gratuity for a Local Host and Local Specialist is 1-2 euros per person, paid at the conclusion of each guided visit.  A convenient option is to prepay your tips before your departure.

  • Baggage on our trips is restricted to one large suitcase per person with dimensions not exceeding 30x19x10 inches and a maximum weight of 50 pounds. You are also permitted one piece of hand luggage, which should be small enough to fit under your coach seat or on the small overhead shelf compartment. Please note that luggage with an adjustable handle and wheels will not fit in the overhead compartment of the coach. Hotel porterage is included in your vacation.

  • You will need to be comfortable on your feet, walking and standing for up to three hours in various weather conditions.  All of our vacations involve walking, often on cobblestone and uneven surfaces in historic city centers.  In order to get the most out of your vacation you need to be able to comfortably walk 1-3 miles unassisted in one day, be in good condition and be able to keep pace with the group. 

    If you need any medications, it is important that you bring enough to last you the whole trip and keep them in your carry-on bag while you travel.

  • We highly recommend our optional Travel Protection Plan, which allows you to cancel for any reason up to 24 hours before departure. The plan also includes trip interruption, baggage loss or delay, and medical and emergency assistance. Click here for a summary of coverage details, terms and conditions.

Request a Quote
  • 30 Day Refund Guarantee

    We promise you’ll enjoy a stress-free travel experience from the minute you start your vacation planning or we’ll refund your deposit. Make your reservation with a $350 deposit. If you change your mind for any reason within 30 days of booking, we’ll offer you a full refund.

  • Add air to your reservation

    Let our Air Specialists handle your air reservations. We have direct access to the most current airfare routes and prices, so you’ll get the best value available when we book your flights. We never charge a booking fee and you’ll enjoy the flexibility to pay for air 60-90 days prior to departure.

Optional Experiences are subject to change. Your Travel Director will supply you with a final list of Optional Experiences available on your trip. Optional Experiences cannot be booked online; they can be purchased during your trip through your Travel Director.

Lucerne

Lake Lucerne Cruise

Adult Price: CHf40.00

A chance to take in the wonderful mountain scenery from a different perspective. Enjoy a leisurely lake cruise, for fine views of the town and it's surroundings. The serene beauty of Lake Lucerne on a summer's day is a joy to behold, made even more enjoyable by the encompassing snow-capped mountains, green pastures and dense forests.

Lucerne

Carriages & Countryside

Adult Price: CHf67.00

In a typical rural community, meet local farmers for a delightful horse-drawn ride. Clip-clop your way through bright green pasture, where the angular spire of a traditional white church shoots skyward and rickety old wooden storehouses still dot the landscape. Call in at a local farm where a wonderful spread of homemade drinks and snacks is served.

Lucerne

Secret Switzerland

Adult Price: CHf46.00

Incredibly, Switzerland provides all its citizens protection in case of nuclear disaster or war. Go behind the scenes for a unique tour of one of the world's biggest civilian fallout shelters! Cold War secrets of the Swiss will be revealed by our expert guide.

Lucerne

Swiss Evening

Adult Price: CHf99.00

There's nothing better than convening with friends around a pot of bubbling fondue with a glass of chilled white wine and having a good yodel! Join us for a tasty Swiss meal in a typical restaurant. While you dine, enjoy a lively folklore show of flag throwing, yodelling, Alpenhorn blowing and other great Swiss entertainment.

Montreux

Lausanne Fondue Evening

Adult Price: CHf97.00

First enjoy a drive along the Swiss Riviera as we travel past the Olympic city of Lausanne. Then, enjoy a three-course meal of classic Swiss meat fondue, served in an historic restaurant with local wines.

Montreux

Charlie Chaplin's World

Adult Price: CHf59.00

Tread in the footsteps of the “Little Tramp” at the genius’s former mansion, perched breathtakingly amongst the vineyards over Lac Leman. All our senses are indulged as we take a journey through replica sets of his greatest films at the Hollywood-style studio. Then, we'll spend time in his family home and round it off with a peaceful walk in the glorious gardens.

Zermatt

Klein Matterhorn Excursion

Adult Price: CHf119.00

A unique electric taxi service will drive us to the foot of Zermatt's highest and most spectacular mountain experience. Enjoy stunning views as we ascend to Furi and Trockener steg before boarding Europe's highest cable car to arrive on the snow-capped top of the world at 3883 m (12,740 ft). A magnificent panorama of the highest peaks in Switzerland, Italy and France will make this an unforgettable experience - one not to be missed.

Italian Lakes

Lake Maggiore Experience

Adult Price: € 84.00

A short hop on our private motor launch brings us to the world-renowned hanging gardens of Isola Bella, where white peacocks preen. In the Borromean Palace, our local expert reveals the grottoes and masterpieces lovingly nurtured by this wealthy Italian dynasty. Our island hopping continues to the quaint Fisherman’s Island where we are treated to a typically local Italian meal - Buon Appetito!

St Moritz

Bernina - Express Excursion

Adult Price: CHf53.00

Enjoy one of the most exciting train rides in Switzerland as you cross the Bernina Pass to the Alp Grum. Spectacular views of the Alpine peaks, glaciers, waterfalls, green valleys and mountain villages. We then descend to Poschiavo to reboard our touring coach.

Interlaken

Jungfrau Excursion By Cog-Wheel

Adult Price: CHf185.00

A once in a lifetime chance to travel to the Top of Europe. Our round trip cog railway trip will take us from Grindelwald through the world famous Eiger Mountain to Europe's highest railway station at 3454 m (11332 ft)! Enjoy spectacular views and explore the Ice Palace which is carved inside the biggest glacier in Europe!

Request a Quote
  • 30 Day Refund Guarantee

    We promise you’ll enjoy a stress-free travel experience from the minute you start your vacation planning or we’ll refund your deposit. Make your reservation with a $350 deposit. If you change your mind for any reason within 30 days of booking, we’ll offer you a full refund.

  • Add air to your reservation

    Let our Air Specialists handle your air reservations. We have direct access to the most current airfare routes and prices, so you’ll get the best value available when we book your flights. We never charge a booking fee and you’ll enjoy the flexibility to pay for air 60-90 days prior to departure.

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