Swiss Tour Day 8: 10 train changes in one day

Posted by Steve Sweeney
on Tuesday, September 18, 2018

INTERLAKEN, Switzerland — Quantity and quality are often traded off one another as mutually exclusive choices. But if you think those are your only choices, you obviously haven’t been on a Trains tour of Switzerland. Because today, after about 10 hours and thousands of feet difference in elevation, our group changed trains 10 times.


(And you smarty pantses out there, we didn’t lose anyone.)

We began the day at Montreux and headed just a couple of miles up the Montreux Oberland Bernois Railway to Chernoix for a shop tour at 07:52. (All times in military time). We had about 45 minutes for the tour and departed on the next train at 09:03 for Zweisimmen. These two trains were on the meter-gauge network known as the Golden Pass Route. It’s scenery was as majestic as it comes traversing the Alps in modern, wood-veneer coaches.

We took an 11:03 train to Spiez on the Bern-Lotschberg-Simplon Railway. We had just a few minutes at Spiez to catch another “BLS” train at 12:05 to Interlacken Ost, where we took the Bernese Oberland Railway to Lauterbrunnen (also meter gauge). That’s where we transferred to the Wengeralp Railway for ascent to Kleine Scheidegg at 13:07. And after a quick latrine stop, we continued on the meter-gauge rack railway Jungfrau Railway to Jungfraujoch, the highest altitude train station in Europe and one of the highest in the world.

BREATHE. No really, the air was thin up there at 11,371-feet above sea level. There we trod on a glacier, took some decent pictures, and bought too much chocolate at the shops atop the mountains. 

We started our descent at 16:43 for Kleine Scheidegg but this time transferred at 17:33 to the train to Grindewald on the Wengeralp Railway. At Grindewald we cross-docked the platform to a waiting Bernese Oberland Railway Train to Interlacken at 18:19.


That was a lot of trains — all narrow gauge, all wonderful, Swiss, and mountainous. 

One of the guests grabbed my arm after dinner tonight and said, “Ten trains in one day is magical.”


Tomorrow, we’re on to Brienz and Lucerne!

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