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Swiss Pass and Bernese Oberland Regional Passes

Dallas, Texas
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Swiss Pass and Bernese Oberland Regional Passes

We will be flying into Geneva, staying in Lauterbrunnen for 8 nights and plan to do a lot of hiking and exploring the area - assume a lot of high mountain lifts on a daily basis. It seems that the Swiss pass provides a 50% discount on most mountain rails and cables, but I'm wondering if it would be a good investment to get one of the regional passes. it's difficult to find prices for the mountain transport, which makes it hard to do the math. We're also planning day trips to Lucerne and spending a couple of nights in Zermatt.

Any advice would be much appreciated.

San Jose, CA
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for Wengen, Jungfrau Region
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1. Re: Swiss Pass and Bernese Oberland Regional Passes

IMO (and I have been to Bernese Oberland 15 times in past 15 years, for stays ranging from 2 weeks to 3 months) your best travel discount option, given your travel plans, is the Half Fare Card. It gets you half off of everything including the high mountain trips such as Schilthorn and Jungfraujoch in the Bernese Oberland. Many of the more expensive passes (such as Swiss Pass) get you free trips everywhere in the flatlands and some lower mountain excursions at 50% off but only 25% off of the high mountain excursions. The flat land and lower mountain excursions are relatively cheap. It's the mountain excursions that are pricey. And that's what you want to see in Switzerland.

I would also recommend that you stay in one of the car-less villages up in the mountains (Wengen or Mürren) rather than staying in Lauterbrunnen. Wengen is only 15 mins by rail from Lauterbrunnen but is worlds different. You are in the Alps there, not looking up at them.

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2. Re: Swiss Pass and Bernese Oberland Regional Passes

When are you travelling?

Dallas, Texas
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3. Re: Swiss Pass and Bernese Oberland Regional Passes

Thanks for the advice! We'll be travelling late June to early July.

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4. Re: Swiss Pass and Bernese Oberland Regional Passes

Kimsanjose is a "veteran" of the Bernese Oberland and I would heed the advice on the best pass to buy. I always advise first time visitors to e-mail either through Jungfrau.com or the Interlaken tourist office and get all the main Bernese Oberland tourist brochures mailed before your visit. Lauterbrunnen can be a bit cold and in shadow most of the winter but is very nice in mid-summer. The valley is the finest example of a glacier U valley anywhere. The cliffs make Yosemite feel like molehills. The valley flat and nice walking terrain. The trummelbach falls underground beneath the Jungfrau Massif are worth seeing and as advised the villages of Wengen and Murren on their perches high above the valley are what we come to Switzerland

to see :TIP you must take the cable car down from Murren to Stechelberg - especially if you are of a nervous disposition!!!!!!

Wichita, Kansas
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5. Re: Swiss Pass and Bernese Oberland Regional Passes

'it's difficult to find prices for the mountain transport'

You can 'do the math' by looking at the Jungfraubahn prices here:

jungfrau.ch/en/…

Berner Oberland Regional Pass info at:

www.regiopass-berneroberland.ch/ticket-en/

Four Lauterbrunnen - Kleine Scheidegg or two Lauterbrunnen - Grindelwald round-trips nearly pays for a 3 + 4 day pass.

Wrexham, United...
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6. Re: Swiss Pass and Bernese Oberland Regional Passes

Jungfraubahn Railways also offer a 6 day pass which allow you unlimited travel on most routes within the area, even up to the higher areas such as Kliene Scheidegg & First. Here's the link:

jungfrau.ch/en/sommer/tourism/places-to-visi…

If you use this pass then it gives you the opportunity to explore some of the 'out of pass' areas for your final 2 days after your pass has run out, e.g. Brienz, Ballenberg, Thun etc.

By the way have you decided which hotel you are staying in in Lauterbrunnen? I have previously stayed at the Silberhorn Hotel and can definately recommend it - very handy for the railway station!

Edited: 2:52 am, April 02, 2011
Dallas, Texas
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7. Re: Swiss Pass and Bernese Oberland Regional Passes

We had a lot of debate about where to stay - Murren was actually our top choice (even looked at Gimmelwald just because it looked uncrowded.)

In the end, we found a beautiful private chalet to rent in Lauterbrunnen that will sleep all 5 of our group and we rationalized that it might be easier to do other day trips (Lucerne, Oechininsee, Gelmersee, Aletsch Glacier etc.) from the valley rather than the mountains. (And Lauterbrunnen looks pretty awesome too (http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/7/7c/Lauterbrunnen_valley_in_summer.jpg - I could wake up to that every morning.)

Right or wrong, we're locked in and will find out when we get there.

For the "staying in the alps" experience, we decided on Riffelberg for a couple of nights.

Hope we've made some right decisions - you don't want to mess up a $20K vacation ... Any other must see day trips or hikes that anyone can recommend?

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8. Re: Swiss Pass and Bernese Oberland Regional Passes

I'd relax you are bang on the money in your choices. Although $20k will only last 3 days in Switzerland ;^D Seriously if you enjoy a tipple all bring Duty Free as 16 sfr for a malt whisky is enough to make this Scotsman weep! From Lauterbrunnen your only 25 mins up to Murren or 15 mins to Wengen from where you can choose to hike up or down on the marked routes. 20 mins your back down in Interlaken which is a hub to everywhere else. Riffelberg will be sensational Alpine experience also.

San Jose, CA
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9. Re: Swiss Pass and Bernese Oberland Regional Passes

Lauterbrunnen is a fine choice, glad you were able to find good accomodations.

Re: what to do, I have a 30+ page document of hikes (easy to moderate), excursions, transport tips,etc on the region (written from a Wengen base but easily translatable to Lauterbrunnen since they are so close). Send me a PM if you're interested (I'll need your email address to send it to you)

springfield...
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10. Re: Swiss Pass and Bernese Oberland Regional Passes

Can I get one of your brochures? It sounds like just what we need. Based on this forum, I think I am changing my mind from a 3-day Flexi Pass to a Half Price card. We are going from Zurich to Grindelwald, staying 5 nights to do lots of hiking and high mountain excursions, then out of Switzerland to Italy. Even with all the research I've done, I didn't realize that the high mountain lifts would only be covered 25% on most of the passes.