Christmas trip to Switzerland-Austria

  • 16 March 2023
  • 9 replies

Hi all,

Since I'm new here, let me first say that I'm so excited that I booked my first interrail pass. I also want to share with you my passion for traveling and especially train traveling.  

My question is what city you would suggest to visit for a short stopover in Switzerland (Christmas period) and what's the best itinerary to choose to benefit the most? A friend suggested taking a Swiss train from cologne which has a glass roof and goes along the Rhine???

Any ideas , suggestions are welcomed.  My interrail pass is just for 4 days and I will start from Brussels. 

Thanks in advance 

See you in the train!










Best answer by thibcabe 16 March 2023, 20:42

View original

9 replies

Userlevel 7
Badge +5

It is this journey between Cologne and Basel/Zurich :

The panoramic coach is a 1st class coach but the journey would still be scenic on regular coaches in 2nd class 

Thanks a lot! 

With a first class interrail ticket, do I still need reservation for that train?

Userlevel 7
Badge +5

It is not mandatory but it is advisable to be sure to be on that coach.

4,50€ per journey (no matter the number of trains) and as Brussels - Germany is a busy route, I'd recommend it.

- ICE Brussels - Köln Hbf 08:23 - 10:15

- EC Köln Hbf - Basel SBB/Zürich HB 10:53 - 15:36/17:00

Of course the schedule might change until December

If you like travelling by train I'd recommend a round trip for example something like that : Zurich - Chur - Andermatt - Locarno - Domodossola (short hop in Italy) - Montreux - Bern - Basel. It should be sunnier in the Alps as the lowlands can be covered in fog for days in winter.

Of course there are the usual St. Moritz, Lauterbrunnen/Interlaken and Zermatt but they'll be very touristy around that time of the year

That's great!!

Thanks for the reply! When the time comes and the tickets are on sale, i will follow your advice!

Thanks again for your help 


Hey guys  

Any suggestions which city in Switzerland should I prioritize for a two days trip during Christmas period?

You know,  get the ambience and move to another one etc


Userlevel 7
Badge +5

Well cities in Switzerland are kind of dead anyway, even more in the winter. The exception is of course the local Christmas market but they usually close on 24th December.

Ski resorts will have more activity but it will be expensive to stay. Youth hostels will very often be cheaper.

Cities :

- Zurich, Basel, Luzern or Bern in the German part

- Geneva or Lausanne in the French part

Ski resorts :

- Verbier (known for its night life, British people often go there), Crans-Montana, St. Moritz, Zermatt


Thanks a lot! I guess I wasn't expecting to hear that cities will be dead during Christmas!😄

Anyway, I will probably stay in Zurich for a day, and the next day do a day trip to Luzern. 










Userlevel 7
Badge +5

Well maybe not 100% dead but don't expect Paris, London, Barcelona or Berlin.

There will always a few bars and nightclubs open, especially around the weekend

Yeah. That's what I thought also. In any case I wasn't expecting Paris or London🙃

It will be my first try to get a glimpse of Switzerland. Never been before there.

After all its just a couple of days. A restaurant,  a bar, something interesting to see and off I go to another destination.