Paris to Amsterdam, Amsterdam to Interlaken, & Interlaken to Paris

Hello,I am wondering if there are any Eurorail passes that would work for these 4 cities. Are there any extra charges I should know about on top of the pass? We are planning on taking the overnight train from Paris to amsterdam. We will also take the train from amsterdam to interlaken and interlaken to paris. Does it make sense to buy a pass or buy these all separately? Any advice would be appreciated!
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  • Jeff (Official Rep) May 08, 2017 18:32
    Hi Julie,

    For the requested itinerary, the most economical option would definitely be to purchase a rail pass instead of regular tickets. The pass you would purchase is a 4 country Eurail Select Pass to include France, the Benelux, Germany, and Switzerland.

    The Netherlands is included as part of the 'Benelux'. The Benelux covers Belgium, the Netherlands and Luxembourg and counts them as one country for the purpose of rail passes. Therefore, you would include the Benelux as one of the 'countries' on your Eurail Select Pass.

    For the Eurail Select Pass, you would click here: https://www.raileurope.com/rail-tickets-passes/eurail-select-pass/index.html.

    Paris to Amsterdam

    I'm sorry, however, there are no overnight trains from Paris to Amsterdam. The trains during the day are high-speed and the ride takes just under 3.5 hours. The trains from Paris to Amsterdam are Thalys trains.

    These trains do require reservations as a supplement to a rail pass. For travel with a rail pass, you would purchase reservations from Paris to Amsterdam by clicking the 'Seat Reservations' tab on our homepage (www.raileurope.com), entering the route, and indicating the type of rail pass with which you'll be traveling (i.e. a 'Eurail Four Country Select Pass').

    Amsterdam to Interlaken

    The most feasible connection from Amsterdam to Interlaken takes about 9 hours in duration and involves changing trains once in Basel along the way.

    The train from Amsterdam to Basel is a high-speed ICE (InterCity Express) train. On the ICE from Amsterdam to Basel, reservations are highly recommended as a supplement to a rail pass. For travel with a rail pass, you would purchase reservations for the train from Amsterdam to Basel by clicking the 'Seat Reservations' tab on our homepage (www.raileurope.com), entering the route, and indicating the type of rail pass with which you'll be traveling (i.e. a 'Eurail Four Country Select Pass').

    On the trains from Basel to Interlaken, reservations are not necessary, so the rail pass is all you would need to board. You can still check schedules from Basel to Interlaken by doing a search on our website. When you pull up the results of a Basel-Interlaken search, it may state that reservations are recommended on these trains, however, that is not the case. Rest assured, the Eurail Select Pass is all you would need to board.

    Interlaken to Paris

    Connections from Interlaken to Paris take just under 5.5 hours in duration and involve changing trains once in Basel along the way.

    Once again, reservations are not necessary on the trains from Interlaken to Basel, so the rail pass is all you would need to board. You can still check schedules from Interlaken to Basel by doing a search on our website. When you pull up the results of a Interlaken-Basel search, it may state that reservations are recommended on these trains, however, that is not the case. Rest assured, the Eurail Select Pass is all you would need to board.

    In contrast, trains from Basel to Paris are high-speed TGV Lyria trains on which reservations are required. With a Eurail Select Pass that includes France, you would be eligible to receive a discounted rate called the 'Passholder 2' on a TGV Lyria from Basel to Paris.

    It is currently the case that the discounted 'Passholder 2' tickets on trains from Basel to Paris are not able to be purchased on our website. At this time, you would have to call us in order to receive a 'Passholder 2' rate on this train. We can be reached at 1-800-622-8600. Our current hours are 8:00 AM to 6:30 PM CT Monday to Friday and 8:00 AM to 4:00 PM CT on Saturdays.
    • Jeff (Official Rep) May 08, 2017 18:44
      For a stay in Interlaken, you would want to keep in mind that the Eurail Select Pass enables you to receive discounts on the various mountain excursions in the area.

      Jungfraujoch Top of Europe

      To get from Interlaken to the Jungfraujoch Top of Europe station, there are 2 different routes you can take; one that goes via Grindelwald and the other that goes via Lauterbrunnen/Wengen.

      The Grindelwald route would look like this:

      -Train from Interlaken to Grindelwald on the ‘Bernese Oberland Railway’
      -Train from Grindelwald to Kleine Scheidegg on the ‘Wengernalp Railway’
      -Train from Kleine Scheidegg to Jungfraujoch on the ‘Jungfrau Railway’ (the highest railway in Europe)

      The Lauterbrunnen/Wengen route would look like this:

      -Train from Interlaken to Lauterbrunnen on the ‘Bernese Oberland Railway’
      -Train from Lauterbrunnen to Kleine Scheidegg on the ‘Wengernalp Railway’ (Wengen is a stop along this rail line)
      -Train from Kleine Scheidegg to Jungfraujoch on the ‘Jungfrau Railway’ (the highest railway in Europe)

      With the Eurail Select Pass, you would be able to receive a discount of about 25% on either of these routes between Interlaken and the Jungfraujoch Top of Europe. To receive this discount, you would purchase the '1 Day Round-Trip Journey from Interlaken - For Use Only With Eurail Pass Which Includes Switzerland' option of a pass called the 'Jungfraujoch Top of Europe' here: https://www.raileurope.com/activities/jungfraujoch/index.html.

      On the 'Jungfrau Railway' between Kleine Scheidegg and Jungfraujoch, reservations would be highly recommended for travel between the months of May and October. The reservations are a small cost in addition to the 'Jungfraujoch Top of Europe' and have to be made locally at the stations in Interlaken (Interlaken Ost), Grindelwald, Lauterbrunnen, and Wengen.

