We will be in Basel. Which scenic train can I take from there?

Hello, which scenic train can we take from Basel between 23-12-17 and 30-12-17 please? We will have Swiss Travel Pass 2nd class. Will we have to pay extra then?
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  • Jeff (Official Rep) November 22, 2017 16:20
    Hi Larissa,

    I'm sorry, however, there are no trains classified as 'scenic trains' right out of Basel. If you'd like to take a scenic train, it would really depend on where you want to go while you're there. The scenic trains only run on specific routes in Switzerland.
    • Jeff (Official Rep) November 22, 2017 16:21
      The routes in Switzerland designated as 'scenic routes' are the following:

      Glacier Express:

      The Glacier Express is a renowned scenic train that runs between Zermatt and St Moritz. Glacier Express trains have panoramic windows for taking in all the scenery.

      If you prefer, you can take a combination of regional trains that runs along the same route. Between Zermatt and St Moritz, regional train connections along the Glacier Express route would consist of the following segments:

      Zermatt-Visp or Zermatt-Brig
      Visp-Andermatt or Brig-Andermatt
      Andermatt-Disentis
      Disentis-Reichenau or Disentis-Chur
      Reichenau-St Moritz or Chur-St Moritz

      From mid-October to mid-December of each year, the actual Glacier Express trains do not operate, so travelers would have to take a connection comprised of regional trains. The regional trains just would not have the panoramic windows.

      Glacier Express trains require reservations as a supplement to the Swiss Travel Pass.

      The regional trains do not accept reservations, so the Swiss Travel Pass is all you would need to board.

      GoldenPass:

      The GoldenPass is a scenic route between Montreux and Lucerne via Zweisimmen and Interlaken. The full route involves 2 train changes along the way, so it consists of 3 segments. These segments are Montreux-Zweisimmen, Zweisimmen-Interlaken, and Interlaken-Lucerne.

      On the Montreux-Zweisimmen segment, travelers have the option of booking either a ‘Classic’ GoldenPass train or a ‘Panorama’ GoldenPass train. Carriages on the 'Classic' trains have a vintage turn-of-the-century Belle Époque look, whereas the 'Panorama' train carriages have a more modern look. 'Classic' GoldenPass trains also have 'wine cellar coaches', which offer a wider selection of wine than would be offered in the bar cars on the 'Panorama' trains; however, food is available for purchase on both the 'Classic' and 'Panorama' trains. The 'Classic' trains do have large windows, but the windows on the 'Panorama' trains are larger and more panoramic.

      On the Interlaken-Lucerne segment, all trains have panoramic windows.

      With regard to the GoldenPass route, reservations are only recommended on the Montreux-Zweisimmen segment as a supplement to the Swiss Travel Pass. On the Zweisimmen-Interlaken and Interlaken-Lucerne segments, reservations are possible but not necessary.

      Bernina Express:

      The Bernina Express is a scenic train between either St Moritz and Tirano (Italy) or Chur and Tirano (Italy). The Bernina Express route also can include a bus between Tirano and Lugano; however, the bus only operates from April-October each year.

      The actual Bernina Express trains have panoramic windows for taking in the scenery.

      If you prefer, you can take a connection comprised of regional trains that follows the same route. The regional trains just would not have the panoramic windows.

      For a connection of regional trains on the Bernina Express route, you could do one of the following combinations:

      Tirano-St Moritz
      St Moritz-Chur

      or

      Tirano-Pontresina
      Pontresina-Samedan
      Samedan-Chur

      The actual Bernina Express trains (and the Tirano-Lugano bus) require reservations as a supplement to the Swiss Travel Pass.

      The regional trains do not accept reservations, so the Swiss Travel Pass is all you would need to board.

      Gotthard Express:

      The Gotthard scenic route runs between Flüelen and either Bellinzona, Locarno, or Lugano by way of the old Gotthard Tunnel. This route can also include a steamboat between Lucerne and Flüelen (over Lake Lucerne).

      From April to July of each year, there are 'Gotthard Panorama Express' trains running on weekends between Flüelen and Bellinzona. These trains run direct between Flüelen and Bellinzona and have large panoramic windows in 1st class. During this time period, passengers can continue on to Lugano by connecting to a regional train.

      From July to October of each year, these 'Gotthard Panorama Express' trains run daily between Flüelen, Bellinzona, and Lugano.

      On days that the 'Gotthard Panorama Express' does not operate, passengers can still follow along the same route and enjoy the same scenery by taking a combination of regional trains. The regional trains just would not have the panoramic windows.

      The regional trains on the Gotthard Express route are:

      Flüelen-Erstfeld
      Erstfeld-Bellinzona
      Bellinzona-Lugano

      The actual 'Gotthard Panorama Express' trains require reservations, as a supplement to the Swiss Travel Pass.

      The regional trains do not accept reservations, so the Swiss Travel Pass is all you would need to board.

      Chocolate Train:

      The Chocolate Train excursion is a roundtrip journey between Montreux and Broc that starts in Montreux. On the way from Montreux to Broc, the train will make a stop in Gruyères. When you get off the train in Gruyères, you'll be taken by bus to the actual village itself. The trip includes free admission to the cheese factory in the village. After a couple hours in Gruyères, the bus would take you to Broc, where you'd visit the Cailler-Nestlé Chocolate Factory. After a couple of hours at the factory in Broc, you would take the train back down Montreux.

      The Chocolate Train excursion does require reservations as a supplement to the Swiss Travel Pass.
    • Jeff (Official Rep) November 22, 2017 20:25
      For days spent in Basel, you can view various city passes and tours offered by clicking here: https://www.raileurope.com/en/activities/switzerland/basel/.
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