      Expect stunning views throughout the entire trek between Interlaken and Jungfraujoch, whether you take the route via Grindelwald or the one via Lauterbrunnen/Wengen. To get the most of your Jungfraujoch experience, you might want to consider making your ascent one way and your descent the other. The ‘Jungfrau Railway’ itself runs mostly through a tunnel (the ‘Jungfrau Tunnel’), but there are two ‘sightseeing stops’ in the tunnel (‘Eigerwand’ and ‘Eismeer’) where passengers can exit their train and take in the views through windows built into the side of the mountain.

      At the Jungfraujoch Top of Europe station, you have access to the Sphinx Observation Terrace and the Aletsch Glacier (Great Aletsch Glacier). The Jungfraujoch station (Top of Europe) is the highest rail station in Europe, the Sphinx Observation Terrace is one of the highest astronomical observatories in the world, and the Aletsch Glacier (Great Aletsch Glacier) is the longest glacier in Europe.

      Schilthorn

      There are also 2 different routes you can take to get from Interlaken to Mount Schilthorn; one via Grütschalp and the other via Stechelberg.

      The Grütschalp route would look like this:
      -Train from Interlaken to Lauterbrunnen on the ‘Bernese Oberland Railway’
      -'Grütschalpbahn' cable car from Lauterbrunnen to Grütschalp
      -'Mürrenbahn' train from Grütschalp to Mürren
      -‘Schilthornbahn' cable cars from Mürren to Birg and Birg to Schilthorn

      The Stechelberg route would look like this:

      -Train from Interlaken to Lauterbrunnen on the ‘Bernese Oberland Railway'
      -Bus from Lauterbrunnen to Stechelberg
      -'Schilthornbahn’ cable cars from Stechelberg to Gimmelwald, Gimmelwald to Mürren, Mürren to Birg, and Birg to Schilthorn

      With the Eurail Select Pass, you would be able to receive a discount of about 25% on either of these routes between Interlaken and Schilthorn. To receive this discount, you would purchase the ‘1 Day Round-Trip Journey from Interlaken - For Use Only With Eurail Pass Which Includes Switzerland’ option of a pass called the 'Schilthorn-Piz Gloria'. For the 'Schilthorn-Piz Gloria', you would click here: https://www.raileurope.com/activities/schilthorn-piz-gloria/index.html.

      With the 'Schilthorn-Piz Gloria' pass, only the bus from Lauterbrunnen to Stechelberg would not be covered. If you take the bus between Lauterbrunnen and Stechelberg, you would pay locally.

      'Piz Gloria’ refers to the panoramic revolving restaurant at the Schilthorn summit.

      Harder Kulm (Harderbahn)

      A Eurail Select Pass would also enable you to receive a 25% discount on the Harderbahn funicular in Interlaken. The Harderbahn takes you to a viewing platform at the ‘Two Lakes Bridge’ (Zweiseensteg) for spectacular views of Lake Thun and Lake Brienz below, as well as incredible panoramas of the surrounding Alps; including Eiger, Mönch and Jungfrau. There is also the Harder Kulm Panorama restaurant offering more stunning views.

      To receive the 25% discount, you would purchase the ‘1 Day Round-Trip Journey From Interlaken - For Use Only With Eurail Pass Which Includes Switzerland’ option of the ‘Harder Kulm Top of Interlaken’. For this pass, you would click here: https://www.raileurope.com/activities/harder-kulm/index.html.

      Grindelwald-First (Firstbahn)

      The Firstbahn departs from its base station in the nearby village of Grindelwald. To reach Grindelwald, you would have to take a train along the famed ‘Bernese Oberland Railway’ from Interlaken. The ascent consists of a cable car from the base station in Grindelwald to Bort, another cable car from Bort to Schreckfeld, and then another cable car from Schreckfeld to the summit station of First. Once you’ve ascended to the First summit station, you would have access to the 'First Cliff Walk (by Tissot)', a 131 ft long suspension bridge leading to an observation platform that offers spectacular panoramic views of the valley below and the surrounding mountains.

      The Eurail Select Pass would enable you to receive a 25% discount on the ‘Bernese Oberland Railway’ (Interlaken-Grindelwald) and the Firstbahn cable cars. To receive this discount, you would purchase the ‘1 Day Round-Trip Journey From Interlaken - For Use Only With Eurail Pass Which Includes Switzerland’ option of a pass called the ‘Grindelwald-First Top of Adventure’. You would purchase this pass here: https://www.raileurope.com/activities/grindelwald-first/index.html.

      Schynige Platte

      The nostalgic ‘Schynige Platte Railway’ runs from the nearby village of Wilderswil to the Schynige Platte station. Wilderswil is only a 4-minute train ride from Interlaken on the ‘Bernese Oberland Railway’.

      The Eurail Select Pass enables you to receive a discount of about 25% to take this excursion. To receive this 25% discount, you would purchase the ‘1 Day Round-Trip Journey From Interlaken - For Use Only With Eurail Pass Which Includes Switzerland’ option of the pass for the 'Schynige Platte' here: https://www.raileurope.com/activities/schynige-platte/index.html.

      From Schynige Platte, you’ll have more amazing views of Eiger, Mönch and Jungfrau, as well as Niesen, Stockhorn and Jura. By the station is also Switzerland’s only Alpine Botanical Garden and the Schynige Platte Panorama Restaurant.

      Please note, the ‘Schynige Platte Railway’ only runs from May 27th to October 22nd for 2017.
    • Jeff (Official Rep) April 19, 2018 21:15
      IMPORTANT UPDATE

      As of April 2018:

      ‘Passholder 2’ and ‘Passholder 3’ rates on TGV Lyria trains (Basel-Paris) are no longer valid. For a TGV Lyria to be covered, Eurail Passes must now include both countries being traveled through.
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